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De Gea dominance unshaken

The Scout 5 Sep 2016
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Man Utd stopper remains most popular pick but which goalkeeper has been drafted in the most ahead of GW4?

Recent injuries and new arrivals have yet to make a major impact on the selection of Fantasy Premier League goalkeepers.

Indeed, with two clean sheets and 14 points claimed so far, Manchester United’s David de Gea (£5.5million) has only seen his ownership grow, with the Spaniard now found in 46.6% of squads.

Hull City’s Eldin Jakupovic (£4.1m) remains the second most popular option, selected by 20.3% of teams.

More than 278,000 FPL managers have paired the aforementioned duo in their squads, turning to Jakupovic to provide back-up for De Gea.

The Tigers shotstopper has also been the most sought after 'keeper ahead of Gameweek 4 – over 600,000 have acquired his services - but Hull City's transfer window dealings now threaten to slow his progress.

The acquisition of David Marshall (£4.5m) could see Jakupovic drop to the substitutes bench, limiting his minutes from this point on.

Hull City v Leicester City
Eldin Jakupovic is currently the most transferred-in goalkeeper ahead of Gameweek 4

That will likely spark a promotion for Sunderland’s Jordan Pickford (£4.0m) as the preferred budget option.

The Black Cats have so far failed to recruit reinforcements in goal following Vito Mannone’s (£4.5m) elbow injury and that leaves Pickford as David Moyes’ current first-choice option.

The 22-year-old is an injury doubt for the Gameweek 4 meeting with Everton due to a minor thigh problem but is expected to take his place between the sticks.

Pickford has attracted 16,000 new owners ahead of Gameweek 4, edging him to 8.3% ownership. That seems likely to accelerate should he be fit to face Everton.

Swansea City’s Lukasz Fabianski (£5.0m) is the current top overall points scorer for goalkeepers on 19 and is the fourth most transferred in 'keeper ahead of Saturday’s deadline, with more than 29,000 new FPL managers looking to the Poland international.

This is somewhat surprising given the Swans’ forthcoming schedule.

Francesco Guidolin’s side register a total of 17 Fixture Difficult Ranking (FDR) points over their next five outings, with Chelsea, Manchester City and Liverpool all due at the Liberty Stadium.

Fabianski will also face testing trips to Southampton and Arsenal before his schedule begins to brighten up from Gameweek 9 onwards.

Those seeking to rely on future fixtures to pave the way for returns should look instead to Petr Cech (£5.5m).

The Arsenal man is about to embark on a kind run of opponents that amount to just 11 FDR over the next seven Gameweeks.

Cech is currently found in 16.9% of squads but that could be set to rise significantly over the coming weeks.

Arsenal v Liverpool - Premier League
Petr Cech's ownership of 16.9% is set to rise in the coming weeks, says The Scout

With Shkodran Mustafi (£6.0m) expected to oust Rob Holding (£4.5m) to the bench, Cech now looks to be the cheapest certain starter in Arsene Wenger’s defensive unit.

If Cech’s fee remains out of reach, both West Bromwich Albion’s Ben Foster (£4.6m) and Burnley’s Tom Heaton (£4.5m) remain popular and worthy alternatives.

Foster’s FDR score of seven over the next four Gameweeks should help keep his tally ticking over.

Heaton records 10 FDR over the same spell but will likely offer points from saves to repay his modest 8.3% ownership. The Clarets No 1 has so far made 18 saves, more than any other FPL keeper.

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