FPL Gameweek 17 Wildcard Guide: Best players for the current gameweek

The 2022 FIFA World Cup has recently come to a close, meaning the second half of the Premier League season is just around the corner. FPL Gameweek 17 lies on the historically famous Boxing Day – a day of football where everything kicks off in great fashion. As the Fantasy Premier League season reloads, managers are looking to put together the best possible team for the upcoming gameweeks. Following the postponements earlier in the season, there are a few matchdays coming up where teams will play twice – a sign that FPL is well and truly back.

In this article, we will analyze some key players to consider for GW17, taking into account their form prior to the World Cup break, upcoming fixtures, and value for money. Whether you are looking to make a push for the top of your league or simply trying to solidify your position, these players could be worth considering as you finalize your squad for the next gameweek. Therefore, there is an opportunity for FPL managers and hence we brought you the FPL Gameweek 17 Wildcard Guide to push your rank ahead of common managers.

FPL Gameweek 17 Wildcard Team: Best Goalkeepers

1. Danny Ward (4.1 million)

A cheap keeper option that actually gets consistent minutes never goes amiss. Ward entered the World Cup break in great form, having kept 6 clean sheets out of 8 games, and tallying 52 points plus 8 bonus points. The fixtures aren’t easy for Leicester but we can counter that using a 2nd keeper.

2. Kepa Arrizabalaga (4.5 million)

There is some uncertainty surrounding the situation with Kepa, as the Spaniard is currently tagged with a possible foot injury. However, in a recent press conference, Graham Potter did not mention Kepa in a list of injury doubts, and Kepa was pictured in training too, so he could be available. Chelsea plays twice in GW19, and their fixtures line up well with Leicester City‘s Ward, for example, when Chelsea plays Nottingham Forrest in GW18, Leicester face Liverpool.

Similarly, Ward may be the better option in GW21 when Leicester face Brighton, in comparison to Kepa against Liverpool. Before his injury, Kepa was on fine form and was on a run of 29 points in 5 Gameweeks, averaging 5.8 per game. If he can get back to this level, that would be a very good gain for a decent price as well.

FPL Gameweek 17 Wildcard Team: Best Defenders

1. Joao Cancelo (7.4 million)

Manchester City has a good fixture against Leeds in GW17 and then plays Everton in GW18. Cancelo is a good pick for managers looking to target players with a double gameweek in GW20 as well, especially considering he has played the most minutes out of all City defenders this season with 1116. Additionally, he offers attacking potential and the City defence has also been generally solid this season, ranking highly in terms of goals conceded and expected goals conceded.

2. Kieran Trippier (5.9 million)

Trippier is currently the highest-scoring defender in the game with 96 points. He is on set-piece duty, which gives him a better opportunity to create chances for his team. Trippier has also created the most chances (34) and the most big chances (7) amongst defenders this season, as well as having the highest expected assists total (4.48) of any defender.

Newcastle is the side that has been solid defensively, with the joint most clean sheets in the league (7). These statistics make Trippier an attractive choice for managers looking for defenders with both defensive solidity and attacking potential.

FPL Fantasy Defenders
Image via Premier League

3. Ben White (4.7 million)

White has been a standout player at right-back for his team, contributing both defensively and offensively with 66 points and 2 assists. Arsenal has been strong defensively with the most clean sheets in the league (7) and the second-least expected goals conceded (12.0).

Despite some challenging fixtures on paper, the team has been in great form this season. Additionally, White’s price makes him a more budget-friendly option compared to the other high-scoring defenders at the club, Saliba and Gabriel.

4. Luke Shaw (4.8 million)

Manchester United have a great set of fixtures around the corner, including Nottingham Forrest, Wolves and Bournemouth in the next 3. It’s a good idea to dip a hand into their defence, but the problem is, a lot of their defenders are tagged as injury doubts.

United’s highest points-scoring defender, Diogo Dalot, would be the primary pick, but it is unlikely he makes the starting XI with a hamstring injury. Luke Shaw is a good alternative though, the Englishman was playing regularly in the Premier League prior to the World Cup. With an ownership of just 3.4%, he fits in as a differential too.

5. Nathan Patterson (4.0 million)

Patterson is a budget enabler in this draft, and his low price of 4.0 million releases funds to use for the rest of the team. Out of all the 4.0 million defenders, Patterson has the 2nd most points (23) and this includes that period where he was out injured.

FPL Gameweek 17 Wildcard Team: Best Midfielders

1. Miguel Almiron (5.8 million)

Almiron is in excellent form this season, having scored 8 goals and provided 2 assists for a total of 93 points, the highest of any midfielder in the game. His price of 5.8 million makes him a very affordable option too.

Newcastle United‘s next two fixtures involve Leicester City and then Leeds, both good opportunities for Almiron to hit the ground running after the World Cup break. He is an important player to have ahead of GW17, with high ownership already.

2. Mohamed Salah (12.8 million)

Salah has not had a standout season compared to previous years, but his 6 goals and 4 assists for a total of 82 points have still made him a solid contributor to his team. While his performances may not have lived up to the high standards set in previous seasons, Salah’s price of 12.8 million and his goal and assist output make him a player worth considering ahead of GW17.

3. Gabriel Martinelli (6.4 million)

Martinelli is in fine form for the Gunners so far this season with 5 goals and 2 assists. No other Arsenal player has managed to score more FPL points than Martinelli’s 77 total. As good as he has been, his ownership is equally as high, sitting at 47.8%. Any return from Martinelli could be detrimental to the rank of those that don’t own him.

FPL Fantasy Best Midfielders
Image via Premier League

Arsenal faces West Ham in GW17, followed by Brighton and Newcastle. On paper, these are fairly tough games, but Arsenal has shown what they are capable of this season. Only Manchester City have scored more goals and produced a greater xG than Arsenal this season.

4. Marcus Rashford (6.7 million)

Rashford has registered 4 goals and 2 assists this season and has been in great form this season. The Englishman also showed his class on the international stage, scoring 3 times in the 2022 World Cup. In fact, very recently, the 25-year-old came away with an impressive solo goal against Burnley in the EFL Cup last week.

It’s clear he is high on confidence at the moment. United have a great set of fixtures coming up, including Nottingham Forrest, Wolves, and Bournemouth. Rashford is definitely a midfielder worth considering and offers good value as well.

5. Andreas Pereira (4.6 million)

Pereira has been this season’s budget hero. At a price of a measly 4.6 million, Pereira has gone on to register 2 goals and 4 assists, totalling 61 points. He’s a starter for Fulham and for the given price, it’s difficult to complain. Additionally, Fulham plays twice in GW19 too.

FPL Gameweek 17 Wildcard Team: Best Forwards

1. Erling Haaland (12.2 million)

18 goals in just 13 matches is an extraordinary tally. It took Haaland just 10 minutes to get back on the scoresheet last week in the EFL Cup, after the World Cup break. It’s not a matter of if, and more a matter of when Haaland scores. Haaland is absolutely essential for any serious FPL draft at the moment.

2. Darwin Nunez (9.0 million)

Although a rather controversial pick, Nunez has the potential to be a real asset in FPL. In periods throughout the season, Nunez has come through with some impressive performances, including a brace right before the WC break in GW16 (13 points), and goals against Spurs, West Ham, and Arsenal. He has 5 goals and 2 assists this season, and fans should expect more given he cost Liverpool a lot of money last Summer. He has still been good nonetheless.

FPL Fantasy Best Forwards
Image via Premier League

In a friendly against AC Milan, Nunez hit the target twice and he came away with an assist against City in the EFL Cup. One could argue he misses lots of chances, which is fair, but he is getting those chances which suggests that a bit of confidence could boost Nunez in the right direction. It’s a risky option, particularly at the price point, but the upside is high. For a safer option, Callum Wilson (7.4 million) is a good alternative.

3. Aleksandr Mitrovic (6.8 million)

Mitrovic has been Fulham‘s best hope of a goal this season. He has spearheaded the attack notching 9 goals in 12 games. No other forward has had more attempts at goal than Mitrovic’s 56. Additionally, Mitrovic has received 13 big chances and has averaged an xG of 0.8 per 90, ranking 2nd amongst forwards in the game. Fulham has a decent set of fixtures coming up, and of course, they play the double in GW19 against Leicester City and Chelsea which is a bonus.

FPL Gameweek 17 Wildcard Team: Full Team and Strategy

By far the best captaincy pick is none other than Erling Haaland (vs Leeds). That goal-scoring record is scary regardless of the opposition it is against. Mohamed Salah (vs Aston Villa) is a potential alternative but that doesn’t really make sense given Haaland will very likely be the most captained by a distance. It’s too risky to go differential with the captaincy so Haaland remains the best bet.

FPL Gameweek 17 Wildcard Team
Image via Premier League

For GW17, the bench set-up is as shown in the image above. Away against Crystal Palace is a tough fixture and it’s difficult to see any players taken out from the starting XI to accommodate for Mitrovic. Depending on what happens with Kepa’s potential foot injury, Ward may need to come off the bench. Chelsea’s fixture against Bournemouth is a good one so Kepa starting is the preference. If he doesn’t then it’s no issue as Ward will auto-sub on anyway.

Note: The draft in this article has a total value of just over 100 million. Some FPL managers may have accumulated additional value over the course of the season. In that case, additional funds could be used to upgrade players, such as White to one of Arsenal’s more nailed-on CBs, Saliba or Gabriel.

Did you find our analysis of the FPL Gameweek 17 Fantasy Premier League Guide useful? Are you considering anyone from here? Drop your comments in the comment section below!

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