As the season nears its midway point, Fantasy Premier League is set for a massive shakeup in the coming weeks with managers having to factor in Blank Gameweek 18 as well as the Africa Cup of Nations and Asian Cup tournaments next month.
Manchester City assets will also be unavailable to cushion any shortage of points due to their involvement in the FIFA World Club from Gameweek 18. This means that the game is set to be without the likes of Erling Haaland, Mohamed Salah, Son Heung-min, Kaoru Mitoma and Hwang Hee-chan for varying periods and new assets must be discovered.
The FootballCastle helps you with the best tips to consider when planning your squad for what will surely be a tedious period in FPL. Remember to make all your planned changes ahead of the deadline on Friday, 15 December at 18:30 GMT.
Emiliano Martínez (£5.0m)
The World Cup winner has registered 19 points from back-to-back clean sheets in massive home victories against Manchester City and Arsenal.
Aston Villa’s excellent form this season sees them only two points behind the league leaders and the consistency of performances raises their keeper’s FPL prospects.
Martin Dubravka (£4.1m)
Newcastle United may have tasted successive defeats but their exit from the UEFA Champions League could spur them on domestically. Meanwhile, their home form suggests Dubravka can offer great value in Gameweek 18.
Newcastle have conceded only once in their last six Premier League matches at St. James’ Park, keeping five clean sheets in that run. Home matches against Fulham and Nottingham Forest over the next three GWs make Dubravka a top pick.
Pedro Porro (£5.4m)
The Tottenham right-back is a popular pick for GW17 after four assists in the last five games. Porro is the most-bought defender so far and he can continue to haul at both ends of the pitch having delivered ten returns from his 15 appearances.
Marcos Senesi (£4.4m)
Senesi has been instrumental in Bournemouth’s five-game undefeated streak and he even popped up with a goal and clean sheet in each of his last two matches.
The Argentine centre-back has 36 points from two goals and three clean sheets during their current run and he can keep up the excellent form with Luton Town, Nottingham Forest and Fulham up next.
Pau Torres (£4.7m)
Going at a fantastic bargain price, the Spaniard has been a quiet performer in the Aston Villa backline with two goals and four clean sheets so far.
Torres is playing with confidence and getting scoring chances, he also offers routes into the fourth-best defence in the league. What more do you want in an FPL defender?
Trent Alexander-Arnold (£8.2m)
His price may be a big issue, but Alexander-Arnold is worth his FPL value and over 15 per cent of his owners would agree.
The Liverpool man has delivered 37 points in the last four GWs thanks to two goals, two assists and a clean sheet. Hence, he offers multiple routes to returns against Manchester United.
Bukayo Saka (£9.0m)
The Arsenal winger boasts a goal, five assists and two clean sheets in the last eight GWs while he also has a flawless home record this season.
Saka is yet to blank at the Emirates Stadium where Brighton will be visiting with their questionable defence which is yet to keep a clean sheet this term.
Jarrod Bowen (£7.7m)
The West Ham top scorer is primed to haul against a Wolves side who have conceded at least twice in each of their last three away matches. Bowen started the midweek European game against Freiburg but was taken off in the second half.
Alex Iwobi (£5.3m)
A switch to the right wing is bringing out the attacking best in Iwobi who has notched three goals and an assist in the last four games. Those exploits have seen him gather 31 FPL points as Fulham have scored at least three goals in each of the last four matches, winning the last two 5-0.
Although they are much better at home than on their travels, Fulham’s new-found attacking impetus as well as Newcastle’s three successive defeats in all competitions could swing this in the away side’s favour.
Leon Bailey (£5.5m)
The winger has had three consecutive starts and produced two goals with an assist in that time. Bailey is emerging into a key player for Unai Emery and he can be relied upon during a home meeting with Sheffield United in Blank Gameweek 18.
With many FPL assets having question marks over their availability for the coming weeks, Bailey could step up with further games against Burnley and Everton over the next five GWs.
Abdoulaye Doucoure (£5.6m)
The midfielder has combined three goals and an assist with three clean sheets in the last five GWs for an ever-improving Everton side. Doucoure is set up nicely for the trip to Burnley who have conceded 20 goals in eight home games.
Mohamed Salah (£13.2m)
The Liverpool marksman is famously a good performer against Manchester United so you should very much captain him in GW17. Salah delivered a season-high haul of 21 points after scoring twice and supplying two assists in a 7-0 win in this same fixture last season.
He also has three goals and as many assists in the last five games and earned a rest in midweek.
Matheus Cunha (£5.7m)
The Brazilian has been on a reliable run of three goals and two assists from the last five GWs, amassing 31 points.
Wolves have a decent schedule and Cunha would remain a key element of their attacks with his all-round qualities.
Dominic Solanke (£6.6m)
With doubts surrounding Haaland’s availability, FPL managers can depend on Dominic Solanke who nevertheless has a good run of fixtures. With eight goals, the 26-year-old is already enjoying the most prolific Premier League campaign of his career.
Bournemouth have also won four of their last five league games and next face a Luton side yet to keep a clean sheet so far. Solanke can continue to add to his tally considering his underlying numbers and the performances of his teammates.
Alexander Isak (£7.6m)
The Swede should return to the starting lineup in GW17 after his cameo against AC Milan in midweek. Isak scored four of his seven goals so far at St. James’ Park and he should get good opportunities against Fulham.