Teams with the best matches, players to buy and captain options



Fantasy Premier League match weeks after international breaks are always tricky. Returning player injuries and fitness issues give FPL managers a lot of headaches.

With the Covid-19 pandemic, complexities have increased with players testing positive and facing quarantine. The GW8 falls just after a series of FIFA World Cup qualifiers and the participation of many top players is already in doubt.

The weeks of play following international breaks are therefore often considered the best for jokers and many managers have already taken the plunge. However, a wild card at this point in the current season has raised many dilemmas.

Wildcard in GW8?

Welcoming personalities like Mohamed Salah, Cristiano Ronaldo, Romelu Lukaku and Kevin de Bruyne proves impossible and many FPL managers are trying to strike a perfect balance and plan to rotate these high-end assets according to their dating list.

Among these strengths, Salah’s consistency has been truly remarkable and he is on the list of must-haves. Ronaldo’s goalscoring exploits over the years and also recently during the international break make it very risky to do without him. As for Lukaku and De Bruyne, they have the matches on their side.

At this point, a combination of Salah and Lukaku looks best for the wildcarders as it combines Salah’s consistency and Chelsea’s excellent games which lead xG (Expected Goals) in the Premier League over the past three weeks.

De Bruyne may be on rotation and it hurts his outlook relative to others. As for Ronaldo, Manchester United’s indifferent form may put off FPL managers. It is also possible to try to accommodate three of these assets, but then that requires smart purchases to go with it.

So the wildcard decision in GW8 is subjective and depends on the condition of your team. But if possible, it would still be wise to hold onto your wild card and wait for more data on the bounty as well as budget assets.

Difficulty of assembly

Chelsea, Leeds United, Manchester City and Southampton have the easiest fixtures in the coming weeks. Everton and Arsenal also have games they would be favorites to win. Leicester and Wolves are also two teams FPL managers can bet on in the coming weeks, watching their matches.

Brighton and Crystal Palace have tough games ahead, as do Spurs, West Ham, Manchester United and Watford.

Team Combined difficulty rating for GW 8-10 Opponents of GW8 Opponents of GW9 Opponents of GW10
Arsenal 8 (2, 3, 3) CRY (H) AVL (H) LEI (A)
Aston Villa 10 (2, 4, 4) WOL (H) ARS (A) WH (H)
Brentford 9 (4, 3, 2) CHE (H) LEI (H) BUR (A)
Brighton 11 (2, 4, 5) NOR (A) MCI (H) LIV (A)
Burnley 9 (5, 2, 2) MCI (A) SOU (A) BRE (H)
Chelsea 6 (2, 2, 2) BRE (A) NOR (H) NEW (A)
Crystal Palace 11 (4, 2, 5) ARS (A) NEW (H) MCI (A)
Everton 8 (4, 2, 2) WH (H) MATH) WOL (A)
Leeds 6 (2, 2. 2) SOU (A) WOL (H) NOR (A)
Leicester 9 (4, 2, 3) MUN (H) BRE (A) ARS (H)
Liverpool 9 (2, 4, 3) WAT (A) MUN (A) BHA (H)
City of man 7 (2, 3, 2) BUR (H) BHA (A) CRY (H)
Male Utd 10 (3, 4, 3) LEI (A) LIV (H) TOT (A)
Newcastle 9 (3, 2, 4) TOT (H) CRY (A) CHE (H)
City of Norwich 10 (3, 5, 2) BHA (H) CHE (A) LEE (H)
Southampton 6 (2, 2, 2) LEE (H) BUR (H) WAT (A)
Spurs 10 (2, 4, 4) NEW (A) WHU (A) MUN (H)
Watford 10 (4, 4, 2) LIV (H) EVE (A) SOU (H)
Western ham 10 (4, 3, 3) EVE (A) TOT (H) AVL (A)
wolves 9 (3, 3, 3) AVL (A) LEE (A) EVE (H)
According to the official FPL website

The big ins and outs

Everton’s low-budget midfielder Andros Townsend, who excelled under Rafa Benitez, is the most bought player this week as FPL managers seek efficient and cheap midfield options to accommodate the active premium. Another such player who is the third most purchased player this week is Wolves’ Hwang. Manchester City’s Cancelo is also in demand with Leicester star striker Jamie Vardy. Salah’s ownership continues to swell and is now owned by 62% of the FPL teams.

Most transferred players before GW8

Pos Player club
FED to cancel MCI
According to the official FPL website on Friday midnight

Surprisingly, Ronaldo and Lukaku top the release list this week, but it shows that FPL managers are looking to spin their premium assets and keep those with the best matches on the team. Manchester United stars Paul Pogba and Mason Greenwood, whose form has declined in recent weeks, are leaving the squads.

Trent Alexander-Arnold is also set to leave the squad, in part because he has been listed as an injury doubt. But the Liverpool full-back is back in training and is set to start against Watford.

The latest addition to the roster is Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger who has been sent off with a back injury.

Most transferred (retired) players before GW8

Pos Player club
FWD Ronaldo MUN
FED Rudiger CHE
FWD Lukaku CHE
According to the official FPL website on Friday midnight

Top Picks for Gameweek 8

Whether you bring them via transfers or (luckily) already have them on your squad, these are the five hottest picks for GW8.:

Mohamed Salah (Liverpool): His massive ownership numbers suggest Salah is probably already on your team, but we want to reiterate his importance once again. He faces a Watford side who have the fourth-worst xGA (expected goals against) in the Premier League in the last three match weeks. Liverpool are the best for shots inside the box in the Premier League and Salah lead the same metric in the player rankings. Absolute evidence.

Jamie Vardy (Leicester): After playing Kelechi Iheanacho’s second fiddle for part of last season, Vardy is Leicester’s best dog again and has quietly helped himself to six goals this season. He has also topped the xG charts for the past three weeks and faces a fragile Manchester United side who are expected to do without first-choice center-back Raphael Varane and Harry Maguire.

Cancelo (Manchester City): Pep Guardiola’s side have the league’s best joint defensive record and face a Burnley side with the league’s worst goalscoring record. Cancelo is more than just clean sheets. He has the potential to contribute to goals and also has the most bonus points among City defenders.

Romelu Lukaku (Chelsea): The Blues created plenty of chances against Southampton and although Lukaku was more involved in creating those openings, the goals will come for the Belgian, especially if Reece James returns as a winger. Brentford have the Premier League’s fifth-worst xGA in the last three games and have looked more vulnerable defensively in recent times. The Blues, who topped the xG charts during this time, will look to exploit that.

Kevin de Bruyne (Manchester City): City have an excellent series of matches and De Bruyne is a target for FPL managers. It still has a relatively weak property and has the potential to be a constant source of points, especially in the weeks to come. Man City have come out on top in recent weeks and could really put Burnley at the edge of the sword this weekend. It’s time to integrate the Belgian before he is part of all the other teams.

Best differential picks for GW8:

Timo Werner (Chelsea): The German has really struggled during his time in England but has put in good performances in club and country in the last fortnight. Werner is fifth in the xG charts over the past three GWs and seems to benefit from Lukaku’s presence. His performance for Germany suggests he could return to his best and could be an incredible differential in the weeks to come. Owned by just 2% of FPL managers, Werner seems like a punt worth taking.

Phil Foden (Manchester City): A City midfielder who performed very well last season makes perfect sense this season. After scoring at Anfield in the 2-2 draw, he followed with very good performances for England. Held by 2.8% of FPL managers, he is a good differential to have against Burnley.

Neal Maupay (Brighton): With four goals Maupay has been Brighton’s best forward so far this season. Owned by just 4.1% of FPL managers, the Frenchman could be a good differential player to own in GW8 as Graham Potter’s men take on a struggling Norwich who has the division’s worst defensive records.

The riddle of the harbor master’s office

The call to the harbor master’s office becomes difficult every week with so many premium assets. Some of the midrange and low budget players also showed consistency, making the decision even more difficult. The main contenders for the armband are Salah, Lukaku, De Bruyne and Ronaldo. Ronaldo’s potential to return with a huge booty seems the weakest given the opponent he faces.

As for the other three, it’s pretty close. Lukaku is probably having the toughest game of the other three and De Bruyne is still in full swing. So, Salah, who has been so consistent this season, seems the best bet for the captain position in GW8. In the current form and the way Liverpool play with the Egyptian at the heart of their football, it’s hard to look past him.

The Field FPL team

7-point play week: 43

Field’s FPL team scored above average in GW7. We made a mistake in our captain call, but we were saved by our defense and Salah. Despite some injury doubts, we only make one transfer this week. Bring in Bukayo Saka from Arsenal for Pablo Fornals from West Ham. Saka appears to be the best bet among the Gunners forwards as they head for a good streak of games.

Antonio Rudiger’s injury is a bit of a blow to us, but we resist the dismissal of the Chelsea defender as there is little merit in taking a hit for a defensive change. The German will be an asset in the coming weeks as Chelsea’s games remain quite good.

Salah has the armband this week, with Lukaku being the vice-captain.

This is our team for GW8.

FPL deadline for GW8: Saturday Sat October 16 3:30 p.m.

(Courtesy of Statistics: FPL website,, and Ownership figures as of Friday night)


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