FPL Goalkeepers GW09
International breaks are usually boring for avid FPL managers, but the last one has been more of a nightmare as injuries and the widespread of COVID-19 have left quite a few casualties that are going to impact GW09.
Some managers have already made up their minds and pulled the wildcard trigger. Others have gone as far as to activate Free Hit. If you are one of those I’m sure you already toying with your squad and planning ahead of what’s the busiest period of the year in FPL.
Chips are even more valuable this season given the amount of injuries and infections so planning has to be more meticulous than in previous years.
This time I will focus on 3 goalkeepers I believe are the standout options until the end-of-the season double gameweeks (DGW).
The GK position may not be the most important one as the ceiling is low more often than not but it’s crucial to find one or two goalkeepers and stick with them throughout a great chunk of the season. Using free transfers for goalkeepers is not optimal, so the choice has to be calculated, particularly for those who opt to buy only one playing goalkeeper and keep him for as long as possible.
Emiliano Martínez (AVL | 4.8)
Emiliano Martínez (4.8) is already owned by over a quarter of the registered teams, the Argentinian has been a revelation since he came on for Bernd Leno at Brighton last season. He has since kept 7 clean sheets. While it is true that Aston Villa have been “leaky” of late, conceding 7 goals in the last 4 gameweeks, Martínez is the first option I’ve chosen mainly because he has a good run of favourable fixtures ahead as well as a double gameweek.
His next six gameweeks are against teams that are in the bottom half for big chances created, which fares well for a goalkeeper who is a decent shot stopper.
In spite of his atrocious performances versus Leeds and Southampton, only four goalkeepers have been better than him at saving shots from outside the box. He’s the keeper with most shots on target faced (29) after Ramsdale (4.8), Areola (4.5) and Darlow (5.0).
It’s also worth noting his penalty save record is a very decent one as he’s saved 5 out of 11 penalties in his career. Even though the Villa defence can be inconsistent and unpredictable, he averages 3.14 saves per match this season, so you can count on save points and even bonus points when Villa don’t score many goals and they keep a CS.
Villa are having a season to remember so far having had their best start in over 20 years and he’s got a decent run of fixtures till GW30, so there’s a case to be made to buy him as your only playing goalkeeper and spend the extra money elsewhere to reinforce attacking positions.
However, he isn’t as cheap anymore, so let’s consider other options who are in a similar price range.
Edouard Mendy (CHE | 5.1)
Ever since his arrival at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea started showing defensive solidity and he’s played a big part in it.
He’s kept 6 clean sheets in 7 seven games for Chelsea this season, including one against Spanish side Sevilla and one away at Manchester United. Chelsea seem to have found a great center-back pairing in Kurt Zouma and Thiago Silva, something that could only benefit Mendy’s output this season.
He may have played only 4 Premier League games so far but he’s already showed his quality.
He is yet to commit an error leading to goal and has got the highest save percentage per 90 (85.7) among all GKs. His fixtures are certainly not the best but Chelsea look very promising not only attacking wise but as a defensive unit.
Since Mendy’s arrival they are the second team with fewest big chances conceded just behind Newcastle and second best when it comes to attempts in the box conceded, second to Brighton.
Now some could argue it’s not worth sacrificing a third Chelsea slot with Mendy as the attackers, or the attacking defenders are just too good given their high ceiling, but he is cheaper and nailed to start all games unless he gets injured or infected.
For those who want a double up in Chelsea defensive assets, the former Rennes player could be a cheaper route and he will definitely rack some some save points.
Currently owned by only 6,4 % of the FPL managers – he’s also a differential.
Lukasz Fabianski (WHU | 5.0)
I would definitely include Ederson (6.0) as my third option as I believe Manchester City will keep many clean sheets over the next 10-15 gws and has a DGW too. However, he’s expensive if we compare him to the likes of Joao Cancelo (5.4) and Rúben Dias (5.5) so that’s why I’ve decided to include the Polish goalkeeper, who despite struggling with injuries last season, has delivered in recent GWs.
This seems like a kneejerk inclusion given he stopped a very easy penalty versus Fulham but the Polish stopper is famous for having a good penalty save record – he’s saved 7 penalties as a Premier League player; just 6 to go and match David James’ all-time Premier League record.
In addition, Fabianski plays for a much-improved West Ham defence compared to that of last season. Despite keeping only 3 clean sheets this season, the Hammers are yet concede an error leading to goal. Only five teams have conceded fewer shots on target this season and if we consider Fabianski is one of the best shot stoppers in the league, we can expect plenty of save points.
For example, the game versus Manchester City. He amassed all three bonus points is spite of conceding one goal. This is precisely why he is poised to be a great pick over the next 15 gameweeks.
He is certainly more expensive than other West Ham value picks such as Coufal (4.6) or Balbuena (4.4), but if you’re looking for lesser owned assets he’s a great option being currently selected by a mere 2.5 of the teams registered.
Contenders such as Leno and Pope (which I picked before the season started) are good options too but he edges it due to his fixture calendar and to the fact their defence is enjoying some momentum. Even though we must take West Ham defensive stats with a pinch of salt as we need a bigger sample to assess their defensive prowess, I just think Fabianski has to the experience to shine even in difficult games so he’s a great set-and-forget goalkeeper.
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