FPL 2023-24: Gameweek 3 preview

A relatively high number of popular fantasy assets delivered in gameweek 2, with 21%-owned Bryan Mbeumo taking the crown for highest-scoring player of the weekend with 16 FPL points, courtesy of 2 goals at Craven Cottage. The ‘podium’ was completed by fellow midfielder Solly March with 15 FPL points after 2 goals at Molineux and Aston Villa’s Leon Bailey, whose goal and assist resulted in 14 FPL points. The two highest-owned players in the gameweek 2 team of the week are both Brighton assets as well: Pervis Estupiñan with 11 points and Kaoru Mitoma with 12 points.

We might just see a couple of those Seagulls back in the team of the week for the upcoming weekend as Brighton have a relatively favourable fixture at home against West Ham. Other favourable fixtures on paper are Chelsea’s home game versus Luton Town, Spurs’ visit to Bournemouth, Arsenal hosting Fulham, Manchester United at home to Nottingham Forest and Manchester City’s visit to Sheffield United. In other words, we wouldn’t be surprised to see a high points average and a spread of high-scoring players across the weekend.

Don’t forget, the deadline for gameweek 3 is set at 18h30 (UK time) on Friday, August 25th, 2023.

Most transferred in/transferred out players (as per August 24th, 2023)

GKPickford (EVE), Onana (MUN), Raya (ARS)Ederson (MCI), Areola (WHU), Sanchez (CHE) 
DEFStones (MCI), James (CHE), Gabriel (ARS)Estupiñan (BRI), Chilwell (CHE), Akanji (MCI)Stones and James injuries
MIDRashford (MUN), Mac Allister (LIV), Fernandes (MUN)Mbeumo (BRE), Mitoma (BRI), March (BRI)Mac Allister red card, Mbeuma form, Mitoma form, March form
FORPedro (BRI), Darwin (LIV), Mitrovic (FUL)Wissa (BRE), Isak (NEW), Alvarez (MCI)Mitrovic transfer out, Isak form

Premium pick

With Kevin de Bruyne out injured for the foreseeable future, the official fantasy Premier League game actually has just two players of more £10m left. That’s why we have decided to lower the threshold for our premium fantasy pick category to £9m, at least for the time being. This adds Heung-Min Son and Marcus Rashford (£9.0m) to the mix, and we are going with the latter for gameweek 3. Man United’s season start has been underwhelming and the same goes for Rashford, who has not yet found an attacking return. The England international did record an Expected Goal ratio of at least 0.30 in each of the season’s first two games, at home to Wolves and away at Spurs. Up next, the Red Devils are hosting Nottingham Forest, which feels like an excellent opportunity for Rashford to break his 2023-24 Premier League season duck. He might even be considered as an outfield captaincy pick this weekend.

Non-premium pick

So far, there have been six players who respective prices have risen by £0.2m and one of them is Bryan Mbeumo (£6.7m). The Brentford forward, who is listed as a midfielder in the official fantasy game, has had a phenomenal start to the Premier League, scoring 3 goals in the first two games for a total of 23 FPL points. As a matter of fact, only Brighton’s Solly March has scored more points than Mbeumo has after two gameweeks. As a result of Ivan Toney’s 8-month ban, much of the pressure came down on Mbeumo’s shoulders at Brentford and he seems to be handling it perfectly. On top of that, the Cameroon international is available at a very affordable £6.7m and has two favourable games coming up. First, it’s Crystal Palace at home this Saturday, followed by Bournemouth at home in gameweek 4. If Mbeumo can keep up his excellent start-of-the-season form, he could easily reach the £7m+ price levels before the season’s first international break.

The budget enabler

If you’re looking for a budget defensive reinforcement for your squad, Destiny Udogie (£4.5m) is worth placing on your scouting list. The young Italian left-back was bought from Serie A side Udinese last summer for around £ 15 million and then loaned back to the Italians. He impressed there with 3 goals and 4 assists in 34 games, enough even for new Spurs coach Ange Postecoglou to include him in his starting eleven for the first two league games of the current season. That includes a clean sheet against Manchester United last weekend, though a yellow card meant Udogie ended the game with 5 FPL points. More points look to be on the way though, with Spurs facing Bournemouth at the Vitality Stadium this Saturday, followed by a visit to Burnley in gameweek 4 and a home game against Sheffield United in gameweek 5. We wouldn’t be surprised to see Udogie add a clean sheet or two to his encouraging start of the campaign over the next few weeks.

The differential

Despite scoring a goal against Forest in gameweek 1 and providing an assist in gameweek 2 at Selhurst Park, Eddie Nketiah (£5.6m) is still owned by just 6.6% of fantasy managers. In the absence of the injured Jesus Gabriel, the academy graduate has filled in fantastically up front, which makes us think that the striker position is his to lose at the moment. No Gunner asset has scored more than 13 FPL points after two games, while Saturday’s opponent Fulham has the highest Expected Goals Conceded ratio with 3.80 after two games. To make matters worse for the Cottagers, one of their starting centre backs Tim Ream got a red card last weekend against Brentford. In other words, with the visit to the Emirates on the agenda in gameweek 3, everything points at there being a few more conceded goals on the way for Fulham and Nketiah could be the differential pick to benefit from that in a big way.

The (vice-)captaincy

The reason we did not mention Erling Haaland as our premium fantasy pick for gameweek 3 is that we don’t want to be picking the same name every week, but we do pick him as our captain. Manchester City are facing Sheffield United at Bramall Lane and we think this one can really only go one way. Placing the armband on Haaland is probably your safest bet this this weekend.

Interesting alternatives for the Norwegian are Marcus Rashford and Bruno Fernandes at home against Nottingham Forest, and Bukayo Saka at home versus Fulham. Riskier fantasy picks for the captaincy are Ben Chilwell at home against Luton Town, Solly March at home to West Ham and Man City’s Julian Alvarez away at Sheffield United.