After back-to-back gameweeks with a 57-point average, gameweek 3 was another relatively high-scoring round with an average of 48. It wasn’t a big one for the official game’s premium assets though, with Tottenham’s Ivan Perisic the only asset that can possibly be considered a premium pick in the Team of the Week. Arsenal’s Martin Odegaard was GW3’s top performer with 16 FPL points, followed by his teammate William Saliba with 14 points and Leeds winger Jack Harrison with 14 points as well. In total, eight of the highest-scoring players in the team were owned by less than 10% of fantasy managers.
Looking at this weekend’s fixtures, things might turn out quite differently in comparison, with Liverpool, Manchester City, Arsenal and Chelsea all playing favourable opposition (on paper), while Spurs host Nottingham Forest. It’ll also be interesting to see how Man United’s surprise win over archrivals Liverpool has impacted them and to what extent Erik ten Hag can build on that performance for their visit to Southampton, the opening game of gameweek 4.
Don’t forget, the deadline for gameweek 4 is set at 11h00 (UK time) on Saturday, August 27th.
Most transferred in/transferred out players (as per August 26th, 2022)
|TRANSFERS OUT||TRANSFERS IN||POSSIBLE REASONS|
|GK||Mendy (CHE), Alisson (LIV), Ederson (MCI)||Sanchez (BRI), Henderson (NFO), Pope (NEW)|
|DEF||Koulibaly (CHE), Alexander-Arnold (LIV), James (CHE)||Perisic (TOT), Trippier (NEW), Saliba (ARS)||Koulibaly red card, TAA and James lack of returns|
|MID||Saka (ARS), Neto (WOL), Son (TOT)||Rodrigo (LEE), Zaha (CRY), De Bruyne (MCI)||Rodrigo form, Zaha form, Saka and Son lack of returns|
|FOR||Darwin (LIV), Greenwood (LEE), Mitrovic (FUL||Toney (BRE), Jesus (ARS), Mitrovic (FUL)||Darwin red card, Toney fixtures, Jesus form + fixtures|
If you’ve been following our gameweek previews for a while already, you know how highly we rate Mo Salah (£13.0m), just like 59.8% of fantasy managers in the official game. Despite a top-notch performance by young United left-back Tyrell Malacia covering the Egyptian last Monday, Mo still managed to get a return for his owners. As a result of a goal and 1 bonus points, he finished on a decent 8 FPL points, putting him on a total of 22 points from the season’s first three games. Liverpool’s talisman now has new boys Bournemouth coming up and we’re betting on yet another return from the Egyptian king. The Cherries have conceded 7 goals in three games, though it should be noted that those came in a 4-0 loss at Man City and a 3-0 home defeat against in-form Arsenal. Then again, Liverpool should, in theory be at the same level as those two opponents, despite the Reds not yet living up to expectations this season. We can see Jurgen Klopp’s bouncing back from their defeat at Old Trafford and we feel that a home game against Bournemouth provides a perfect opportunity to do so.
There are lots of options to choose from in the non-premium category at the moment, but few present as much value as Gabriel Martinelli (£6.4m). The Brazilian forward, who is classified as a midfielder in the official game, hit the ground running this season and has yet to go a league game without returning. He scored in gameweeks 1 and 2 for consecutive 8-pointers and then provided an assist last weekend for 6 points, bringing his total to 22 FPL points from three games. At a starting price of just £6.0m, that’s phenomenal and when looking at Arsenal’s upcoming fixtures, Gabby’s purple patch might just keep going for the foreseeable future. Tomorrow, it’s Fulham at home, followed by Aston Villa at home, two games in which we can easily see him add to his current tallies. Rotation will, of course, become a bit more of an issue over the coming gameweeks as Premier League clubs will be playing three games over a one-week period, but we’re still recommending bringing Martinelli in before his price rises any further.
The budget enabler
Our budget enabler for gameweek 4 is not the most exciting of picks, but one we feel that is dependable, both in terms of playing time and fantasy returns. Ben White (£4.5m) has filled in for Tomiyasu at right-back since the start of the 2022-23 Premier League campaign and we expect him to retain his place in the starting eleven once the Japanese international is back to full fitness. While Saliba and Gabriel have performed well as the Gunners’ central duo, it’s hard to see manager Mikel Arteta bench White. Saliba is a great budget option as well, but he costs £0.1m more than White already, while Gabriel is priced at £5.0m. In other words, from a purely budget perspective, White is coming out on top here. The former Brighton Player of the Year has recorded 13 FPL points from three games so far, courtesy of 2 clean sheets and 1 bonus point, and more points look to be on the way for him and the rest of the Arsenal defence. Up next are two home games (Fulham and Aston Villa) that should see the Gunners add 6 points to their perfect start to the season, and hopefully they can book a clean sheet in at least one of these games.
While Rodrigo Moreno is stealing all the highlights at the moment, and rightly so considering his incredible 35 FPL points from three starts, there is another Leeds asset going under the radar in his shadow. We already mentioned Jack Harrison (£6.0m) in our gameweek 2 preview and the 25-year-old has not let up since then. After consecutive assists in gameweeks 1 and 2, recording 6 and 4 FPL points respectively, his big moment came last weekend in the shape of a goal and an assist in the impressive 3-0 home win over Chelsea. With 14 FPL points, Harrison delighted the 3.2% of fantasy managers who own him and we can see that delight being extended over the coming gameweeks. While this weekend’s visit to Brighton is going to be a tough one, the Whites are riding a wave of confidence and they are facing Everton (home), Brentford (away) and Nottingham Forest (home) after that. Harrison has the form, the fixtures and the price tag to remain as one of the best budget-enabling value picks over the short and medium term.
As we wrote earlier, the coming weekend sees all of the traditional top six lining up for favourable fixtures, so there are quite a lot of captaincy candidates available. We’re slapping the armband on Mo Salah’s forearm for Liverpool’s home game against Bournemouth as we can see the Egyptian leading a bounce-back after the United defeat, but there are plenty of excellent alternatives as well.
Those standing out are Manchester City aces Kevin de Bruyne and Erling Haaland, who are facing a resilient Crystal Palace defence at the Etihad. Current table leaders Arsenal also boast a couple of major captaincy options in Gabriel Jesus and Gabriel Martinelli for Fulham’s visit to the Emirates. Harry Kane could very well make it three consecutive games with a goal for Spurs’s visit to Nottingham Forest, while his teammate Heung-Min Son could take the opportunity to net his first of the season. More differential picks for the armband are Ivan Toney at home against Everton, James Ward-Prowse at home against Manchester United and Marcus Rashford in that same game.