20 Teams: 20 Players looks at the best fantasy football options from each team, each week. From the must starts to the best of a bad bunch, here are this week’s picks for Gameweek 6 of the 2016/17 season.
Arsenal (Chelsea H)
Alex Iwobi: Alongside Alexis Sanchez, this youngster stood out as Arsenal’s most impressive performer in a 4-1 drubbing of Hull. Wenger may want to tweak this winning formula for the visit of Chelsea, but despite the magnitude of the game Iwobi should start on the left with Sanchez as the primary striker. It paid off last time as the youngster bagged two assists.
Bournemouth (Everton H)
Callum Wilson: The Englishman broke his duck in Gameweek 4 but was powerless to make a dent in Manchester City’s armour last time out. Eddie Howe and co will hope for a better result against Everton, but with the Toffees now boasting one of the best defences in the league, it’s no easy feat.
Burnley (Watford A)
Stephen Defour: The Belgian appears to be at the heart of everything positive for Burnley these days and nowhere was this more apparent than their Gameweek 4 with Hull. Defour put the Clarets a goal up before it was cancelled out by Robert Snodgrass’s equaliser. Their meeting with Leicester wasn’t as productive but Defour could play a key role against an Watford – even after their recent scalp.
Chelsea (Arsenal A)
Diego Costa: His goal record reads five in five this season, but card count reads three in as many games. He walks a tightrope but Diego Costa has started this season like feral bull, blasting through any defence that stands in his path. His working relationship with Antonio Conte looks to be bringing back the best in his him after a season in the relative wilderness.
Crystal Palace (Sunderland A)
Christian Benteke: Palace appear to finally have the centre-forward they’ve been searching for. It feels like decades since the Eagles had a top class centre-forward at the peak of his powers, and in the Christian Benteke they have just that. The Belgian likewise appears to be bringing out the best in widemen Andros Townsend and Wilfried Saha.
Everton (Bournemouth A)
Romelu Lukaku: A frustrating and often wasteful player at times, when Romelu Lukaku is on his game, he’s a breathtaking player – and we’re currently smack dab in the middle of one of his purple patches. The Belgian has now struck four times in his last two games and if benefitting hugely from both Ronald Koeman’s structure as well as a budding understanding with Everton newcomer, Yannick Bolasie.
Hull City (Liverpool A)
Robert Snodgrass: Snodgrass’ affordable price a eye for a goal this season make him Hull’s stand out player this season – certainly in fantasy terms – even if his side’s promising start to the season is starting to ebb away.
Leicester City (Manchester United A)
Islam Slimani: The Foxes’ new signing fully announced himself on the Premier League in the last round of fixtures. His most lethal asset is without doubt his aerial ability and he exercised this weapon fully with two headed goals put past Burnley’s Tom Heaton. Slimani’s inclusion in the Leicester starting XI is not only effective in the form of his own considerable talents, but also a way of freeing up a resurgent Jamie Vardy. Taking all this into account, Leicester could really put United to the sword in Gameweek 6.
Liverpool (Hull City H)
Sadio Mane: The Senegalese has arguably been Liverpool’s man of the season so far, grabbing two goal and assist from four starts. Hull City, fresh off a crippling defeat at the hands of Arsenal could be low hanging fruit for the winger and his in-form teammates. For an in depth look at Liverpool’s star man, see last week’s player profile.
Manchester City (Swansea City A)
John Stones: The upward trajectory of this young man looks set under Pep Guardiola. The ex-Everton man is playing superbly and presided over another clean sheet in a 4-0 rout of Bournemouth. Another potential clean-sheet earner in Gameweek 6, as City take a trip to Wales.
Manchester United (Leicester City H)
David De Gea: The rock of Manchester United season, De Gea’s contributions this season have been somewhat overshadowed by his more marquee teammates. The Spain international has kept two clean sheets so far this term and could be in line for another against Leicester. Manchester United need to make a big statement against the champions, as Mourinho looks to right their Watford defeat in Gameweek 5.
Middlesbrough (Tottenham Hotspur H)
Stewart Downing: The one-time Liverpool man has been quietly influential at Boro this season with one goal to his name, but Downing remains vitally important to the newly promoted side. With set-piece contributions and constant creative input, Downing could be a canny differential pick in Gameweek 6. That’s if he can crack a resolute Tottenham defence.
Southampton (West Ham United A)
Charlie Austin: Since his January transfer from QPR, Charlie Austin has found game time and goals hard to come by. However, given the Saints’ relative lack of goals this season – just three goals scored prior to last weekend – Claude Puel is now putting his faith the striker. It’s already paid off. Austin scored the only goal in a 1-0 win in Gameweek 5 and his gaffer will expect the same against West Ham’s leaky backline – eight goals conceded in their last two Premier League matches.
Stoke City (West Bromwich Albion H)
Jon Walters: The performances just aren’t coming together for Stoke City in recent times. In tough times, the reversion is often to go with what works and this seems to be the approach from Mark Hughes, as Jon Walters finds himself back in the team. The Ireland international managed five goals and three assists from 18 starts last season and the West Brom clash looks a game tailor made for his talents.
Sunderland (Crystal Palace H)
Jermain Defoe: Stuck in a lamentable run of form, Jermain Defoe looks like the most likely candidate to get push Sunderland out of it. Just as he’s done for most of the past two seasons. The problem is, the veteran needs to shake off a knock in order to do that, when a resurgent Crystal Palace come to town.
Swansea City (Manchester City H)
Leroy Fer: By far their most impressive performer this season, Francesco Guidolin will need the Dutchman to replicate his his recent goalscoring purple patch if Swansea stand to gain anything from Pep’s Manchester City – a side who are really strutting their stuff with nine wins on the bounce in all competitions.
Tottenham Hotspur (Middlesbrough A)
Son Heung-Min: Son’s brace and assist in Gameweek 4 won him many new fantasy investors ahead of Gameweek 5. That performances didn’t exactly transfer as Spurs made hard work of a struggling Sunderland side, but Son did look dangerous, rattling the woodwork in one instance. With Harry Kane now injured, the Korean international will inherit greater goalscoring responsibility.
Watford (Burnley A)
Etiene Capoue: The Frenchman has burst into life this season and Walter Mazzarri appears to be making the optimum use of this talents. He was imperious in their victory over Manchester United, but can he continue his hot scoring streak – four goals already this season – against Burnley? You wouldn’t bet against it.
West Brom (Stoke City A)
Nacer Chadli: A two goal, two assist, man of the match in Gameweek 5, fantasy managers are clamouring to get the Belgian in their line-ups as West Brom size up a victory over luckless Stoke. Chadli is a slight injury doubt, but Tony Pulis and his fantasy admirers will be hoping for his full fitness and involvement at the Britannia.
West Ham (Southampton H)
Michail Antonio: The newly christened England international has been a beacon of hope in otherwise grim start to 2016/17. With five goals to his name so far, Antonio is both their top goalscorer and most consistent performer and Slaven Bilic will look towards him