Fantasy Premier League managers are deliberating the big decisions ahead of the season’s opening weekend, with FPL screen time sure to be at an all-time high.
Pre-season form and injuries must be taken into consideration ahead of Gameweek One and the news that Arsenal’s Gabriel Jesus will miss the first weeks of the campaign has rocked FPL coaches.
Jesus had proven to be an uber-popular selection at centre-forward and managers must find alternatives ahead of Fantasy Premier League’s opening gameweek.
Luckily, we’re on hand to provide the best FPL mid-priced forwards.
Ollie Watkins – Aston Villa (£8m)
Ollie Watkins was a man transformed after Unai Emery’s arrival at Aston Villa last season, embarking on a phenomenal run of form that helped his side to Europa Conference League qualification.
Having scored just two league goals prior to Emery’s appointment, Watkins was the third highest-scoring forward in FPL after the Spaniard took the reins. The 27-year-old scored 13 goals and provided six assists from November 1 onwards, averaging 5.6 points per game.
Watkins remains Villa’s established first-choice at centre-forward and could have an improved supply line following the arrival of Moussa Diaby from Bayer Leverkusen. The England international has scored 11+ goals in each of the last three Premier League seasons and could prove fine value at £8m.
Christopher Nkunku – Chelsea (£7.5m)
Christopher Nkunku has been the headline arrival of Chelsea’s transfer window to date, completing his long-agreed £52m move from RB Leipzig.
Chelsea fans will be cautious of placing too much expectation on the Frenchman given past disappointments from the Bundesliga (Sorry, Timo), but Nkunku arrives with a big reputation from German football.
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) July 20, 2023
The 25-year-old has scored 58 goals across the last two seasons at Leipzig and ended last season as the joint-leading scorer in the Bundesliga. He has made an immediate impact on Chelsea’s pre-season tour with three goals and the west Londoners will be hoping a knee issue picked up is nothing serious.
Darwin Nunez – Liverpool (£7.5m)
Ah, Darwin, perhaps the most frustrating player in Fantasy Premier League last season.
Nunez introduced himself to Premier League fans with a season of chaotic centre-forward play at Liverpool, often appearing to have it all – barring a little refinement in the final third.
Nunez averaged more shots (4.46) and shots on target (1.86) per 90 minutes than any other player in the division last season, but lacked the clinical touch needed to be a go-to FPL asset.
Darwin opening up the scoring in Singapore 👌 pic.twitter.com/vqw3655NjT
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) July 30, 2023
He ended the campaign with just nine league goals from 19 league starts, but has enjoyed an encouraging pre-season with four goals in four games. A rotation risk given Cody Gakpo’s presence, but certainly one to watch.
Nicolas Jackson – Chelsea (£7m)
Nicolas Jackson’s pre-season performances will tempt FPL managers ahead of Gameweek One, with the Senegalese striker having shone for Chelsea in the United States.
Signed from Villarreal, he has netted goals in friendlies with Brighton and Newcastle, provided three assists, and demonstrated encouraging chemistry with the likes of Christopher Nkunku and Mykhailo Mudryk.
Nicolas Jackson’s pre-season:
⚽️ 2 goals
🅰️ 3 assists
— Fantasy Premier League (@OfficialFPL) July 27, 2023
A handful with pace, power and composure, expect the 21-year-old to start when Chelsea face Liverpool in their season opener.
Evan Ferguson – Brighton (£6m)
Evan Ferguson made a fine impression last season with 10 goals in all competitions during a breakthrough campaign at Brighton.
No teenager scored more Premier League goals than Ferguson, while only Erling Haaland (65) and Mohamed Salah (93) bettered his minute-per-goal-involvement rate in 2022/23.
The Ireland international is set for increased minutes with Roberto De Zerbi possessing huge faith in one of the Premier League’s brightest young talents.
⏱️ – Best minutes per goal or assist rates among Premier League players this season in all competitions (10+ G/A):
65 – Erling Haaland
93 – Mohamed Salah
97 – Evan Ferguson
97 – Callum Wilson
97 – Roberto Firmino
99 – Kevin De Bruyne
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) May 25, 2023
Brighton begin the season at home to Luton and have three home fixtures in their first four games. At just £6m and with appealing fixtures, Ferguson will be a popular pick.