FPL Draft: Premier League Waiver Wire Week 14
Nothing is certain, except death, taxes and Manchester City. With big wins from Fulham and Huddersfield Town, the Premier League table slipped into a state of uncertainty and ambiguity. While the gap between the top teams and everyone else continues to grow, the bottom half of the table is harder than ever this season to predict. It means that planning around favorable fixtures and past results is a difficult game to play in fantasy Premier League. If this uncertainty is to continue, and game flows continue to be impossible to predict, be sure to bet on talent and opportunity. The players on the Premier League waiver wire this week are short on neither talent or opportunity.
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Week 14 Premier League Waiver Wire
The FPL Draft waiver wire deals with players owned in 65% or less of Fantrax Leagues.
1. Michail Antonio – Midfielder – West Ham – 39% Owned
The collective groan when Hammers fans saw Antonio on the team sheet could be heard across London. Antonio has been tarred with the reputation of ‘a bit of a lump’ recently and has fallen out of favor with Pellegrini and the fans. However, watching this game, it was hard to understand why. With Snodgrass out, Antonio got the start on the left wing and was involved in every dangerous attacking move that West Ham had. Later in the second half, Antonio hit the post with a decent effort. His performance in this game surely gave Pellegrini a decision to be made regarding Antonio’s playing time. If he gets the opportunity to build on this game, Antonio is a high ceiling/high floor midfielder every week. Antonio is worth using a top waiver pick on.
2. Matt Ritchie – Midfielder – Newcastle – 65% Owned
With the plethora of midfielders that have risen to relevance in recent weeks, it’s understandable that heads have been turned away from the Magpies midfielder. Ritchie has been just fine this season. He gives consistent returns and is currently performing like a top 25 fantasy midfielder. His drop in ownership down to a season-low of 65% this week is vexing but could be beneficial for smart owners. Check your player pool and make sure that Ritchie isn’t available this week because he is a matchup-proof, top 25 midfielder this season. If the Gordon Ramsey lookalike is available than scoop him from the Premier League waiver wire this week and laugh all the way to the bank.
3. Serge Aurier – Defender – Tottenham – 48% Owned
Last season Aurier was a big part of Tottenham’s defense before the rise of Kieran Trippier. With Trippier out this week, Aurier was back in the lineup and had an uncharacteristic mature defending performance against Chelsea. He was one of the three-man defending crew assigned to follow Eden Hazard round the pitch on Saturday and you would have put your mortgage on Aurier bringing down Hazard in the box at some point. Trippier is expected to miss ‘at least two weeks’ and Aurier would be a good option in his absence. I wouldn’t use a top Premier League waiver wire pick on Aurier, but he can be useful for a team replacing Trippier or needing defensive help.
4. Steve Mounie – Forward – Huddersfield – 36% Owned
Somehow, Steve Mounie has passed me by until this point in his career. He has been trending upwards regarding fantasy in recent weeks as Huddersfield’s performances have been improving. Mounie scored seven goals in 28 games last season but hasn’t found the back of the net this season. Mounie had a couple of excellent shots this week against Wolves this week. If Mounie continues to trend in this direction and get his shots on target then the goals with come. Forwards are hard to come by at this point in the season and Steve Mounie could be useful for a team in need of some attacking ballast. In deeper leagues, Mounie makes a smart Premier League waiver wire pick up.
5. Beram Kayal – Midfielder – Brighton – 8% Owned
For the deep dive this week, I give you a rotational midfielder who gave away a penalty this week. Kayal played this week after Stephen’s was sent off last week for Brighton and had a mixed day. Kayal was getting forward often and twice got behind the Leicester back line. He could have had an assist on a Pascal Gross goal that was mistakenly ruled offside in the first half. Kayal has been a Brighton regular for a couple of years, and in my opinion, has more about him than Dale Stephens. Brighton have been fine this season and look destined to finish in mid table obscurity. If Kayal continues to play, he is a perfectly serviceable midfielder in a deep fantasy league. In deep leagues Kayal can be added from free agency if not from the Premier League waiver wire.
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