If you haven’t already, check out new blogger Niall’s excellent article on the Sky Fantasy rule change for defenders. This article is far less sophisticated, I’ll be running you through my top choice keepers that will form part of a watchlist series on each position. Each post will also poll your views and this will be compiled to form a new Watchlist Tab prior the season launch on the 11th August (I’ll also endeavour to keep this updated throughout the season!)
For me, cheap stoppers are the way to go in Sky. This is based on years of playing the game and backed up by Niall’s recent analysis on the points for goals conceded rule change, which should make it a no-brainer to save the pennies in this position. Remember, theres little point looking beyond Gameweek 3 for fixtures due to the Overhall in GW4.
Coming in at 5.7 the Huddersfield stopper is dirt cheap and set for a kind trio of early games that include Palace (a), Newcastle (H) and Southampton (H). An imposing 6’ 5” tall, Lössl arrives at the John Smith’s Stadium with over 250 top flight appearances under his belt in Denmark, France and Germany, as well as European and international experience. The loan keeper is expected to take over No.1 duties as last years keeper hero Joal Ward moves back from his loan spell to parent club Liverpool. Backing the big Danish stopper doesn’t come without risk, as Huddersfield are expected to be the whipping boys this year. I certainly wouldn’t be anticipating massive scores, but if he can sneak one clean sheet and rack up the save points he could be a great enabler for those looking to spend their cash elsewhere and well worth the punt.
Verdict: 8/10 top choice for those scrapping the barrel
Coming in at 1m more at 6.7, the Saints stopper still represents great value as he squares up against Swansea (H), West Ham (H) and Huddersfield (a) in the opening fixtures. Having accrued 158 points last time out, more than top priced De Gea (148) and last years budget favourite Heaton (153), the big Englishman represents a very safe pair of hands. With more points allocated to keepers (+7) than defenders (+5) it could be worth shelling out that little bit more. Much could depend on if the Saints backline is bolstered by Van Dijk or if he ends up in different pastures before the season kicks off. That said, they did manage clean sheets towards the back end of last season without their talismanic defender.
Verdict: 8/10 a very safe pair of hands.
Coming in a little cheaper at 6.4, we have another Englishman with favourable fixtures as West Brom line up against Bournemouth (H), Burnley (a) and Stoke (H). Last time out the baggies and Foster flattered to deceive often shipping the one goal. This meant Foster racked up a mediocre 95 points over the season. I still fancy Pulis to navigate at least one shut out in the during the opening 3 matches making Foster a decent option for those looking for a proven premier league stopper, but can’t quite stretch to Forster.
Verdict: 7/10 a solid, if unspectacular choice.
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