Fantasy Premier League tips: How to navigate the next two gameweeks without a Free Hit


The chaos in the Fantasy Premier League schedule rumbles on with a Double Gameweek 28 followed by a Blank Gameweek 29.

We have a bumper 11 fixtures heading into the next round, with Bournemouth and Luton Town both playing twice, but then just four fixtures in the following gameweek.

Perhaps you’re planning to use your Free Hit chip in Gameweek 29, but what if you’re either hoping to hold on to it for a future double gameweek or you’ve already used it? With Bournemouth the only side to double and then immediately blank, how can we navigate this spell without the Free Hit?


Double Gameweek 28

FPL Double Gameweek 28 is an interesting one, with the sides who double — Bournemouth and Luton — both in the bottom half of the Premier League table.

Despite this, Bournemouth’s fixtures are particularly interesting as they face last-placed Sheffield United in their first Gameweek 28 match. Luton’s initial opponents are also in that half of the table, with Crystal Palace the first match of their double gameweek. Luton then visit Bournemouth next Wednesday.

Ordinarily, these sides wouldn’t be the major focus of our fantasy transfers, but there’s a perfect storm given tougher fixtures elsewhere in the division.

Bournemouth and Luton’s fixtures

Team GW28 GW29 GW30 GW31 GW32

Bournemouth

Sheff. United (H); Luton (H)

N/A

Everton (H)

C. Palace (H)

Luton (A)

Luton Town

C. Palace (A); Bournemouth (A)

N. Forest (H)

Tottenham (A)

Arsenal (A)

Bournemouth (H)

We have the current two top teams in the league, Liverpool and Manchester City, meeting on Sunday afternoon. Crucially, these two sides don’t have a fixture in Gameweek 29 either, as they will both be playing FA Cup quarter-finals instead.

Meanwhile, favourable fixtures for the doublers provide an opening to invest in assets from Luton and Bournemouth, potentially in the place of FPL’s popular City and Liverpool picks.

Luton assets are easier purchases given they also have a fixture in Blank Gameweek 29, with striker Carlton Morris (£5.1m) their most attractive option. He is on penalties and has produced three goals in his last four Premier League matches. He is the fifth-highest-scoring forward in the game. Morris could be a potential replacement for City’s Erling Haaland (£14.5m) or Julian Alvarez (£6.5m) to gain an additional two fixtures over the next two gameweeks.

There’s a similar argument to replace your City striker with Bournemouth’s Dominic Solanke (£7.1m), who is the leading captaincy option for the double gameweek.

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Solanke will be a popular captaincy option in Gameweek 28 as Bournemouth play twice (Matt McNulty/Getty Images)

However, we need to be mindful that in the case of Haaland, he’s a player who remains in the captaincy conversation for this gameweek and is a solid long-term hold. His fixtures immediately after the internationals are against Arsenal and Aston Villa, so for managers holding the wildcard it could be viable to bring him back in down the line. Without a wildcard, transferring the Norwegian out will need to be reversed later on, effectively costing managers eight points.

We need to think carefully whether Solanke will outscore Haaland by that amount in Bournemouth’s Gameweek 28 home matches against Sheffield United and Luton.

Away from the forward options, Luton assets are more attractive given their fixture in Blank Gameweek 29, with some defensive options worth considering. Alfie Doughty (£4.7m) is the top defensive pick having chalked up nine goal involvements this season. He is heavily involved in Luton’s set pieces and has produced 230 crosses so far, the most of any player in the division. Goalkeeper Thomas Kaminski (£4.5m) may also be worth a look. He is fourth in the league for saves with 102, but has only kept two clean sheets.


Blank Gameweek 29

For those managers without a Free Hit chip to play, it might be more important to ignore the double in Gameweek 28 and instead focus transfers on players whose clubs have a fixture in Blank Gameweek 29.

We need to be mindful that some of the sides with a fixture this week won’t have a double gameweek later in the season — although crucially, Tottenham Hotspur do have an additional fixture against Chelsea.

Gameweek 29 fixtures

West Ham vs Aston Villa

Fulham vs Tottenham

Burnley vs Brentford

Luton vs Nottingham Forest

Spurs have scored eight goals across the last four gameweeks and have a favourable match-up in Gameweek 29 as they travel to Fulham, a side they beat 2-0 at home in October. Their fixtures remain attractive beyond this month’s international break, as they face Luton, West Ham and Nottingham Forest.

It’s important to use transfers for players that are attractive holds in the long term, with Tottenham captain Son Heung-min (£9.8m) top of those options.

He will be the stand-out captaincy pick in Gameweek 29 against Fulham, having picked up a goal and an assist in the reverse of this fixture for 14 fantasy points. Son ranks among the top five midfielders in FPL this season, with 19 goal involvements in 22 appearances. Two of those returns have come in his past three games, since the South Korea international returned from helping his country reach the semi-finals of the Asian Cup.

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Son is an attractive Gameweek 29 option (Julian Finney/Getty Images)

The current injury to Richarlison (£7.0m) has seen Son move into a more central role, and those managers short on funds should now look to his Spurs team-mate James Maddison (£7.9m) as their second choice. Maddison is dominating Tottenham’s set pieces once again and has produced three assists in five games since a late January return from an ankle injury.

It’s not essential to field a full team of players in a tricky Gameweek 29, especially if significant points hits are necessary to achieve a playing XI. We must be mindful that Son is the only premium player available to us in that gameweek and only three of the clubs in action are in the top half of the Premier League table — Spurs, Aston Villa and West Ham.

go-deeper

GO DEEPER

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Villa forward Ollie Watkins (£9.0m) is a must-have for any non-owners, given he is the top-performing fantasy asset this season with 31 goal involvements in 27 appearances. He managed 11 points when he faced Villa’s Gameweek 29 opponents West Ham in Gameweek 9, scoring a goal and assisting another in a 4-1 win.

Another form player worthy of our attacks amid that big blank is West Ham midfielder Jarrod Bowen (£7.9m), who is reaching a positive spell in form with three goals and one assist in his last two.

Elsewhere, Brentford forward Ivan Toney (£8.2m) could be a smart buy come their Gameweek 29 visit to struggling Burnley, with five attacking returns in eight appearances since his belated start to the season in January.

Getting to a squad of eight, including these key targets and two or three defensive options, should see you reasonably through this blank and beyond.

(Top photo: David Rogers/Getty Images)





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