No joy for Christian Pulisic as we assess the pick of the GW1 Fantasy Premier League match-up bets
The 2019/20 Fantasy Premier League season gets under way on Friday evening and FPL managers are sure to be in for a roller-coaster of a ride as the use of the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) makes its long-awaited debut.
Tempers and frustrations will no doubt run high as managers look to target the introduction of the new technology as the scapegoat for any ‘poor’ picks that they make.
Don’t let it beat you up though. Seasoned campaigners will tell you that a Fantasy Premier League campaign is a marathon not a sprint but short-term gains are not to be sneezed so it is encouraging to see to that a number of prop bets are available for Gameweek 1 with Betonline which may well serve as a welcome distraction. Therefore, we have decided to take a look at a few of them to see if we can spot any value.
Trent-Alexander Arnold vs Andrew Robertson … Odds: 1.76/2.00 (-130/+100)
It could be argued that Trent Alexander-Arnold hasn’t had the ideal pre-season, with his defensive actions having come under the microscope on more than one occasion. However, Liverpool’s second-half showing in the Community Shield highlighted that they are likely to be a force to be reckoned with again this season so we’re not expecting newcomers Norwich City to cause them too many problems on opening night.
The England youngster’s penchant for attacking returns should therefore give him the edge over his Liverpool team-mate here.
Pick: Trent Alexander-Arnold to score more GW1 FPL points than Andrew Robertson
Christian Pulisic vs David de Gea … Odds: 1.83/1.90 (-120/-110)
Super Sunday should serve up a treat with Manchester United entertaining Chelsea at Old Trafford so this is an intriguing match-up between Christian Pulisic and David de Gea.
De Gea will be looking to put a miserable 18 months behind him and much needed defensive reinforcements should really help his cause as he looks to reestablish himself as the number one goalkeeper in the world.
Pulisic, on the other hand, has big boots to fill. He will perhaps be relieved that he wasn’t handed the number 10 shirt vacated by Eden Hazard’s departure, opting for number 22 instead, with Willian taking the revered number.
However, expectations for Pulisic are sky-high across the Pond, perhaps buoyed somewhat by the success of the USWNT in this summer’s World Cup, that there is even a suggestion that Sunday’s clash will be the most-watched Premier League game ever in the US.
The American winger, who is 4/1 to be top FPL points scorer for Chelsea over the course of the season, may have his work cut out getting the better of Aaron Wan-Bissaka here though so we’re siding with the United stopper and expect him to bring home the bacon.
Pick: David de Gea to score more GW1 FPL points than Christian Pulisic
Gylfi Sigurdsson vs Paul Pogba … Odds: 1.95/1.80 (-105/-125)
Two first choice penalty takers meet in this match-up and it wouldn’t be the biggest shock in the world if the outcome of the prop bet is determined by a spot-kick.
Gylfi Sigurdsson and Paul Pogba joined an elite club last season when they both managed to miss from 12 yards on 3 occasions but the fact that they both converted one of them from the resultant rebound papered over the cracks somewhat.
Pogba may sit a bit deeper for United this season, as the right-sided anchor in a double pivot, so he might not get forward as much as he is accustomed to.
This could give the edge to Sigurdsson, although the Icelandic international might not be the be a great long-term pick since the arrival of Alex Iwobi and Moise Kean gives Marco Silva more flexibility with his formation choices. However, for the short-term at least, he should continue to occupy the number 10 role and the extra competition for starting spots also gives him an additional incentive to perform well.
Pick: Gylfi Sigurdsson to score more GW1 FPL points than Paul Pogba
Harry Kane vs Raheem Sterling … Odds: 1.86/1.86 (-115/-115)
Raheem Sterling has certainly enjoyed his last couple of visits to London. The England attacker scored twice in Manchester City’s 6-0 drubbing of Watford in the FA Cup final and also managed to get himself on the score-sheet in last weekend’s Community Shield.
A trip to the London Stadium is a bit of a tricky opener for the champions though and there are sufficient reasons to believe that Harry Kane could outscore him this weekend.
The England captain, who finally put his August hoodoo to bed last year when he broke his Premier League August goal drought, has looked sharp enough in pre-season. The Champions League finalists have also been strengthened by the arrival of Tanguy Ndombele, Ryan Sessegnon and Giovani Lo Celso but it’s the ins and outs at Villa Park that really caught our eye.
Dean Smith has really splashed the cash giving his Aston Villa squad a real overhaul but it’s likely to take some time for all of these new faces to settle in so we’re banking on Kane to make the most of it!
Pick: Harry Kane to score more GW1 FPL points than Raheem Sterling
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