The new Premier League season is fast approaching and with it comes the return of Fantasy Premier League.
Each week, Sport360 will bring you tips for the English Premier League’s official fantasy football game. Fancy pitting your wits against us? You can join “Sport360 Fans League” using the code 2529004-595062.
When it comes to choosing goalkeepers for your fantasy team, you want to make sure they’re first choice. An ability to keep clean sheets is obviously a priority as well but there is value in those who are faced with more shots and therefore are more likely to get points for saves, which could even amount to bonus points.
Tom Heaton (£5.0m) was the highest scoring goalkeeper last season, leading the way in saves with 142 to his name.
However, the 10 clean sheets he managed also helped him top the scoring charts and it’s doubtful if Burnley will be able to maintain a stubborn defence especially after losing Michael Keane (£5.5m) to Everton.
Here’s a look at the best goalkeeper picks.
DAVID DE GEA | Manchester United | £5.5m
Manchester United may have finished sixth in the Premier League last season but despite an ever-changing back four, they conceded only 29 goals. David de Gea was the man between the sticks for the Red Devils and is one of the safer bets in this department.
The Spaniard was the fourth highest scoring keeper last season with 136 points, boasting 14 clean sheets, only two behind Golden Glove winner Thibaut Courtois. In terms of keeping clean sheets, De Gea should be among the best again this season.
Under Jose Mourinho, United have become a far more compact and disciplined unit. With the inclusions of Victor Lindelof and Nemanja Matic, the Portuguese has added even more defensive solidity this summer.
However, he is bound to suffer in terms of shots saved as last term he only managed 74 which was the 13th most in the league and could only muster five bonus points all season.
De Gea also enjoys a fine start to the campaign as United face one of the top six only in Gameweek Eight.
HUGO LLORIS | Tottenham | £5.5m
The Tottenham skipper was the second highest scoring keeper with 143 points last season. Spurs also boast the best defence in the league, conceding only 26 goals and keeping 15 clean sheets, just one behind Courtois.
While they’ve lost Kyle Walker (£6.5m) to Manchester City, they’ve got a good replacement in Kevin Trippier (£5.5m).
Like De Gea though, Lloris also misses out in terms of saves, notching up only 78 and last season. In terms of bonus points, the Frenchman mustered just six as Spurs finished as runners-up.
BEN FOSTER | West Brom | £4.5m
Among the highest scoring £4.5m goalkeepers in the game, Ben Foster’s arguably the most reliable. He managed 113 points last season and the keepers in that price range who have scored more are Artur Boruc (120) and Lukasz Fabianski (116) while Heurelho Gomes scored the same.
However, Bournemouth, Swansea City and Watford conceded 67, 70 and 68 goals respectively. West Brom on the other hand conceded just 51. While his counterparts managed more clean sheets, the stats suggest that Foster is the more likely to keep out the opposition.
Meanwhile, Boruc represents a risk as Asmir Begovic will give him plenty of competition. In fact, the former Chelsea keeper may well start given that Bournemouth spent £10 million to secure his signature.
JOE HART | West Ham | £4.5m
No established England No1 has fallen from grace quite so quickly. After being shunned by Pep Guardiola, he spent last season on loan in the Serie A with Torino FC and will be at West Ham this season.
The Hammers weren’t convincing defensively last season but they’ve added good experience at the back in Pablo Zabaleta. With the World Cup coming up next summer, Hart will want to put on his best performance and West Ham offer him the perfect stage for a renaissance.
ROB ELLIOT| Newcastle United | £4.0m
This could prove to be a stroke of genius or an utter disaster. So it’s safe to say it’s been filed under the right section.
In the 2015-16 Premier League season, Steve McClaren dropped Tim Krul for Rob Elliot and when Rafa Benitez took over, the latter remained between the sticks. Elliot suffered a knee injury which ruled him out with eight games to go and that’s when Karl Darlow was handed an opportunity.
After relegation, Darlow continued in goal as Elliot was still sidelined through injury, returning only in February but had to be content with a place on the bench. However, for the last three games of the season, Benitez opted for the 31-year-old Elliot, even handing him the captain’s armband for the penultimate game.
Now fit again, it could well be that the Irish keeper is Newcastle’s first choice keeper but given that he barely played last season, he’s been priced lower than Darlow (£4.5m).
At just £4.0m, Elliot could be a steal, particularly with Benitez at the helm as the Spaniard has brought a defensive stability to the team that was a previously alien concept to Newcastle.
The Magpies had the joint-best defence in the Championship last season. It’s also worth noting that Darlow has been heavily linked with a move to Middlesbrough.
HOW GOALKEEPERS SCORE
1 – For playing up to 60 minutes
2 – For playing 60 minutes or more (excluding injury time)
6 – For each goal scored
3 – For each goal assist
4 – For a clean sheet
1 – For every 3 shot saves
5 – For each penalty save
1-3 – Bonus points for the best players in a match
-1 – For every 2 goals conceded
-1 – For each yellow card
-3 – For each red card
-2 – For each own goal