The 16th Man: Gameweek 17

A good Fantrax manager successfully builds a starting XI to be feared. A winning Fantrax manager builds a fearsome squad of 16 to be reckoned with!

The aim of this feature is to provide you with several options with which to fill that 16th roster spot ahead of a match day. If it doesn’t work out, you can simply dump them back on to the Waiver Wire.

For one reason or another, the players who feature in this article every week won’t be one to use a waiver on and will certainly be too much of a risk to start in our Differential XI, whether that be due to the fact they’re coming back from injury or working at earning a recall.

Here are your 16th man contenders for Gameweek 17!

Antonio Rudiger | Chelsea | Defender | 45% Owned

Antonio Rudiger is finally back and Chelsea’s back line can only benefit from the return of their best defender. The likes of Reece James will only improve but Rudiger himself could be a decent asset to get hold of while ownership is low.

Simon Francis | Bournemouth | Defender | 1% Owned

This is a bit of a left field one and not one to consider for this week. Bournemouth’s defence is littered with injuries, meaning Simon Francis will almost certainly get more minutes. Francis is one of those who scores well without relying on clean sheets.

Johann Berg Gudmundsson | Burnley | Midfielder | 58% Owned

Once again, Johann Berg Gudmundsson has struggled for fitness this season. The Icelandic midfielder started the season very well and proved his value as a 4th/5th round early on. However, the old injury issues have come back and JBG has barely featured since September. Sean Dyche says that he’s not far from (another) return so if he’s available in your league, he’s well worth a punt.

James Milner | Liverpool | Midfielder | 49% Owned

The classic “week after the Champions League” pick. James Milner didn’t feature in Liverpool’s Salzburg success so an appearance at home to struggling Watford wouldn’t be a surprise. He scored 11 points against Bournemouth last week without an attacking return.

Phil Foden | Manchester City | Midfielder | 15% Owned

See above but for the opposite reasons. Phil Foden DID feature in the Champions League an even starred in a 4-1 win. Many are crying out for Foden to be given his chance in the league and this latest performance coupled with David Silva’s knock means he may just be given that opportunity.

Ryan Sessegnon | Tottenham Hotspur | Midfielder | 21% Owned

It may finally be time to consider Ryan Sessegnon. The youngster scored his first goal for Tottenham on Wednesday night playing as part of the Spurs attack. You’d think he’d be more likely to challenge Jan Vertonghen for the left back slot but he will be an even better asset if Jose Mourinho considers him an attacker.

Gabriel Martinelli | Arsenal | Midfielder | 24% Owned

Similar to Sessegnon and Foden, Gabriel Martinelli has done himself no harm in the limited opportunities that he has been given. A league goal at West Ham probably puts him ahead of the aforementioned pair.

Robbie Brady | Burnley | Midfielder | 7% Owned

Robbie Brady is in this column once again. This FPL favourite has seen more minutes this season and has a few attacking returns off the bench. A start vs Newcastle could be lucrative.

Dennis Praet | Leicester City | Midfielder | 6% Owned

Dennis Praet was handed a surprise start at Aston Villa and even grabbed an assist in a tidy display. Leicester looked like a well oiled machine at Villa Park so an unchanged lineup wouldn’t be out of the question against a below par Norwich.

Mario Vrancic | Norwich City | Midfielder | 2% Owned

Mentioned as a potential gem in out Waiver Wire article this week, Mario Vrancic has finally been given a chance in the Premier League after putting up decent numbers in the Championship. He scored 7.5 points in Gameweek 16, largely made up of key passes and shots on target and is well worth a punt if you’re short on midfielders.

Shane Long | Southampton | Forward | 6% Owned

Shane Long has always been very goal dependant in Togga scoring but has scored 28.5 points in two weeks with only one assist in there. Long looks to be forming a decent strike partnership with Danny Ings and has been unlucky not to find himself on the scoresheet already.

Andy Carroll | Newcastle United | Forward | 8% Owned

I didn’t think I’d be talking about Andy Carroll as a Fantasy Football asset this season but two assists in two weeks have forced him into contention recently. Carroll’s aerial presence always means he scores good ghost points but it’s hard to ignore that he already has as many attacking returns as the ineffective Joelinton.

Divock Origi | Liverpool | Forward | 44% Owned

In similar spirit to the James Milner pick, Divock Origi is worth picking up as a 16th man as well as Xherdan Shaqiri. Liverpool’s involvement in the early kick off also means managers who take the gamble also have the luxury of being able to drop assets that don’t feature right at the start of the Gameweek.

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