Fabianski Replacements

Many managers find themselves looking for a new goalkeeper after Fabianski went off injured 13 minutes into West Ham’s 1-0 loss to Sheffield United. Fabianski had been a popular transfer in due to West Ham’s double game week in game week 24.

Team Performance

Teams that face a large number of shots outside the box but concede few big chances will lend themselves to good FPL returns for their goalkeeper. These two stats are plotted on the graph below:

Over the last six game weeks, six teams have been above the league average shots conceded outside the box and below the league average big chances conceded: Southampton, Sheffield United, Watford, Everton, Tottenham and Norwich.Goalkeepers from these teams are potentially good replacements for Fabianski.

Individual Goalkeeping Performances

Analysing the two key stats that contribute to goalkeepers FPL points; saves and clean sheets; the best performing goalkeepers from the last six game weeks can be found. A plot of these stats can be seen below:

Five goalkeepers were above average for saves and clean sheets over the last six game weeks: Pope, Leno, Pickford(highlighted in blue), Foster (black and yellow) and McCarthy(red and white). Pickford/Everton, Foster/Watford and McCarthy/Southampton were the three player/club combinations that were better than average in all four categories, suggesting these three goalkeepers are the best options to replace Fabianski.

Fixtures

Looking at the fixtures of the three goalkeepers for the next ten game weeks (as seen below courtesy of Fantasy Football Scout), it looks like Southampton have the best fixtures as they only face two “top six” sides over this time. A lot of managers will be looking to wildcard around game week 32 or 33 so will likely not want to make another goalkeeper transfer before then.

Everton face four “top six” sides and Leicester over these fixtures where as Watford face three “top six” sides and Leicester. One factor from these fixtures that is worth considering is that Watford have six away fixtures in the next ten. On the road this year Watford have struggled with only two wins and two clean sheets (against struggling Bournemouth and Norwich).

Conclusion

Foster can slightly better stats than Pickford over the last six, a lower price, and better fixtures assuming Pearson can continue improving Watford’s away form. Therefore, Foster is a better option than Pickford to replace Fabianski.

Southampton have performed better defensively than Watford in the last six, conceding 5 big chances to Watford’s 9, meaning McCarthy is more likely to keep a clean sheet than Foster. However, Foster has 3 clean sheets to McCarthy’ 2 over the last 6. McCarthy does have a slight edge in saves – 23 to 22 – as well as being cheaper and have the best fixtures over the next 10.

Overall, I think McCarthy is the best option to replace Fabianski, followed by Foster and then Pickford.

FPL Bielsa

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