You could hear the cry from Fantasy Premier League managers just as the echoes of concern faded from the chorus of Man City fans.
What do I do if Erling Haaland doesn’t play?
While Manchester City is used to playing without a center forward and has even won the Premier League without a traditional player in that role, FPL managers have gotten used to getting big points from the first-year Premier League star.
And there’s no guarantee they won’t get one from Haaland this weekend when City goes to Leicester, as the Norwegian is nursing a knock and could still play and even start at the King Power Stadium.
Yet there are few ways to overstate how important Haaland has been to FPL teams this season; There’s little excuse not to own the Norwegian, even given his lofty price tag (which has sank to 11.8 due to the knock, daring owners to cash-in if they bought him at his season-opening 11.5 and not the current 12.2).
Haaland has posted 117 points in FPL this season, 35 more than his closest competitor in Harry Kane and 47 more than third-place Kevin De Bruyne.
With only 57 players registered as FPL forwards — who do we speak to about this? — it makes little sense not to splash the cash on Haaland given that you have three roster spots for forwards and it’s a thinner position than anything but goalkeeper.
Six of the 57 forwards have yet to register a point this season while Wolves’ Sasa Kalajdzic posted just one before being lost in their opener. Another dozen or so should only be on your radar in case of an injured teammate.
Well, today’s your lucky day, as we present the Fantasy Premier League forward tiers, as of Week 14.
Not having at least one of this trio is a shocking approach.
Erling Haaland; Harry Kane, Gabriel Jesus
Nearly at the top level but can be held back by their team or opponent any given week.
Ivan Toney, Aleksandar Mitrovic
On the bubble
Capable of a monstrous week any time out, but yet to prove they can deliver consistency.
Ollie Watkins, Darwin Nunez, Kai Havertz, Gianluca Scamacca
In the bubble (wrap)
Battling injuries or with a history of doing so that make them difficult to trust.
Diogo Jota, Alexander Isak, Richarlison, Callum Wilson, Anthony Martial, Dominic Calvert-Lewin
Living off their reputations but still capable of a big week against the right opponent.
Cristiano Ronaldo, Raul Jimenez, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Jamie Vardy, Diego Costa, Roberto Firmino
Ranking all 57 forwards in Fantasy Premier League
*injured/status for Week 14 in question
Sasa Kalajdzic* (out for year)
More Premier League
Fantasy Premier League, Week 14: What if Haaland doesn’t start? originally appeared on NBCSports.com