This column serves the purpose of providing you with weekly waiver-wire adds for Togga season long draft leagues. Each week Sean Sullivan recommends players—based on availability, current form or matchups—that should be added or started. These weekly picks are meant to grab your attention, limit the often-fatal last minute lineup tinker, and help you maintain a superior squad throughout the FPL campaign.
Fantasy Premier League owners have a lot to consider ahead of a hectic GW34. The round will take place over the span of six days, with the FA Cup Semi Finals at the weekend, and three clubs have a double-game week—Middlesbrough, Manchester United and Crystal Palace.
In short, the double-game week means players will have a shot at double the points. This week’s column focuses on the three clubs in action twice, pointing out the top players to consider adding and starting.
@ Bournemouth (April 22)
vs. Sunderland (April 26)
@ Burnley (April 23)
@ Manchester City (April 27)
@ Liverpool (April 23)
vs. Tottenham (April 26)
As usual, this column features players that owned in less than 50 percent of all Togga draft leagues.
Brad Guzan, Middlesbrough (12 percent): Victor Valdes has been ruled out for Saturday’s trip to Bournemouth, due to a rib injury, which means Guzan will be in between the sticks for at least one of Boro’s two matches. The American international has two clean sheets in four starts this season and played well in the 2-1 defeat to Arsenal on Monday. Guzan did concede twice, but could do nothing to spot either of the visitor's goals—a stellar free-kick from Alexis Sanchez and a close-range volley by Mesut Ozil. If you stream goalkeepers, the smart play is to use Guzan against Bournemouth and whoever is in goal against Sunderland.
Artur Boruc, Bournemouth (25 percent): Normally a four-nil defeat would be a huge concern but, considering how well Tottenham have played at White Hart Lane, I don’t see last weekend’s result as a reason to write off Boruc. In fact, the veteran shot-stopper actually played rather well. Overshadowed by a woeful defensive effort, Boruc kept the scoreline from being even more lopsided with a season-high 10 saves. As for GW34, the 37-year-old should have much easier outing against Middlesbrough—opposing goalkeepers have averaged eight fantasy points per match against Boro over the course of the last four weeks. If you need to stream a goalkeeper and play in a deeper league, he’s your guy.
Matteo Darmian, Manchester United (27 percent): Darmian should start at least one of Manchester United’s two matches after helping keep successive clean sheets against Sunderland and Chelsea. The Italian international recorded 11 clearances during the win over Sunderland and followed with a solid performance in the 2-0 win over Chelsea, winning four aerials and three tackles. He has value as streaming option in deeper leagues for GW34.
Ben Gibson, Middlesbrough (11 percent): Middlesbrough play Bournemouth and Sunderland during their GDW fixtures and Gibson is a lock to start in both. Gibson is averaging 8.4 points per match over the last eight games and has scored more than 13 points in three of his last four. His current production alone qualifies him as a streaming option, while his value is booster even higher considering a clean sheet is a realistic possibility against the Blacks Cats. He’s a top streaming play this week.
Joel Ward, Crystal Palace (16 percent): I debated whether or not to include Ward on this column because of Crystal Palace’s matchups—at Liverpool on Sunday and at home against Tottenham on Wednesday. But, after much thought, I opted to mention Ward. The full-back is a lock to feature in both DGW fixtures and performed well in successive matches against Arsenal and Leicester City, scoring 11.25 and 8 points respectively. He’s a streaming option who has boosted value for GW35: the Eagles play Burnley at Selhurst Park.
Gaston Ramirez, Middlesbrough (38 percent): Stewart Downing is still the top Middlesbrough midfielder to add for the GDW but, if he’s not available, Ramirez is another enticing option. After missing a pair of matches with an ankle injury, Steve Agnew drafted the Argentine playmaker back into the starting XI for the 2-1 defeat by Arsenal at the Riverside. Ramirez recorded five successful take-ons and posed a threat going forward throughout his 68 minutes on the pitch, which leads me to believe he'll have success against the Cherries and Black Cats. He’s a one-week, streaming consideration for 10-team-or-deeper-leagues.
Ashley Young, Manchester United (4 percent): Young returned from a groin injury and put in a strong 89 minutes against Chelsea on Sunday. Jose Mourinho’s decision to switch to a 3-5-2 formation saw Young deployed on left-wing where he found space to cut inside and create United’s second goal, providing the cross that lead to Ander Herrera’s strike that deflected in past Asmir Begovic. Young has whipped in 19 crosses and created five scoring chances in his last four appearances, which is why I’m expecting at least one assist over the course of the double-game week. He’s a good depth add for all leagues who can be started in deeper-leagues this week.
Wahbi Khazri, Sunderland (3 percent): Khazri was nothing shot of excellent in his first start since last October, deservingly earning the man-of-the-match. The Tunisian international was the catalyst in the 2-2 draw with West Ham; sending in 12 crosses, five scoring chances and scoring an Olympic—a goal straight from a corner. Khazri’s goal was a work of beauty as his right-footed inswinger from the left corner flag sailed over the head of goalkeeper Darren Randolph, before hitting the base of far post and bouncing into the net. If 26-year-old is handed another start this weekend, he can be used as a fifth midfielder.
Peter Crouch, Stoke City (X percent): If you’re a Saido Berahino owner, Crouch should be on your radar. Crouch has been on the bench for six straight league matches but came on for Berahino in the 58th minute and scored a textbook header during the 3-1 win over Hull City. I wouldn’t be shocked to see Mark Hughes mix things up against Swansea City on Saturday and drop Berahino to bench in favor of Crouch, who has four goals and three assists in his last 10 starts. If Hughes hands Crouch a start, then he can be used in 10-team-or-deeper-leagues.