Bench Boost seems to be the choice of chip heading into the biggest double gameweek of the season.
For a special ‘Bookies Advantage Bench Boost XV’ we see plenty of differential options in defence while the usual suspects dominate the midfield and forward spots.
We use bookmakers’ odds to pick the perfect FPL team for the upcoming gameweek, including selecting the best captain.
Bookmakers make a living from predicting the future. Simply put, bookmakers set odds to represent what they believe is the most likely outcome of an event. It gets a bit more complex, but in a liquid market (many bettors), the odds should accurately predict the likelihood of an outcome. If the odds are way off, that creates arbitrage that will be exploited quickly by traders.
We translate bookmakers’ odds into likelihood to help you pick your team.
- We don’t remove the variable bookmaker’s margin, so the likelihood is realistically a few percentage points lower than in our projections.
- The odds are assuming the player starts. Most bookies operate with a rule where the bet is refunded if the player isn’t in the starting lineup.
Who’s the best captain pick for gameweek 29? Find out in our roundup here
Goalscorer odds gameweek 29
|Player||Team||Match 1||Match 2||Combined probability|
|Alexis Mac Allister||BHA||31%||29%||51%|
|Kevin De Bruyne||MCI||24%||24%|
|Virgil van Dijk||LIV||5%||7%||11%|
Marcus Rashford (63%) tops the goal-scoring odds for DGW29, first playing Newcastle away before Brentford at home.
Though his output has dropped off, blanking in the last two, his form in other competitions suggests he is still the main goal scorer in this United team.
Newcastle and Brentford’s defensive numbers would suggest two tough games ahead for Rashford, however, the England winger’s high volume of chances combined with his lethal finishing is enough for him to haul in any game.
He takes the captain’s armband for us this week.
Bruno Fernandes (48%) joins his United teammate in our midfield this week. The Portuguese has looked dangerous in recent games and Brentford tend to concede the majority of chances through the middle (132), higher than any other team.
Erling Haaland (61%) is another yellow-flagged player heading into Gameweek 29. Even with just a single gameweek against Liverpool at the Etihad, the Bookies still fancy him.
Liverpool are joint 20th for big chances conceded on the road this season (43) and there are no harder away days than this.
Four returns in his last three, as well as a hattrick in the Champions League and one in the FA Cup, mean Haaland has the ability to punish sellers big time this week.
Joao Felix (59%) marginally beats out teammate Kai Havertz (56%) to become the Chelsea forward of choice.
The Blues have two home games against Aston Villa, who are 17th for expected goals conceded (xGC) in their last six, as well as Liverpool, whose defensive issues are covered above.
The Chelsea forward has good underlying numbers and makes for a shrewd pick this week.
Ollie Watkins (55%) made it nine returns in nine gameweeks as he provided an assist and was denied what looked a stonewall penalty against Bournemouth.
This DGW he plays a leaky Chelsea and a woeful Leicester in two away games.
The Villa forward is top three for goals, expected goals (xG) and expected goal involvement (xGI) over the last six game weeks.
It’s also worth noting that Villa have scored in every game since GW14, just after Steven Gerrard got the sack.
Mohammed Salah (53%) followed up his 21-pointer against Man United with a 0-pointer away at Bournemouth last weekend. The Liverpool winger continues to frustrate but remains 6th for points overall.
This week he travels to Man City, a game which usually has plenty of goals, before going to Chelsea who look inconsistent at best.
Alexis MacAllister (51%) returned a cool 10 points in his last double gameweek and has by far the best xGI amongst Brighton midfielders in the last six gameweeks. With Brighton having what look like the best fixtures on paper this week, he seems an obvious choice.
Said Benrahma (43%) is our 8th man in attack as he takes on Bournemouth and Newcastle in two home games. Three returns in his last three games as well as being on penalties make him a decent punt for a bench boost at just £5.5m.
Clean sheet odds gameweek 29
|Team||CS Probability||CS Probability game 2||Combined probability|
Brighton (71%) are the most likely team to keep a clean sheet in one of their two games as they take on Brentford at home before travelling to Bournemouth for their second game of the double.
With three clean sheets in their last seven and just three big chances conceded the Seagulls are looking much more defensively solid compared to when De Zerbi first took over.
Bournemouth have just four goals in their five home matches played since the World Cup and continue to look poor in attack. While Brentford are firmly mid-table for goals, shots and shots in the box in away games this season.
Jason Steele looks a steal at just £3.9m, getting a double-digit haul in Gameweek 28 vs Crystal Palace, while Pervis Estupinan is in the top five amongst defenders for both chances (13) and big chances (4) created.
Chelsea (63%) frustrated those who owned defensive assets last week when they were stunned by Everton, conceding two goals at home to one of the worst attacking teams in the league. While their underlying defensive data remains in the top five, they have just one clean sheet in their last six gameweeks.
The Bookies are giving them a good chance of getting at least one this week as they play host to both Aston Villa and Liverpool. It’s hard to find a statistical justification for the Bookies confidence but with Liverpool’s struggles on the road and Chelsea’s good underlying numbers, backing for at least one seems like a good idea.
Ben Chilwell looks back to his best putting up really good xG and xA numbers in his last three games. With points potential at both ends of the pitch, he’s a decent pick this week.
Lastly, from our starting contingent is West Ham (62%), who surprisingly are the third most likely to keep at least one clean sheet this gameweek when they host both Southampton and Newcastle.
Despite one clean sheet in their last six, the Hammers welcome two teams in the bottom eight for xG from open play in the last twelves games since the World Cup.
Kurt Zouma looks the best candidate here, by far the highest scoring defender in this West Ham team, the centre back is a threat at set-piece time and always capable of those elusive 15 pointers.
On our bench as part of our bench boost this week is Pascal Struijk with Leeds given a 61% chance of clean sheet this gameweek, mostly coming from the fact they play Nottingham Forest, who have scored just four away goals all season, in their second game
He is joined by Timothy Castagne (£4.4m) & Daniel Iversen (£3.8m), both of Leicester (54%) who play Crystal Palace, sure to be less attacking under Roy Hodgson before playing Aston Villa at home. Both are decent cheap punts this week.
Team of the week Gameweek 29
Who’s the best captain pick for gameweek 29? Find out in our roundup here
Odhrán Brennan is a data journalist for a sports data company, living in Finland. He’s been playing FPL since the 06/07 season and is a long-suffering fan of both Arsenal and the Republic of Ireland national team. You can follow him on Twitter here