Crystal Palace: The FPL View

01/08/2019 Planet FPL

Well, it’s that time of the year again. The time to look at the players that could be potential options for our FPL squads in the upcoming season. I have ordered them in preference to who I would own come gameweek 1 in each category.


Vincente GUAITA – £5.0m

Wayne HENNESSEY – £4.5m

Stephen HENDERSON – Unlisted

Albeit he wears 31 on his back, the Spaniard looks to have the No.1 shirt nailed as we head into the new season. There was a visible upturn in the Eagles’ season after Guaita took Hennessey’s place in goal for the gameweek 17 clash with Leicester City, no more so than in the match results where Palace went from winning only 3 games in first 16 games, to winning 11 in the following 22. After his introduction to the side in mid-December, Guaita played in all but 2 of those 22 league games, only missing the away win at Burnley [Hennessey] and the 4-3 thriller at Anfield [Speroni]. A large contribution to the increase in victories came from the more regular clean sheets the side was keeping with Guaita in goal, going from 29.4% to 35%. He may have had his flappy hands moments, like in the FA Cup defeat to Watford, but he’s proved to be an improvement on Hennessey.

Preference Explanation

Guaita should be the first-choice keeper when the season kicks off. Simple as that


Martin KELLY – £4.0m

Joel WARD – £4.5m

Patrick VAN AANHOLT – £5.5m

Mamadou SAKHO – £5.0m

Scott DANN – £4.5m

James TOMKINS – £5.0m

I’ve been asked many many times over the summer whether Kelly will be the 4.0m, and my immediate and resounding response has been no every time. Yes Martin may be a good option in the first week or two while the fitness questions continue to hover over the likes of Sakho and Tomkins, so if you was planning to play your wildcard in gameweek 3 or 4 and wanted to take a punt on Kelly, then by all means go for it. However, Martin will not be the 4.0m regular starting right-back that you can hang your hat on for the season like you could with Wan-Bissaka last year. If you want to consider him as just a 4.0m bench fodder, he does have the potential to be one that will come in from time to time and get some points, as he looks to be favoured ahead of Dann as that first back-up to Tomkins and Sakho.

The bargain buy of the Palace defence could be the one that WOULD presently be classed as the first choice right-back, Joel Ward. With Aaron now part of Ole’s squad up north, and no replacement having yet arrived, Joel looks set to be the starting right-back come gameweek 1. Priced at a competitively bargain value of 4.5m, Ward looks to be that cheaper way into the Palace defence, with Tomkins now joining Sakho at 5.0m and Dann falling further down the pecking order.

Preference Explanation

Although I have said that Kelly won’t be this season’s Wan-Bissaka (and he won’t be), he should be a cheap filler that could feature in the opening weeks because both Sakho and Tomkins aren’t fully fit. Sakho has only featured for about 20 minutes, whereas Tomkins has played no part in pre-season so far. So, for those FPL managers like myself who are likely to play an early wildcard around gameweek 3 or 4, then Kelly could provide you with some points until the first-choice partnership returns. After that, you can either keep him on the bench for any time Mamadou or James pick up knocks or suspensions, or ship him out for an asset that you believe will do better.


Wilfried ZAHA – £7.0m

Luka MILIVOJEVIĆ – £7.0m

Max MEYER – £5.5m

Andros TOWNSEND – £6.0m

Jeffrey SCHLUPP – £5.5m

James MCARTHUR – £5.5m

Cheikhou KOUYATÉ – 5.0m

Luke DREHER – £4.5m

The Palace midfield is where the main talking points for the summer have laid, namely the potential of Zaha and Milivojević. Since last year’s announcement that VAR would be introduced into this season’s Premier League, the duo of Luka and Wilf have never been far from the plans of FPL managers. Milivojević scored 10 of the 11 penalties he had last season, and Wilf playing a big part in the winning of many of them amongst his 11 assists last campaign. What impact VAR will have on the league is yet to be known, but it’s safe to say, seeing as though Palace are always up towards the top for penalties won, there will be plenty of opportunities for Milivojević to slot them home, especially if Zaha stays.

One name to keep an eye for this season is Max Meyer. Priced at 5.5m this year, the young German will be hoping to have a much better season this time around after struggling to new surroundings last year, and thus a lack of game time. He has already impressed in pre-season, where he has featured more in a prominent attacking role. However, with Zaha still to come back, and the likes of Schlupp and McArthur always proving difficult to drop, Max may struggle with the starts. Hopefully he can have an opportunity from the start of the season, and become one of the main fixtures in the Palace side, especially sharing the set-piece responsibilities with Milivojević, and being a full 1.5m cheaper than his captain.

Nothing else really draws me to the Palace midfield in an FPL aspect. The likes of Townsend and McArthur will no doubt provide exceptional gameweeks every now and then, and Schlupp has lost his lustre having been move to the midfield with a 1.0m price increase alongside it.

Preference Explanation

It won’t come as a shock that I’d go with either Zaha or Milivojević as my midfielder of choice, in fact I’ve had both in one of the drafts I done. I can see them as being really important players this year for Palace and FPL managers alike, and especially with the view that Wilf won’t be going anywhere this summer (fingers crossed), it only makes them both more appealing. Third choice would be Meyer, especially at that price point, he could prove to be one of the bargains of the season.


Christian BENTEKE – £6.0m

Jordan AYEW – £5.0m

Connor WICKHAM – £4.5m

Alexander SØRLOTH – Unlisted

In terms of forwards, there’s nothing much to write home about. Although all 3 available forwards (Sørloth currently unlisted on the game) have had relatively good summers, it is still not an exciting line-up heading in to the new season if I’m honest. Benteke and Wickham have both notched up a goal in pre-season, with the latter also contributing with an assist, whereas Ayew grabbed a couple of goals at the African Cup of Nations as Ghana made it to the round of 16. I have seen quite a few drafts with Wickham on the bench as that cheap forward fodder, much like Kelly. There is nothing wrong with this if you’re fully expecting not to get much from him. His time at Palace has been plagued with injuries, although he does impress most times he can get some minutes. It will be whether he can get past Benteke and Ayew to be that first choice striker, which could be aided if reports of the numerous transfer enquires about Benteke are true. Connor has signed a new contract till 2021 this summer, so he and Roy obviously feel like he has something to offer. I wouldn’t be looking at either of the other two because of the price, unless they start having some sort of miraculous season.

Preference Explanation

IF I had to have one, purely because of his bargain basement price, it would be Wickham. But then again, he’ll probably struggle to get past Benteke in a similar way he has for last few seasons. Unless some other team buys Christian of course.

Pre-Season Record (so far).

With a home game against Hertha Berlin still to be played on the 3rd of August, here are the stats from the Eagles’ pre-season so far.

Played: 7

Won: 2 (incl. 1 on pens)

Lost: 4

Goals Scored: 10

Goals Conceded: 13

Attacking FPL Contributions:

Wickham ⚽️⚽️?️

Benteke ⚽️⚽️

Pierrick ⚽️⚽️

Meyer ⚽️?️

Townsend ⚽️?️

D. Boateng ⚽️

Schlupp ⚽️

Milivojević ?️

Sørloth ?️

Flanagan  ?️