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FPL tips: Gareth Bale heads list of forgotten favourites back in form

FPL (3)

Gareth Bale‘s recent impact with Tottenham has translated into fantasy points and the Wales forward is the man to turn to in gameweek 28.

Thirty-five of Bale’s 57 points this season have come in the last two weeks, with goal doubles against Burnley and Crystal Palace.

He is joined in the PA news agency’s recommendations by a couple more forgotten favourites and an unfamiliar cast of defenders.

Bale adds to Spurs sharp shooters

Tottenham’s Harry Kane and Son Heung-min have been FPL mainstays this season, ranking second and third in total points behind Manchester United midfielder Bruno Fernandes.

Bale has added a third attacking threat in recent weeks and, when form, cost, ownership and upcoming fixture difficulty rating (FDR) are combined to create PA’s Transfer Score, he comes out on top with 83 out of a possible 100, with only his £9.4million price tag stopping him from rating even higher.

Top midfield picks for FPL gameweek 28

Gareth Bale’s form makes him this week’s top pick (PA graphic)

His eight-points-per-game average is the highest over the period covered by FPL’s form rating, narrowly ahead of his fellow midfield recommendations in what is the most competitive area of the field.

Riyad Mahrez has four goals and four assists in the last four gameweeks, Manchester City having doubled up twice in succession, and now ranks in the top 10 midfielders by season’s points and joint-13th overall.

His transfer score of 77 is one point higher than Arsenal’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, a pre-season must-have whose ownership plummeted from over three million to 515,502 at its lowest point three weeks ago. A hat-trick against Leeds that week and a goal against Burnley have him back on track ahead of this week’s derby with Spurs.

Defensive shake-up

Top defensive picks for FPL gameweek 28

Jamaal Lascelles headlines an unfamiliar defensive group (PA graphic)

Newcastle and Fulham, along with Brighton, are battling to avoid relegation but provide defenders to depend on.

After Brighton’s recent dominance in that area, their rivals take centre stage this week. Jamaal Lascelles has slowly got back to his influential best for the Magpies after missing nine weeks with the effects of Covid-19 earlier in the season, and a goal and a clean sheet in his last two games help the £4.2m man to a transfer score of 77.

That leads all defenders, a point ahead of Fulham’s Ola Aina. The full-back has added a goal and an assist to his three clean sheets in six, deprived of another shut-out by playing only 45 minutes against Crystal Palace.

A meeting with free-scoring Manchester City this week tempers expectations and may lead managers to instead consider Chelsea’s Andreas Christensen, who has quietly picked up three straight clean sheets with five bonus points along the way.

A surprise Pick?

Top goalkeeping picks for FPL gameweek 28

Jordan Pickford joins Sam Johnstone and Emiliano Martinez on the goalkeeping podium (PA graphic)

Like Aubameyang, Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford suffered a drop in form and FPL popularity throughout much of the season but has been resurgent of late.

Three straight clean sheets prior to Monday’s 2-0 loss at Chelsea, which came via an own goal and a penalty, help the England international to a transfer score of 70 to rank third among goalkeepers.

West Brom’s Sam Johnstone continues to defy his side’s slide towards relegation and ranks top ahead of Aston Villa’s Emiliano Martinez, 73 to 72.

At the other end of the field, Pickford’s Everton team-mate Richarlison heads a list of strikers on 68 ahead of Crystal Palace’s Christian Benteke (63) and Fulham loanee Josh Maja (60).