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FPL tips: Is Mahrez emerging as a festive fantasy favourite?

Manchester City v Burnley – Premier League – Etihad Stadium
(Image credit: Laurence Griffiths)

With the Premier League’s festive schedule upon us, your FPL side needs a midfielder you can rely on to produce points in vast quantities – but with Santa busy, who can you count on to deliver?

Using a Transfer Score made up of recent form – with further marks for low cost, ownership and upcoming fixture difficulty rating – we have plucked some of the most appealing picks from the pack.

And one man could be the Christmas present your FPL squad has been crying out for all season.

Why add Riyad?

A graphic showing some recommended Fantasy Premier League purchases ahead of gameweek 13

Brighton’s Pascal Gross scores highest among midfielders on our Transfer Score due to a highly favourable fixture list and minimal ownership – however, Manchester City’s Riyad Mahrez scores more impressively in the form category.

Owned by 9.6 per cent and priced at £8.4m Mahrez is reasonably appealing in both categories, but scores brilliantly for form thanks to a hat-trick against Burnley in gameweek 10.

Mahrez is just four FPL points behind team-mate Kevin De Bruyne, and while he has blanked in most of City’s league games this season, he ranks eighth and tenth for Creativity and Threat respectively, suggesting he has been unlucky not to register better attacking returns.

Furthermore, City’s fixture list looks kind – Pep Guardiola’s side face West Brom – who have the worst defence in the league – before games against Southampton and Newcastle.

Attack from defence

A graphic showing some recommended Fantasy Premier League purchases ahead of gameweek 13

Mahrez’s club colleague John Stones also has a good Transfer Score this week in part down to the fixture list – he has also registered three consecutive clean sheets with City since his return to the side.

At just £4.8m he could make a nice stocking filler, but if it’s goals you are after from your back line, Angelo Ogbonna and Jan Bednarek are worth considering – both score better for form due to their recent form in the final third.

Ogbonna has two goals in his last three games and is a certain pick in a West Ham defence which has won four of its last five league games. At 1.3 per cent ownership he looks an appealing differential option.

Bednarek, meanwhile, has a goal and an assist, along with two clean sheets, in his last five games, and at £4.6m is the cheapest option of the three. His upcoming fixtures are tough, but then, Southampton are flying high themselves in fourth.

Glove Actually

A graphic showing some recommended Fantasy Premier League purchases ahead of gameweek 13

Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho called Hugo Lloris the best goalkeeper in the Premier League over the weekend, and the France stopper does currently have the highest form score in the division.

Lloris has registered four clean sheets in his last five games, and has earned three bonus points on two occasions in that time. At £5.6m, his price is currently his only apparent drawback.

For a cheaper option, Leeds’ Illan Meslier costs a full £1m less and rewarded his owners with an 11-point haul in GW10.

Burnley’s Nick Pope meanwhile is also cheaper at £5.4m, but it is his fixture list which marks him out as a prospect. Burnley face Aston Villa, Wolves, Leeds, Sheffield United and Fulham next.