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FPL tips: Returning FPL assets pass the FA Cup audition

Chelsea v Chesterfield – Emirates FA Cup – Third Round – Stamford Bridge
(Image credit: Nick Potts)

Returning Premier League players showed they mean business with eye-catching displays in the third round of the FA Cup this weekend.

Whether out with Covid-19, injury or something else, the historic cup competition provided a platform for a number of players to prove their worth.

Romelu Lukaku was one player who made a positive impact upon returning to the spotlight.

Chelsea’s Romelu Lukaku looks on during the Carabao Cup semi final first leg match at Stamford Bridge, London. Picture date: Wednesday January 5, 2022

(John Walton/PA)

The Belgian missed a number of games through injury and Covid, before he was dropped from the squad for Chelsea’s game against Liverpool.

After playing 90 minutes during the Blues’ League Cup semi-final first-leg win against Tottenham however, he again appeared in the FA Cup, scoring one as Chelsea beat Chesterfield 5-1.

Lukaku missed three more chances before the west London side rang the changes at half-time, but fans will have been encouraged to see him creating opportunities.

At £11.5m the 28-year-old has a premium FPL price tag which he has failed to justify so far this season, but performances in recent weeks suggest all is not lost.

Along with a goal in the Cup, Lukaku scored in GW20 against Brighton, while GW19 saw him register a goal and an assist against Aston Villa.

Elsewhere another Belgian made a positive impact in a convincing win for his side, with Leicester’s Youri Tielemans contributing in a 4-1 victory over Watford.

Leicester City’s Youri Tielemans (right) celebrates scoring the opening goal of the game during the Emirates FA Cup third round match at the King Power Stadium, Leicester. Picture date: Saturday January 8, 2022

(Mike Egerton/PA)

The 24-year-old midfielder missed four league games in November and December with a calf injury, having found some goalscoring form beforehand.

His return to the side saw him net a brace against Newcastle, and seven minutes into Leicester’s cup tie he broke the deadlock from the penalty spot.

At £6.4m and just 4.3 per cent ownership, Tielemans might well be worth a look for any FPL managers hoping to bag a differential.

Leicester’s form meanwhile makes for interesting reading for any prospective buyers – the 2015-16 Premier League champions have won two and lost two in their last five.

In that period the Foxes have scored 11 goals, while they recorded a disappointing defeat against Aston Villa and a sensational victory against Liverpool.

Last but not least, Manuel Lanzini failed to get many minutes under his belt in the first part of the season, but looks to be finding the kind of form which could make him essential for West Ham.

West Ham United’s Manuel Lanzini (second right) scores their side’s first goal of the game during the Emirates FA Cup third round match at London Stadium, London. Picture date: Sunday January 9, 2022

(Nigel French/PA)

The Argentina international has four goals in his last eight Premier League appearances, and bagged the opener in the Hammers’ third-round tie against Leeds on Sunday.

Lanzini’s knack for a goal comes cheap too (£5.8m) while he is owned by fewer than one per cent of FPL managers.

West Ham’s form meanwhile only further enhances his reputation as a FPL purchase – David Moyes’ team are fifth in the league and have scored nine goals in their last three PL games.

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