There are only three jobs for you to do on Boxing Day: create an epic Christmas Day leftover sandwich, lounge on the sofa all day, and set up your Fantasy Premier League team. Everything else can be put off until the 27th.
The Gameweek 19 deadline is the easiest one to miss. Whether you are nursing a hangover brought on by having one Baileys shot too many or have traditional activities to attend to like going for a nice stroll or diving headfirst into the sea, it is feasible that FPL will be the last thing on your mind when you wake up.
So here are a couple of handy tips: one, sign up to i‘s Fantasy Football newsletter now to receive our Ganeweek 19 tips in full (that’s a team of 11 players, plus a captain pick); and two, set your alarm for 10.45am to give yourself a bit of time to sort out your squad before the 11am deadline. Easy peasy.
This is the second and final round of Amazon Prime’s coverage for the 2023-24 campaign meaning that every game between Boxing Day and 28 December is being broadcast live. So, if you’ve got nothing better to do you can take in four matches back-to-back on 26 December and watch those FPL points stream in. It truly is the most wonderful time of the year.
i‘s top scorers in Gameweek 18
- Dominic Solanke – 17 points vs Nottingham Forest: The outright top scorer of the gameweek. A first-ever Premier League hat-trick ensured a huge 17-point haul from Bournemouth’s No 9. With Fulham up next he will be a popular pre-Boxing Day transfer.
- Son Heung-min – 7 points vs Everton: Another goal for Tottenham’s skipper in a 2-1 win over Everton. Mo Salah is the only player in the game to have amassed more FPL points so far this season.
- Trent Alexander-Arnold – 5 points vs Arsenal: Liverpool’s No 66 delivered his fifth attacking return in the last six gameweeks with an assist for Salah in the draw with Arsenal. He should have made it six in six with a late chance that rattled the crossbar.
Includes players selected in i‘s Fantasy Football newsletter
Thanks for taking the time to read i‘s Fantasy Premier League tips this year and for subscribing to our weekly newsletter if you have done so, we hope they have been useful!
Our next FPL tips will be out before the Gameweek 20 deadline on 30 December, but until then Merry Christmas and may your arrows be green!
This is an extract of i’s Fantasy Premier League tips. Sign up here to receive the newsletter every week this season for our full 11-player team, advice on the best captain and more!
Editor’s note: These tips have been written before the start of Gameweek 18, which means that some prices and points may have changed.
Gameweek 19 fixtures
Tuesday 26 December
3pm kick-off unless otherwise stated
- Newcastle United vs Nottingham Forest (12.30pm)
- Bournemouth vs Fulham
- Sheffield United vs Luton Town
- Burnley vs Liverpool (5.30pm)
- Manchester United vs Aston Villa (8pm)
Wednesday 27 December
- Brentford vs Wolves (7.30pm)
- Chelsea vs Crystal Palace (7.30pm)
- Everton vs Manchester City (8.15pm)
Thursday 28 December
- Brighton vs Tottenham (7.30pm)
- Arsenal vs West Ham (8.15pm)
Bukayo Saka (Arsenal)
Arsenal have started to show signs of clicking into gear in attack and their forwards could soon become hot property with a promising run of games coming up. The Gunners have a nice five-day break over Christmas and then host West Ham at the Emirates on 28 December before taking on Fulham (a), Crystal Palace (h) and Nottingham Forest (a) before the end of January.
Bukayo Saka has been far less explosive than Mo Salah and Son Heung-min when it comes to delivering double-digit hauls, managing just two compared to their six apiece, but he has been an ultra-consistent asset all season.
Only five players in the game have outscored him, and with both Salah and Son heading off to international tournaments in January, Saka will start to become a viable captain option.
Saka is already very highly owned but if you don’t have him he should be a priority buy this week.
West Ham have conceded five goals in both of their last two away games against Fulham and Liverpool and the chances of them keeping Saka and co quiet appear remote.
Price: £9m Points: 98 Gameweek 19 fixture: West Ham (h)
Callum Wilson (Newcastle)
With Alexander Isak nursing a groin injury and Anthony Gordon also struggling with a knock, Eddie Howe’s attacking options are a bit restricted.
It could mean that Callum Wilson sees plenty of game time over the festive period which given his track record makes him a great short-term differential.
Wilson himself has had an injury-hit campaign, but it was encouraging that he was able to play the full 90 minutes during Newcastle’s win against Fulham last weekend and again in the Carabao Cup on Tuesday.
That Wilson scored in the eventual defeat to Chelsea in midweek further boosts his appeal as an FPL asset for Boxing Day.
It remains to be seen whether Nottingham Forest benefit from a Nuno Manager Bounce – see what we did there? – but even if their performances improve a trip to St James’ Park is tricky for any team. The Magpies have won eight of their nine home matches in the league scoring over two goals per game.
Price: £7.8m Points: 54 Gameweek 19 fixture: Nottingham Forest (h)
Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool)
Having championed Trent Alexander-Arnold’s FPL credentials for a good few weeks now, it goes without saying that he is the best Liverpool defender – and best defender outright – to own at the moment. However, at £8.2m he is a full £2m more expensive than Virgil van Dijk, who is equally nailed as a regular starter and provides a goal threat from set-pieces.
The Dutchman lags some way behind his teammate in the points standings but has actually provided a bigger single gameweek score than TAA. Van Dijk returned 14 points in the recent 2-0 win away to Sheffield United after scoring a goal, keeping a clean sheet and earning two delicious bonus points.
The prospects of him repeating those exploits at Turf Moor seem promising. Burnley have failed to score in four of their nine league matches at home and have conceded the joint-highest number of goals from set-pieces with eight. A Van Dijk goal from an Alexander-Arnold assist could be on the cards.
Price: £6.2m Points: 63 Gameweek 19 fixture: Burnley (a)
Richarlison will need to score a few more goals to truly convince everyone that he has indeed turned a corner at Spurs after a disappointing first 18 months in north London, but the signs are certainly positive. After scoring twice in his first 39 Premier League games for the club, the Brazilian has since netted four in his last three
The 26-year-old has looked a different player since returning from groin surgery at the start of the month and those strikes against Newcastle, Nottingham Forest and Everton have given his confidence levels a much-needed boost. Considering he is leading the line for one of the division’s most attack-minded teams, he could offer great value at £6.7m.
Poor form and competition for places in the Spurs attack have limited Richarlison’s FPL appeal in the past, but he is finding his feet and will stand to benefit from Son’s participation in the Asian Cup next month. Spurs face Brighton (a), Bournemouth (h), United (a) and Brentford (h) in their next four.
Price: £6.7m Points: 64 Gameweek 19 fixture: Brighton (a)
Christopher Nkunku (Chelsea)
At long, long last, Chelsea fans caught a glimpse of the club’s headline summer signing Christopher Nkunku during the Carabao Cup quarter-final win over Newcastle. Nkunku, a £52m buy from RB Leipzig who has been sidelined with a knee injury, came on for the final 20 minutes and took his penalty with aplomb as the Blues won 4-2 in the shootout.
Mauricio Pochettino will be eager to ease Nkunku in gently given his lengthy lay-off, but he will also want to get him up to speed quickly too given Chelsea have plenty of work to do to secure European football for next season.
Chelsea’s options in attack will be restricted soon too with Nicolas Jackson set to represent Senegal at the African Cup of Nations.
Chelsea know better than most that players who were prolific in the Bundesliga may not necessarily be as lethal in the Premier League, but at this stage, we can only go off his impressive record at Leipzig.
During his final two seasons at Leipzig, Nkunku netted 36 Bundesliga goals and provided 17 assists, while also scoring 10 times in 13 appearances in the Champions League.
Buying Nkunku now is undoubtedly a risk, but with a dearth of forwards to pick from right now and taking Chelsea’s promising run of fixtures into account, moving for him quickly could pay off in the long run.
Price: £7.3m Points: 0 Gameweek 19 fixture: Crystal Palace (h)