Fantasy Premier League Gameweek 29: Free hits, who to captain and transfer tips as West Ham face Aston Villa

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
Our Top 4,000 manager's free hit plans, captain choices and transfer tips ahead of Gameweek 29 in the FPL.

Welcome back to our regular Fantasy Premier League advice column, this week focussing on Gameweek 29 and its particularly small number of fixtures – all penned by our very own high-flying fantasy coach, who is well inside the global Top 5,000.

He’ll have all the advice you need below, but before we get started we should remind you that the deadline for all of your transfers to be made by is 13:30 GMT on Saturday 16 March, with no early kick-off to force you out of bed to get your team sorted early. Enjoy the lie-in. Anyway, over to Matthew…

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Beating the big blank

There are two types of player heading into this mini-gameweek which plays host to just four fixtures – those who have been carefully cultivating their team over the course of several weeks to ensure that they have enough players involved already, and those who have more or less ignored it until now and plan to use their free hit. And perhaps some players who have made a meal of things and don’t have a free hit left, but there’s not much I can do to help you if you’re in that camp. Sorry.

Given that most of you who’ve been doing some long-term planning to save your chips will already have their team more or less sorted, I’ll focus today on the players who are planning to use their free hit, and see what their team should look like. This includes me, so I’ll be able to show my working below.

Let’s start with goalkeeper and defence. On paper, things don’t look too promising for clean sheets, so it’s hard to imagine wanting more than three starting defenders. Generally speaking, you’ll want to avoid picking players who are up against your midfielders and attackers, so given that we’ll mostly be picking them up from Tottenham Hotspur, Aston Villa and West Ham United, we want to avoid defenders facing those players.

Given that we also want to err towards sides more likely to win, that means I like Spurs, Luton Town and Brentford players. Pedro Porro hasn’t hit top form for a while but still takes some set pieces, so he seems like a good place to start. Alfie Doughty is likewise a reliable source of assists, so he should also be high on the list.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

For the final pick, I like Brentford’s Sergio Reguilón, who offers pretty regular returns from left-back with three assists in his last five matches. The only downside is that he missed the game against Arsenal with a knock, so I’ll be keeping an eye on Thomas Frank’s press conference to check that he’s playing. Mads Roerslev, Kristoffer Ajer and Issa Kaboré are the alternatives.

In goal, I think Mark Flekken is the best direction of travel. Brentford’s chances of keeping a clean sheet against Burnley are as good as anybody’s, and Flekken has earned at least one save bonus point in six of his last seven matches. Thomas Kaminski and James Trafford are the next best options, but the gap seems fairly substantial.

Further forward, there’s really no argument for looking past Son Heung-Min, Ollie Watkins, Ivan Toney and Jarrod Bowen. Between them, they have the highest points ceiling of all the available players, with James Maddison close behind. They’re all in my free hit team and I can’t think of a good argument against them.

That would leave us with two slots to fill – and the decision, for me, is between Leon Bailey, Mohammed Kudus, and an interesting range of strikers which includes the off-form Carlton Morris, Chiedozie Ogbene, Taiwo Awoniyi, Yoane Wissa and Rodrigo Muniz.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Having hinted at Awoniyi as a differential option in recent weeks, I must regretfully withdraw that recommendation as he simply isn’t getting on the pitch. Wissa is on good form but rarely plays the full 90 minutes, while I don’t fancy Fulham to get much from a game against Spurs even with Muniz is fine form. That makes it a toss up between the midfielders and the Luton strikers – and it’s a very close call indeed.

Morris has been off colour lately but they face a leaky Nottingham Forest side at home, and as the penalty taker I still think his odds of scoring are better than Ogbene’s on any given day, even if that hasn’t been how it’s panned out of late – but I could easily see an argument for going with two up front and having Bailey and Kudus rounding out a midfield five. With all of that in mind, here’s how my free hit looks as it stands…

Fantasy Premier League

For those of you getting up to 10 or 11 players without a free hit, you’ll need to look further ahead at fixtures, of course. You’re hopefully not far from playing your wildcard anyway, but if you’re in this boat then I like Muniz a lot more, for instance, as his next two games are against Sheffield United and Forest, so he should get more goals down the line.

Similarly, Forest have games against Fulham and Palace so there’s a much stronger argument for a player like Morgan Gibbs-White, while I’d be less inclined to move on West Ham players as their forthcoming fixtures are far tougher than other teams’. The same goes for Luton, who face Arsenal and Spurs after this gameweek.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Captain chips and injury hits

There aren’t too many injuries to worry about this week, although a ton of players are out for the international break, so keeping track of knocks and bumps can be a problem for a fortnight’s time – but Reguilón is a known doubt for Brentford, Richarlison is still out, and anyone fancying a punt on Tahith Chong or Elijah Adebayo should be aware that they’re doubts too. Not that too many people should be picking them up anyway.

For your captain this week, it’s pretty hard to look past Son based on form and potential returns. Watkins is a defensible selection, as is Toney, but if in doubt, go for the midfielder – and I don’t think there’s all that much doubt anyway, unless you have a different view of how Fulham v Spurs will pan out compared to me.

3 Added Minutes FC

Finally, a very quick update on our example team, 3 Added Minutes FC, which just about survived an absolutely horrible week with a marginally above-average score – but still a low one, and one that dropped my rank by almost 2,000 places having been hovering around 1,500 last time around. Ah well, it was a weird one and an amazing number of players didn’t return. Others had it worse, but not having Son has proven to be a shame these past two weeks.

Fantasy Premier League

Further bad news comes from my bench, which has Anthony Gordon on it – and as we await word on the severity of his injury, I inch ever so slightly closer to being forced to use my wildcard early, but that’s a discussion we’ll likely have in our next column in two weeks’ time.

Until then, best of luck for this weird gameweek, and may all of your players do rather better than they did in Gameweek 28…

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.