How many times in your FPL career have you thought you’ve got your team perfectly nailed, only to realise you’re £0.5m over budget? That feeling of dread runs through you when you realise that a forward line of Harry Kane, Sergio Aguero and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang isn’t actually that affordable (shock horror).
It’s upsetting. You thought you’d done your research, that your tinkering was going to pay off. All for it to come crumbling down because of a measly £0.5m. Suddenly, you’re scrambling for cheap options and sacrificial lambs elsewhere in your team. Perhaps you’ve even convinced yourself that Shane Duffy could still be a viable option instead of a premium defender. Sorry, too soon?
But pump the brakes for one second and you’ll see that maybe you don’t need the world-beating front three you first dreamed of. What if there were lower budget options in attack that didn’t force you to play Sheffield United’s fourth choice left back every other week?
How to identify good budget forwards?
As much as we’d like FPL to be as easy as possible, when you’re dealing with budget forwards, nothing is guaranteed. The idea should be to take as few risks as possible.
Budget forwards don’t need to be scoring goals every week. What you’re looking for is consistency and a few key advantages over other options in that price bracket.
Is he taking penalties for his side? How much playing time is he likely to get? Does he take any set pieces? If your budget forward fits any of these criteria then you might well be onto a winner.
It’s worth remembering that even if you aren’t looking to start him every week, FPL is a cruel game full of rotational headaches. Because of this, you’ll want your budget option to provide at least two points off the bench if he’s needed.
Who are the best budget forwards in FPL 19/20?
The following list is sorted by attacking fixture difficulty for the opening six gameweeks.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin (£6.0)
Calvert-Lewis managed a respectable six goals and five assists last season while sharing centre-forward duties with the somewhat inconsistent Richarlison.
With Marco Silva having realised that his record signing is better suited on the left, the young Englishman appears to be a first choice striker for Everton for the moment.
The real attraction in picking Calvert-Lewin lies in the Merseyside club’s lovely set of fixtures to start the season. His side face just three top six sides in their first 15 fixtures, making Calvert-Lewin an enticing option to begin your season with.
Danny Ings (£6.0m)
It’s painful to even include him given his horrible injury record, but Danny Ings can – and this is key here – can score goals at this level. Not will, can. Maybe. Hopefully.
He found the back of the net seven times last season in just over 1500 minutes of action and will probably be on penalties for Southampton this season, suggesting he could be a useful budget option for your FPL team.
His main competition will come in the form of Charlie Austin who appeared to be out of favour last season. If Ings can stay healthy he could be an option to rotate into your FPL side for Southampton’s more favourable fixtures.
Jonathan Kodjia (£5.5)
What if I told you there was a budget forward available for the very reasonable sum of £5.5m who was on his team’s penalties, was almost guaranteed game time, and only played two of the top six in his first nine fixtures? Look no further than Aston Villa’s Jonathan Kodjia.
The Ivorian was somewhat outshone by Chelsea loanee Tammy Abraham last season, but with the West London club’s transfer ban looming, they’ll be looking to keep hold of their assets this summer.
This should give Kodjia a run in the Villa side, and with Dean Smith’s attack-minded style of play, there should be chances aplenty for him.
David McGoldrick (£5.5)
The bottom of the proverbial barrel is now being scraped. 15 goals for McGoldrick last season was a decent return for the journeyman striker, and barring any major signings for the Blades, the Irishman looks set to lead the line this season.
Billy Sharp may also represent decent value at £6.0m, but with McGoldrick on penalties and goals likely to be at more of a premium for the newly promoted side, he’s a safer bet for some infrequent returns. The best option? Absolutely not. Worth considering? Definitely.
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