Jamie Vardy

The big issue for a huge number of Fantasy Premier League managers this week has been finding a suitable replacement for Callum Wilson. The promising young Bournemouth striker has been ruled out for at least six months with a serious knee injury.

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Consequently, the former Coventry City forward has been released by well over half-a-million FPL managers and his price has plunged from 6m to 5.7m. Most FPL managers, it seems, have switched to Jamie Vardy. The Leicester City forward has risen 0.3m to 6.6m as more than 450,000 FPL managers acquired his services. This was one week when it paid to make a quick decision. There was only a 0.3m gap between the two players last Saturday. This Saturday the price difference is 0.9m.

The second most popular striker being bought this week was Anthony Martial, but the 8.4m Manchester United forward has attracted less than a third of Vardy’s transfers and risen just 0.1 in price. Several factors came together to make Wilson to Vardy an obvious choice this week:

  1. Price – The switch was easy for many because the two players were so close in price.
  2. Goals – Vardy’s brace against Arsenal catapulted him above Wilson and teammate Riyad Mahrez to top the Premier League scoring charts with six.
  3. Form – Those two goals were his fourth and fifth in four games.
  4. Fixtures – Leicester’s next six fixtures (nor, sot, CPL, wba, WAT, new) are arguably the best in the Premier League over that period.
  5. And, for those who pay attention to such matters, his underlying statistics are solid too.

Jamie Vardy GW1-7 2015-16

As well as being the Premier League’s top goal scorer, he is sitting in the top five among strikers for Shots, Shots in the Box and Shots on Target. At 60 per cent, his percentage of goals from Shots on Target is too high. But even if he had only scored a more realistic three or four goals this season, that would have left him the joint seventh or joint third highest scoring forward respectively this season.

The former Halifax Town forward is taking lots of shots, hitting most of them from inside the box and getting more than 40 per cent of them on target. As a cautionary note, Vardy went largely missing from the perspective of striking statistics during two games but still collected an assist in the Gameweek 3 match against Tottenham Hotsput, the meanest defence in the league for goals conceded.

Will Vardy keep scoring every match? Probably not, but if he can keep shooting from inside the box with his current accuracy he should be good for a few more goals during the next couple of months. The Wilson to Vardy switch was a logical one.

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