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FPL tips: Bosses target midfield Afcon replacements as Mohamed Salah departs

By January 10, 2022No Comments

With the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) under way, FPL managers have been forced to replace some of their star players.

Egypt and Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah is the most high-profile absentee from the FPL roster, and he is joined by a number of talented Premier League colleagues at the tournament.

Along with Salah, Algeria and West Ham’s Said Benrahma – and Ivory Coast and Crystal Palace’s Wilfried Zaha – were the most transferred-out midfielders ahead of gameweek 22.

FPL tips: Bosses target midfield Afcon replacements as Mohamed Salah departs PLZ Soccer

Salah has seen his ownership dip by around a million managers, with plenty deciding to free up the roughly £13m costs.

An outrageous first half of the season ensured the Egyptian would always be dropped by hundreds of thousands when AFCON rolled around, with more than six million owning him a few weeks ago.

His 16 goals and 10 assists this campaign have earned Salah and his backers 177 points – the highest total of any player this term by some distance.

Benrahma cost FPL managers less than half of Salah’s value at £5.9m but had boosted his ownership to more than 1.5 million managers thanks to a run of form.

FPL tips: Bosses target midfield Afcon replacements as Mohamed Salah departs PLZ Soccer
(Adam Davy/PA)

The 26-year-old has two goals and one assist in his last three PL games, and has seen a drop of around 150,000 managers ahead of GW22.

And Zaha’s ownership has dropped by around 30,000 as he departs Palace for the international stage.

The forward has returned five goals and one assist in a solid if unspectacular season – his backers will have felt less conflicted in replacing him after he returned a negative points total thanks to a red card in GW19.

So who will be replacing these Premier League stars over the coming weeks?

FPL tips: Bosses target midfield Afcon replacements as Mohamed Salah departs PLZ Soccer

Diogo Jota is the main beneficiary, his ownership rising by around 400,000 ahead of GW22.

The Portuguese is, on paper, a very sensible option – with Sadio Mane and Salah at AFCON, and the Reds facing Brentford and Palace next, his points potential is high.

The £8.2m Jota is also in a fine run of form, with six goals and one assist in his last nine games.

Arsenal’s Bukayo Saka, meanwhile, has seen his ownership rise by more than 250,000 ahead of Sunday’s north London derby.

The young England star costs just £6.4m and ranks in the top 10 for Threat AND Creativity among midfielders this term.

FPL tips: Bosses target midfield Afcon replacements as Mohamed Salah departs PLZ Soccer
(Joe Giddens/PA)

Furthermore, he has scored four goals in his last three league appearances, returning 29 points for his fantasy managers.

Last but by no means least, West Ham’s Jarrod Bowen has added more than 180,000 managers ahead of GW22 thanks to a fine run of creative form.

Bowen has registered five assists in his last three league games and now has more FPL assists than any other player this season.

At £6.7m he also ranks fourth among midfielders for Threat, and scored in West Ham’s FA Cup third-round win over Leeds at the weekend.