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EPL Bargain Bin: Week 5 Value Players

Chris Mosinski

Chris Mosinski

Fantasy sports connoisseur and expert soccer prognosticator.

There is a lot of intrigue surrounding the Week Five Bargain Bin, as some teams are coming off European matches, which means some big names might be rested on the weekend after playing earlier in the week. This could mean having to turn to some bench players for a spot start on your roster. But which of those bench players could provide enough value to be worthy of a roster position? Well, if that is the question you are faced with, or if you have very little money remaining on your budget to fill out your roster, here are some guys to consider for Week Five:

Goalkeeper
Newcastle United have surprised people this season by picking up seven crucial points through the first four weeks. They have been successful because of timely scoring as well as strong defense and goalkeeping. In fact, the last three matches have seen Tim Krul and the rest of the Newcastle backline surrender just one goal. This week they host a Hull City squad that has been less proficient on the road this season, failing to score a goal away from KC Stadium. On the flip side, Newcastle United have yet to allow a goal in any Premier League match at St. Jamesí Park this season. Hull struggled to score last season on the road and it seems to be no different this year: their shots per game are cut nearly in half when they play on the road. Look for the Magpies to secure another clean sheet, giving Krul three early in the season.

Defenders
In Week One, Arsenal surrendered three goals at home to Aston Villa in defeat. Since then (and including the Champions League play-off round) Arsenal have yet to allow a goal at Emirates Stadium. This week they play host to a Stoke City squad that have not scored against Arsenal since April 2012. Helping to continue the scoreless streak will be Carl Jenkinson, who started in each of those clean sheets and the only time he didnít get a start this season was the aforementioned Week One debacle against Aston Villa. Jenkinson is in good shape to pick up a clean sheet against a Stoke City squad that saw only two teams get shut out more times away from home last season. And if that wasnít enough motivation to play Jenkinson this week, take a look at how he may play a role in the attack against Stoke City. No team in the Premier League has surrendered more shots to defenders this season than Stoke. In addition, they have been victimized through the air by crosses and Jenkinson is second on the team in crosses through the first four matches. Jenkinsonís value gets a nice bump up this week against Stoke City.

Liverpool have been fantastic at preventing goals this season and much of that can be attributed to the fabulous play of keeper Simon Mignolet, but that doesnít mean the defendersí fantasy values donít benefit because of it. Thanks to injuries along the back line, Martin Skrtel has started the last two Premier League matches for Liverpool and he should see similar playing action this week against Southampton. The matchup Saturday should play out well for Liverpool defenders to have good fantasy value. Southampton are already poor in their shot efficiency and going against Liverpool will not improve their chances. Last season, Liverpool shut out Southampton 1-0 in their match at Anfield, in which Liverpool took more than twice as many shots as Southampton while limiting Southamptonís quality attacks. Look for Skrtel to pick up a clean sheet Saturday and get some quality points.

Midfielders
There should be plenty of firepower when Norwich City host Aston Villa this weekend. In the five matches the two sides have played over the past two seasons, there have been an average of 3.4 goals scored. Norwich City should also benefit by playing an Aston Villa squad that have seen only two other teams allow more goals this season. Of the five goals scored against Villa (including one own goal), four of them have come from shots to the left of the penalty dot. Patrolling the left side of the midfield for Norwich will be Nathan Redmond. If that doesnít make you excited about Redmondís chances of participating in the scoring this week, keep in mind he also leads the team in shots. I like Redmondís chances to find the back of the net in what should be a high scoring affair.

Yohan Cabaye issued an apology to Newcastle supporters for trying to leave St. Jamesí Park earlier this week. Iíve seen stories like this plenty of times and many of them play out the same, with the player doing something great after making this type of announcement. Cabaye and Newcastle play host to Hull City on Saturday in a match Newcastle should handle. No team in the league has allowed more goals to opposing midfielders than Hull. Cabaye has worked himself back into the lineup and got his first start of the season last week against Aston Villa. In addition to the offensive potential this week, Cabaye should be in line to pick up some clean sheet points, as discussed with Krul. The value should be there for Cabaye if you need a cheap midfielder.

Forwards
Victor Anichebe is clearly reaping the benefits of being loaned to West Brom earlier this month. He got his first start of the season last week against Fulham and managed to take three shots in the process. This week, the Baggies get to play host to a Sunderland squad they have dominated recently. In their last five matches against the Black Cats, West Brom have been able to score 15 goals. It does not appear that Sunderland have improved their goal prevention this year as they rank last in the Premier League, having allowed eight goals through four games. Anichebe was the focus up front for West Brom last week and gets to face a Sunderland squad that allows more shots to forwards than any other team and ranks second to last in preventing those opportunities from becoming goals. Anichebeís chances of scoring a goal this week are as good as anybodyís.

The Norwich City match with Aston Villa was described earlier as having a lot of firepower. You didnít think that the Bargain Bin would be without a striker from that match, did you? Aston Villa is another team that allows a high conversion rate for opposing forwardsí shots, ranking 17th in the 20 team Premier League. Ricky van Wolfswinkel should benefit from playing Aston Villa, as the striker looks for his second goal in Premier League play. Sure, the threat of Gary Hooper playing looms, but until he gets consistent time on the pitch, van Wolfswinkel is the play up front for Norwich and your fantasy team. Between van Wolfswinkel and the previously discussed Redmond, Canaries are clearly a hot commodity in the Bargain Bin this week.