Fantasy football is back on the menu, with the new Premier League season landing on our doorstep TONIGHT.
Arsenal take on Leicester at the Emirates Stadium ahead of what many expect to be one of the most exciting seasons yet.
Dream Team 2017/18
But further North, attention has turned to Liverpool with the news that midfield playmaker Philippe Coutinho has handed in a transfer request, with La Liga giants Barcelona keen on adding the Brazilian magician to their ranks this summer.
Barcelona are a player short following the departure of Neymar to Paris Saint-Germain last month, but they have a shed-load of money to spend and Coutinho is reportedly top of their wishlist.
If Coutinho does leave Anfield in the next week or so, then that poses a very serious question indeed;
Who are the fantasy football alternatives to replace Philippe Coutinho in your team?
Nearly 15% of you have selected Liverpool’s talisman so far, which means you could have a rather large, £6.0m-size hole in your team.
Luckily, we’ve got some fairly reliable, points-scoring midfield alternatives you may want to consider:
Sadio Mane – £6.0m
If he can stay fit this season, then Mane could be a key figure for Liverpool in the absence of Coutinho.
With the Reds competing on multiple fronts, including the Champions League, they’ll need the Senegalese winger to continue his awesome pre-season form into the new Premier League campaign.
Mane ran the show against Bayern Muncih during their Audi Cup win over Bayern Munich, and has seemingly linked up well with new boy Mohamed Salah.
Kevin De Bruyne – £6.0m
If Man City are going to win the Premier League this season (like many predict) then they’ll be relying heavily on this midfield maestro to pull out the stops.
De Bruyne topped the assist table last season with 18, beating the likes of Christian Eriksen and Gylfi Sigurdsson, while his tally of 214 points on Dream Team ranks much higher than teammates David Silva (153) and Raheem Sterling (159).
He’s already a favourite on this season’s game, with nearly 25% of managers selecting him.
Mesut Ozil – £5.5m
We’ve been really scratching our heads over this one.
Hardly anyone is picking Ozil this season, with only 8% of managers opting for the Arsenal playmaker in their Dream Team.
The German midfielder broke the 200 point barrier in fantasy football last season, putting him in the same bracket as the likes of De Bruyne, Dele Alli and Paul Pogba.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan – £4.5m
With 13.3% of managers selecting Mkhitaryan so far this season, the Armenian has crept into our top 20 most selected list.
His performances during United’s Europa League run were particularly eye-catching last season, earning the former Dortmund man a 7.33 rating on WhoScored, Dream Team’s ratings provider.
Expect him to have an even bigger role to play this season.
Dele Alli – £6.0m
What more can we say about this guy?
For the same price as Coutinho, you can sign the midfielder who scored the most league goals in Europe’s top five leagues last season.
How does fantasy football work?
The setup for Dream Team is pretty simple really – as a manger you get a budget of £50m to spend on your team of 11 players.
Game Weeks will run from Friday to Thursday this season and you’ll be allowed to transfer out players who have already played in that Game Week.
Each manager gets a maximum of three transfers a month – so it’s important to pay attention to upcoming fixtures.
And if the incentive of beating your mates in our Mini-League system isn’t enough, there’s a whopping £750,000 prizepot at stake too.
Which fantasy football team names are the most popular?
Team names have become almost as important as picking winning sides in recent years, with the punnier the better the general perspective.
So whether it’s Lallana in Pyjamas, Giroud Sandstorm or Teenage Mutant Ninja Skrtel, take a look at our foolproof list to help you decide.
What else do I need to know?
Remember Dream Team stands above it’s competitors because it factors in every single competition in the season – not just the Premier League.
That means you’ll have to have your wits about you in the League Cup, FA Cup, Champions League and Europa League too when selecting your players.
Head to Head leagues and Mini Leagues will also be back so you can beat your mates and earn those all important bragging rights.
ike what you see? Keep up to date with all the latest with our fantasy football live blog and sign up to play Dream Team below…