Some teams play as many as nine games throughout December so it should go without saying that we’re about to embark on a decisive month in the Dream Team calendar.
Transfers will be refreshed tomorrow (Friday 3rd) and it’s imperative you whip your XI into shape – although it’s probably wise to keep at least two transfers back so you can react to unfolding events later in the month.
In a timely fashion, we’ve identified five players who could rack up loads of points in the coming weeks.
Before we get into it, just a note to say we haven’t included Mohamed Salah (£8.0m) because, frankly, he’s a given at this stage.
Those without the Egyptian King in their XI – he has 94 points more than the next-best forward – have probably given up on Dream Team altogether for 2021/22.
1 Diogo Jota (£4.6m)
Liverpool’s Portuguese forward is the biggest winner of Game Week 13 at the time of writing having racked up 31 points.
The 24-year-old scored two goals against Southampton before his brilliant strike against Everton on Wednesday night helped him claim the Star Man award in the Merseyside derby.
Jota has heartily capitalised on Roberto Firmino’s (£3.9m) hamstring injury having scored five goals in his last five games for the Reds.
The Brazilian will surely struggle to reclaim his place in Jurgen Klopp’s first-choice XI given Jota’s form.
Liverpool average over three goals per game in all competitions this season which means it’s perfectly reasonable to pair Salah with one of his attacking buddies in your XI.
2 Bruno Fernandes (£6.1m)
Last season’s standout midfield asset has mustered just four points from his last four outings but we’re backing him for a resurgence this month.
There’s no telling yet whether Ralf Rangnick will be able to iron out the problems that blighted the end of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s reign at Old Trafford but the Red Devils’ fixtures from Game Week 14 onward appear very favourable.
Fernandes will be licking his lips looking at the following run: Crystal Palace, Young Boys, Norwich, Brentford, Brighton, Newcastle, Burnley.
We’ve deliberately picked out Man United’s midfield talisman because at this stage it’s still not clear to what extent the interim manager will utilise Cristiano Ronaldo (£8.0m)…
3 Marcos Alonso (£4.1m)
Ben Chilwell’s (£5.0m) injury is thankfully not as severe as first feared but he will be sidelined until 2022 which opens the door for his Spanish understudy.
Even accounting for Thomas Tuchel’s rotation policy, Alonso will surely start the majority of games at left wing-back in December and given the importance of his position in Chelsea’s current system, we fancy him to chip in with goal contributions on top of the regular clean sheets we’ve come to expect from the Blues.
Chelsea play four bottom-half teams in the space of 15 days later this month.
4 Pablo Fornals (£2.7m)
A left-field suggestion here but what’s life without whimsy?
Michail Antonio’s (£3.9m) form has fallen off a cliff but West Ham’s midfielders continue to tick along nicely and after bright spells from Said Benrahma (£3.7m) and Declan Rice (£2.9m), we think it might be the Spaniard’s time to take centre-stage.
Fornals assisted the Hammers’ goal against Brighton on Wednesday night and did enough on top of that to scoop the Star Man award, equating to a very respectable ten-point haul.
The 25-year-old is just three points off breaking into the top ten assets in his position having scored four goals and provided two assists in the league this term.
Chelsea’s visit to the London Stadium this coming weekend completes West Ham’s testing run of fixtures and David Moyes will much prefer the outlook ahead with four of the bottom five to play before New Year’s Eve.
5 Bernardo Silva (£3.3m)
Perhaps we’re still drunk off the Portuguese playmaker’s immaculate volley against Aston Villa but, come on, that was obscenely impressive.
Pep Guardiola believes Bernardo is the best player in the Premier League right now and while that raises questions of whether he’s bothered to watch Salah at all this season, there is no doubt that Man City’s No20 is enjoying tremendous form.
Five goals and two assists, while a very respectable tally at this stage, doesn’t reveal the full extent to which Bernardo has influenced games in recent months.
His Dream Team points tally of 71 gives a clearer indication as that puts him just three points off his compatriot Fernandes, who is currently the second-best midfielder in the game – Riyad Mahrez (£5.8m) remains top dog.
Watford, Leeds, Newcastle and Brentford will all be fearing thrashings at the hands of the reigning champions this month and Bernardo will fancy his chances of cashing in against some of the more porous defences in the division.