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TRIP UP

Kieran Trippier is immensely popular ahead of the new Dream Team season but are gaffers making a mistake?

Some interesting patterns are emerging as Dream Team gaffers submit and tinker with their line-ups ahead of the new season.

Take for example, the fact Kieran Trippier (£3m) is currently the second-most selected defender in the game.

The 31-year-old’s ownership of 26.1% means he’s more popular than Joao Cancelo (£6.5m), Reece James (£5.5m), Andy Robertson (£5.5m) a host of other proven performers.

Only Trent Alexander-Arnold (£6.5m), last season’s second-top points scorer overall, appears in more teams than Trippier right now.

Of course, the outlook could all change before Game Week 1 gets underway on August 5th but it’s reasonable to assume Newcastle’s first-choice right-back will be heavily backed once scoring begins.


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Mr Popular

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Mr Popular

The case for including Trippier in your XI is a strong one.

At £3m he’s affordable which is a huge plus considering the likes of Mohamed Salah (£7.5m), Harry Kane (£7.5m) and Erling Haaland (£7m) all demand a significant portion of your £50m budget.

Assets in Trippier’s price range allow you to splash the cash on the premium forwards who seem most likely to rack up plentiful points.

Add in the general expectation that Eddie Howe’s side will continue to improve after an impressive turnaround in 2021/22 that saw them finish just two points off the top half having previously been under serious threat of relegation.

New arrivals Sven Botman (£2.5m) and Nick Pope (£2.5m) should strengthen the Magpies further and more Saudi cash is likely to be spent with the club hoping to emulate the rise of Man City under Sheikh Mansour.

If Newcastle can pick up where they left off once the new term begins then there will be Dream Team points to be had at St James’ Park.

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Trippier made a fantastic start to life on Tyneside last season when he scored twice in four games before injury sidelined him for three months.

The England international is a set-piece specialist and an excellent crosser in open play which means he’ll chip in with regular attacking returns on top of any clean sheets if all goes to plan.

Not only that, Newcastle start the upcoming season with arguably the most favourable fixture possible, a home game against play-off winners Nottingham Forest.

26.1% of Dream Team gaffers are backing Trippier to deliver points

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26.1% of Dream Team gaffers are backing Trippier to deliver points

However, is it possible over a quarter of Dream Team bosses are guilty of a short-sighted view?

The Toon’s opening fixture may look ripe for points but zoom out and August presents a tough test.

Howe’s side will take on both Man City and Liverpool in the first month and away days to Brighton and Wolves – two teams that finished in the top half last term – will also be tricky negotiate.

NEWCASTLE’S AUGUST FIXTURES

  • Nottingham Forest (h)
  • Brighton (a)
  • Man City (h)
  • Wolves (a)
  • Liverpool (a)

The prospect of facing Salah, Haaland, Luis Diaz, Kevin De Bruyne and company in quick succession limits the viability of any defender in Dream Team, Trippier included.

One possible tactic could be to back the former Atletico Madrid full-back from the get-go before using one of your five allotted monthly transfers to replace him ahead of Game Week 3 to swerve City, Wolves and Liverpool.

Newcastle’s September fixtures appear friendly enough (Crystal Palace, West Ham, Bournemouth) so you could always bring Trippier back in then, or during the international break prior to the Toon facing Fulham and Brentford in early October.

Alternatively, if the thought of dedicating two transfers to shuffling one player around before the first international break doesn’t sit well then you may be better off avoiding Trippier altogether for the opening month.

Remember, Dream Team managers can make unlimited changes prior to Game Week 1 so you can tinker to your heart’s content.


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