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Choosing the correct midfield is crucial for FPL success. Last season, managers keenly gravitated towards 3-5-2 and 4-5-1 formations in a bid to squeeze as many midfielders into their squads as possible.
Overall, forwards have struggled to keep up in terms of FPL points, thanks to the extra one point earned by midfielders for a goal and clean sheet. For example, only 14 Fantasy Premier League forwards scored over 100 points last season, while a healthy 37 midfielders managed the same total.
And whilst it is impossible to stack a team full of Golden Boot winners such as Mohamed Salah (£13.0m) and Son Heung-min (£12.0m), there is still plenty of value to be found in the middle of the park, with a couple of must-have bargains emerging at the start of every season.
So, as Fantasy Premier League managers worldwide carefully consider which five midfielders to select ahead of GW1, we have identified the 10 best budget options between £4.5 and £6.0m in the position.
The 21-year-old winger heads into the 2022-23 season with a very kind price tag of £6.0m, matched by his Gunners team-mate Emile Smith-Rowe.
Although the Arsenal pair shared minutes on the left flank last campaign, Martinelli had a strong finish to the season and seemed to win Mikel Arteta’s favour, notching a goal and three assists in his last four Premier League matches.
Despite only arriving at St James’ Park in January, Guimaraes racked up five goals and an assist in 17 appearances to help Newcastle avoid the drop.
Since his first start in GW28 of last season, the £40million midfielder quickly became Newcastle’s best attacker statistically, topping the charts in terms of shots (20) and expected goal involvement (3.79).
It is almost always a risk betting on a newly promoted attacker due to the improved calibre of Premier League defences, but Wilson may offer shrewd value at the £6.0m price bracket.
The playmaker bagged 10 goals and 20 assists as record-breaking Fulham clinched the Championship title. After a difficult clash against former club Liverpool in GW1, he holds favourable fixtures against Wolves and Brentford.
Pedro Neto was just like Gareth Bale. Unstoppable thanks to his ability to carry the ball and dribble inside and outside on both flanks. So explosive and yet so dangerous thanks to his nimble dribbling & special ball striking. Hoping he returns the same.— EBL (@EBL2017) July 26, 2022
The Portuguese winger endured a £1.0m price drop following his injury perturbed season at Molineux and looks an excellent budget option ahead of the new campaign.
Neto scored five and assisted eight in 2020-21 and has two fantastic games against Leeds and Fulham to start the new season.
Gordon notched four goals and three assists during Everton’s relegation scrap last campaign and has since been rewarded with the club’s No 10 shirt.
Following the £60million exit of Richarlison to Spurs, the 21-year-old is set to take on an increase in game time next campaign, as Frank Lampard looks to return the Toffees to the top half.
Brentford kick off the season with a very kind run of fixtures, facing Fulham, Everton, Crystal Palace, Leeds, Southampton and Bournemouth between GW3 and GW9.
Scoring four goals during his last nine matches, Wissa became the left winger of choice under Thomas Frank towards the tail-end of last campaign and should therefore start the season ahead of new arrival Keane Lewis-Potter.
A steady and reliable FPL midfield option at the £5.5m mark, Fornals has scored a century of points in his last two seasons, accruing 125 in 2020-21 and 117 in 2021-22.
The Spaniard was second behind Jarrod Bowen for minutes played amongst attacking midfielders last campaign, making him a likely starter in West Ham’s opening four fixtures against Man City, Nottingham Forest, Brighton and Aston Villa.
Although Bailey is a concern for minutes ahead of GW1, he is certainly worth consideration at the low price of £5.0m.
The Jamaican star has started each of Aston Villa’s three pre-season friendlies so far and has strengthened his claim to start in GW1 against Bournemouth, following a goal and assist across those games.
The ex-Manchester United midfielder left Old Trafford to join Marco Silva at Fulham, making him a standout option at the £4.5m price bracket.
Not only is Pereira likely to play most matches but he may also get the odd attacking return, as he looks set to replace Fabio Carvalho’s role in the team following his exit to Liverpool.
With Christian Eriksen having joined Manchester United rather than Brentford this summer, Frank will need a fresh creative midfielder to provide for Ivan Toney, Bryan Mbeumo and Wissa up front.
It is perhaps too early to tell whether Dasilva will fit the bill, but the 23-year-old claimed 15 goals and eight assists in the two seasons prior to his injury-blighted campaign in 2021-22, making him an intriguing option at £4.5m.
The 21-year-old had his breakthrough season for Aston Villa in the 2021/22 campaign and looked mighty impressive, not only contributing with six goals and an assist but also showing he has the mentality of a leader.
Ramsey will be a guaranteed starter for Steven Gerrard's side this season and will look to kick on and give Gareth Southgate something to think about ahead of the 2022 World Cup.