FPL gameweek 27 tips: Barnes storming onto managers’ radars

Harvey Barnes could be a key Fantasy Premier League differential if you need reinforcements for gameweek 27.

Leicester are secure in the Champions League places despite an indifferent run of form, and Barnes has emerged as a key factor heading into the season’s final stretch.

Elsewhere, defensive players continue to dominate the rankings with no striker featuring in the top 45 places this week.

Harvey danger

Leading midfield picks for FPL gameweek 27
Harvey Barnes ranks number one overall for gameweek 27 (PA graphic)

Barnes’ impressive recent form score of 7.3 points per gameweek, underpinned by three goals and an assist across successive games against Burnley, West Ham and Chelsea, helps him rank highly in the PA news agency’s Transfer Score metric – 50 per cent of which is based on form, with the other half made up by cost, ownership and fixture difficulty rating (FDR).

He is owned by only 2.5 per cent of FPL managers and even though Leicester face Manchester City this week, their fixtures after that are appealing – helping Barnes to an overall transfer score of 79. Team-mate Ayoze Perez is not far behind at 74, second in the midfield rankings.

Of course, Champions League qualification is the limit of Leicester’s realistic ambitions as Liverpool fans count down the games to their title coronation – and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain completes the podium as the Reds are represented in all four positions.

Bellerin back with a bang

Leading defensive picks for FPL gameweek 27
Hector Bellerin has returned from injury in top form (PA graphic)

Arsenal full-back Hector Bellerin has missed much of this season due to injury but his return has provided a major boost to FPL managers shrewd enough – and bold enough – to slot him straight in.

The Spaniard scored on his return against Chelsea and followed that up with clean sheets against Burnley and Newcastle to score 22 of his 23 points this season. He will have further opportunities against Everton, West Ham, Brighton, Southampton and Norwich in the coming weeks – though the Gunners do sit out gameweek 28, with scheduled opponents Manchester City in Carabao Cup final action.

Bellerin’s transfer score of 77 slots him just ahead of Harry Maguire, whose form rating is boosted by his goal – and, just as significantly, by avoiding a red card – in Manchester United’s win over Chelsea on Monday night.

Joe Gomez is Liverpool’s representative in third place, the same position occupied by Alisson Becker on the goalkeeping podium, with the pair keeping 10 clean sheets in their last 11 games.

Leading goalkeeping picks for FPL gameweek 27
Rui Patricio leads all goalkeepers (PA graphic)

Wolves’ Rui Patricio is our top goalkeeping recommendation with a transfer score of 77 – the Portugal international is £1million cheaper than Alisson and has back-to-back clean sheets with bonus points in both games.

Sheffield United’s Dean Henderson is second on 74, with Alisson on 72.

Striker light

Leading attacking picks for FPL gameweek 27
Troy Deeney is the best of an indifferent bunch up front (PA graphic)

And so to the barren attacking area of the rankings, where Watford captain Troy Deeney is our best bet after a goal and an assist in his last three games.

A transfer score of 62 is hardly a ringing endorsement and leaves Deeney 46th in the overall rankings, four places and one point ahead of Liverpool striker Roberto Firmino.

Everton’s Dominic Calvert-Lewin is a consistent presence in the top three, though the Toffees’ difficult run of fixtures caps his score this week at 60.