The 2016/17 season brings new managers and players to the Premier League, although which are the best picks?
After Euro 2016 comes a slight lull before we get going with a new domestic season and, for many of us, that means picking a deadly fantasy football team.
Whether you enjoy playing FPL, Telegraph, Dream Team or another version of the game, the premise is always the same. You want to find strikers to score loads of goals, midfielders to chip in with assists and defenders to keep clean sheets.
We thought we would supply a helping hand, with our team avid enthusiasts of fantasy football and ready to share their nuggets with you!
Please note they are subject to change. However, we see these players as worthy of strong consideration for the 2016/17 campaign:
EDEN HAZARD (Chelsea)
Towards the end of last season, we started to see the real Hazard. The one who had won PFA Player of the Season previously. Under Antonio Conte, we expect the Belgian to start realising his potential and bossing matches as he did when Chelsea won the league during the 2014/15 campaign.
KEVIN DE BRUYNE (Manchester City)
Impossible to ignore another Belgian who might have steered City to a title success if he’d stayed fit all campaign. Likely to be expensive but will be at the heart of attacking moves under Pep Guardiola.
DIMITRI PAYET (West Ham)
It appears the Hammers will retain Payet’s services for another season, with the Frenchman wowing at Euro 2016 and sure to be a red-hot pick for West Ham next season. He’ll assist and score free-kicks for fun.
SERGIO AGUERO (Manchester City)
Aguero (when fit) is one of the world’s best in his position. He’s regularly demonstrated the ability to score in bucketloads and you don’t want him out of your team when he’s on fire like this.
RIYAD MAHREZ (Leicester City)
There seems little reason to desert the Algerian who won PFA Player of the Year. He shone for Leicester last term and, even if the Foxes don’t hit the heights of last season, it shouldn’t stop Mahrez from racking up the points.
HECTOR BELLERIN (Arsenal)
Hard to go for defenders until we know where the clean sheets are springing from, although Bellerin is much more than just a stopper at right-back. Last season, he was a big part of the Arsenal attack, especially on the counter with some lightning pace that helped his team enormously. Expect more goals and assists to go with the clean sheets.
These six players should be on your shortlist for the new season. It might be that you won’t be able to shoehorn all of them into a team, although all six are already proven as class operators at Premier League level.
We’re not sure about Manchester United players while Jose Mourinho rebuilds things at Old Trafford, even if Zlatan arrives with an impressive reputation. Nolito might take a while to adjust at Manchester City, while Liverpool under Jurgen Klopp are somewhat unpredictable.
Tottenham went well last term and England’s poor show at Euro 2016 shouldn’t lead us to desert Harry Kane or Dele Alli. Even so, it’s worth biding time before going ahead with those players.