FPL notes: Palmer’s unwanted record + why Bruno got bonus

Rounding off the weekend Scout Notes, we cover the matches at Aston Villa, Everton and Manchester United.


Cool, calm and collected. And offside. Nicolas Jackson (£6.9m) finally finishes a one-on-one, and it doesn’t count.

Jackson owners looked like they were off to a flyer after 15 minutes of Saturday’s clash at Villa Park, only for the VAR to rule his uncharacteristically well-taken effort out for offside.

Normal service was resumed soon after, with Jackson heading against the woodwork from six yards. That’s now 11 big chances in a row he’s missed, going back to mid-December.

On the subject of familiar failings, Chelsea continued their record of not keeping a single clean sheet against any of the top eight this season. Marc Cucurella (£4.8m) owners had a punishing afternoon on three fronts, seeing him lose a clean sheet, score an own-goal and then go unrewarded for the big chance that Jackson nodded against the post.

No one on show created more chances than Cucurella (three), who was again quite advanced. There is certainly more attacking onus on him at present, with a centre-half playing at full-back on the opposite side of the pitch.

Above: Defenders sorted by chances created in their last six matches

In fairness to Chelsea, they’ve scored against all of the top eight this season, which bodes well for Thursday.

They could have even won this match, were it not for another late strike being overturned by the VAR.

Conor Gallagher (£5.4m) made it six attacking returns in ten starts with a fine strike, also playing a part in Noni Madueke‘s (£5.3m) goal. The big caveat with Gallagher is that he’ll be in a deeper midfield role for the rest of the season, with Enzo Fernandez (£4.8m) sidelined.

As for Cole Palmer (£6.2m), whisper it quietly but he hasn’t actually scored a non-penalty goal against any of the top five this season. The ‘big game player’ jibes have already started after this latest quiet showing, which was almost salvaged by a great injury-time chance.

Spurs’ wobbly defence gives him a perfect opportunity to end that unwanted record later this week.


Chelsea had five players in “partial training” as of last Friday, none of whom featured here. One of those is Robert Sanchez (£4.5m), which may give Djordje Petrovic (£4.6m) owners some jitters.

Malo Gusto (£4.3m) is also not expected to be sidelined for too long.

Mauricio Pochettino couldn’t say whether any of them would be fit for Thursday but we will at least get another press conference from the Chelsea boss in midweek.

“We’ll see, we’ll see. Not sure.” – Mauricio Pochettino on whether he’ll get anyone back for Thursday

Thiago Silva (£5.0m) will now have to be assessed after sustaining a groin injury against Villa.


Aston Villa have two new injury concerns of their own.

Youri Tielemans (£5.6m) and Emi Martinez (£5.3m) both suffered muscle issues on Saturday, neither making it past half-time.

“Not yet, tomorrow we will test [Martinez], even with the injury of Youri Tielemans we have to wait for tomorrow. Hopefully, it’s not a lot for both but I don’t know exactly.

“If Tielemans and Martinez are unavailable for one week, two weeks, three weeks we have to accept it and every situation we are passing for the season we are reacting.” – Unai Emery

Ollie Watkins (£9.0m) couldn’t make it to 20 league goals for the season but he should get ample opportunities in the next two. A Brighton side winless in six and a deflated Liverpool are next up for Villa.

Morgan Rogers (£5.0m) is increasingly looking like one to watch in 2024/25. It’s now four attacking returns in five matches following Saturday’s goal, his versatility meaning he can play either on the left wing or just off Watkins. He operated in both roles against Chelsea.

If this late-season burst can escape the attention of FPL Towers, then he could be one of the better budget midfielders next season.


And then there were three.

With Sheffield United down and Everton now safe, it’s between Burnley, Luton Town and Nottingham Forest for the two remaining relegation slots.

The Toffees secured their Premier League status with a narrow win over Brentford on Saturday night.

Thomas Frank called it a “boring” spectacle, and we won’t disagree with him there. Neither team reached 1.0 xG, with a returning Ivan Toney (£7.8m) and Abdoulaye Doucoure (£5.5m) wasting the only clear chances either side had. Idrissa Gana Gueye‘s (£4.8m) winner was suitably scrappy.

“It was a tight game. A little bit of a boring game, honestly. There was not too much in it and it probably should have been a draw.” – Thomas Frank

Four successive home clean sheets was achieved with minimal fuss, with Jordan Pickford (£4.7m) now likely to finish the season as the highest-scoring FPL goalkeeper after this double-digit haul.

He’ll have a chance to add to his tally with Luton Town and Sheffield United up next. The danger is probably complacency, with security assured – but Sean Dyche doesn’t seem like the type of manager to entertain that idea. Dyche also hasn’t historically rotated his goalkeeper at the end of the season when fates are already sealed, so Pickford owners will be hoping that trend continues.

Brentford themselves have been in decent defensive nick lately. They were only a sloppy pass away from a clean sheet at Luton last week, too. We could easily have been looking at four shut-outs in six.


Above: Players involved in Man Utd v Burnley sorted by Bonus Points System (BPS) score

Bruno Fernandes (£8.5m) salvaged some sort of consolation from Saturday’s blank, banking two bonus points. He was on course for maximum bonus at one stage.

A player delivering bonus points without an attacking return or clean sheet is not a common occurrence but is not unheard of, especially in a one-all draw with no assists.

Bruno’s creativity was largely to thank: nine chances created, four of them ‘big’ ones, accounted for much of his Bonus Points System (BPS) score.

A frustrating day for Fernandes saw not only his teammates spurn every chance he carved out but also the woodwork rattled by the Portuguese midfielder.

If you were to describe a typical United display this season, this was probably it. Rasmus Hojlund (£7.1m) very quiet, Marcus Rashford (£8.4m) missing in action (this time literally rather than metaphorically), the home faithful booing a substitution, Alejandro Garnacho (£5.0m) racking up loads of shots, the opposition getting plenty of chances and the Red Devils finding a way to shoot themselves in the foot. This time it was Andre Onana (£5.0m) with the error, flattening Zeki Amdouni (£5.1m) for little reason and conceding a late penalty.

Burnley, meanwhile, have now lost just once in the last eight games, scoring in the other seven. Given how poor Newcastle United have been on the road, the Gameweek 36 clash at Turf Moor might be closer than you think.

Haaland Foden