DREAM TEAM gaffers are forever keeping an eye out for bargains.
This season, several affordable midfielders have mixed with the familiar premium options at the top of the rankings.
Even now, seven of top 13 midfielders are available for less than £4m – let’s run through the septet…
- 84 points
The Seagulls’ new fan favourite with a degree in dribbling (literally).
Mitoma gave everyone else a head start and didn’t score his first point until Game Week 12 but since then he’s given it both barrels – he’s averaged 6.5 points-per-game since getting off the mark.
The 25-year-old has scored seven goals in all competitions and his educated running has ensured plenty of 7+ ratings and three Star Man awards.
- 85 points
Graham Potter did a fantastic job at Brighton but if there was one criticism of his reign it’s that the team didn’t score as many goals as they deserved.
Roberto De Zerbi has imprinted his own style on the south coast and while clean sheets are now harder to come by, the goals are flooding in.
March has been a revelation under the Italian coach and is currently on a run of five goals, three assists and four Star Man gongs in his last nine outings.
Previously a wing-back/utility man, he’s thriving on the right wing where he can take up more advanced positions.
- Manchester City
- 87 points
The Spain international is something of an anomaly in the realm of Dream Team because he’s a defensive midfielder who consistently provides healthy returns.
Generally speaking, deep-lying playmakers or tough-tackling anchors do a lot of the dirty work that doesn’t translate to points in the same direct manner as goal involvements.
Rodri has bucked that trend for three seasons on the bounce now thanks to impressive match ratings and a penchant for the odd goal.
He’s actually the best-performing asset of the current Game Week at the time of writing having taken Aston Villa and Arsenal for 16 points.
- Manchester United
- 95 points
Like London buses, you wait an age for a defensive midfielder who produces loads of points and then two come along at once.
The five-time Champions League winner has made a world of difference to Man United and while his experience and industry are intangible factors, it’s his nine goal involvements that have endeared him to Dream Team bosses.
Casemiro is the ninth-best asset in his position right now despite his recent red card.
- 96 points
Another combative midfielder… what is going on this season?
It’s a similar story here as Spurs’ No5 have contributed five goals and five assists so far this term, more than would have been expected of him given his role within the squad.
You would have got long odds on Hojbjerg being his side’s next-best performer after Harry Kane (£8.2m) this campaign but that’s the reality of it after 22 Game Weeks.
- 99 points
A surprise package here not because of his specific position – backing wingers is usually a wise move – but because of his unanticipated new lease on life.
The 29-year-old has scored more Premier League goals (ten) in 2022/23 than he managed in his previous four seasons combined!
Almiron is one of just seven players into double figures for league goals and the other six are all categorised as forwards.
- 104 points
In terms of pure value for money, there aren’t many Dream Team assets who can hold a candle to Arsenal’s captain this season.
Odegaard’s playmaking is his great strength but he’s developed a keen eye for goal since his move to these shores – he has eight league goals from 21 outings this term.
Add in five assists and the same number of Star Man awards and it’s no wonder the Norwegian’s ownership is up to 37.9%.
The Gunners’ No8 is the fifth-best midfielder overall but, taking price into account, he’s arguably been the most valuable asset in his position to date.