Set pieces are an incredibly important part of football, with between 25% and 33% of goals scored coming from a set piece. They are equally important in Fantrax EPL, and in these articles we will highlight the trends in set pieces that will lead to player value fluctuation.
Gameweek 13 Set Piece Takers
With Odegaard back in the lineup, he took set pieces (2 corners and 1 free kick shot) instead of Saka. Smith-Rowe however kept his right-footed set pieces and took 2 corners. Saka did get 1 free kick cross. Going forward, it should be assumed that when Odegaard is in the lineup, he'll mostly take set pieces away from Saka.
Ashley Young took 3 corners and 1 free kick cross. McGinn and Bailey also each took 1 free kick. Like last game, when Buendia was out, Young seemed to be the primary corner taker. It will be interesting to see what happens when Luiz is back starting.
A bit of an unusual set piece game for Brentford where Canos got everything, including 3 corners and 1 free kick. It should be noted, however that they were all right-footed in-swingers, so if there were any lefties, they would have likely gone to Janelt. It is a new development that Janelt doesn't have both sides though, so not good news for his managers that he likely only has 1. Toney took and scored a penalty.
Gross again started and got a near-monopoly, taking 5 corners (from both sides) and 1 free kick. Cucurella did manage 1 corner and 1 free kick though. Will Gross stay in the lineup remains the question.
Game was postponed due to snow. In Westwood's absence (due to suspension), I expect Brownhill to get a couple set pieces more than usual (as he's the other right-footed Burnley starter).
Alonso had a whopping 13 corners, and Ziyech had 2. Reece James took all 4 free kicks (all uncompleted crosses). Alonso did take them from both sides once Ziyech was off the pitch. It seems Alonso has preference even over James for corners on both sides. We'll see what happens when Mount starts again. Jorginho took and scored a penalty (no Lukaku on the pitch).
Woah! Interesting one here. Olise took 4 corners, Eze took 2, and Milivojevic 1. Mili also took the only 1 free kick. Gallagher had 0 of both. We've been hinting at this all season, with these 3 the players likely to steal Gallagher's set pieces. Olise is a lefty, and Eze and Mili are righties. Eze subbed on at the same time Mili came off, so we don't know who's preferred yet there but Eze did also take corners on both sides (thus over Olise). This is one to watch, and will likely evolve over time based on who starts.
In Gray's absence, Anthony Gordon took 2 corners on Gray's normal side. Townsend also took 2 corners on the other side. Digne was left with 3 free kicks. A little bit of good news there for those rostering Gordon.
Maddison took 7 corners and Albrighton, after subbing on, took 1. No free kicks in this one. If Albrighton does start he'll likely cut into Maddison's set pieces, as we've seen historically, as they're both righties.
Dallas took 1 corner and Raphinha took 1 free kick.
Alexander-Arnold and Robertson split corners and Liverpool didn't have any free kicks. Henderson did take 1 short corner, but seems like a 1-off for now.
Without KDB, Gundogan and Mahrez split corners (5 and 3 respectively) and City didn't have any free kicks.
United had 2 corners and Telles took both of them in the absence of Shaw. Notably, they were both left-footed out-swingers, where Bruno might be expected to take right-footed in-swingers. For now it appears like both Shaw and Telles are preferred on both sides of the pitch to Bruno. We'll see what changes when Rangnick is in charge.
Fraser and Ritchie split corners this week, with Shelvey taking none. It looks like Fraser has priority over Shelvey for right-footed corners. Ritchie is however, suspended for GW14 against Norwich, so one of the previous 2, or Jacob Murphy if he starts, will get more corners from the right side.
Again, it was Billy Gilmour and Rashica who split corners and free kicks (5 and 4 set pieces for each). Normann again had 0 but he was subbed early.
JWP took all of Southampton's set pieces (7 corners) once again.
Game was postponed due to snow.
Cleverley, Cucho, and Pedro all took corners (3, 2, and 1) and Cleverley and Cucho each took 2 free kicks. Louza had 0 in 45 minutes and Cleverley's all came from 45 minutes of play as well. It seems like all of Watford's takers are not consistent starters but in the short term Cucho might get the most minutes and thus most set pieces. Josh King took and scored a penalty in Sarr's absence. It remains unclear who's the preferred taker after Sarr missed twice 2 gameweeks ago.
Bowen and Cresswell split corners (1 and 3) and Fornals got 0, but there were again 0 left-sided, right-footed corners for him to take, so likely just unlucky. Cresswell took 1 off-target free kick shot.
Like the past 2 weeks, Rayan Alt-Nouri and Moutinho split corners and free kicks.
Things to Watch Out For From This Week
Will Olise or Eze start for Palace and have priority over Mili and Gallagher for set pieces?
Will Fraser, Odegaard, and Young continue to start and take set pieces?
Will Sarr stay on Watford penalties after missing twice o will Josh King take them over after scoring one in GW13?
Will Janelt get more set pieces again instead of Canos?
How will United lineup and set piece takers change with new manager?
Things to Watch Out For From Previous Weeks
Will Gilmour stick in the Norwich lineup and keep taking set pieces? Yes, seems likely
Who will take set pieces for Leicester if Maddison and Tielemans both don't play? Unclear but Maddison looks a starter again.
Will Digne get more sets in Gray's absence? A couple more free kicks, but Gordon actually took corners
Will Gross make his way back into the starting XI and who will take sets consistently if he does not? He did in GW12 & GW13 but TBD if he sticks
Will Aston Villa's set piece takers ever stabilize? Maybe Bailey and Buendia have priority, but TBD when Luiz returns, and the starting XI is still evolving a lot with Gerrard at the helm
Will Milivojevic regain his starting XI spot or will Gallagher continue to take set pieces in his absence? In and out of the lineup by the week, and Eze and Olise now factoring in
Was Bruno's lack of set pieces just a blip? Looks like Shaw and Telles are preferred on corners mostly, but TBD with new manager
Can Cucho keep a majority of set pieces? He's likely the preferred right-footed taker.
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