Updated: Oct 26, 2021
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.
The graph above shows the top 25 players for set piece Fantrax points last season. A remarkable 58% of James Ward-Prowse's FPts came from set pieces.
Gameweek 3 Set Piece Takers
Manchester City vs Arsenal
Gundogan took 2 free kicks (crosses) and the majority (7) of City's corners. Mahrez, Grealish, Silva, and Zinchenko also each had at least a corner apiece, but most were short corners and not crosses into the box. Predominantly playing with 10 men, and getting thoroughly outclassed, Arsenal had 0 set pieces in total, so it remains to be seen how they're split among Pepe, Saka, and Odegaard.
Aston Villa vs Brentford
Buendia once again lead the way in the free kick department, and also took all but 1 of Villa's corners. Targett took the 1 remaining corner. It looks like McGinn on set pieces last week was an anomaly. Brentford only had 2 corners in this game, but in his EPL debut this season, Ghoddos got 1, and Jensen the other 1. Canos and Mbeumo may miss out on set pieces going forward if the previously mentioned two stay in the side.
Brighton vs Everton
Pascal Gross kept his almost 100% hold on set pieces (corners and free kicks), with Trossard chipping in 1 remaining free kick. Digne with 5 corners in this one. Calvert-Lewin is the designated penalty taker after scoring 1, and Benitez later said to the press that Richarlison is second in line for penalties. 0 set pieces for Townsend today.
Newcastle vs Southampton
Matt Ritchie lost his set piece monopoly in this one. Ritchie still took 3 corners, but Longstaff also got 1 and Jacob Murphy took the 1 free kick for Newcastle. James Ward-Prowse continued his set piece dominance taking all corners and free kicks for Southampton.
Norwich vs Leicester
Looks like a change in the corner pecking order for Norwich, with Milot Rashica taking the majority (7) of corners over Billy Gilmour (2). Rashica also had 1 shot directly from a free kick, with Pukki taking and converting Norwich's penalty. Marc Albrighton took all 9 of Leicester's corners in this game, but his time in the starting XI may be short lived with Ademola Lookman coming into the squad. Lookman could also potentially take some corners, after featuring on them regularly for Fulham last season in the EPL. Luke Thomas took Leicester's 1 free kick of the game.
West Ham vs Crystal Palace
Bowen took 3 corners and Cresswell took 2 against Palace. Bowen and Coufal each had 1 free kick. Gallagher kept his set piece monopoly, again with 3 corners and 2 crosses, in the absence of Milivojević, Eze, and Olise.
Liverpool vs Chelsea
In his return to the side, Robertson split corner kick duties with Alexander-Arnold. Harvey Elliot and Tsimikas also each took 2 corners. Trent took the 1 free kick of the game. Chelsea only had 3 corners in this game and Reece James took 2 and Alonso 1. Mount missed out all together on set pieces in this one.
Burnley vs Leeds
Unlike last week, Westwood started and resumed his set piece duty split with McNeil. Each took a couple corners and a couple free kicks. Nothing for Brownhill with Westwood back in the side, as expected. Raphinha led the way with 3 corners, with Kalvin Phillips and Jack Harrison each taking 1. Phillips also took Leeds 1 free kick of the game. Unlike last week, Dallas was not involved in set pieces and Klich was not in the squad.
Tottenham vs Watford
Son took most of the corners (8) for Spurs, with Hojbjerg contributing 2 (short) corners as well. Son, Hojbjerg, and Dier each had 1 direct free kick shot this week. Lo Celso did not see any minutes. Masina and Cleverly split corners, with Dennis taking Watford's 1 free kick.
Wolves vs Manchester United
Moutinho took all but 1 of Wolves set pieces (4 corners, 2 free kicks), with Trincao taking the remaining 1 corner. Shaw and Greenwood split corners once again, with Bruno Fernandes getting United's 1 free kick of the game. Sancho did not get any set pieces, unlike his time at Dortmund.
Things to Watch Out For From This Week
Targett to remain involved with Aston Villa set pieces? Or Bailey/Traore to claim kicks when they return?
Is Townsend losing out on more set pieces to Digne or just unlucky in 1 game?
Will Lookman, Vlasic, or any other new signings take any set pieces off existing takers?
Harvey Elliot to remain involved in corners when he starts?
Trincao mostly losing out to Moutinho on set pieces?
Things to Watch Out For From Last Week
Will Odegaard take some set pieces off of Pepe and potentially Saka when he starts? To be determined
Can Canos keep any set pieces when Jensen returns? Looks like no for corners, to be determined for free kicks
Will McGinn continue to be involved in Villa's set pieces? Likely no, Buendia to take most
Will Dallas continue to be involved in Leeds' set pieces? Likely no, Raphinha, Harrison, Phillips split
Any chance Brownhill stays on corners when Westwood returns? No, Westwood took them back
Who will take Crystal Palace's set pieces when they are at full strength? Still to be determined, but Gallagher taking most at the moment
Will Antonio keep taking penalty kicks for West Ham? Still to be determined
Will Dowell take set pieces if he starts for Norwich? Still to be determined
Bruno (23%) and Maddison (26%) were reliant on set pieces for a large proportion of their FPts last season. Will their average Points per Start drop if they continue to go without? Still to be determined
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