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 32 Set Piece Takers
Soares and Odegaard each had 4 corners, Saka had 2, and Martinelli had 1. Soares and Odegaard each had 1 direct free kick Smith-Rowe started and had 0. Arsenal set pieces continue to be a bit of a mess, split between 5 players with no clear leader.
Digne took 5 corners and Luiz took 4. Luiz had 1 crosses free kick and Coutinho had 1 direct free kick. Luiz and Digne were the preferred set takers on each side but with Digne rumored out for the season with a collarbone injury, McGinn should be expected to gain his set pieces going forward.
Eriksen had a 4 corners and 1 free kick. Going forward, Eriksen should be expected to start nearly every game and have a set piece monopoly almost every time.
Potter rotated somewhat so March was benched but Gross and Mac Allister started. Brighton only had 2 corners though and Gross got both. When Potter rotates again, whichever of the 3 remaining in the starting XI will be the short-term winners, but March and Gross look to have priority over Mac Allister when both on the pitch.
With McNeil benched, Cornet split corners with Westwood (4 to 3). Westwood took their 1 free kick cross and Brownhill took their 1 free kick shot. They did have a devastating loss to Norwich so McNeil could be reinstated. Westwood and McNeil should be expected to split going forward, but if McNeil is benched, Cornet will again gain left-footed set pieces (if he starts, of course).
Neither Ziyech nor Reece James started this week. Alonso started and took 3 corners and Mount took 1 free kick. In the midweek UCL game, James started alongside Mount and Alonso, but Ziyech did not start again. Mount took 4 corners and Alonso took 6. Reece James took their 1 free kick shot. It appears Mount and Ziyech are the preferred corner takers but Alonso will gain when Ziyech is out. Reece James may be the designated free kick taker.
Gallagher had 2 corners and 1 free kick cross. Eze came off the bench and had 1 (short) corner and 1 free kick. Olise did not start, but should be expected to be involved again in the coming weeks. Zaha took, but had his penalty saved (after having another saved by Schmeichel but it had to be retaken). He did, however, score the follow-up. Viera says Zaha will continue on them going forward.
Gordon started, and Gray did not, so Gordon had a monopoly as expected. 5 corners and 2 free kicks. Gray and Gordon will be the takers going forward, but it all depends on who's actually in the lineup. If both, Gray will take most, instead of Gordon.
Maddison again had a monopoly with 3 corners and 2 free kicks. Going forward, Maddison will continue to get most, with Albrighton or Dewsbury-Hall occasionally chipping in a corner.
Raphinha was back off corners and instead Dallas and Harrison split (4 to 3). Marsch's set piece takers have slightly changed each week, but for now the thinking is Dallas & Harrison are most involved, then Raphinha, then Klich rarely.
Only 1 corner for Liverpool and Trent Alexander-Arnold took it. Generally Trent and Robertson should be expected to split sets down the middle. Tsimikas will cover for Robertson when he starts and the right-footed corner depth chart is Alexander-Arnold, Milner, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Jones, Henderson in that order.
Mahrez didn't start so KDB and Foden split corners (3 to 1) and KDB took their 1 crossed free kick. Mahrez subbed on and took 1 direct free kick. Those 3 plus Gundogan are the key names to look for in the lineup to be involved in set pieces.
Bruno Fernandes took 4 corners to Telles' 2. Mata subbed on and took 1 corner. In the very rare instance he's on the field, it looks like Mata is preferred on left-footed corners (at least to Telles). Bruno and Shaw/Telles should be expected to split going forward.
Shelvey took their 1 corner and took 1 free kick to Targett's 2. Schar took their 1 direct free kick (off target) after scoring one recently. Most important callout this week is that Fraser has gone down with an injury and looks to miss a couple weeks. If so, Shelvey should get a larger share of set pieces along side Matt Targett. Chris Wood won, took, and scored a penalty.
Dowell and Normann split corners 3 to 3. Dowell and Rashica each had 1 free kick. Gilmour did not start. Due to a rare win for Norwich, we could see a similar lineup and set piece distribution next match. Generally, Gilmour looks to have priority but when he doesn't start Normann and Rashica will takeover, however it appears Dowell may have won a place and involvement as well.
James Ward-Prowse had 2 corners and 3 free kick crosses for his normal full-monopoly.
Son had 3 corners and there were no free kicks. Son should generally be expected to have a monopoly going forward.
Louza had 1 corner and Femenia had 1. Pedro had 0. Louza, Femenia, and Cucho all had 1 free kick cross. Watford do not generate a ton of set pieces but Louza and Femenia have been involved the most, and look likely to continue starting.
Fornals had 3 corners, Bowen had 2, and Cresswell 1. Those 3 are expected to split fairly evenly going forward.
Trincao and Neto (as a sub) each had 1 corner, and Moutinho and Trincao each had 1 free kick. With Neves out injured for a while, those 3 plus the occasional corner from Podence/Ait-Nouri is the expectation and set piece distributions are highly dependent on starting lineups (depth chart is roughly Neto, Moutinho, Trincao, Ait-Nouri, Podence in that order)
Things to Watch Out For From This Week
With Digne likely out for the season, will McGinn get all his set pieces?
Will McNeil stay benched and will Cornet continue to get sets as a result?
Will Potter rotate his side again and how will Gross, March, and Mac Allister's starting positions and set pieces be affected?
Will the Leeds set piece picture ever settle and will Raphinha miss out on corners mostly going forward?
Will Shelvey take over half of Newcastle's sets in Fraser's absence?
What will happen with Norwich starting lineup and sets? Will Dowell stay in and Gilmour out?
What happens to Wolves set pieces when/if Neto starts?
Things to Watch Out For From Previous Weeks
How will Chelsea set pieces shake out with Reece James back starting? Mount and Ziyech preferred on corners, then Alonso. Reece will take some free kicks but no corners yet.
Will Douglas Luiz be benched again and will Coutinho or someone else take sets as a result again? No, back in the lineup and back on sets.
Will Gray or Gordon stick in Everton's starting lineup? Still evolving with Lampard, but Gordon has mostly stuck around and Gray has been in sometimes. Gray and Gordon split with Gray having priority.
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