Transfer recommendations ahead of Gameweek 30 – familiar favourites and European differentials

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GAMEWEEK 30 features a full round of Premier League fixtures plus a generous smattering of European quarter-final first legs.

Arsenal, Liverpool, Manchester City, Aston Villa and West Ham are the five teams that will be in action in midweek and should therefore be the focus for Dream Team managers.

Granted, the European match-ups are likely to be hotly contested at this stage of the campaign with the Gunners, the Citizens and the Hammers facing particularly stiff competition in the form of Bayern Munich, Real Madrid and Bayer Leverkusen respectively.

Even so, these additional fixtures should yield bumper returns.

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In terms of transfer recommendations for Gameweek 30, it’s worth recapping some old ground first and foremost.

Arsenal’s defence continues to go from strength to strength, Liverpool’s attack remains potent, and Wednesday night’s showing should have reminded everyone that Phil Foden (£5.7m) is a must-have asset this season.

We’re not going to waste time extolling the attributes of Mohamed Salah (£6.7m), Ben White (£3.9m), Cole Palmer (£4.6m) and other players we’ve tipped recently – it goes without saying they’re still hugely viable.

With that in mind, here’s some fresh suggestions…

Rodri (£3.9m)

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Foden is clearly the top priority among Pep Guardiola’s midfielders but some gaffers may feel compelled to double up (or even triple up) with the defending champions set to face Crystal Palace, Real Madrid (twice) and Luton across the next two Gameweeks.

And so Rodri has to be considered a worthy candidate.

The Spain international is viewed as a defensive anchor but he’s so much more in reality, as evidenced by his tally of eight goals and 11 assists this season.

Arguably the best player in his position in world football right now, the 27-year-old produced a masterclass against Aston Villa in midweek to bank 13 points, making it 18 for the Gameweek in total.

Rodri has 199 points to his name this term and while he doesn’t offer the same explosiveness as Kevin De Bruyne (£6m) or Jeremy Doku (£3.5m), he’s ultra reliable and a guaranteed starter.

He averages 5.7 points-per-game in 2023/24.

Ezri Konsa (£3m)

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Unai Emery’s side may have conceded four in midweek but gaffers shouldn’t judge players based on what happens to them at the Etihad.

Konsa is a potentially smart selection for Gameweek 30 because of his ability to earn bonus points – he notched three of them away to City despite shipping four goals!

Villa’s fan favourite has collected 46 bonus points this season, seven more than the next-best defender.

This coming Gameweek, he has the luxury of back-to-back home games against Brentford and Lille.

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Clean sheets aren’t guaranteed by any means but the Bees are desperately struggling for positive results at present.

Konsa bagged 18 points in Gameweek 29 and the additional Europa Conference League fixture this coming Thursday makes him a decent option.

Mohammed Kudus (£5m)

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Another player we’ve tipped regularly this season but one worth underlining ahead of Gameweek 30.

Kudus is simply one of the best dribblers in Europe – he’s registered more successful dribbles than any other Premier League player this season – and he hoards bonus points for fun as a result.

In fact, only Bruno Guimaraes (£4.3m) has more bonus points to his name at the time of writing.

Add in 12 goals, seven assists plus a more-than-respectable tackle tally (74) and the Ghana international has to be considered one of breakout stars of the season.

Despite Africa Cup of Nations commitments and an injury setback, Kudus is currently ranked fifth among all midfielders – a monumental effort.

West Ham travel to Wolves and Bayer Leverkusen next and while that’s far from favourable (the German side remain undefeated this term) Kudus has proven himself capable of healthy returns regardless of the opposition’s quality.

It’s criminal that he features in just 2.5% of teams.

Martin Odegaard (£4.3m)

GettyThe safe choice while Saka is a doubt?[/caption]

Mikel Arteta generally selects Bukayo Saka (£5.8m) even if the England winger is only half fit so for the the latter to be absent from the matchday squad in midweek is a huge cause for concern.

The 42.7%-owned midfielder may yet be passed fit ahead of Gameweek 30 but his owners should be forming contingency plans at this stage.

One possible option is a direct swap to Odegaard, who pocketed 12 points in Gameweek 29.

The Norwegian playmaker ranks in the top ten midfielders for goals, shots on target and big chances created.

Arsenal visit Brighton this weekend before a highly-anticipated Champions League meeting with Bayern Munich at the Emirates.

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As captain, Odegaard is one of the first names on the team sheet when fit and his average of 5.8 points-per-game suggests it’s reasonable to expect a double-digit haul from him in Gameweek 30 with two fixtures at his disposal.

Lock in your transfers before Saturday’s 11:30am deadline.

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