DREAM TEAM gaffers do not exist in a vacuum.
It’s easy to fall into the trap of focusing solely on your own XI but you should also be aware of what others are plotting.
If you’re in a mini-league then you should definitely be keeping an eye on what your rivals are doing, particularly around the time transfers are refreshed.
It’s also worth looking at which players are popular in the wider world of Dream Team generally.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at the ten most-popular midfielders right now…
10 Andros Townsend (£4.3m) – 11.4% ownership
The first inclusion on this list is the outright best midfielder after seven Game Weeks.
Everton’s rejuvenated winger has a whopping 66 points to his name after his equaliser at Old Trafford, complete with Cristiano Ronaldo celebration – only Mohamed Salah has more points among all players.
The extent of Townsend’s success since joining the Toffees has come as a surprise to the vast majority of Dream Team bosses and it’s taken a while for his ownership to rise from <1%.
9 Jadon Sancho (£3.2m) – 11.6%
In stark contrast to Townsend, Manchester United’s new winger was expected to hit the ground running but has struggled to make a positive impact so far.
Sancho is yet to register a single point this season from nine appearances.
The 21-year-old’s ownership has more than halved since the start of the campaign and it can’t be long before those who have retained faith admit defeat – although he’s now dropped £1.3m in value!
8 Raheem Sterling (£3.8m) – 12.5%
Manchester City’s No7 was understandably popular ahead of the new term after his excellent showing at Euro 2020 but he’s mustered just 13 points to date.
The majority of his appearances have come as a substitute and he may find minutes hard to come by for the rest of the season with Phil Foden and Jack Grealish competing for a spot on the left on Pep Guardiola’s front three.
7 Kevin De Bruyne (£5.7m) – 13.7%
Were it not for his injury, the Belgian would have been among the top three most-popular midfielders, a status he may be working his way towards as we speak.
There isn’t a Dream team gaffer in the land who isn’t aware of De Bruyne’s enduring quality – the man is a Star Man magnet when fully fit.
He produced 18 points across three Game Weeks before the international break – a sign his engines are warming nicely.
6 Ferran Torres (£3.7m) – 15.9%
The Spaniard look a seriously inviting option a few weeks back when it appeared he was Guardiola’s first-choice centre-forward, leading to a surge in popularity as Dream Team managers tried to take advantage of this hack (since he’s categorised as a midfielder).
However, Torres has sat out four of City’s last five games, putting an abrupt end to the gravy train, though his overall points total of 31 is still very respectable.
All eyes on this weekend as Burnley travel to the Etihad for the annual 5-0 defeat – if Torres starts then he may still be a worthy asset.
5 Mason Mount (£4.1m) – 16.8%
It makes sense that Chelsea’s homegrown playmaker would be a popular asset, especially with the Blues amidst of a favourable run of fixtures, but he hasn’t really got going yet.
Fitness issues and a stinking Euro 2020 hangover have affected his form to point he’s returned just 14 points so far, for an average of just two points per outing.
Mount has plenty of credit in the bank after finishing 2020/21 as Dream Team’s sixth-best midfielder and it would be a surprise if he didn’t come good again this season.
4 Paul Pogba (£4.1m) – 17.1%
The Frenchman was largely overlooked prior to Game Week 1 but a flurry of assists resulted in a huge uptake.
However, his tally of 23 points doesn’t quite match his popularity and those who recruited him after Game Week 4 have been rewarded with just three points since.
Experienced Dream Team gaffers know Pogba blows hot and cold – time it right and he can be a very useful asset but many more have been burnt by his inconsistent nature.
3 Said Benrahma (£3.7m) – 19.1%
The Algerian is fully deserving of his spot on the popularity podium after a blistering start to the season.
Four goals, two assists and a pair of Star Man awards make up the bulk of his 52 points, a tally only bettered by the aforementioned Townsend among midfielders.
While Michail Antonio (£4.6m) has been the focus of much praise, Benrahma has been equally important to West Ham’s enterprising start to 2021/22.
2 Jack Grealish (£4.6m) – 39.2%
Another Euro 2020 favourite who was heavily backed before Game Week 1.
Unlike Sterling or Mount, City’s £100million man has provided enough returns to satisfy his owners – only seven players in his position have more points than his total of 31 at this stage.
Guardiola’s rotation policy has the potential to throw a spanner in the works at any time but Dream Team gaffers should continue to back Grealish without concern… for now.
1 Bruno Fernandes (£6.3m) – 63.8%
Before he was usurped by Mohamed Salah (£7.3m) last week, the Red Devils’ talisman was the most-selected player in the game.
It’s indicative of Fernandes’ quality that even with a high-profile penalty miss and five blanks to his name he still boasts a mightily impressive points tally of 49 – the hat-trick against Leeds in Game Week 1 is propping him up.
Ronaldo’s return to Old Trafford has partially morphed Fernandes into a more prominent creator when previously he was his side’s primary goal threat first foremost.
An ownership of 63.8% feels flattering but equally there’s no need for anyone to transfer him out right now – let’s not forget he amassed 323 points last season!
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