With the start of Fantasy Premier League (FPL) now upon us, managers all over the world are putting the final touches on their teams as the deadline for Gameweek 1 approaches.
The season starting during the transfer window makes deciding your final FPL team much trickier, with new players being thrown into the mix each day. And another big name was entered into the fantasy game today, as Raphael Varane’s price was finally revealed following Manchester United ‘s official unveiling of the defender.
United signed the 28-year-old for a fee of £43 million subject to a medical in July, with the defender arriving at Old Trafford with big expectations.
Varane is widely considered to be one of the best defenders in world football after a stellar 10-year career at Real Madrid, where he formed a formidable partnership with Sergio Ramos and helped Los Blancos win four Champions League trophies along with loads of other silverware.
It’s become more and more common for managers to spend big on defenders in FPL, with the likes of Liverpool, Manchester City and United targeted due to the number of clean sheets and attacking returns they provide.
So, what is Varane’s price in FPL next season? How does he compare to his new United teammates and similar price options throughout the rest of the league?
We assessed the new United man in Fantasy Premier League ahead of the new season.
Raphael Varane in Fantasy Premier League (FPL) assessed
Price: £5.5 million
First three fixtures: LEEDS ( H ), SOUTHAMPTON ( A ), WOLVES ( A )
Entering FPL with a word-class reputation and on the back of a decorated career in La Liga, Varane is priced at £5.5 million — the given rate for a starting United defender.
Varane will undoubtedly tighten things up at the back for United given his track record, and a valuable trait Varane will bring to United is leadership — something which United seems to have been lacking when his future partner Harry Maguire has been absent from the squad.
Unlike the likes of Virgil Van Dijk, Varane doesn’t offer a massive goal threat going forward or from set pieces. The Frenchman’s highest goal tally in one league season is two, whilst he’s only scored eight league goals in his whole career in Madrid.
So, how does Varane compare to his new United teammates?
Price-wise, Varane is the same price as Luke Shaw (£5.5M), Maguire (£5.5M) and Aaron Wan-Bissaka (£5.5M). For FPL players, this works out well with the starting backline at United all costing the same.
Currently, Shaw is the highest selected defender in the game, with over half of all players having the left-back in their teams (54.9%).
Maguire and Wan-Bissaka both have relatively small ownerships with 12.7% and 10.9% respectively.
If Varane was to have received Fantasy points based on his stats in La Liga last season, the defender would’ve registered 119 points in total, the 17th highest in the league and less than the Manchester United trio. Shaw and Maguire both totalled 124 points, whilst Wan-Bissaka got the most with 144.
But how does Varane rank against other Premier League defenders at a similar price point?
Price-wise, Varane seems undervalued compared to some of the best defenders in the league, with Ruben Dias (£6.0M), Cesar Azpilicueta (£6.0M), and Van Dijk (£6.5M) all costing more than the Frenchman.
Only Dias (142) had more points than Varane would’ve had last season, with Azpilicueta and Van Dijk both tallying less – albeit the Liverpool man was out injured for 33 GW’s last season.
Azpilicueta is currently only selected by 3.7% of managers whilst Van Dijk is also in the low figures with 11% ownership. This could be due to both sides’ attacking full-backs being more likely to get any attacking returns.
Dias is highly selected with a 27.3% ownership after a distinguished first season with Man City where he won the leagues Player of the Year award.
Overall, the 28-year-old comes into the 2021/22 FPL season at a reasonable price and with a wealth of experience.
Will you be putting Varane in your FPL squad next season? Let us know in the comments below!