Fantasy Premier League 2013: Sleepers to Watch in Remaining Week 1 Fixtures

Tim DanielsFeatured ColumnistAugust 18, 2013

NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND - MAY 19:  Hatem Ben Arfa (R) of Newcastle in action against Aaron Ramsey of Arsenal during the Barclays Premier League match between Newcastle United and Arsenal at St James' Park on May 19, 2013 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England.  (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
Stu Forster/Getty Images

Building a successful Premier League fantasy squad is a two-step process. First, owners must identify stars who are going to produce on an elite level each week. But equally important is finding players who provide plenty of bang for the buck.

Choosing the right sleepers is often the difference between top teams and those squads in the middle of the pack or below. Anybody can build a strong foundation with players like Robin van Persie or Theo Walcott; it's the other players who can provide an edge.

With that in mind, let's examine three players outside of the superstar realm that owners should watch in the remaining Week 1 fixtures. They are capable of making a significant fantasy impact over the course of the new campaign.

 

Robert Koren (Hull City)

Hull City return to the Premier League with low expectations after being promoted from the Championship. So it doesn't come as a surprise that their players aren't generating much fantasy hype heading into the season.

Yet, Koren should warrant serious consideration. While the 32-year-old midfielder is on the downside of his prime, he still produced nine goals and five assists last term. And he will likely be a key piece of the Tigers' attack once again.

The Slovenian international also has some EPL experience with West Bromwich Albion. So going up against Chelsea won't be a new experience. And even if Hull City struggle as a whole, Koren should be productive enough to become fantasy worthy.

 

Hatem Ben Arfa (Newcastle United)

Talent has never been the issue for Ben Arfa. The 26-year-old winger possesses a terrific combination of pace, creativity and finishing ability. Unfortunately, injury woes have prevented him from reaching the next level in recent years.

In turn, his fantasy value is down and he presents a solid buy-low opportunity. He's scored 11 goals and notched 10 assists in 56 appearances for the club across all competitions. That's with only rare glimpses of top form as he was in and out of the lineup.

He doesn't come without risk, of course. Another injury would quickly shift him from sleeper to bust. But Newcastle need somebody to step up on the attack, starting with their opener against Manchester City, and Ben Arfa is due for a breakout season.

 

Andreas Weimann (Aston Villa)

After getting their seasons started over the weekend, Aston Villa and Chelsea wrap up the opening week action with a Wednesday match. It's the last matchup before fantasy owners start figuring out what direction to go with their Week 2 lineups.

Weimann is one player to keep an eye on in the clash. He's often overshadowed by Christian Benteke and Gabriel Agbonlahor when discussing the Villa attack, but he's coming off a strong campaign and should build off it at age 22.

He scored 12 goals in 38 appearances last term. It wouldn't be a surprise to see him approach that number or more in league play alone this season to go along with a handful of assists. That's the type of production owners are seeking from their secondary players.