THE November international break has arrived and that means one thing – recharging the Dream Team batteries ahead of the festive period.
It's a time for reflection. A time to analyse your performance against your pre-season goals. And, of course, a time to make those changes to get you closer to that mate of yours who seems to get lucky every week.
With injury issues creeping in for almost every club in the Premier League – some more than others – it's vital you get a fit and healthy team on the pitch heading into this hectic period after the break.
It's also imperative to pick up the hidden gems. Those players that deliver most weeks but very little managers have selected.
We've collected the top 10 best performing defenders up until now, which less than 10% of managers have included in their line-up. How many have you got?
Top 10 best performing defenders with <10% ownership
- Fabian Schar (£4.3m) – 77pts – 6.3%
- Dan Burn (£3.6m) – 71pts – 4.8%
- Diogo Dalot (£3.4m) – 71pts – 3.1%
- Vitalii Mykolenko (£2.9m) – 71pts – 0.6%
- Pedro Porro (£3.2m) – 71pts – 5.7%
- Joachim Andersen (£3m) – 70pts – 6.9%
- Manuel Akanji (£4.4m) – 67pts – 5.5%
- Gabriel (£4.2m) – 67pts – 4.6%
- Lucas Digne (£2.8m) – 65pts – 6.9%
- Ezri Konsa (£3m) – 65pts – 3%
Fabian Schar is currently joint-fifth in the defender points table alongside Trent Alexander-Arnold.
The Newcastle centre-back has been one of the key members of Eddie Howe's side for the last 18 months, highlighted by his glowing performances despite a changing of partner in the heart of the defence.
Team-mate Kieran Trippier leads the way in terms of defender points but Schar is £1.1m cheaper and has averaged 4.5 points per gameweek so far this season.
It's another Toon player who comes next in the list too, with Dan Burn a fixture of the Newcastle back four that has kept five Premier League clean sheets this term.
He's a further £0.7m cheaper than Schar and has six less points than the Swiss star, and features in 4.8% of teams compared to Schar's 6.3%.
Diogo Dalot also has 71 points and is enjoying a prolonged run in the Manchester United team as injuries and "tactical reasons" contribute towards an often much-changed back line.
He has a Premier League goal to his name, with three clean sheets to boot – including in the last two outings in the division – and just 3.1% of managers have him included.
Think that's low? Less than 1% (0.6%) of managers have Everton's Vitalii Mykolenko as part of their squad despite also racking up 71 points.
The roaming left back already has a couple of league goals to his name, with Everton's two clean sheets helping his points balance too.
He's averaging an impressive 6.5 points per gameweek and his last four GW points totals read 9 – 10 – 8 – 11.
Pedro Porro is the last to have claimed 71 points to now and is Spurs' top performing defender, despite strong competition from Romero, Van de Ven and Udogie.
5.7% of managers have the Spaniard, with a strong 6.9% including Joachim Andersen in their teams.
The Crystal Palace man enjoyed a strong start to the campaign and has been flagged here plenty of times already this season as his growing tally showed no signs of stopping.
Despite 1, 2 and -1 points in three of the last four gameweeks, his average of 5.8 per GW remains high and he's still one to consider.
Manuel Akanji has two goals this season and looks amongst the first choice picks in a Manchester City defence which will always dominate the ball.
Only 5.5% have Akanji which is perhaps surprising given he looks value for money, though the 67 points gained so far indicates perhaps not.
Similarly to Gabriel who also has 67 points with just 4.6% of players putting their trust in him – preferring his partner William Saliba in would appear.
Lucas Digne and Ezri Konsa are doing the business for Aston Villa and both have 65 points apiece so far.
Digne is £0.2m cheaper than Konsa, recently called up to his first England squad, and you'd suspect his continued threat from the dead ball and from deliveries from that left side will pay dividends the further the season goes.
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