While we would all love to have a backline full of premium assets such as Andy Robertson and Aymeric Laporte, it is often picking the right budget defenders that can act as a differential to move up mini-leagues. For the purpose of this article, 5.0m is being set as the outer limit and there are 118 players that fit this criteria at the time of writing.
At this price point, it is difficult to find defenders that you are happy to field every week regardless of opposition as it does not include any players from the ‘top six’ sides. This is why I have put a preference on defenders with attacking threat so that even if their team concedes, they have potential to deliver points via their attacking attributes.
1) Willy Boly (Wolves, 5.0m)
Wolves had an incredible season for a promoted team last year, finishing seventh and qualifying for the Europa League. They kept nine clean sheets and only four teams conceded fewer goals than their 46.
They only allowed opponents 51 ‘big chances’ with only the top two sides bettering that number. As a result, their wingbacks Doherty and Jonny have both received significant price hikes, by 1.5m and 1.0m respectively. However, Boly’s price has only been bumped by 0.5 to 5.0m, despite the center-back scoring only 20 points less than the Irishman.
An ever-present in their defence, he also chipped in with four goals, indicating his significant attacking threat. His style of play is also suited to the Bonus Points System (BPS) and only Doherty picked beat him for bonus points amongst their defenders, 12 to 10.
Wolves were particularly effective against the top teams last season and Boly can be considered the most ‘fixture proof’ amongst defenders in this price bracket.