With unlimited transfers ahead of the new season, now's the time to be getting your Bundesliga Official Fantasy Manager team in shape – and Werder Bremen's Josh Sargent could be just the man to give you the edge in 2020/21.
bundesliga.com outlines why the USA international needs to be in your squad…
It may seem like an obvious thing to say, but players only earn fantasy points if they actually play in real life. Handily for Sargent, he has the full backing of Bremen head coach Florian Kohfeldt.
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"Right now, I can't imagine a starting XI that doesn't include Josh Sargent," he said at the start of September. “For me, he's in pole position for the opening weekend of the season […] Josh is no longer the contender."
With one point just for appearing in a game and two for playing 70 minutes or more, things are already looking positive for Sargent from a fantasy perspective.
Having made almost half of his Bundesliga appearances last season as a substitute, what has changed over the course of the summer?
Well, for starters, Sargent is that bit older and wiser. Still just 20, the new season will be just his second full campaign with the Bremen pros. He now knows what he's going up against in Bundesliga defences and how to react accordingly.
"The combination of his strength, physicality, work off the ball, his improved tactical understanding and positional flexibility - it all speaks volumes for him as a player," said Kohfeldt.
If that makes it sound like Sargent can do it all – well, he can. And that also includes that most precious fantasy commodity: goals. The USMNT forward registered four and two assists in the Bundesliga last term but has already shown he intends to fulfil his pledge of being "the team's top scorer" in 2019/20 by notching three in five pre-season outings.
With forwards receiving four points for every goal, three for each assist and two points for every two shots on goal this season, his hunger for scoring could reap big rewards.
The added competition for places at Bremen is undoubtedly helping spur Sargent on. Where there were numerous injuries in the squad last season, now he has Niclas Füllkrug, Davie Selke, Yuya Osako all fit and vying for a place up front.
"We've got a lot of options up top and we all push each other on," Sargent said recently. "At the end of the day it's up to the coach to decide, but whoever plays, we'll continue to drive each other forward."
Not only that, but the addition of Tahith Chong on loan from Manchester United in attacking midfield has given Bremen a new dimension going forward, and should provide the strikers with plenty of goalscoring opportunities.
And what of Bremen's brush with relegation last term, and the fact only four teams scored fewer than their total of 42 goals? Sargent, for one, is confident the team can start afresh, beginning with their home fixture against Hertha Berlin on Matchday 1.
"We're approaching the new season a lot more positively and with greater focus. It's a new start for us all. I hope we can pick up lots of points in the first games and get on the right path."
They look to be well on course to doing that. Bremen found the net 24 times in seven pre-season games, 20 of which were scored by strikers and three by Sargent. The Missouri native also started and scored in the team’s DFB Cup first round clash against Carl Zeiss Jena.
And if all that still doesn't persuade you, his price should. With an overall budget of 150M to spend, splashing out in big name forwards like Robert Lewandowski (18M) and Erling Haaland (17M) and Alassane Plea (15M) will soon eat up your funds. At just 8M, Sargent will get you points but without breaking the bank.