DraftKings Fantasy Soccer: Saturday EPL Picks

DraftKings Fantasy Soccer: Saturday EPL Picks

This article is part of our DraftKings Fantasy Soccer series.

MATCHES (EDT)

THE CHALK

Bruno Fernandes, MUN v. CRY ($11,100): Fernandes is the most expensive player on the slate, but he also has a monopoly for the biggest favorite with the highest implied goal total. He's one of a handful of players who not only takes corners and free kicks but also penalties, which certainly came in handy last season when he scored four from the spot despite making his Premier League debut on Feb. 1. This slate doesn't have many players worth targeting, so paying up for Fernandes is likely to be extremely popular in cash games and GPPs.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, ARS v. WHU ($10,200): There is certainly an argument to be made that Willian ($10,500) will be higher owned in cash games than Aubameyang, who has more of a profile for tournaments, but even the latter should be popular in double ups and head-to-heads because Arsenal are heavily favored and he has the highest anytime goal scorer odds on the slate. Given the somewhat weak player pool on the slate, don't be surprised when many people roster both Fernandes and Aubameyang or Fernandes and Willian or perhaps even all three.

FORWARDS

Andros Townsend, CRY at MUN ($6,100): The matchup is far from ideal, but Townsend remains a decent attacking winger who is able to create chances and send in crosses. He wasn't a prolific crosser in last week's win over Southampton, but he did pick up an assist on one of his two chances created. He's much more of a cash-game option than teammates Wilfried Zaha ($6,800) or Jordan Ayew ($5,600), though you do have to question how many set pieces Crystal Palace will get as the biggest underdog on the slate. 

Helder Costa, LEE v. FUL ($5,500): Costa doesn't profile as a classic cash-game play, but he could be an option with Leeds favored against Fulham and his moderately cheap price. There are certainly GPP options to be had if you want to fade the popular ones from Manchester United and Arsenal, though rolling with Patrick Bamford at $7,400 doesn't seem as fun when you can pay $500 more for Mason Greenwood. Then again, that's the leverage move, with another simply being to pay up for the non-Fernandes United attackers other than Greenwood like Anthony Martial ($9,600) and Marcus Rashford ($9,300).

MIDFIELDERS

Kalvin Phillips, LEE v. FUL ($6,400): Phillips is a defensive midfielder who takes a vast majority of set pieces for a strong favorite, but his price is in a tough range for those looking to pay up for at least one piece from Manchester United and Arsenal. His upside revolves around those set pieces, so you're really committing to Leeds putting up a big score on Fulham to justify the price. However, the midfielder pool is very weak on this slate, which is why Phillips theoretically is a consideration (mostly for cash games). Paul Pogba ($6,600) is similarly priced and has more upside, though his floor isn't nearly as high as Phillips and there are plenty of players with higher anytime goal scoring odds.

Dani Ceballos, ARS v. WHU ($5,300): We're put in a tough spot with Ceballos because we don't know if he's going to start in his first match back with Arsenal (he recently rejoined the team on another season-long loan), and given that they play in the late match, we could be in trouble if he's not in the first XI. The other difficulty is that Ceballos took a lot of Arsenal's set pieces toward the end of last season, but the expectation is that Willian will get a majority of those opportunities now. A side-split would be enough to make Ceballos a worthy target Saturday, but it's important to ensure you have some lineup and salary flexibility in case he's not in. We also have a possible cheap set-piece taker on Crystal Palace if Luka Milivojevic ($4,100) starts, but he's in the same mold as Phillips in that he needs the set pieces to be effective, except he's playing as a sizable underdog. Otherwise, Neeskens Kebano ($3,700) occasionally gets some dead-ball opportunities and can get some peripheral attacking points if he starts, though Anthony Knockaert ($3,500) would be more popular if he's in the starting lineup.

DEFENDERS

Joe Bryan, FUL at LEE ($4,900): Bryan is likely to be the most popular defender – certainly in cash games – because he has a role on set pieces for Fulham. Granted, they are underdogs against Leeds, but his price and lack of quality options at defender will make him an easy target.

Luke Shaw, MUN v. CRY ($4,500): Shaw isn't the best attacking fullback, but Manchester United are heavily favored and he should be able to get involved moving forward. United have very good clean sheet odds, and building that into the floor consideration for Shaw certainly makes things look rosier, especially since he's $1,400 cheaper than right-back Aaron Wan-Bissaka. If you trust the Arsenal defense more than Man United, Ainsley Maitland-Niles ($4,000) is a decent attacker who is likely to start as a wing-back.

GOALKEEPER

David de Gea, MUN v. CRY ($5,900): There is no guarantee that de Gea starts ahead of Dean Henderson ($5,800), but because Manchester United don't play in the first match of the slate, it's safest to budget for de Gea and potentially leave $100 on the table if Henderson starts. United are obviously huge favorites with excellent clean sheet odds, and you can make the case that it's more beneficial to pay up for a goalkeeper than to target midfielders or defenders in the same price range.

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Andrew M. Laird plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: kingmorland, DraftKings: andrewmlaird, Yahoo: Lairdinho.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Andrew M. Laird
Andrew M. Laird, the 2017 and 2018 FSWA Soccer Writer of the Year, is RotoWire's Head of DFS Content and Senior Soccer Editor. He is an eight-time FSWA award finalist, including twice for Football Writer of the Year.
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