DraftKings Fantasy Soccer: Saturday EPL Picks

DraftKings Fantasy Soccer: Saturday EPL Picks

This article is part of our DraftKings Fantasy Soccer series.

MATCHES (EDT)

For additional stats and odds, check out the

DraftKings Fantasy Soccer: Saturday EPL Cheat Sheet

THE CHALK

Andrew Robertson, LIV v. SHU ($7,300): Robertson is one of the set-piece takers on the biggest favorite on the slate, and he's been one of the most reliable floor players in the Premier League this season. Teammate Trent Alexander-Arnold ($7,200) could also be very popular, though locking up $14,500 in salary for two defender spots probably doesn't work well, especially since they have very minimal goal upside. Alexander-Arnold used to be a cash-game lock because of his excellent floor, but Robertson has passed him this season because he's been getting more corner opportunities. There are likely to be plenty of people who focus on Liverpool, both in cash games and GPPs, and their fullbacks are the best places to go for floor points.

FORWARDS

Mohamed Salah, LIV v. SHU ($11,400): Salah is the most expensive player on the slate because he has a solid floor and the highest anytime goal scorer odds for the team with the highest implied goal total. He is likely to be popular in cash games for fantasy players who build around him, and teammate Sadio Mane ($11,000) is a pretty natural pivot in GPPs, as he has the second-highest anytime-goal scorer odds and is averaging the third-most shots per 90 minutes among expected starters. Amazingly, for a variety of reasons, center-forward Roberto Firmino is only $5,700, with DraftKings pushing his price down now that he has just one goal in his last 20 Premier League appearances. However, given the matchup, his goal odds are still solid, and his price is low enough that he could be a target even in cash games.

Ivan Cavaleiro, FUL v. CRY ($6,400): Cavaleiro has a role on set pieces for Fulham, though they seemingly change who takes them on a game-by-game basis, as sometimes Cavaleiro will take even when defender Joe Bryan ($6,500) is on the pitch and other times he cedes them all. However, with very few solid floor forwards on the slate – and it's not like Cavaleiro has that great of a floor – he could be popular in cash games as fantasy players look for any kind of safety without having to pay all the way up for Andros Townsend ($8,700), who is somehow priced higher than guys like Marcus Rashford ($8,500), Timo Werner ($8,300) and Christian Pulisic ($7,300).

Christian Pulisic, CHE at MU ($7,300): Speaking of Pulisic, he makes for an interesting play because he's a solid attacker for a team in the game an implied total closer to Liverpool v. Sheffield United (the highest) than Fulham v. Crystal Palace (the lowest). Chelsea are coming off a scoreless draw with Sevilla in the Champions League on Tuesday, but we can't overlook that there were four, two, six, four and six goals in their five Premier League games, respectively, this season, while there were four, five, seven and five in Man United's four games, plus three in their UCL match against PSG earlier this week. Compared to the Liverpool forwards, the Chelsea and Man United guys are pretty cheap, so there should certainly be some game-stack considerations, with pretty much anyone who starts up front an option in GPPs.

MIDFIELDERS

Bruno Fernandes, MUN v. CHE ($10,600): Fernandes has arguably the highest floor on the slate, but his price is really tough to fit in if you want to pay up at defense (we'll get to that in a bit) and have at least one forward from Liverpool or even just the Man United v. Chelsea game. He had a penalty saved earlier this week against PSG only to be given a re-take, which he converted, so the expectation is that he's still on penalties even though he missed his last Premier League one too. We also can't ignore that he doesn't have a monopoly of set pieces, with Juan Mata ($4,600) and Luke Shaw ($4,100) getting a few opportunities in last week's Premier League game, and Alex Telles ($5,100) took some against PSG. Given the uncertainties and price, he seems more suited for GPPs, as he could be less popular that he has been recently. Meanwhile, Mata could actually be on more rosters than we're accustomed to, if he keeps his starting spot, as a role on set pieces at his price in that game seems like a worthwhile gamble.

Hakim Ziyech, CHE at MU ($7,900): The expectation when Ziyech signed with Chelsea was that he would likely have a role on set pieces, and we finally saw that come to fruition last weekend against Southampton when he took two corners in 18 minutes off the bench, finishing with one chance created, four crosses and a foul drawn. It's tough to rely on him since they aren't in the first game, but Ziyech would make for a very interesting option given how many fantasy points are expected in this one. He isn't likely to have a monopoly of set pieces, but he crosses enough where that may not be necessary.

Ruben Loftus-Cheek, FUL v. CRY ($3,900): If you just want to focus on fantasy points instead of set pieces, Loftus-Cheek is there, as his role as an attacking midfielder for Fulham at home against Crystal Palace could produce similar results to last weekend's match away to Sheffield United when he had 7.9 fantasy points thanks to two shots, including one on target, one chance created, two tackles won, one foul drawn and 45 completed passes. As you can tell, he isn't a crosser, but Loftus-Cheek is a solid attacking option who can create chances, and Fulham will need him to play that role if they want to bounce out of their early season funk that has seen them get shut out in three of five games.

DEFENDERS

Alex Telles, MU v. CHE ($5,100): There are a ton of expensive defenders who are very viable on the slate beyond Robertson and Alexander-Arnold, but Telles is one of the cheapest. He actually led Manchester United in free kicks during their UCL win over Paris-Saint-Germain this week, finishing with eight crosses and three chances created in 67 minutes, and there's no reason to think he shouldn't move up against Chelsea too. His left-back counterpart, Ben Chilwell ($6,100), is also an extremely viable option since he's been taking corners recently, though Ziyech starting would theoretically eat into those opportunities. And it keeps going, as Joe Bryan ($6,500) could be the option for Fulham and even Patrick van Aanholt ($5,800) could regain corners for Crystal Palace if he can get back into the starting XI now that he's recovered from his long-term shoulder injury. Or, if somehow Reece James ($5,400) starts without Chilwell and Ziyech, he could be the guy for Chelsea. Like I said, there are plenty to choose from.

George Baldock, SHU at LIV ($3,600): Playing a defender against Liverpool doesn't seem like an ideal situation, but Baldock theoretically is a consideration because he's so much cheaper than fellow Blades wing-back Enda Stevens ($4,900) even though the two are basically the same. Neither are likely to do much of anything against Liverpool, but if you're adamant about playing outside defenders, Baldock is likely to be one of the cheapest unless newly acquired Terence Kongolo ($2,600) gets used as a fullback by Fulham.

GOALKEEPER

Alphonse Areola, FUL v. CRY ($4,400): Areola is the cheapest home goalkeeper on the slate and is playing in the game with the lowest implied total. Given how many viable expensive defenders there are and a dearth of cheap playable forwards, at least in cash games, paying up for Adrian ($5,900) doesn't seem optimal, and needing $5,000 for David de Gea against Chelsea is laughable. Even the Crystal Palace set-piece guys aren't that cheap, so many fantasy players are likely to skip them altogether, which makes Areola the right play from a correlation standpoint.

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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