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DraftKings Fantasy Soccer: Saturday Premier League Picks

Andrew M. Laird

Andrew M. Laird, the 2017 FSWA Soccer Writer of the Year, is RotoWire's Senior Soccer Editor and a fantasy football contributor. He is also a two-time finalist for the FSWA's Football Writer of the Year Award.

For detailed odds and stats, check out the Fantasy Premier League: Saturday Cheat Sheet.


10:00 a.m: Chelsea v. Leicester City
10:00 a.m: Watford v. Southampton
10:00 a.m: Newcastle v. Swansea City
10:00 a.m: Crystal Palace v. Burnley
10:00 a.m: West Brom v. Brighton
10:00 a.m: Huddersfield v. West Ham
12:30 p.m: Tottenham v. Everton


Willian, CHE v. LEI ($10,700): Willian's value takes a significant hit if Cesc Fabregas ($7,500, midfielder) gets the start, as it'll likely take him off set pieces, a major source of his crosses and opportunities for shots and assists. Chelsea are big favorites at home against Leicester, and while Alvaro Morata ($9,900) and Eden Hazard ($10,500) have higher goal upside, Willian is the safer cash play. Hazard could be a popular cash pick if Willian and Fabregas don't start, as it'll likely push set pieces his way, but it seems unlikely. One other forward-eligible Chelsea player to consider is Victor Moses ($5,600), as his wingback role usually allows him a decent number of crosses, though his ceiling is pretty low for GPPs.

Johann Berg Gudmundsson, BUR at CRY ($7,200): Paying this much for a Burnley forward playing away doesn't seem like a great idea, but Gudmundsson's monopoly of set pieces puts him in consideration against Crystal Palace. His goal against Liverpool on New Year's Day was his first of the season, and he rarely takes more than two shots, so his GPP upside isn't exactly high. His crossing consistency will make him very popular in cash games, as you don't get a ton of forwards who have control of so many set pieces, and while Palace have been better under Roy Hodgson, they've allowed the fourth-most crosses among teams on the slate over the past six games.

Son Heung-Min, TOT v. EVE ($8,500): Paying $12,000 for Harry Kane means you probably need at least two goals to make value unless the cheap midfielder you punt with also scores. It's not out of the question, of course, as Kane had back-to-back hat tricks at the end of last month. He's taken eight, eight and seven shots in his last three starts, respectively, including four, three and three on goal. But again, that price (the highest on the slate) requires a shot to find the back of the net. Meanwhile, Son has two goals on seven shots (three on target) in the last three games while also picking up two assists. He's far from the volume shooter that Kane is, but he still provides solid exposure to a Spurs side with the second-highest implied goal total and his salary won't force at least one punted position. Erik Lamela ($6,300) is another option, though his value will really come from set pieces and there's simply no guarantee he'll get them.


Matt Ritchie, NEW v. SWA ($7,700): Ritchie hasn't exactly been lighting up the fantasy scoreboard lately, but home against Swansea City is about as good a matchup as you'll get all season. He is the current leader in Premier League shots without a goal (40), though he's really more of a solid-floor, cash-game option than someone who will help win a GPP. Nevertheless, Swansea give up a good number of crosses and chances per game, which fits into Ritchie's wheelhouse. Jonjo Shelvey ($3,900) is always around to poach a few corners, and his price is low enough that he won't kill a cash lineup if he plays the full 90.

Yohan Cabaye, CRY v. BUR ($6,400): Cabaye's value increases if Andros Townsend ($7,800, forward/midfielder) doesn't play, as Cabaye will likely get all set-piece responsibilities. His minutes and fantasy totals haven't been great lately, but it seems more of a result of trying to keep him relatively fresh during the congested schedule. The matchup against Burnley isn't bad, as the Clarets have allowed the most shots, most crosses, most chances and most corners per match among teams on the slate, all of which would benefit Cabaye. Another Palace midfielder to keep an eye on is Bakary Sako ($5,000), who scored earlier this week against Brighton and could be playing in a very advanced position. Additionally, there's a small chance he takes some set pieces, a chance that grows if Townsend and Cabaye sit out.

Chris Brunt, WBA v. BHA ($6,600): Brunt is another cash-game-friendly option, as he has been taking most of West Brom's corners of late, helping him to send in 31 crosses in his last three games. It's worth nothing that he may be forced to play left-back against Brighton, which could slightly limit his open-play crossing, and his assist upside isn't that high in a game with a relatively low implied goal total. Nevertheless, he's a safe option against a Brighton side that has allowed the third-most shots, fifth-most crosses and second-most corners per match among teams on the slate.


Kieran Trippier, TOT v. EVE ($6,300): Trippier is the most expensive defender on the slate, and choosing him is more for the flexibility in case he doesn't start because Spurs play in the late game. There's no telling what Tottenham will do with their set pieces, and we can be more confident that Ben Davies ($6,000) will get the start because Danny Rose ($6,200) is out with an injury, but Davies has also been the lesser effective attacking player lately. Trippier has the most open-play crossing upside, but there's also a good possibility that Serge Aurier ($5,700) starts ahead of him. The reason I led with Trippier is that if you only budget for Aurier and he doesn't start, you won't have the money to switch to another Spurs fullback. Tottenham are big favorites and have a good chance at a clean sheet, so any of the ones you pick come with a decent shot at three points to start, and it's possible that Trippier or Davies get to take some corners with Christian Eriksen ($9,100, midfielder)...maybe. Either way, they should be in attack mode against an Everton side that's likely to pack it in, so the offensive peripherals should be there.

Martin Olsson, SWA at NEW ($4,100): Choosing a Swansea defender playing away doesn't bring a ton of optimism, and Olsson's game logs certainly don't jump off the screen. He's been a minimal crosser of late, but he's had some tough matchups (at Liverpool, v. Spurs), and Saturday's against Newcastle isn't that. Sure, the Magpies have back-to-back clean sheets and the Swans' attack has been lacking this season, but Olsson should get his opportunities to move up, as we saw when he sent in eight crosses against Newcastle earlier this season.

Craig Dawson, WBA v. BHA ($4,000): Dawson's cross numbers aren't exciting, but he's been a nice contributor across the stat sheet, such as against West Ham in their last Premier League match when he sent in three crosses, won four tackles and drew four fouls. He's a bit of an up-and-down fantasy producer, but a home match against Brighton should have him moving forward, with the clean sheet definitely a possibility.


Lukasz Fabianski, SWA at NEW ($4,100): Newcastle have scored just four goals in their last six matches, including none in their last three at home. On the flip side, Fabianski has allowed 16 goals over the same time period. That's a bit skewed though, as he allowed four to Man City, five to Liverpool and two to Spurs, and his 24 saves over that run helped mitigate what could have been awful fantasy days. Newcastle's struggles finishing should help provide a decent return, as they've forced the third-most saves among teams on the slate while scoring the fifth-fewest goals.

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, TheSix: Lairdinho.