A number of matches have been postponed this weekend so we have a short four gamer on the slate. There seems to be a lot of chalk shaping up for this one, as we lack many great teams or players, but it’s certainly a playable slate and it could present us with some good value. Let’s take a look.
Lee Grant ($4,400) – Grant has been fairly consistent this season and Stoke have climbed to 11th in the standings through some of his performances. He’s cheap once again at just $4,400 and should see a heavy number of shots from a Swansea team battling to avoid relegation. Gylfi Sigurdsson will look to lead his team in attack from early on, presenting Grant with a number of save opportunities. Considering Grant hasn’t had a negative finish in his last ten games, the floor is solid there and he is cash playable, especially on this slate.
Tournament Targets: Brad Guzan (Or Victor Valdes, whoever starts), Heurolho Gomes
Martin Olsson ($5,300) – Olsson hasn’t played extremely well in his last three matches but a lot of that has been matchup related. Away games at Watford and West Ham didn’t see him get a chance to go up often, and the game before that was against Tottenham, where Swansea were pinned back for the majority of the game. When Olsson gets involved in attacking, he racks up fantasy points, and Swansea will be aggressive in this one.
Andrew Robertson ($4,600) – Robertson hasn’t gotten fewer than five fantasy points in his last ten matches and has shown a good level of consistency. He contributes mainly through crosses, tackles, and interceptions, and the beauty there is that the combination of those three stats is fairly game-script independent. Whether Hull attack or stay back, he should have enough ways to contribute to bring a solid floor in an otherwise barren position. Use him in cash games and sprinkle him in GPPs.
Cheap Plays – With a wide array of expensive options in midfield and attack, don’t be afraid to take some tournament shots with cheap defender. Monitor starting lineups, and consider any starter whose price is under $3,000. If any good cheap starters emerge, I’ll tweet about it on Saturday morning.
Stewart Downing ($6,000) – Downing is very difficult to get excited about, but he’s been too solid to ignore. He is on corner kick duty and has gotten nine or more crosses in four of his last five matches. Grant Leadbitter has stolen some corners of late, but he will miss out tomorrow with a hamstring injury and boost Downing’s stock. Downing averages almost seven crosses per 90 minutes, and the upside is there for a goal or assist against what is a very mediocre Bournemouth squad. Being away from home hurts the floor, especially with the decrease in crossing and shooting opportunities, but Middlesbrough are in the relegation zone and must be aggressive here.
Gylfi Sigurdsson ($11,000) – Once again, we return. Gylfi has failed to eclipse ten fantasy points in two of his last three matches, but those were a tough matchup against Spurs and an away match to West Ham, both of which proved difficult. However, the floor is still eight to nine fantasy points, and despite that being horrendous for $11,000, it’s some level of production that doesn’t totally kill you. In a matchup against Stoke City, at home, the floor has to be at least 12-14 points, and the ceiling is 30+. Gylfi should warrant high ownership this week, but not high enough where we want to fade in tournaments. He is on all set pieces and there is just zero reason to fade him this week. He is in play in all formats.
Ryan Fraser (6,500) – Fraser didn’t start last time out but I expect him to return here against Middlesbrough. However, it’s worth double checking before kickoff. Bournemouth are favored here and the game is expected to be over 2.5 goals by the bookies. Overall, a great situation for Fraser, who likes to get involved in the attack through sustainable stats. The issue here is that it’s difficult to gain upside with Fraser’s lack of goal scoring ability, but the crosses should be there and that makes him cash viable.
Xherdan Shaqiri ($7,700) – The Shaq Attack is back and playing very well. He seems to finally be at full health and it’s showing on the pitch. Shaqiri has been splitting corners with Marko Arnautovic, but he does a lot more from open play, which makes him cash viable even at a high price. It certainly helps Swansea are relegation bound and have played horrendous defense this season, giving Shaqiri goal and assist upside.
Let’s start with a discussion of Romelu Lukaku. Lukaku has been on fire this season and his price now reflects it. He’s at $11,400 and its just impossible to imagine playing him at this price, away from home, against West Ham. It’s difficult for Lukaku to meet value without scoring at least two goals at this price, and his chances at scoring two goals are 7/2 according to SkyBet. I’m not chasing those chances, and will avoid Lukaku this weekend. He is a tournament only play if anything.
Kamil Grosicki ($7,200) – Another player who’s struggled recently is Kamil Grosicki, but it’s been largely schedule driven. Two straight weeks of travel were tough, and he is a player that seems to be way more efficient at home. In his last four home matches, he hasn’t scored less than 13 fantasy points, and a matchup against Watford isn’t changing that.
Joshua King ($6,900) – In tournaments, Joshua King can be a forgotten piece this week. He scored zero fantasy points on the road against Tottenham last weekend, but the Spurs have been one of the best defensive teams in the league and defend even better at home. Don’t look past that as King has been playing well as of late and deserved consideration. Tournament viable only.