UCL DFS Picks: You Should Be Earning Money with Bayern
Champions League football is back for week two and we have some huge DraftKings tournaments coming up. MondoGoal also has some big tournaments on the British Pound side, so don’t be afraid to dip your toes there as well.
The numbers below signify the percentages each team has of winning, with the percentages calculated from SkyBet odds.
The slate features some really one-sided affairs. Arsenal, Barcelona, Bayern Munich, and Zenit all play at home and have at least a 65 percent chance at a win. Roma plays BATE Borisov on the road and features an impressive 52 percent chance at a win, but that worries me a little with the fact that they’re on the road and they are coming off some really poor matches. It doesn’t help that Edin Dzeko, Francesco Totti, and Seydou Keita are all injured. With how one-sided the other affairs are, I’m not a huge fan of Roma here, although some value still remains in their squad, especially on sites where they are much cheaper.
This is an extremely weird slate with so many one-sided matches, so I’m going to start with the forward position first and explain my reasoning and overall approach to the slate. With so many great forwards in fantastic situations, there’s a number of them who are unfadable. Since you can’t fit all in one lineups, you’ll have to alternate them in GPP lineups. Playing cash in this slate is not advisable, as you’re basically playing the lotto with the top strikers.
Vincent Aboubakar/Yacine Brahimi
I know this is a big list, but Tier 1 is completely unfadable. Any of those guys could score a hat-trick tomorrow and leave you winless if you completely ignore them. They are all really good players that play on really good teams, against really poor opposition. One goal from either of those will probably NOT be enough for them to reach “value” tomorrow, so we’re searching for the braces and hat-tricks in this slate. If I had to choose, I’d go with at least one of the Bayern guys in almost every one of my lineups because they’re such huge favorites. The rest of the analysis will focus on finding values that are cheap enough to allow you to afford two or three top strikers in your lineup.
David Ospina ($3,500) or Petr Cech ($5,200) – There’s a lot of debate on Twitter about who will start in goal for Arsenal. I won’t get into who should start, I’m just going to note that whoever starts will be smart to use. Ospina at $3,500 should be extremely highly owned if he starts – that extra money will free up tons of space for strikers. As of now, it seems Ospina will start, but I wouldn’t trust the Mirror without double-checking tomorrow.
Yury Lodygin ($5,100) – It’s not that cold in Russia yet but that trip is never easy. Lodygin has a very favorable home matchup and is $500 cheaper than Manuel Neuer. I like him to at least get a win, and he should be fairly safe for a clean sheet as well.
Roberto ($3,800) – If Ospina starts, he’s by far a better option than Roberto, but if Cech is the one starting for Arsenal, I wouldn’t mind taking a shot at Roberto. Arsenal put up a ton of shots weekly and Roberto can reach double digit points just from saves so he’s worth a gamble in a few lineups.
Others: Manuel Neuer and Marc-Andre Ter Segen are obviously options but cost a lot and provide about the same upside that Ospina/Cech or Lodygin will give you. If you can afford them, don’t be afraid to use them.
Lucas Digne ($3,800) – Digne wasn’t great in Roma’s first Champions League match this season but that was against Barcelona and that’s completely understandable. The defender has a goal and two assist already in just four matches this season and he should be considered in your lineups on Tuesday. He has a huge upside as Roma are expected to win and this guy can bring you a clean sheet on top of some attacking firepower.
Danilo Silva ($4,000) – Silva put up eight crosses in his first match and can easily match that again. He plays on a team that’s expected to win, even though they’re not as big of a favorite as Bayern or Barcelona. At the price, I think he’s worth every penny.
Adriano ($3,300) – Adriano started at left-back in Barcelona’s last match in La Liga and if he gets another start here, he’s good value at that price. He has a great chance at a clean sheet and should provide some attacking stats to push his value further. Don’t expect him to return 20 points, but a solid 10 is very doable and that’s great at the price.
Alessandro Florenzi ($4,000) – I’m not chasing points here with Florenzi, although he did score against Barcelona last week. You might remember his fantastic goal. The midfielder averages 1.4 shots and 1.8 key passes per match and I am hoping for enough phantom points here to meet his $4,000 price tag.
Oleg Shatov ($5,600) – The Zenit midfielder has four goals and three assists this season while averaging 1.8 shots and 2.7 key passes per match. He only had seven points in Zenit’s last Champions League match, but here, the Russians are expected to be heavy favorites. I don’t see many better values in this price range and I think Shatov will be heavily owned in my teams.
Mathieu Valbuena ($5,400) – I don’t love Valbuena’s floor that much but I think his upside is there for that price tag. He allows you to afford three top strikers. Because of the low floor, I wouldn’t recommend rostering Valbuena in all your lineups – he’s more of a 20% owned type of player. I would classify Alex Olxade-Chamberlain in the same category, if he starts.
Arsenal midfielders – Arsenal could really score a lot tomorrow. Bayern Munich scored three AT Olympiakos, while Arsenal face them at home. If you go with one mid-range striker, you could afford an Arsenal midfielder or two in your lineup. Mesut Ozil and Santi Cazorla are GPP options.
Douglas Costa ($8,000) – Douglas Costa had a very poor match fantasy wise against Olympiakos in week one but his price somehow went up by $500. I think those two factors will put off fantasy managers and lead to him being low owned. He has one goal and five assists in his seven matches this season and has an insane 3.7 shots and 2.3 key passes per match. He will most likely start in the most one-sided match of the day, and that warrants some consideration. Mario Gotze is also an option at FLEX if you can afford him.
Ivan Rakitic ($4,900) – Rakitic should be a lot more involved in Barcelona’s attack now that Messi went down and he has the potential to return twice his value tomorrow. His numbers so far have been quite poor with Barcelona because Messi, Neymar, and Luis Suarez have always dominated touches, but without Messi, Rakitic can return to his Sevilla form of a few years ago, when he finished the season with 11 goals and 10 assists. Andres Iniesta is a better option but is much harder to afford at $6,500. Use Iniesta if you can fit him in.
These forward values at the FLEX spot allow you to go with two top strikers and a competent midfield/defense.
Mohamed Salah ($5,200) – Salah has been playing very well and is in a favorable situation. Without Dzeko, he might even take extra shots on goal and he will be at value with just one goal. I don’t mind if he is heavily utilized.
Munir El Haddadi ($5,500) – El Haddadi replaced Lionel Messi in the last match after Messi went down with an injury and could presumably start for him on Tuesday. If he starts, he should be given consideration with the fact that he is a $5,500 forward in one of the most potent attacks of the day.
Alexandre Lacazette ($7,200) – Not really a “value” play, but Lacazette allows you to go with a more expensive goalkeeper if you play him at FLEX instead of an elite striker. He put up six shots against Gent in week one and will have a chance to score at home this week.
Let’s look at a possible lineup for this slate.
If you go with Ospina and Adriano, given they start, you could build a squad that allows you to fit three top strikers in. If you go with Walcott instead of Hulk or Suarez, you should be able to upgrade from Adriano to a better defender if he doesn’t start, or from Ospina to Cech. Another option is going with Douglas Costa at Flex and then upgrading one of your midfielders. Rakitic instead of Shatov and you could fit both Bayern strikers plus one of Neymar or Suarez!
The top strikers should all be played to some extent in your lineups, and I hope the value plays I gave here will be enough to get you to the promised land. Good luck!