4 FanDuel Premier League Studs to Target for Matchweek 21
As is the case when playing any sport on FanDuel, it’s imperative to hit on high-priced studs, the players in which you’ve made the biggest investment. This is especially true with strikers in soccer as goals are often the difference between winning and losing in DFS.
Let’s take a look at some high-priced players -- all across the pitch -- who, despite costing a good chunk of change, are worth the investment.
This article is geared toward Saturday's main slate, which starts 10:00 a.m. EST and features seven matches.
|Saturday, January 14th|
|Stoke City at Sunderland|
|Crystal Palace at West Ham|
|Arsenal at Swansea City|
|Southampton at Burnley|
|Bournemouth at Hull City|
|Middlesbrough at Watford|
|Chelsea at Leicester City|
Let's get to it.
Alexis Sanchez, Arsenal
FanDuel Salary: $13,500
It doesn't get much better than this as far as striker matchups go. Sanchez -- the slate leader in FanDuel points per game (32.3) among forwards -- gets a juicy matchup at Swansea. The Swans have allowed the most goals this season, conceding 45 times in 20 matches, and they've given up 14 goals in their last six matches. Swansea has surrendered the fourth-most shots per game (14.5).
Arsenal is a one-goal favorite, which ties Chelsea as the biggest favorites on the slate, and will likely control this match. The over/under of three means the Gunners have the biggest implied total on the slate -- the Chelsea-Leicester game has an over/under of 2.5 -- and Sanchez should live in dangerous areas.
The Chilean international is the only player in the top five in the Premier League in both goals (13) and assists (7), and he's scored at least 30 FanDuel points in seven of his last eight matches, including two outings of at least 60 FanDuel points. He's sixth in the league in shots per match (3.4), and the volume should be there in what should be a match with a lot of one-way traffic.
Eden Hazard, Chelsea
FanDuel Salary: $9,800
With Chelsea and Arsenal in such favorable spots, you're probably going to want exposure to both team's attacking studs. If you opt for Chelsea's Diego Costa atop your lineup, then Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil makes sense here, but if you go with Sanchez, Hazard is a good player to pair with him.
After suffering through a poor season a year ago, Hazard has returned to form this year. He totaled a meager four goals and three assists in 25 appearances last campaign, but he's already bagged nine goals with two assists through 19 appearances this year as Chelsea threaten to run away at the top of the table.
Leicester were last season's darlings, but things haven't gone as well this year as they're flirting with the drop zone. Even when they won their historic title a year ago, the Foxes weren't much for possession, and that trait has carried over this season, with Leicester's 44% possession rate ranking 17th. The Foxes are allowing 14.1 shots per match, the seventh-most in the league, and Hazard should see plenty of the ball in a match where the Blues are a one-goal favorite.
Virgil van Dijk, Southampton
FanDuel Salary: $5,900
van Dijk has been an incredibly consistent performer on the Saints' back line. He's put up at least 15 FanDuel points in 15 of his last 16 matches, including a run of seven straight. Over those last seven contests, van Dijk is racking up 22.98 FanDuel points per match. He is averaging 48.5 passes per match to go along with 6.8 clearances, 2.6 interceptions and 2.1 tackles, giving him a comfortable floor.
On the surface, a matchup at Burnley doesn't look all that appealing since the Clarets are typically a conservative side, but some of van Dijk's best fantasy games this year have come against teams with lesser attacks, including a 27-point outburst against this Burnley side back in October.
Darren Randolph, West Ham
FanDuel Salary: $6,500
West Ham have struggled defensively this season, allowing the sixth-most goals -- 35 in 20 matches -- in the league. That's not necessarily a terrible thing for Randolph for DFS purposes as it helps ensure he'l be busy. Randolph has been in good form lately, too, conceding just four goals over his last five games, including a pair of clean sheets.
The Hammers host Crystal Palace, a team that's been on the front foot this season more than anticipated. Palace have 30 tallies in 20 matches, which ranks seventh in the league and is one shy of what Manchester United has done. Palace, though, is roughly league average in possession (48.9%) and shots per game (12.2), so it's not like they're some overpowering force. On top of that, they've hit a dry spell of late, scoring six goals over their last six matches.
As usual, Randolph's services should be required (he's made at least four saves in four straight games), but the recent drop in Palace's goal-scoring form gives him a decent shot at a clean sheet.