3 FanDuel Premier League Under-the-Radar Plays for Matchweek 34
If you have played daily fantasy sports for a while, you know the importance of being contrarian in large-field tournaments. Recognizing which players are going to be owned by the masses and finding others who you think have a similar point projection but will come at much lower ownership can really separate yourself from your opponents.
The same goes for DFS Premier League. Even though the large-field tournaments aren't quite as large as they are for other sports, there is still value in identifying quality under-the-radar plays.
This article will discuss FanDuel's main Saturday slate, which starts at 10:00 a.m. EST and features four matches.
|Saturday, April 22nd|
|Everton at West Ham United|
|Middlesbrough at Bournemouth
|Stoke City at Swansea City|
|Watford at Hull City|
Short(er) Slate! The main slate for Matchweek 34 consists of only four matches, two fewer than the standard Saturday slate. All four of these matches have an over/under of 2.5 goals, and all them have a team favored to win by half a goal. Three of those favorites – Bournemouth, Hull City, and Swansea City – are at home, and the other – Everton – is on the road.
The first question that needs to be answered by anyone playing this slate is what to do with Everton.
On one hand, they are the second-hottest team in the Premier League right now – behind only Tottenham - with four wins in their last six matches and 16 goals scored over that span. On the other hand, they’re on the road, where they have had just one win in their past six matches and only six goals over that span. West Ham aren’t the fiercest of opponents, as their recent home form has them tied for the most goals allowed, at 11, over their last six home matches. However, Everton’s away form includes 0-0 draws to likes of Stoke City and Middlesbrough.
In this situation, it's OK to trust your Everton options. Their terrible away form is slightly skewed, as it includes matches against Manchester United (a 1-1 draw), Liverpool (a 3-1 loss), and Tottenham (a 3-2 loss). In their last four matches against no elite sides, they have won by a combined score of 14-3, and it's hard to think West Ham will fare much better.
Another reason to trust your Everton options are the lack of alternatives. On this short slate, Everton are the only elite side, and you shouldn’t have a problem fitting them into your lineups, with most of the other options being cheap.
With that said, here are three additional players to consider for large-field tournaments this weekend.
Fernando Llorente, Swansea City
FanDuel Salary: $7,800
People could favor Josh King as their lower-priced forward option due to his recent form – two goals in his last three matches – and his heroics on the last short slate that we had, which saw him net a hat trick in early March. While Llorente has been struggling to find the net lately, he’s no stranger to putting up huge FanDuel performances, as he has four multi-goal games this season.
His odds to score are actually slightly better than Josh Kings, and he has the fourth-best odds to score on the slate. Of course, the best reason to play Llorente is the same as it’s always been this season – his correlation with Glyfi Sigurdsson. Sigurdsson is an auto-include in a slate where salary relief is easy to come by and Swansea are favored at home. Maximizing his upside by combining him with Llorente is a good way to move up the leaderboard in large-field tournaments.
While Swansea’s home form has been far from impressive, with only eight goals scored in their last six matches, Stoke’s away form has been equally as unimpressive, with only one win in their last six. On a short slate where forward options are limited, I like taking advantage of a lower-owned Llorente in a plus matchup at home.
Cheikhou Kouyate, West Ham United
FanDuel Salary: $6,200
Whenever a team is a home underdog, I like looking to see if they have a productive defensive midfielder. In these situations, those players tend to have the opportunity to produce on both ends of the pitch. They are under pressure from the opposing favored team, and also manage to get forward and have a few offensive opportunities.
Kouyate’s recent role at West Ham fits the bill perfectly. While he has filled numerous roles for his club this year, Kouyate has been deployed as a defensive midfielder in four of West Ham’s last five matches. In those five matches, he produced FanDuel point totals of 18.00, 31.75, 18.75, 21.50, and 31.25. With only one goal scored over that span, these numbers are more a result of his defensive duties. In those five matches, he averaged 3.6 tackles, 3.8 interceptions and 3.2 clearances per match. Against Everton on Saturday, he should be able to improve upon those averages.
Kamil Grosicki, Hull City
FanDuel Salary: $5,700
On a short slate, in a good spot at home and at a low price point, Grosicki may be slightly higher-owned than we'd like, but he is worth it. Hull City are tied for the largest favorites on the slate with Bournemouth, and Grosicki has been a key part of their offense since joining from French side Rennes. He has the 13th-best odds to score of any player on the slate and the 3rd-best odds of any midfielder, behind only Gylfi Sigurdsson and Junior Stanislas. He also handles the lion’s share of corner kicks for Hull City, giving him upside with assists as well as goals.
Hull City have been surprisingly great at home recently -- they have five wins in their last six matches, scoring 14 goals over that span, which is fourth most in the Premier League. Conversely, Watford have been abysmal on the road, allowing an average of two goals per match in their last six road fixtures. Grosicki averages three shots per match at home, a very impressive mark. He has also produced all three of his assists this season in the confines of the KCOM stadium.
This appears to be a situation that he, and Hull City, can take advantage of this Saturday.
As always, make sure to check lineups as they come out on Saturday morning and adjust accordingly.