4 FanDuel Premier League Players to Avoid for Matchweek 37
The main slate for Matchweek 37 features four Saturday matches, which includes only one club in the top nine of the Premier League table. FanDuel’s late swap is available for the slate as it continues to be available for all soccer slates.
As with any sport, it is imperative to have your players, especially the high-priced studs, live up to their price tag. When making an investment into any player, it is important to determine which players will likely contribute in FanDuel's emphasized areas (goals, assists, and shots on target). It's also just as important not to overspend on players in bad matchups.
We should look to take advantage of the teams -- and players -- who play especially well either home or away while also looking at Vegas favorites and over/under totals. DFS players, as always, should look at injury reports and confirmed starting XI's when they become available.
Let's take a look at four players, across the entire pitch, who should be avoided in the upcoming matches.
Danny Welbeck, Arsenal
FanDuel Price: $8,100
Welbeck is the third-highest priced forward for Matchweek 37, and he has averaged 7.85 FanDuel points this season. Welbeck is priced well below the top two forwards on the slate as he is $1,800 cheaper than his teammate Alexis Sanchez and $1,600 cheaper than Bournemouth’s Josh King, but he is the top-priced “value” forward. Welbeck has started seven matches this season, including two straight, and has averaged 12.38 FanDuel points in those matches.
The Gunners travel to bet365 to face Stoke City in Saturday’s late match. The Gunners maintain the fourth-best possession percentage (56.1%) while taking 12.6 shots per match away from Emirates Stadium. The Potters maintain 48.8% of the possession while allowing 15.1 shots per match on their home pitch.
The Gunners have the highest implied total on the slate (1.75 goals), but the attackers will face a tough matchup against a tough Potters backline that has only conceded 20 goals at bet365 Stadium.
They have also been very stingy this season against forwards. They have allowed the fifth-fewest shots on target (41), sixth-fewest goals (16), sixth-fewest assists (6) and eighth-fewest shots (127) to forwards this season. In comparison to other clubs on the slate, the Potters have allowed the fewest goals, shots and shots on target while allowing the second-fewest assists.
Despite the high over/under (3 goals), both Welbeck and Sanchez received thought as the forward to avoid, with Welbeck ultimately winning out. King seems like the obvious play for forwards as Bournemouth is hosting a Burnley squad that have not performed well on the road this season. The Gunners’ attack seemed to come to life in Wednesday’s match against Southampton, but both attackers seem hard to trust when King, a forward in good form, is hosting Burnley.
Xherdan Shaqiri, Stoke City
FanDuel Price: $6,600
Shaqiri is the sixth-highest priced midfielder for Matchweek 37, and he has averaged 15.18 FanDuel points this season. Shaqiri has scored fewer than 10 FanDuel points in three of his last six matches while recording 1 goal and 2 assists in his last 14 starts.
Despite being involved in the match with the highest over/under on the slate, the Potters enter Saturday’s match with an implied total of 1.25 goals. The Potters host the Gunners at bet365 stadium in Saturday’s late match and are a 0.5-goal underdog.
The Gunners are not a good matchup for attacking-midfielders. They have allowed the third-fewest goals (4), third-fewest crosses (101), fourth-fewest chances created (43) and seventh-fewest assists (4) to attacking-midfielders this season. Arsenal is the toughest matchup for attacking-midfielders on the slate as they have allowed the fewest of each of those statistics compared to the other clubs on the slate.
Shaqiri has only scored more than 20 FanDuel points four times this season while averaging 9.45 FanDuel points in his other matches. Shaqiri’s FanDuel points are extremely dependent on goals. He does not produce many statistics on his own and has only recorded more than three chances created in three matches this season, and he now faces the best defense -- against his position -- on the slate, making Shaqiri the top midfielder to avoid.
Adam Smith, Bournemouth
FanDuel Price: $6,300
Smith has topped his season average of 16.93 FanDuel points in three of his last four matches, but he faces a Burnley squad on Saturday that has been atrocious in road matches.
The Clarets have an implied total of 1.0 goal and enter Saturday’s match as a large underdog. They are the league’s second-worst squad in road matches, earning seven points in 18 matches, and they have scored the third-fewest goals (12) in those matches.
The Clarets maintain the third-worst possession percentage (42.3%) in road matches and are not a great matchup for defenders, especially on the right side. Burnley have allowed the fewest blocked shots (4), fewest tackles (36) and third-fewest interceptions (42) to right-backs this season. They have allowed the third-most clearances (112) and second-most chances created (31) to right backs this season, but Smith has not recorded over four clearances since Matchweek 22 and has only registered three or more chances created twice this season.
It’s not a great slate for defenders, so avoiding defenders -- including Steve Cook -- against Burnley on the road seems ideal, given they are the two top-priced defenders on Saturday’s slate.
Jordan Pickford, Sunderland
FanDuel Price: $7,200
Pickford is the third-highest priced keeper for Matchweek 37, and he has averaged 16.56 FanDuel points this season. Pickford has made five saves in back-to-back matches while averaging 24.63 FanDuel points in that span.
Pickford and Sunderland host Swansea at the Stadium of Light. The Black Cats are a 0.5-goal underdog, and the over/under is set at 2.5 goals. They have allowed the second-most goals on their home pitch, and the Swans have an implied total of 1.5 goals.
Clean sheets and saves are extremely important for keeper scoring on FanDuel, and Pickford has kept four clean sheets this season. Every clean sheet has come against clubs near the bottom of the Premier League table, and three of the four have come at the Stadium of Light.
The Swans have forced the 8th-fewest saves while allowing the 10th-fewest clean sheets to opposing keepers this season. They have been held scoreless in six matches on the road this season, including three of their last four away from Liberty Stadium and average the third-fewest shots on the road.
Sunderland have already secured a spot in the League Championship for next season, and the Swans are currently one point shy of the drop zone. The Swans have everything on the line over the next two weeks and need to get a result against the worst squad in the Premier League. Swansea should have an aggressive attack -- meaning a slight uptick in shots -- but the Black Cats have struggled all season to pick up clean sheets, making Pickford a keeper to avoid.