4 FanDuel Premier League Players to Avoid in Matchweek 8
The main slate for Matchweek 8 features six Saturday matches, including four of the top five clubs.
As with any sport, it is imperative to have your players, especially the high-priced studs, live up to their price tag. When investing in any player, it is important to determine which will likely contribute in FanDuel's emphasized areas (goals, assists, and shots on target). It's also just as crucial not to overspend on players in bad matchups.
We should try 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 check out 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.
Javier Hernandez, West Ham
FanDuel Price: $9,500
Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez is tied as the sixth-highest priced forward for Matchweek 8, and he has averaged 18.64 FanDuel points this season. Chicharito has had an up-and-down year, scoring more than 20 FanDuel points three times this season but fewer than 10 FanDuel points in each of his other four matches.
The Hammers travel to Turf Moor to face Burnley and are a slight underdog in Saturday’s match. The possession in the match should be relatively even with the Clarets possessing the ball 51.2% on their home pitch while the Hammers maintain 50.8 % of the possession in away matches.
Despite allowing the most shots to forwards this season (43), the Clarets have only allowed one goal -- tied for second-fewest in the Premier League -- and zero assists to forwards in their first seven matches.
The Clarets have scored more points on the road this season but have had an excellent back line at Turf Moor, conceding only one goal -- Matchweek 2 against West Brom -- in their three home matches and Chicharito could struggle to find the back of the net. DFS players will want some exposure to the top clubs on the slate and Chicharito’s price may make it difficult to have exposure to the talented forward in a potentially tough spot.
Cesc Fabregas, Chelsea
FanDuel Price: $9,000
Fabregas is tied, along with four other players, as the sixth-highest priced midfielder for Matchweek 8. He has averaged 17.67 FanDuel points this season.
The Blues travel to Selhurst Park to face Crystal Palace and are a 1.5-goal favorite over the Eagles with an over/under set at 2.5 goals. The Eagles maintain 51.9% of the possession on their home pitch while the Blues maintain 49.6% of the possession away from Stamford Bridge.
Most of the top-priced midfielders are in great spots as their opponents struggle against the midfield position. The Eagles, despite conceding the second-most assists to that position (6), have been fairly stingy in the other categories against midfielders/attacking-midfielders. They have allowed the second-fewest shots (20), sixth-fewest crosses (55), sixth-fewest chances created (31) and seventh-most shots on target (11) to midfielders/attacking midfielders this season.
Fabregas has scored one goal on four shots but has struggled in two away matches, averaging 8.375 FanDuel points. DFS players should avoid Fabregas in a tough road match, especially with better options available in the same price range.
Cesar Azpilicueta, Chelsea
FanDuel Price: $7,000
Azpilicieta is tied, along with two other defenders, as the third-highest priced defender for Matchweek 8. He has averaged 20.96 FanDuel points this season.
The defender has averaged 29.25 FanDuel points over his last two matches but was unable to reach 25 FanDuel points in his first five matches, scoring under 15 FanDuel points twice in that span.
As mentioned above, the Blues travel to Selhurt Park to face Crystal Palace. The Eagles, along with Stoke City, have the lowest implied team total (0.5 goals) and are not a great matchup for opposing defenders. They have allowed the ninth-fewest crosses (29), eighth-fewest tackles (39), eighth-fewest blocked shots (15), fourth-fewest clearances (111) and second-fewest interceptions (29) to defenders this season.
Azpilicueta has lined up in the midfield twice this season -- if he moves up in the formation against the Eagles, his fantasy value would increase. But if he plays in the Blues’ back line, as he has done five times this season, he’ll face an Eagles squad that should find it difficult to put heavy pressure on the Blues’ defense.
Petr Cech, Arsenal
FanDuel Price: $5,000
Cech has averaged 15.71 FanDuel points this season while keeping four clean sheets and racking up 2.71 saves/match in his first seven matches.
The Gunners travel to Vicarage Road to face Watford and are a one-goal favorite. The Hornets average 42.4 % of the possession on their home pitch while the Gunners are the Premier League’s third-best squad in that category in away matches.
The Hornets have allowed opposing keepers to make 11 saves -- second-fewest -- while conceding two clean sheets this season. Both of the Hornets’ clean sheets have come on their home pitch, including their fixture against Brighton when they were playing down a man for most of the match.
It is unlikely that Cech will face heavy pressure in a match that the Gunners should easily control, making Cech’s fantasy value solely dependent on a clean sheet.