4 FanDuel Premier League Players to Avoid in Matchweek 13
The main slate for Matchweek 13 features six Saturday matches, with four of the top-five clubs in action, but only one -- Tottenham -- facing a club currently in the bottom-five of the table (West Bromwich Albion). The slate is capped off with a pivotal match between Chelsea and Liverpool, a fixture that should be fun to watch.
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 who 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 oddsmakers favorites and over/under totals. DFS players, as always, should check out injury reports and confirmed starting XIs when they become available.
Let's take a look at four players across the entire pitch who should be avoided.
Alvaro Morata, Chelsea
FanDuel Price: $10,500
Morata is the third-highest priced forward for Matchweek 13, and he has averaged 26 FanDuel points this season. Morata is in great form, contributing on the Blues’ scoresheet in three straight matches while averaging 32.75 FanDuel points in that span.
Morata has been hit or miss when it comes to fantasy production this season, scoring more than 25 FanDuel points in 7 of 11 matches while scoring less than 10 FanDuel points in his other 4 matches. The forward has feasted against clubs currently in the bottom five of the Premier League table -- scoring six goals and tallying three assists in five matches against the bottom feeders while scoring just once in the five matches against clubs in the top-half of the table.
The Blues enter Saturday’s match against Liverpool as a 0.5-goal underdog. The Reds have been stingy this season against opposing forwards, limiting them to the eighth-fewest shots on target (16), third-fewest shots (30) and fewest chances created (8) while allowing 9 goals and 2 assists.
Despite the seemingly high number of goals conceded to forwards, the Reds’ back line has conceded the fewest number of goals (four) -- to an attacking-midfielder -- while facing four clubs currently in the top-half of the table this season at Anfield. Morata has shown this season that he is capable of tournament-winning performances, but as an underdog against a stingy backline, Morata should be faded in favor of forwards with better matchups.
Abdoulaye Doucoure, Watford
FanDuel Price: $8,500
Doucoure is tied, along with three other midfielders, as the eighth-highest priced midfielder for Matchweek 13, and he has averaged 20.94 FanDuel points this season. Doucoure has been very goal-dependent this year. He's averaged 13.28 FanDuel points in his eight matches without a goal this season, and only once has he put up more than 20 FD points in a match in which he didn't net a goal.
The Hornets travel to St. James’ Park to face Newcastle, and the Magpies are a 0.5-goal favorite. Newcastle are the Premier League’s third-worst squad at maintaining possession on their home pitch (42.8%) while the Hornets are the eighth-best squad in that category, keeping 51.8% of the possession in road matches.
The Magpies have not produced a large number of defensive actions to midfielders this season. They have allowed the seventh-fewest tackles (93), fourth-fewest blocked shots (7), third-fewest clearances (53) and third-fewest interceptions (36) to midfielders (all midfield positions) this season. Despite conceding seven goals to midfielders this season, four of those goals have come from attacking-midfielders, a position Doucoure does not play.
Three of Doucoure’s four goals have come away from Vicarage Road, totaling more goals this campaign than he has in his previous three seasons. However, goals are hard to predict from midfielders, and Doucoure’s fantasy output significantly drops when he doesn’t score, making him a risky DFS option in a tough matchup.
Mamadou Sakho, Crystal Palace
FanDuel Price: $6,000
Sakho is tied with 10 other defenders as the 10th-highest priced defender for Matchweek 13. He has averaged 15.21 FanDuel points in six matches this season, scoring more than 20 FanDuel points twice -- both against clubs currently in the top five of the table -- while not reaching 14 FanDuel points in his other four matches.
The Eagles host Stoke City at Selhurst Park and are a 0.5-goal favorite over the Potters. The Eagles should be able to control possession in Saturday’s match as they are the Premier League’s seventh-best squad (52.8%) in that category on their home pitch while the Potters’ maintain just 44.8% of the possession on the road.
Stoke have not been a great attack for opposing center-backs. They have allowed the 10th-fewest interceptions (38), 6th-fewest blocked shots (18), 6th-fewest tackles (33) and 2nd-fewest clearances (124) to center-backs this season.
Sakho is not highly involved in the Eagles’ attack, taking one shot (it was off target) and tallying one assist in his six matches, and he now faces a squad that does not relinquish a high number of defensive statistics to center-backs. DFS players should look to avoid Sakho and aim for a defender that has a better opportunity to record defensive actions.
Asmir Begovic, Bournemouth
FanDuel Price: $5,500
Begovic is tied with Brighton's Mathew Ryan as the top-priced keeper on the slate, and he has averaged 13.58 FanDuel points this season. Begovic is second in the Premier League with 41 saves while conceding the 12th-most goals (14)
The Cherries travel to Liberty Stadium to face Swansea. The match is listed as a pickem with the over/under set at 2.5 goals, and both squads have an implied team total 1.25 goals.
According to the odds, Swansea is likely to score at least one goal in Saturday’s match, an outcome the Cherries have allowed in all but one of their away matches. The Swans have scored in three of their previous four matches at Liberty Stadium, and they have forced the fewest saves (24) from opposing keepers while scoring the second-fewest number of goals (7) this season.
Begovic will likely need a clean sheet to produce value at his price, and even with a clean sheet, his upside may be limited due to a low number of save opportunities. If you are looking for a clean sheet, Manchester United’s David de Gea seems to be in a better position (at home against Brighton), and he is $500 cheaper than Begovic.