4 FanDuel Premier League Studs to Target for Matchweek 18

Cesc Fabregas has displayed a high floor in recent weeks, and he should be on the ball plenty as Chelsea host Southampton.

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 FanDuel's main slate, which begins at 10:00 a.m. EST Saturday and features six matches.

Matchweek 18
Saturday, December 16th
West Ham at Stoke City
Newcastle United at Arsenal
Huddersfield at Watford
Burnley at Brighton
Southampton at Chelsea
Tottenham at Manchester City

Four of the Premier League's "big six" are part of this six-game slate, but two of them -- Manchester City and Tottenham -- play each other in a match with a 3.0-goal over/under in which City are a 1.0-goal favorite. The other two top-shelf clubs on the slate -- Chelsea and Arsenal -- are home favorites, with both installed as a 1.5-goal favorite. The Arsenal-Newcastle match boasts a 3.0-goal over under while Chelsea-Southampton sits at 2.5 goals, so the Gunners have the slate's largest implied total at 2.25 goals.

As will be the case pretty much throughout December, checking starting XI's Saturday morning is a must during the EPL's crazy holiday schedule. All of these teams played midweek games, so expect to see some squad rotation this weekend.

Let's get to it.


Alexis Sanchez, Arsenal

FanDuel Price: $11,000

Sanchez was a guy to target midweek, and even though he didn't score a goal, he delivered 26 FanDuel points -- precisely what makes him so appealing. Unlike most strikers, the Chilean can produce for you even without a goal as he's put up at least 26 FanDuel points in six straight outings.

He'll have a great chance to get on the scoresheet Saturday as Arsenal boast a slate-best 2.25-goal implied total for their home date with Newcastle. The Magpies have surrendered 14 goals in eight away matches this season while the Gunners have netted 10 goals across their past six matches.

A 1.5-goal favorite, Arsenal are fully expected to control this match. The possession stats bear that out, as well, as the Gunners sit 3rd in possession (59.0%) with Newcastle 17th (45.1%). Sanchez should be heavily involved, and he offers both a great floor and sky-high ceiling.


Cesc Fabregas, Chelsea

FanDuel Price: $10,500

There are some really intriguing top-end midfield plays this week.

Eden Hazard ($11,000) offers huge upside, as evidenced by his 69.25-FanDuel-point game three outings ago, but he's had two games of 6 or fewer points in his last four. Kevin de Bruyne ($11,000) is safer, scoring at least 33 points in three of his last four, and has huge upside (69.25 points in Matchweek 14), but the Tottenham defense is a tough matchup, even for a City team burning down the EPL.

Fabregas doesn't have the enormous upside of those two -- he's gone over the 33-point mark just once this year -- but he offers a superb floor and has been in sparkling form. In his last five starts, Fabregas has averaged 27.3 fantasy points, scoring at least 23.5 points in all five matches. He's produced at that level without the aid of a goal in that span, and he recorded an assist in only one game in those five matches, so the upside is certainly there if he can get in on some goal creation.

The former Barcelona man has become an integral piece for this Chelsea side, and he was rotated out midweek, meaning he should be ready to roll Saturday. The home matchup against Southampton is perfect for him. Fabregas isn't known for his ability to track back and defend, but he excels in attack and should be on the ball quite a bit in this one. The Blues are a 1.5-goal favorite, and their 54.1% possession average at home is the sixth-best clip in the league. As an added bonus, he'll likely see less ownership than both KDB and Hazard.


Zanka, Huddersfield

FanDuel Price: $6,500

Huddersfield offer two reliable defenders in Zanka and Christopher Schindler ($7,000). Zanka is $500 cheaper and has been every bit as productive as Schindler in recent weeks, scoring at least 16 FanDuel points in each of his last four matches.

The newly-promoted Terriers have spent much of this season pinned back in their own half, averaging just 46.3% possession, 13th-most in the league. They'll be on the road in this one, playing away at a Watford side that ranks eighth in possession (50.1%). The Hornets are a 0.5-goal favorite, so Zanka should have the opportunity to rack up defensive-action points.


Petr Cech, Arsenal

FanDuel Price: $5,000

Cech is at home against a Newcastle side that gets off a good amount of shots but struggles to make the net bulge -- that's pretty much the perfect recipe for success for a DFS keeper.

Newcastle ranks ninth in shots (12.8) and seventh in shots on target (4.4) per match. Despite that, they are 13th in the league in goals scored with 16 through 17 matches. They've been even less clinical in their travels, putting the fourth-most shots on target per match (4.9) but bagging only seven goals in eight away matches.

Newcastle has a 0.75-goal implied total, giving Cech a good shot at a clean sheet, and there's upside here, too, with the Magpies' ability to generate shots.

Austan Kas is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Austan Kas also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username akas247. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.