3 FanDuel Premier League Trends to Exploit for Matchweek 19
Spotting trends is one way to stay ahead of the crowd in Premier League DFS. Here, we're going to try to hone in on recent occurrences across the EPL DFS landscape that appear to be a sign of things to come.
This article is geared toward FanDuel's main slate, which begins at 10 AM EST on Saturday and features seven matches.
|Saturday, December 23th|
|Tottenham at Burnley|
|West Brom at Stoke|
|Newcastle at West Ham|
|Watford at Brighton|
|Huddersfield at Southampton|
|Crystal Palace at Swansea City|
|Bournemouth at Manchester City|
With the formalities out of the way, let's get to the trends.
Benitez' General to Shine Again
One of the first pieces of business Rafa Benitez did when he took over at Liverpool in 2004 was to sign a promising Spanish midfielder named Xabi Alonso, and we all the know the rest is history. A lot of Newcastle supporters (and their opponents) are starting to see many similarities in their own pass master Mikel Merino ($7,500) who recently made his loan from Borussia Dortmund permanent in a five-year deal.
After a difficult full debut against Huddersfield, the Spaniard has been a shining light for Newcastle -- in stark contrast to Rafa Benitez' side performance as a whole, which has seen them only pick up one point in their last nine Premier League games.
Merino has averaged 28.45 FanDuel points in his last five games; all that with no goals and only one assist in that period.
With an excellent floor and his willingness to be more offensive (he has taken more shots in the last five games than he has in his previous 10), there is much upside and very little risk in grabbing Rafa's new midfield maestro this weekend.
Spurs' Marauding Full-Backs
After a chastening defeat away to Manchester City last weekend, Tottenham Hotspur will want to get back to winning ways against an extremely stingy Burnley defense on Saturday. (They have kept a clean sheet in six of their last eight home games. It would have been seven if Arsenal had not been awarded a contentious stoppage time penalty at Turf Moor in their 0-1 win.)
Along with Nick Pope in goal, Jack Cork and Steven Defour do an excellent job protecting the back four, which may cause Spurs to change tactics against the Clarets and attack Burnley down the flanks instead of through the middle.
With this in mind -- along with the fact that Stephen Ward, Burnley's left back, is missing on Saturday and Matthew Lowton is only coming back from injury on the right -- it might be wise to look at Spurs' full backs in a game like this.
On average in the last five league games, Spurs' full backs have averaged 20.9 FanDuel points per game, which is an excellent return for a position that rarely returns goals or assists. Based on Mauricio Pochettino's trend of rotating his full backs this season, we should expect Ben Davies ($6,500) and Serge Aurier ($6,500) to start (please check team sheets an hour before the game so you can pivot to Danny Rose ($6,000) or Kieran Trippier ($7,000) if you so desire).
It may well be another low-scoring game, but Davies and Aurier should provide enough attacking threat to make the $6,500 investment value for money.
Silva Lining for Ilkay
It looks like David Silva might miss his third game in a row this weekend after having to travel to Spain for a "serious family problem" -- which should open the door for Ilkay Gundogan ($7,000) to start again for Manchester City.
The German playmaker has not had many starts this season, but judging by his showing against Tottenham Hotspur last weekend, he proved to be more than an adequate stand-in for the sublime Spaniard. To compensate for Silva's offensive threat, Gundogan was given more license to get forward, and this bore fruit with a goal, an assist, three shots on target, and 44.25 FanDuel points for his troubles!
In his last five starts for City in either the Premier League or the Champions League, Gundogan has averaged 23.85 FanDuel points, which is a nice return for a $7,000 player, considering he has only scored one goal in those five games.
If Bournemouth's display against Liverpool last weekend is anything to go by, City and Gundogan should have plenty to smile about come the final whistle on Saturday.