3 FanDuel Premier League Under-the-Radar Plays for Matchweek 30
If you have played daily fantasy sports for a while, you know the importance of being contrarian in large-field tournaments. Recognizing which players are going to be owned by the masses and finding others who you think have a similar point projection but will come at much lower ownership can really separate yourself from your opponents.
The same goes for DFS Premier League. Even though the large-field tournaments aren't quite as large as they are for other sports, there is still value in identifying quality under-the-radar plays.
This article will discuss FanDuel's main Saturday slate, which starts at 10:00 a.m. EST and features six matches.
|Saturday, March 10th|
|Leicester City at West Bromwich Albion|
|Burnley at West Ham United
|Brighton & Hove Albion at Everton|
|Southampton at Newcastle|
|Swansea City at Huddersfield Town|
|Crystal Palace at Chelsea|
Matchweek 30 is all about Chelsea. As the only elite side, roster construction starts with how to handle their home match against Crystal Palace. That match having an afternoon start time adds a slight wrinkle to the equation, as Chelsea's starting eleven tends to rotate more than most of the other elite sides. Whoever starts can be expected to carry heavy ownership, as Chelsea are the largest favorites on the slate (1.5 goals) and have an implied goal total more than 0.75 goals above the next closest side.
Unlike with Manchester City, it is possible to fade Chelsea completely, as they have had their struggles, and they aren't nearly as favored as other elite sides have been in previous slates. Also, without knowing the exact starting lineup, it can be difficult to leave the right amount of salary in the right position. While Chelsea will be fully rested after not featuring during the week, they could have their sights set on their Champions League tie with Barcelona on Wednesday, which only adds to the potential rotation.
From the remaining five matches, West Ham and Everton are the largest favorites, with a spread of 0.5 goals over Burnley and Brighton & Hove Albion, respectively. Huddersfield Town and Newcastle are slight home favorites in pick um matches, while Leicester City are the only road favorites on the slate, in a pick 'em match at West Bromwich Albion. With the exception of the Leicester City match, which has an over/under of 2.5 goals, all of these matches have an over/under of just 2.0 goals.
With that in mind, here are three under-the-radar players to consider for Matchweek 30.
Michail Antonio, West Ham United
FanDuel Salary: $7,000
After coming off the bench to score against Swansea City last weekend, Antonio could be in line for a start at home against Burnley. After missing all of January due to a groin injury, Antonio has been excellent in his return, producing two goals and an assist in his last four appearances. Only one of those appearances was a start, making his production even more notable. With two goals in his last two matches and West Ham looking to rebound, they would be wise to include Antonio in the starting eleven.
While the match against Swansea City was dismal, West Ham have been in much better form at home, where they have eight goals in their last five matches. Burnley finally stopped their winless run with a 2-1 victory over Everton, but their road struggles are far from figured out. At 41.8% they have the lowest road possession in the Premier League this season, and allow a league-worst 17.5 shots per match to opponents on the road. Despite this, they have managed to only concede 14 away goals this season, a ratio that seems impossible to sustain given the amount of opportunities they surrender.
On a slate where eight of the 10 teams playing have an implied goal total within 0.35 goals of each other, the outlook for all of these sides is relatively similar. In a situation like this, ownership is key, and with public perception of West Ham low after being destroyed by Swansea, they could be in for a bounce-back spot at low ownership. As a fringe starter in good form, Antonio could be the lowest owned Hammer on the slate, making him an intriguing option for large-field tournaments.
Theo Walcott, Everton
FanDuel Salary: $9,000
Everton and Brighton are two sides that appear to be moving in opposite directions at the moment. Everton have lost two in a row, while Brighton are in the middle of a seven-match unbeaten streak. However, both of these sides have drastic home/away splits that are counter to their current momentum.
In their last four home matches against non-elite opponents, Everton have three wins and one draw, outscoring their opposition nine goals to four. Their 23 home goals this season are the most of any non-elite side in the Premier League, and they also have the best home-goal differential of any non-elite side. Brighton are winless in their last six away matches, conceding eight goals during that span. They allow the fourth-most shots per match to road opponents this season, and at 44.4%, they have the fifth-lowest road possession.
Everton have the second-highest implied goal total on the slate, but due to recency bias, their ownership might not reflect that. With a salary of $9,000, Walcott should carry less ownership than Pascal Gross ($8,500) and Ki Sung-Yueng ($8,000), who are both cheaper and in good form. However, as an attacking midfielder in a match Everton should control, Walcott has better odds to score than either of them, along with owning higher upside.
Rajiv van La Parra, Huddersfield Town
FanDuel Salary: $6,500
Following their 0-2 defeat to Tottenham, Huddersfield Town will return home to host a Swansea City side coming off an excellent performance against West Ham. Overlooking that loss to a much better Spurs side, Huddersfield have won two of their previous three matches, with van La Parra scoring in each. After failing to score in his first 17 starts, van La Parra has found a good run of form, with 5 shots on goals, 4 chances created and 4 fouls drawn across his last three matches.
While Swansea City are much improved since the arrival of Carlos Carvalhal, they have still struggled on the road, where they have allowed 15 goals in this last six matches, the second most in the Premier League. They're allowing 16.4 shots per match to their road opponents, the fifth-most in the Premier League. Huddersfield are far from offensive juggernauts, but they do have six goals scored in their past three matches, including four against Bournemouth in their last home match.
At a salary of only $6,500, van La Parra is a cheap option that allows for the allocation of enough salary to a spot for any Chelsea attacker in the late match. He has averaged 33.1 FanDuel points over his last three matches and missed just a single minute of action during that span. If Swansea's road woes continue and Huddersfield Town maintain the home form that saw them demolish Bournemouth 4-1, they could produce at low ownership this weekend.
Zack Bussiere is not a FanDuel employee. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.