Premier League: 4 FanDuel Value Plays for Matchweek 31
|Saturday, March 17th|
|Watford at Liverpool|
|Everton at Stoke|
|Crystal Palace at Huddersfield|
|West Brom at Bournemouth|
Liverpool players are the most expensive on the slate, as one may expect. Mohamed Salah leads the way at $13,000. Only eight players are priced at or above $9,000.
Four defenders are priced at this week's highest price of $7,000. A total of 20 defenders are priced at or above $6,000.
The keepers range is typical as they sit from $5,500 to $4,500.
With the lay of the land complete, let's see where the value lies.
Peter Crouch ($6,000): Stoke's goal creation actually goes up when Crouch is in the lineup. Clearly, his height gives the team an advantage as it does not take as precise of a ball for Crouch to have an opportunity to head it home.
Crouch has not been a major part of the Stoke gameplan this season, but injuries are forcing Crouch back into the lineup. Despite limited playing time, he is still one of WhoScored.com's in-form forwards, and he earned a Man of the Match nod the last time he started for Stoke. That game against Bournemouth netted him 12 FanDuel points.
While Stoke has had one of the worst defenses this season, Everton have given up 49 goals. Everton only have one shutout in their last six league matches, and they have lost their last five away matches. Stoke City desperately needs points, and they will be pressing, looking for Crouch at all costs.
James McArthur ($6,000): Much like Crouch, McArthur is the cheapest expected starter at his position. He has been on an improved run of form over his last three matches, averaging close to 15 FanDuel points per match over that stretch. He has recorded 22 defensive actions and created two chances.
McArthur is expected to start out wide left in the midfield with Wilfried Zaha returning from injury. Zaha's presence increases the value of many Crystal Palace players, and McArthur's proximity on the field may make him the top beneficiary. In last week's loss to Chelsea in which Palace did not see much of the ball, McArthur was the midfield leader in touches. If he can keep that up, he will be the one switching Palace from defense to offense and springing the dangerous Zaha.
Both McArthur and Crouch offer great value for their price as they are expected to start in games with big implications for their respective teams, which need three points.
Scott Malone ($5,000): Malone will be on the opposite side of the field from McArthur trying to slow down Andros Townsend and Aaron Wan-Bissaka, two of Palace's most in-form players at any position.
Malone is tied for the cheapest expected starter at his position this week. The price is indicative of his inconsistent playing time, but he had a good showing in his start against Swansea last weekend. He had over 100 touches with two key passes and two aerials won. He also completed more than 90% of his attempted passes. He also led the team in interceptions while tying for the lead in tackles.
Malone also created two chances last week after creating one in his last start for Huddersfield, a 4-1 win over Bournemouth. Malone is not afraid to get forward and send balls into the box. He should have chances to send in crosses as this game gets more stretched and Palace push for three points.
Asmir Begovic ($5,000): Last week's mid-value keeper pick paid off with a clean sheet, so back to the well with Begovic. There are several keepers priced $500 lower, but none provide clear clean sheet value.
Despite Bournemouth being outclassed last week by Tottenham, Begovic still had his best game since January 31. He was able to make four saves against the potent Spurs' attack. Luckily, Bournemouth gets to face the most listless attack in the Premier League this weekend.
Douglas Smith is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Douglas Smith also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username aquemini03. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his/her personal views, he/she may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his/her personal account. The views expressed in his/her articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.