4 FanDuel Premier League Players to Avoid in Matchweek 34
The main slate for Matchweek 34 features six Saturday matches with six of the top-10 clubs in action. The marquee match features two of the top-four clubs in the table as Manchester City visits Wembley Stadium to face Tottenham.
|Everton at Swansea|
|Brighton at Crystal Palace|
|Watford at Huddersfield|
|Leicester at Burnley|
|Bournemouth at Liverpool|
|Manchester City at Tottenham|
As with any DFS 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 XI's when they become available since some players may be rested.
Let's take a look at four players across the entire pitch who should be avoided.
Chris Wood, Burnley
FanDuel Price: $9,500
Wood is tied with Manchester City’s Gabriel Jesus as the fifth-highest priced forward on the slate, and he has averaged 15.47 FanDuel points in 19 matches this season. Wood has scored in three of his last four matches -- four total goals in that span -- while taking 11 shots and averaging 28.56 FanDuel points over that time.
The Clarets host Leicester at Turf Moor, and the match is listed as a pick’em, with Burnley holding a slight edge on the moneyline. The Clarets have scored the seventh-fewest goals (31) this season and have scored only 12 on their home pitch -- fewest in the Premier League.
Wood has started 15 matches this season, including the last two, and has been unable to place more than two shots on target in any match this campaign, and he now faces a Leicester squad that has played well against the forward position. They have allowed the 7th-fewest shots (2.31) and 10th-most goals (0.41) per 90 minutes to forwards but have performed better since Matchweek 29, allowing the 3rd-fewest shots (1.5) and 6th-fewest goals (0.19) to the position in that stretch.
The Clarets are the EPL’s fourth-worst squad at maintaining possession (45.1%) and may not find many scoring opportunities against the Foxes.
If you are looking for a top-priced forward to avoid, Harry Kane could struggle against a tough City squad that is coming off a Champions League exit.
Pascal Gross, Brighton and Hove Albion
FanDuel Price: $9,500
After contributing on the Seagulls’ score sheet in three of four matches from Matchweek 26 through Matchweek 29, Gross has taken just two shots on target and created seven total chances in his previous three matches while averaging 13.66 FanDuel points over that span.
The Eagles are a 0.5-goal favorite over Brighton, and the over/under is set at 4.0 goals, the highest total on the slate. The Eagles have conceded two or more goals in four of their last five league matches while the Seagulls have scored one or fewer goals in four of their last six EPL matches.
Palace have allowed the ninth-most chances created (1.37), second-most crosses (3.29) and eighth-fewest shots (1.32) per 90 minutes to midfielders/attacking-midfielders this season. Gross has created the fifth-most crosses this season (74), but he has created four or more chances in just eight matches while only twice scoring more than 20 FanDuel points without a goal or assist.
The top-priced midfielders -- especially the Liverpool players -- all seem to be in a great spot, while Raheem Sterling and Christian Eriksen have both been in great form. You'll most likely want to roster one -- if not two -- of those players in large-field tournaments, and given his form and price, Gross is tough to stomach this week.
Leighton Baines, Everton
FanDuel Price: $7,000
Baines is tied with three other defenders as the top-priced player at his position, and he has averaged 15.32 FanDuel points through 17 matches this season. Since returning to the pitch from a calf injury, Baines has averaged 16.06 FanDuel points over four matches.
Saturday’s match is listed as a pick’em, with the Swans holding the slight advantage on the moneyline, and both teams have an implied team total of 1.0 goal. Both squads struggle to maintain possession as the Toffees average 46.2% of the possession while the Swans see 45.9% of the possession.
Outside of allowing the second-most tackles (1.94) per 90 minutes to opposing defenders, the Swans have not allowed a large number of defensive actions. They have surrendered the 10th-fewest interceptions (1.42), 5th-fewest blocked shots (0.46) and fewest clearances (3.8) per 90 minutes to defenders. Baines has made three or more tackles in four matches this season, but all four of those matches have come against clubs currently in the top-eight of the table while the Swans are just four points shy of the drop zone.
There are plenty of defenders on the slate who could see a large number of defensive actions, which makes Baines, especially at his price, a risky option in all formats.
Lukasz Fabianski, Swansea City
FanDuel Price: $5,000
Fabianski is tied with three other keepers as the sixth-highest priced player at his position, and he has averaged 13.74 FanDuel points per game this season. Fabianski has made two or more saves in just two of his last six matches while picking up two clean sheets and averaging 10.58 FanDuel points over that span.
According to the odds, the Toffees are likely to score at least one goal, which is something they have done in 8 of their last 11 matches away from Goodison Park. If they are able to find the net, Fabianski will likely have a hard time providing value as the Toffees have forced the second-fewest saves (62) from opposing keepers this season.
The keepers on the slate -- as usual -- are all priced relatively evenly, so you should be able to find a keeper who offers more value than Fabianski.