World Cup Daily Fantasy Helper: Wednesday 6/27/18
After a four-year wait, the World Cup is back, and FanDuel is offering daily fantasy contests for the entirety of the tournament. For those who played DFS during the Premier League season, FanDuel has made some changes to their scoring system, so make sure you're up to date on how the new settings impact things.
Wednesday's main slate features all four of the day's matches, which start at 10 a.m. EST.
Let's go through the four positions and look at some players to target at various price points.
Forwards to Target
Neymar ($13,000) -- After a disappointing 1-1 draw versus Switzerland in their opening match, Brazil needed a pair of stoppage-time goals to edge Costa Rica, 2-0, last time out. But the Brazilians played better than that would have you believe, putting 10 shots on target while keeping Costa Rica without an attempt on goal. Brazil looked much more like the attacking powerhouse they're supposed to be, and they're in a great spot Wednesday versus a Serbia squad that need at least a tie -- but more than likely need a win, assuming Switzerland defeats Costa Rica -- to advance, meaning Serbia can't sit back and defend for 90 minutes. Neymar netted his first goal of the tourney last time out and should be heavily involved again in this one. We project Brazil to score 2.53 goals, so you'll want some exposure to the Seleção.
Mario Gomez ($8,500) and Timo Werner ($9,000) -- Gomez came on as a sub in Germany's pivotal win over Sweden, and he played atop the formation, pushing Werner out wide. The move paid off as Gomez gave Germany a physical presence in the air against a packed-in defense while Werner was good in space on the outside. Germany may opt to start the match against South Korea using that setup, and if they do, it'll make Gomez a great play at this price as we project the Germans to score 2.03 goals. Starting outside would hurt Werner's goal-scoring chances, but it'd also likely ding his ownership, so he'd make for an appealing GPP option.
Midfielders to Target
Coutinho ($11,500) -- Coutinho has been Brazil's best player so far, scoring two of their three goals, including the key go-ahead tally against Costa Rica.
COUTINHO WITH THE NUTMEG GOAL 🇧🇷 pic.twitter.com/mcJzubSJ8l
— Abdul Memon (@abdulamemon) June 22, 2018
Brazil aren't yet guaranteed a berth in the Round of 16, so they have no reason to let their foot off the gas. As we touched on, our models have the Seleção scoring 2.53 goals, tops on the slate. While Coutinho's recent form should cause him to see big ownership, he'll still likely be less popular than Neymar.
Sebastian Larsson ($7,000) -- Mexico have been one of the surprise teams of the tourney thus far, but our models have Sweden beating them, 1.26-0.69. Mexico didn't look nearly as lethal against South Korea -- generating a mere five shots on goal -- as they did in their opening win over Germany. Sweden, on the other hand, was impressive in pushing Germany to the brink in a game the Germans desperately needed to win. Larsson has created three total chances through two matches, and he also works defensively, recording seven clearances versus Germany.
Xherdan Shaqiri ($9,500) -- Shaqiri is the main man for Switzerland, and he delivered one of the World Cup's best moments so far with his late game-winner against Serbia last time out. Our models have the Swiss scoring 1.28 goals, third-most on the slate, in their clash with Costa Rica. Given that Germany and Brazil are in good spots -- plus the abundance of top-notch players on those teams -- Switzerland profiles as a great contrarian team to stack if you want to pair Shaqiri with Steven Zuber ($8,500) or another one of their attack-minded players.
Defenders to Target
Marcelo ($6,500) -- Attack-minded full-backs were already valuable, but FanDuel's new scoring format has taken it to another level as players like Marcelo are such a cheap way to get exposure to attacks. Marcelo is well known for his propensity to get forward and lose track of his defensive duties. While that burns him sometimes in real-life, it's pretty great for his DFS value. On top of that, Marcelo has a good chance for a clean-sheet bonus as we project Serbia for 0.52 goals, the fewest on the slate.
Joshua Kimmich ($6,500) -- Pretty much everything I just said about Marcelo can apply here, though to a lesser degree. Germany has pushed forward heavily through two games, leaving themselves surprisingly open to counters. As a result, Kimmich has been a key cog in their attacks, and that should be the case again versus South Korea, a team that's without a point through two matches. We project Korea to total 0.59 goals, second-fewest on the day, so Kimmich offers a good floor as well as big-time upside should Germany keep a clean sheet.
Goalies to Target
Alisson ($6,000) -- The hope with rostering Alisson is that Brazil win and notch a clean sheet, which would give him 17 FanDuel points. He didn't make a save in his last outing -- Costa Rica failed to put a shot on goal -- but still finished with 17.0 FanDuel points thanks to the bonuses for a victory and clean sheet. Alisson's floor is a little scary because the save volume is unlikely to be there should he concede a goal. But per our models, Brazil have an 85.1% chance to win versus Serbia, the best win odds on the slate, and Alisson also offers the best clean-sheet odds.
Manuel Neuer ($6,000) -- It's clean-sheet odds and wins that we're after with keepers, so while Alisson and Neuer figure to be the chalk choices, they will be popular for a reason. Neuer has given up one goal in each game thus far, but he's made seven total saves. Against South Korea, our models have Germany winning 79.9% of the time, and we project South Korea to score just 0.59 goals. In large-field tournaments, you can entertain going with someone other than Neuer or Alisson for game-theory reasons, but no one on the slate comes close to their win odds and clean-sheet chances, going by our projections.
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.