Champions League Daily Fantasy Helper: Tuesday 3/5/19
The Champions League, Europe's biggest soccer competition, knockout rounds return on Tuesday. FanDuel will be offering plenty of contests featuring the two Tuesday matches, both of which begin at 3:00 p.m. EST.
|Round of 16|
|Tuesday, March 5th|
|Ajax at Real Madrid|
|Tottenham at Dortmund|
Tottenham bagged a 3-0 home win in the first leg, but Dortmund are favored at home in the second leg. Dortmund have their work cut out for them as their league form has dipped, as well. They now lead the Bundesliga on only goal differential.
Real Madrid are not in great form, either, having lost three of their last four matches across all competitions. Two of those defeats have come against another Champions League side, Barcelona, but Madrid failed to score in either game versus their rivals. That has not swayed the oddsmakers for Tuesday's clash as Madrid are still heavy favorites over Ajax.
Let's look at some players to target across the pitch at some different price points on this slate.
Harry Kane ($12,000) -- Kane has either an assist or a goal in eight of his last 10 matches across all competitions. He has some of the top odds to score in a match in which both teams are expected to score. Kane just became the all-time leading scorer in North London derbies. However, the team's Premier League title hopes have faded, and teammates fear Kane could leave if they do not win a trophy soon. That may be the spark the team needs to finish off Dortmund and move to the final eight. Kane is generally the beneficiary of elevated play by his teammates. He has 20 goals between the Premier League and Champions League and averages 27.76 FanDuel points in the European competition, the highest mark on this slate. There is some risk in playing Kane as Tottenham may sit back to protect their lead, but he has shown he can hold up the ball to start a counter-attack. One Spurs goal likely ends the tie.
Marco Reus ($10,500) -- Reus had been on a scoring streak prior to this past weekend, getting a goal in four consecutive matches. He has 13 goals in the Bundesliga and will need to bring the scoring touch to Tuesday's match given the hole his team is in. Reus' best game in the Champions League came in the first game of the group stage as he tallied more than 50 FanDuel points in that one. He did not play in the first leg of this tie due to injury, and he was sorely missed. Dortmund's last match against Augsburg was Reus' first in nearly a month, and he played 66 minutes. He should be fit to go the full match on Tuesday in a purely attacking role. Dortmund have averaged 58% possession at home in the UCL, which is fourth-best overall. That will allow Reus to get into the flow of the game and give Dortmund hope they may be able to come back in this tie.
Vinicius Junior ($6,500) -- Junior, an 18-year-old Brazilian attacker, has been relied on heavily by Real Madrid over the past two months. His name has not littered the score sheet, but manager Santiago Solari has praised his efforts. Junior has been called into his national team for friendlies at the end of the month. The young attacker did register an assist in the first leg against Ajax, which was his second assist in three appearances in the competition. Junior averages over two shots per game in both Spanish and European competitions. He has drawn three fouls and completed three tackles in the last two Champions League matches. Clearly, he is active on and off the ball and should cause problems for Ajax in a match Madrid are expected to win.
Hakim Ziyech ($8,500) -- Ziyech may be considered Ajax's most important player as he is first on the team in assists, second in goals, and the highest rated, per WhoScored.com. He has three goals and an assist in his last four matches, including the only Ajax goal in the first leg. The versatile midfielder averages over five shots per match across all competitions as he will take a look at goal nearly any time he gets a sliver of space. He plays four keys passes per match in the Eredivisie, and he has created 24 chances in the league, which is good for second-most. Ziyech has created at least one chance in all but one Champions League game. He has been impressive on Europe's biggest stage, scoring at least 30 FanDuel points in his last two UCL matches -- which came against top-tier competition in Real Madrid and Bayern Munich -- partially by contributing 12 defensive actions.
Mario Gotze ($7,500) -- Gotze's value gets a bump given where it appears he will play in the Dortmund lineup. He led the line as the lead forward this past weekend for Dortmund with Rues slotting in behind. Gotze did record an assist on Dortmund's only goal in the match after scoring a goal the previous matchweek. Gotze has not been relied upon in the Champions League for Dortmund to this point, but he is on an upward trajectory in terms of FanDuel points in his last two appearances. He created two chances and added five defensive actions in the first leg of this tie. With Christian Pulisic struggling to recover from injury, Gotze becomes an integral piece to the Dortmund attack. If Tottenham do sit back, expect Gotze to be active in the attacking third for much of the match.
Nicolas Tagliafico ($6,500) -- Tagliafico averages the most points per match of any defender on this slate. It helps that he scored two goals in the first match of the group stage, but he has recorded 26 defensive actions across his last three Champions League matches. Prior to the first leg against Madrid, he had drawn four fouls in three consecutive matches. Tagliafico averages 1.2 shots per game across all competitions but has only one goal in the Eredivisie. With Ajax on the road in Madrid, Tagliafico must stick to his back line responsibilities and should be a busy man on both ends of the pitch. He averages close to 10 defensive actions per match in the Champions League.
Sergio Reguilón ($5,000) -- Reguilón is being called the "Marcelo ($6,500) bencher" at Madrid as the 22-year-old defender is now the top choice left-back. His stats check out over Marcelo, including winning duels at a rate of 7.57 per match. Reguilón also completes a touch more than 73% of his passes in the final third. In three Champions League matches, he is averaging 14.8 FanDuel points per match. He created one chance and had eight defensive actions in the first leg against Ajax. In Madrid's most recent match, Reguilón had the most touches, a pass completion percentage of 85%, and four defensive actions.
Thibaut Courtois ($5,500) and Roman Burki ($5,000) -- These choices fall in line with the oddsmakers. The picks also follow logic, which does not necessarily hold up in the Champions League. Winning keepers get a seven-point bonus on FanDuel, so with neither game expected to see a clean sheet, the win bonus becomes vital. Of the expected starting keepers, Courtois averages the most FanDuel points per match while Burki is second. Courtois had two clean sheets in the group stage while Burki earned four. While these are clearly not contrarian plays, the safe play can also be a rewarding one.
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.