FanDuel Soccer: 3 Premier League Under-the-Radar Plays for Matchweek 29
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 6 matches.
|Saturday, March 7th|
|West Ham at Arsenal|
|Brighton at Wolves|
|Watford at Crystal Palace|
|Newcastle at Southampton|
|Norwich at Sheffield United|
|Tottenham at Burnley|
The 29th main slate of the season features two big-six sides from North London heading in opposite directions. Tottenham has lost back-to-back games and isn't favored against Burnley this weekend. Arsenal has won their last two matches and is undefeated in their last seven Premier League fixtures. The Gunners are the largest favorites on the slate, with an implied win probability of 63.6% at home against West Ham.
Wolves and Sheffield are close behind Arsenal, with implied win probabilities of 61.5% at home against Brighton and Norwich, respectively. Right behind that duo is Sheffield, with an implied win probability of 61.5% at home against Norwich. Crystal Palace rounds out the slate as slightly home favorites in a pick-em' against Watford.
This slate features an uninspiring pair of big-six sides and a closely grouped field behind Arsenal. Arsenal's implied goals scored of 2.01 is only slightly ahead of Southampton (1.82), Wolves (1.74), and Sheffield (1.74). For tournaments this weekend, consider fading the two North London sides altogether and drawing from the trio of Southampton, Wolves, and Sheffield to create a balanced lineup.
With all that in mind, here are three players to consider this weekend -- especially for tournament formats -- who may fly under the radar.
Pablo Fornals, FWD/MID, West Ham
FanDuel Salary: $15
Fornals is a good option for lineups that fade Arsenal's stars and those that include them. As an attacker on the largest underdog on the slate, Fornals should carry low ownership despite his recent performances. Also, despite being the largest underdog, West Ham's implied goal total is greater than Newcastle, Norwich, and Brighton.
West Ham has struggled this season, but their production in the final third has been excellent recently. They have nine goals over their last four games combined, including a two-goal performance against Liverpool, and three-goal performances against Brighton and Southampton. Arsenal has been a more vulnerable side at home this season, where they are conceding an average of 1.4 goals per match. If West Ham's recent fixtures are any indication, there's a good chance this match turns into a shootout and there are goals to be had on both sides.
Fornals has enjoyed good spells of production during the season and endured some terrible ones. He has been very involved recently, with a goal and two assists in West Ham's last two fixtures. He recorded an assist in the reverse fixture back in December and is a decent option for tournaments this weekend operating at the heart of a West Ham side that is likely to go overlooked despite their recent production.
Pedro Neto, FWD/MID, Wolves
FanDuel Salary: $11
Wolves are at the end of a brutal gauntlet of fixtures that has seen them face Tottenham, Leicester City, Liverpool, and Manchester United in four of their last five fixtures. They came away from those matches with five points and are now staring down a run of favorable schedule. In their last two matches against lesser opposition, they scored three goals in each game, and this weekend they will face a Brighton side that has conceded a combined 10 goals over their last six matches. Wolves could be looking at the start of a productive run, so take advantage of the potential lower ownership while you still can.
With Adama Traore's status up in the air due to a shoulder injury, Neto could start upfront for the first time since the middle of February. In his last start, Neto had three chances and shared set-piece reasonability with Joao Moutinho. At a price of just $11, he is an excellent value option this weekend and may go overlooked in favor of the more well-known names on Wolves. In his seven starts this season, Neto has produced two goals and two assists and has upside as part of an underrated Wolves attack this weekend.
Jay Rodriguez, FWD/MID, Burnley
FanDuel Salary: $16
Tottenham's recent run of form may cause the public to shy away from paying up for their stars this weekend, but it likely won't cause them to take a serious look at Burnley's attackers. Burnley is undefeated in their last six matches, including wins over Leicester City and Manchester United. During that stretch, they averaged 1.5 goals per game, including 5 over their last three fixtures. Rather than simply fading Tottenham this weekend, consider gaining some exposure to Burnley, who have secured the second-most points in the Premier League (14) over their last six matches.
Rodriguez's addition to the starting 11 directly coincided with Burnley's great run of form. Over his last six starts, he has played the full 90 minutes in each game, taken a combined 17 shots, put 9 on goal, and scored twice. He averaged 16.03 FanDuel points per game over that stretch, and only failed to reach double-digit FanDuel points once. Spurs have conceded a combined seven goals over their last three matches, the most in the Premier League, and are allowing an average of 1.7 goals per game on the road this season. Burnley could easily add to Tottenham's woes this weekend and hand them another poor result.