Bundesliga DFS Single-Game Helper: Dortmund vs. Bayern Munich (5/26/20)
The Bundesliga's two heavyweights square off Tuesday at 12:30 p.m. EST in another edition of Der Klassiker, with Dortmund hosting Bayern Munich in a match that has massive title ramifications.
FanDuel is offering single-game contests for the big matchup. While scoring is the same to the normal Bundesliga offerings, roster requirements are different. You have $50 to work with and need to roster four forwards/midfielders -- one in a captain slot, where the player's points are multiplied by 1.5 -- along with a defender.
Both teams come into this one in sparkling form, winning each of their past five. Bayern are currently atop the Bundesliga table, four points clear of Dortmund. Bayern have an 11-goal advantage in goal differential. Going by FBref.com's expected goals, the gap between the two is even larger, with Bayern's expected goal differential at +40.4, compared to BVB's +15.1 mark.
As such, despite being on the road -- it's behind closed doors -- Bayern Munich are -120 favorites, according to FanDuel Sportsbook. We should see goals as it's at -250 to go over 2.5 goals, although that number has fallen from -280.
Now that we have the lay of the land, which players should you roster for Tuesday's showdown?
Robert Lewandowski ($15), Bayern Munich
In a match with a plethora of top-tier attackers, Lewa is the only player with anytime goal odds better than +105, and he's way down at -180 to make the net bulge. That says a lot. He's priced accordingly as the slate's most expensive player, though $15 isn't that pricey.
The question here isn't about Lewandowski's chances to score -- we know he's a stud and always brings multi-goal upside to the table, aided by his role as penalty taker -- it's more about how highly owned you think he'll be and how you want to handle him as a result. The same can be said for Dortmund's Erling Haaland ($14), who is +105 to score, the second-best odds.
With Bayern favored, Lewa will be popular. In a soccer single-game contest, it's tempting to fade any player who could be in at least 50% to 60% of lineups, and that's my rough estimate for Lewa's ownership. It may be a conservative projection, too. A way to hedge your bets would be to roster him but don't put him in the captain slot, but hedging is rarely the optimal strategy in DFS.
If you're OK with swallowing chalk, find a way to pay up for Lewa (or Haaland). If you want a unique lineup, fade both of them and go for a balanced build.
Thomas Muller ($13) and Serge Gnabry ($11), Bayern Munich
Passing on Lewandowski frees up some cash to get both of these two, and they check a lot of boxes. If you fade Lewa, you should go for at least one of Muller or Gnabry unless you're playing for a BVB masterclass.
Gnabry -- who owns +125 anytime goal odds, second-best on Bayern -- will be fresh after playing just 27 minutes in Bayern's 5-2 thrashing of Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday. Prior to that game, he'd put at least one shot on goal in seven straight matches across all competitions, notching 11 shots on target in that span. He's tallied nine goals and 11 assists in 20 Bundesliga starts, and his pace should play well in what could be an up-and-down affair.
As for Muller, he's racked up seven goals and a remarkable 17 assists in 20 league starts, rebounding in a huge way from what was a down 2018-19 season by his standards. He kept rolling on Saturday with a goal and assist and will be a key figure in Bayern's attack once again. He's +175 to score anytime.
Jadon Sancho ($12), Dortmund
It's easy to like Sancho's price. He has followed up last season's breakout campaign with even better numbers this year, amassing 14 goals and 16 assists in 21 starts. The English star is averaging 1.47 goals plus assists per 90 minutes. For reference, Lionel Messi is at 1.48 goals plus assists per 90 this year.
The only worry here is that Sancho -- who is +170 to score -- doesn't appear to be fully fit. He hasn't started either of Dortmund's two games since play resumed, logging 12 and 26 minutes in the two. I'd assume he starts against Bayern in what is close to a must-win contest for Dortmund if they are going to win the league, but Sancho is looking unlikely to play the full 90 -- unless BVB have just been playing it super safe with him.
Still, even in 70ish minutes, Sancho has the upside to break this slate, making him worthy of captaining.
Achraf Hakimi ($7), Dortmund
Hakimi and Raphael Guerreiro ($10) are BVB's two wing-backs in their 3-4-3 system, and both are listed as midfielders on FanDuel. If Dortmund stick with that system, it pushes these two up the pitch, helping their DFS outlooks.
Point chasers will love Guerreiro, who has scored three goals in the past two games. But I like pivoting to Hakimi at a cheaper salary. On loan from Real Madrid, Hakimi got a goal at Wolfsburg last time out after putting up just 6.2 FanDuel points versus Schalke. He's registered four goals and 10 assists in 24 league starts, generating two crosses in each of the two games since the break.
Over his last eight games in all competitions, Hakimi has taken 14 shots (four on target), so he gets forward plenty and may slip through the cracks today if the masses go after Guerreiro.
Leon Goretzka ($7), Bayern
Goretzka has started for Bayern in their first two games back, playing 70 and 90 minutes in the two. He netted a goal versus Eintracht Frankfurt and has fired off four shots (one on target) across the last two games.
For the year, he has just four goals and four assists in 10 Bundesliga starts, but he's growing in importance for the reigning champs, scoring three of his four goals over the last four matchdays. If he starts again, his salary makes him worth a long look, and he's a respectable +320 to score.
Thomas Delaney ($5), Dortmund
Delaney has started in central midfield in each of Dortmund's two games since the restart. He has been taken off in each fixture but has posted 13.0 and 7.8 points. He is a defensive-minded player who doesn't generate a ton of fantasy points, but he is cheap and comes in handy if you're looking to punt one spot in a stars-and-scrubs build. Delaney should have to tend to his defensive duties versus Bayern.
Benjamin Pavard ($9), Bayern Munich
With Hakimi and Guerreiro listed as midfielders, there are only two upside plays at defender -- Pavard and Alphonso Davies ($10).
Davies is a stud and showed his ceiling with 37.5 FanDuel points this past Saturday (a goal and an assist), but I'm siding with Pavard in an effort to dodge ownership. Given the lack of quality options at the position, I'm expecting Davies to be highly owned.
It's not like Pavard is some bum, though. In the two games back, the Frenchman has recorded six crosses, six interceptions, and one goal. He's a good stacking partner with any of Bayern's attackers and has three goals and three assists in 25 Bundesliga starts on the season.
Jerome Boateng ($5), Bayern Munich
Due to Dortmund playing three at the back, their three starting defenders are low-ceiling, low-floor plays in DFS. Boateng has the exact same outlook, but the difference is he's $5, a buck cheaper than BVB's cheapest expected starting defender, Lukasz Piszczek. That $1 matters a heck of a lot on a single-game slate.
For me, there are three routes to take at defender -- Davies, Pavard or full-on punt. I'm going to do everything I can to have the coin to pay up for Pavard or Davies, but if I can't get to either, I'll go with the cheapest expected starter. The remaining options, barring something unforeseen, will all be unappealing center-backs.