FanDuel Soccer: Champions League DFS Helper for 11/4/20
|Dynamo Kyiv at Barcelona||Barcelona (-1200)||-350||Messi (-490)|
|Dortmund at Club Brugge||Dortmund (-145)||-162||Haaland (-150)|
|Rennes at Chelsea||Chelsea (-310)||-162||Werner (-140)|
|PSG at RB Leipzig||Leipzig (+145)||-160||Sorloth (+175)|
|Krasnodar at Sevilla||Sevilla (-410)||-172||Ocampos (-115)|
|Juventus at Ferencvaros||Juventus (-450)||-150||Ronaldo (-280)|
If you don't enjoy making lineups for this slate, you hate fun. We have a loaded, star-studded player pool -- even with Kylian Mbappe and Neymar sidelined -- and there are four huge favorites we can zero in on. Per a study I did on stacking, we want to target teams with implied win odds of at least 70% (-233). We have four such sides, giving us a slew of routes we can take.
The chalk stack is going to be Barcelona, who are -1200 home favorites versus Dynamo Kyiv, and the slate's most popular player will almost surely be Lionel Messi ($23; -490). Don't get too cute here. Messi's all-around contributions give him an insane floor/ceiling combination and make him really hard to fade. He's capable of producing a good fantasy day without netting a goal, but with laughable -490 anytime goal odds, he's got an implied probably of 83.1% to score. For me, lineup construction starts after I've locked in Messi.
After that, the decision is who to stack alongside Messi, or -- with so many other top-notch players in ceiling spots -- you don't have to go too heavy on one team if you don't want to. I'm going to have Barcelona stacks in a lot of lineups because they could score four or five if they keep their foot on the gas. Ansu Fati ($19; -155) and Antoine Griezmann ($17; -120) also have sweet goal odds for Barca, and Pedri ($13; +130) is a fun stacking piece at a modest salary if he starts.
Juventus (-450), Sevilla (-410) and Chelsea (-310) are also viable stacks, and it's easy to make a case for each side. Outside of Barca, Sevilla are the team I most want to stack. Not only are they hefty favorites, but I think they could be a little less popular than Juve and Chelsea due to a lack of big-name stars.
We shouldn't sleep on Sevilla as they dominated in a similar situation versus Rennes last round despite winning just 1-0, putting 10 shots on target and holding 66% possession. Lucas Ocampos ($14; -115) and Luuk de Jong ($21; +100) are both in a great spot, and with some better finishing against Rennes, they could've had eye-popping fantasy days. De Jong netted the game-winner while Ocampos took five shots (one on target) and will likely be on penalties. Considering salary, Ocampos is one of the slate's best plays.
For Juventus, Cristiano Ronaldo ($22; -280) is the obvious play versus Ferencvaros, and he carries the second-best goal odds behind Messi's. He's more than capable of getting multiple goals in this spot. I'd imagine most lineups will have Ronaldo and Messi in them, and it's hard to argue against it. If you want to stack Juve, Alvaro Morata ($19; -150) and Paulo Dybala ($15; -120) make sense, and Dejan Kulusevski ($16; +120) could pop at a low draft percentage. However, this match has slate-worst odds to go over 2.5 goals, so I'm not crazy about loading up on the Old Lady.
On a lot of slates, Chelsea as a -310 favorite would be a focal point, but with Ronaldo and Messi on this slate, the Blues profile as an under-the-radar stack. Timo Werner ($20; -140) will be in his fair share of lineups, though he's yet to truly take off in a Chelsea shirt. Werner's outlook would get a boost if first-choice penalty taker Jorginho ($10; +240) didn't start, opening the door for the German to possibly handle penalty duties. Kai Havertz ($17; +160) and Hakim Ziyech ($16; +180) should be key attacking options for Chelsea with Christian Pulisic injured.
Added time -- Erling Haaland ($20; -150) is worth a mention, although it looks like he's iffy to play due to injury. Haaland sitting would put more of the goal-scoring responsibilities on Jadon Sancho ($19; +140) and Marco Reus ($14; +140) for a BVB side that's a mild favorite. ... Callum Hudson-Odoi ($13; +190) has sneaky-good upside and could start for Chelsea with Pulisic out. ... As such colossal favorites, Barcelona could opt to rotate the squad. If Martin Braithwaite ($5; -120) or Trincao ($9; +160) get in the starting XI, they're well worth a look as they have solid goal odds and open up a ton of cap space.
While we're spoiled for attacking full-backs, I'm going to put an emphasis on using low-salary center-backs on underdogs. The reason I prefer that route is think there's some high-floor plays at low salaries, and I want all the cash I can get for this slate's attackers.
I will prioritize center-backs over full-backs, since center-backs usually rack up more defensive actions, but I'll be looking for cheap defenders from Dynamo, Krasnodar, Rennes and Ferencvaros. Some of the expected starters I'll have my eye on are Oleksandr Syrota ($8), Denys Popov ($9), Illia Zabarnyi ($9), Brandon Soppy ($6), Evgeni Chernov ($6) and Adnan Kovacevic ($9). There will be others, so check starting XIs.
On the flip side, each of the four big favorites have full-backs who should get forward plenty. They can be nice stacking partners or a way to get a piece of an attack if you can't jam in one of that side's forwards.
Sergino Dest ($8) and Jordi Alba ($14) should be bombing forward for Barcelona. The same can be said for Sergi Roberto ($12) if he starts for the Catalans. Alba has long been a master of the cut-back pass to Messi, making the two a fun stack. Dest is a lot more appealing for DFS than Roberto is, and if the USMNT international gets the nod, I'll have a lot of him.
Ben Chilwell ($14) and Reece James ($13) will likely live in attacking areas for Chelsea. Sevilla's Jesus Navas ($14) was fantastic last round in a similar spot against Rennes, creating four chances on his way to 23.3 FanDuel points.
Added time -- Danilo ($14) and Juan Cuadrado ($13) should start at full-back for Juve. Danilo doesn't offer as much in attack as a lot of the other top-salaried full-backs, but he's scored 16.9 and 18.0 FanDuel points via defensive work through two rounds. Cuadrado is the more attack minded of the two and the one to stack with Ronaldo.
The four keepers with the top win odds are Neto ($15), Wojciech Szczesny ($14), Bono ($13) and Edouard Mendy ($12). I expect the masses to get their keeper from this foursome.
With the lowest salary of the bunch, Mendy may wind up being the highest-rostered of the four. He's a -310 favorite and hasn't given up a goal in three starts since coming to Chelsea. The Blues are a dope -110 to keep a clean sheet.
While there's a lot to like with Mendy, those clean-sheet odds are actually the worst among the four aforementioned keepers as Neto (-186), Szczesny (-140) and Bono (-118) all have better marks. If I have the salary to get up to Neto and his massive win odds, I'll do it, but Szczesny and Bono are both great plays, as well. Overall, I will prioritize getting one of these four, but I don't think there's too much between them.
One quick note on Neto -- it's possible Marc-Andre ter Stegen ($5) makes an earlier-than-expected return from injury for Barca. If he does, he'd be easy to love at his salary and would likely be the slate's most-rostered goalie.
Added time -- If you find yourself without any attackers from one of the four big favorites, you can double-down on that and use the goalie who is facing them. The four expected starting keepers for the heavy underdogs are no more than $8, and they should all generate a lot of save volume. ... I don't hate the idea of picking either Simon Mignolet ($9) or Roman Burki ($11) from the Brugge-Dortmund match, and with PSG short-handed, Peter Gulacsi ($10) has some appeal.