SOCCER

FanDuel Soccer: Champions League DFS Helper for 12/1/20

Duvan Zapata is in an excellent spot versus Midtjylland. Which other players are worth rostering on Tuesday?

The Champions League, the best soccer competition on the planet, rolls on, and FanDuel is offering plenty of contests for Tuesday's and Wednesday's group stage matches. This article will focus on the main Tuesday slate, which starts at 3 p.m. EST.

Group Stage - 5th Game
Tuesday, December 1st
Inter at Gladbach
Bayern at Atletico Madrid
Manchester City at Porto
Olympiacos at Marseille
Ajax at Liverpool
Midtjylland at Atalanta


Per FanDuel Sportsbook, Atalanta (-600) is the slate's biggest favorite, with Manchester City (-155) in second. Liverpool (-150), Atletico (-110), and Inter (+120) slot in behind City, with Marseille (+140) rounding out the slate at home against Olympiacos. From an odds perspective, this is one of the most evenly matched slates of the season so far. The largest favorites on the slate are not a world-class powerhouse side, and are only -600 favorites, while the rest of the slate features five relatively even fixtures. This should lead to a more even popularity distribution among the top options on the slate.

One major note for this slate is that two sides, Bayern Munich and Manchester City, have already secured their spot in the Round of 16. Manchester City still needs a result to win their group, but Bayern has already secured the top spot and has little left to play for. Robert Lewandowski, Leon Goretzka, Corentin Tolisso, and Manuel Neuer did not travel with the team, and they may rotate their squad further to provide some valuable experience to their rotational/young players, which could open up some value. However, the matchup against Atletico on the road is a tough one, as the Spanish side is undefeated at home across all competitions this season, and has lost just twice on the road.

Here are some players to target at various salary ranges.

Forwards/Midfielders

Duvan Zapata and Alejandro Gomez, Atalanta ($19 and $17) -- Atalanta's position as the largest favorite on the slate places their two attacking stars at the perfect intersection of salary and outlook. Usually, the top projected star on a slate commands a salary above $20, but both Zapata and Gomez fall below that. This should increase their popularity, but with the rest of the slate projected to be close contests, the expected popularity is well deserved. Zapata is in the midst of a six-game goal-scoring drought but has played his best soccer in the Champions League this season, with FanDuel point totals of 48.2, 46.9, 18.9 (against Liverpool), and 0.0 (20-minute substitute against Liverpool).

In the reverse fixture back in October, he tallied a goal and an assist with three shots on net and two chances created. Gomez sees the lion's share of set-piece opportunities for Atalanta and is in an excellent spot on Tuesday. His upside is less appealing, with just one performance above 20 FanDuel points since mid-October, but his floor is secure.

Kevin De Bruyne and Riyad Mahrez, Manchester City ($23 and $16) -- De Bruyne deserves consideration in every single slate that he is on. The Belgian has been fantastic this season, producing one goal and nine assists across nine starts in all competitions. Mahrez takes some set-piece opportunities from him, but for the most part, he is central to everything that City does. The matchup on the road against Porto is a difficult one, they have been excellent in the UCL so far against all non-Manchester City sides, outscoring their opposition seven goals to zero.

However, City put three past them in the reverse fixture in October and are in decent form themselves. On an evenly contested slate, De Bruyne is well worth considering even in a difficult spot on the road. Mahrez isn't a lock to get the start in this one, but he is coming off a hat trick against Burnley on Saturday that may have earned him another start. Usually, stacking isn't advised in a game with as close of odds as this one, but given De Bruyne's prolific playmaking ability, pairing him with any City striker is a good idea.

Lars Stindl, Gladbach ($14) -- Stindl is in the middle of an excellent run of form, boosted by his impressive performances against Shakhtar in Gladbach's last two UCL fixtures. In his last four starts across all competitions, Stindl has produced FanDuel point totals of 37.3, 9.3, 53.2, and 40.3. He saw just 19 minutes of action as a substitute in Saturday's Bundesliga fixture, which positions him for a full shift against Inter on Tuesday.

Jonas Hofmann's thigh injury has freed up set-piece opportunities, with Stindl and Patrick Herrmann ($11) taking advantage. Inter are battling through a miserable season that has seen them win just three fixtures since early October, but they have produced some spirited displays, most notably a one-goal loss to Real Madrid and a last-second draw with Gladbach in the reverse fixture. With a chance to secure their place in the Round of 16 on the line, look for Gladbach and Stindl to produce on Tuesday.

Defenders

Hans Hateboer, Atalanta ($13) -- Hateboer is coming off back-to-back 90-minute shifts against Verona and Liverpool that resulted in 19.0 and 17.8 FanDuel points. He produced an assist against Liverpool and two shots on goal with three chances created against Verona. Atalanta is expected to control this game from start to finish, which should give him multiple opportunities to get forward and contribute in the final third. Operating as a right mid in Atalanta's preferred 3-4-1-2 formation, Hateboer provides additional exposure to the largest favorite on the slate at a reasonable salary for a defender.

Joao Cancelo, Manchester City ($15) -- Cancelo has been excellent for City this season and enters Tuesday in a terrific run of form. He has scored over 17 FanDuel points in each of his last five appearances and has only failed to pass the 17 point mark in one of his seven starts this season. The catch is that the one start was in the reverse fixture back in October, but Cancelo has been productive enough to trust him in this one. He was rested for City's five-goal victory over Burnley on Saturday and should be good to go for this one. He has eight chances created over his last three appearances and should have opportunities to produce points on both ends of the pitch in this one. In lineups that fade De Bruyne, consider gaining exposure to City through their defense.

Goalie

Andre Onana, Ajax ($7) -- Onana is an interesting, high-upside option on Tuesday, as he should see plenty of shots on the road against Liverpool. In previous seasons, that would have also meant a high likelihood of conceding multiple goals, but Liverpool's struggles this season make this a much more appealing spot. Liverpool is coming off back-to-back poor performances, with a draw against Brighton and a two-goal loss to Atalanta. This should be a get right spot for them, but Ajax has won five in a row and are undefeated in their last eight. If Liverpool's struggles continue, Onana could produce multiple saves and a clean sheet in this one, but the risk is certainly there. Atalanta's Marco Sportiello ($14) is a much safer option at the high-end of the salary range, while Bayern Munich's Alexander Nubel ($5) is an intriguing value option making his UCL debut for the Germans.