DraftKings UCL Daily Fantasy Soccer Helper for 9/14/21
The Champions League Group Stage is back. These six-game slates are some of the most fun in all of DFS, so let’s make the most of them. Here are the games, with odds from FanDuel Sportsbook:
|Dynamo Kiev (+230)||+240||Benfica (+120)|
|Barcelona (+250)||+300||Bayern Munich (-105)|
|Lille (+180)||+220||Wolfsburg (+160)|
|Chelsea (-550)||+550||Zenit St. Petersburg (+1600)|
|Villareal (+140)||+260||Atalanta (+180)|
|Malmö (+600)||+340||Juventus (-220)|
Forwards to Target
Romelu Lukaku ($10,900): Lukaku has hit the ground running in his second stint with Chelsea. He has three goals in his first three games back in the Premier League. Combine that with his performances for Belgium and previously Inter Milan, and you have one of the most in-form strikers in 2021.
Chelsea open up their European campaign as huge home favorites against Zenit St. Petersburg. They stand out in that regard as they are the only home team favored to win over the three possible results. That should mean that Chelsea have the best chance to go off for a lot of goals, and there's no better way to exploit that than playing Lukaku. He has the best anytime goal scoring odds on that slate as a solid -175 favorite. With his goal scoring form and the opponent, Lukaku is an elite tournament option.
Paulo Dybala ($9,300): Juventus' squad has many moving parts with injuries and the departure of Cristiano Ronaldo. One reliable option is Paulo Dybala, and he offers many different avenues of scoring fantasy points. With Federico Chiesa and Federico Bernardeschi both missing this game, Dybala should have a locked-in role on set pieces. He'll also likely be playing out wide, with traditional center forward Álvaro Morata acting as a good target for crosses.
Dybala also has underappreciated goal upside. The season before Ronaldo came to Juventus and ate up a large chunk of the goals, Dybala scored 22 goals in Serie A. With Ronaldo gone again, there should be more shooting opportunities for Dybala and perhaps even penalty duties. He has good goal scoring odds at +120 against an overmatched Malmö side, so he fits in all types of lineups on this slate.
Wout Weghorst ($7,200): Weghorst might be one of the best low-key center forwards in Europe. He has 55 goals in 100 Bundesliga matches since joining Wolfsburg in 2018. He's also chipped in with 19 assists in those games, as well. He has to go on the road to face a solid Lille side, but the matchup isn't scary enough to cross him off the list of potential plays on this slate. Weghorst is a goal-dependent option, but his salary is a good area to make palatable in lineups.
Others to consider: Robert Lewandowski ($10,500), Jonathan David ($7,400), Éverton ($5,800)
Midfielders to Target
Joshua Kimmich ($7,500): Kimmich continues to be somewhat of an anomaly in daily fantasy soccer. We don't like to target defensive midfielders, especially ones that have salaries over $7,000. Kimmich is an exception, though, as he is always delivering the goods. Part of the reason is because he takes the majority of Bayern Munich's set pieces. He has taken 22 of their 23 corner kicks in the Bundesliga this season, according to Rotowire.
Another factor is that Kimmich plays for a dominant Bayern Munich team that allows him to get further forward than most defensive midfielders. Even though they are playing away to Barcelona, that could be the case again considering the talent that the Spanish side has lost of late. Kimmich should still have one of the highest floors for midfielders on the slate, making him a solid play in cash games.
Ruslan Malinovskyi ($6,800): Atalanta have become known as one of the most exciting attacking teams in Europe over the past few seasons. They won't take teams by surprise this season, but they still make for good targets for daily fantasy on this slate. Malinovskyi is definitely one of their players that we can target.
The Ukraine international has taken the most set pieces for Atalanta so far this season and crosses a decent amount from open play. He's averaged over five crosses per 90 minutes in three straight seasons in Serie A. The matchup isn't perfect away to Villareal, but they have allowed the most crosses per game in La Liga this season, according to WhoScored.com. Malinovskyi should be able to get balls into the box and provides a solid floor.
Yusuf Yazici ($6,000): Yazici is another player who we can play when hunting for crosses. He's averaged over seven per 90 in the last two Ligue 1 seasons. Lille surprisingly won the French league last season, so they could be a bit underrated heading into the Champions League.
Yazici isn't a player with little chance of scoring, as he had seven goals in eight Europa League games last year. The competition is a bit tougher in the Champions League, but they are facing Wolfsburg in this game, who were also a Europa League team last season, so they aren't exactly way ahead of Lille. Yazici is a solid play in the midrange of midfield and fits all formats.
Others to consider: Pizzi ($8,100), Maximilian Arnold ($7,100), Jamal Musiala ($6,300), João Mário ($5,000)
Defenders to Target
Alejandro Grimaldo ($5,900): Grimaldo is an attacking wing back for Benfica who we love to roster in daily fantasy. He gets forward and also gets a share of set pieces for the Portuguese club. Benfica are favored over Dinamo Kiev and experienced in Europe, so the long journey east shouldn't be much of a concern. Grimaldo may go overlooked with bigger name options from other clubs, so he makes for a good play in tournament lineups.
Marcos Alonso ($5,700): Alonso is perhaps the best play at defender. He's playing for the biggest favorites on the slate and is definitely known to push up the pitch in games where Chelsea can attack their opponents. He also should have a role on set pieces as he had in the past.
One of the things that separates Alonso from other defenders is his ability to score on free kicks. There isn't another defender on the slate who is as dangerous as Alonso from a dead ball situation. With Chelsea playing solid defense all throughout their Champions League campaign last season, their clean sheet odds are -158, so the three-bonus is definitely in play for Alonso. He checks a lot of boxes and makes sense in any lineup you make.
Alberto Moreno ($4,200): Moreno is a good value at defender considering his role. He plays as more of a midfielder for Villareal, occupying a left wing position. He also gets some set pieces for the Yellow Submarine and is likely the lowest-salaried defender who will have any set pieces. If you need the salary for other positions, he's an option that you can feel comfortable about while getting value.
Others to consider: Reece James ($6,100), Alphonso Davies ($4,400), Reinildo ($3,700)
Goalkeepers to Target
Édouard Mendy ($5,900): Mendy is pretty clearly the most reliable goalkeeper on the slate. Chelsea are the overwhelming favorite on the slate and should control the game. Mendy has kept clean sheets in three of four Premier League games this season. We know that he is likely to keep a clean sheet in this match, as well, so he should be locked in for at least 10 points.
Koen Casteels ($4,600): We can take advantage of some line movement and roster Casteels. Since Wolfsburg opened the game as underdogs, Casteels has a lower salary than his opposite keeper. That's now shifted to have Wolfsburg as favorites, and obviously his salary hasn't moved. This should make us unafraid to roster Casteels and take the value that we know he offers.
Nicholas Vazquez is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Nicholas Vazquez also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username hbyanksman. 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.