FanDuel Soccer: EPL DFS Under-the-Radar Plays for 2/25/23
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 popular and finding others who you think have a similar point projection but will be much less popular can separate you from your opponents.
The same goes for EPL DFS. 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 five matches. All betting lines come from the soccer odds at FanDuel Sportsbook and FoxBet, and they may change after the article is published.
Aston Villa (+190) at Everton (+155)
Over 2.5 Goals: +134 | Most Likely to Score: Calvert-Lewin (+195)
Arsenal (-145) at Leicester (+380)
Over 2.5 Goals: -150 | Most Likely to Score: Nketiah (+160)
Nottingham Forest (+400) at West Ham (-130)
Over 2.5 Goals: +116 | Most Likely to Score: Ings (+170)
Southampton (+280) at Leeds (-105)
Over 2.5 Goals: +100 | Most Likely to Score: Bamford (+135)
Manchester City (-340) at Bournemouth (+900)
Over 2.5 Goals: -186 | Most Likely to Score: Haaland (-170)
Matchweek 25 features two big-six sides, with Manchester City and Arsenal in action on a five-game main slate.
Manchester City (-340 to win) are the largest favorite on the slate, and Erling Haaland ($24) has the best odds to score (-170) of any player expected to be active on Saturday.
Arsenal (-145) are the second-largest favorite, followed by West Ham (-130) and Leeds (-105). Everton (+155) round out the slate as slight home favorites.
All eyes will be on the title race with both contenders in action this weekend. After a three-match blip that saw them drop eight points, Arsenal turned things around with an unconvincing last-minute win over Aston Villa last Sunday. Meanwhile, City's hot streak came to an end with a shocking draw against Nottingham Forest, followed by a draw with RB Leipzig in the Champion's League on Wednesday. All this to say -- neither side appears to be on top form heading into this weekend, and both are on the road.
City have the easier matchup, facing a Bournemouth side allowing the most goals in the Premier League this season, and will likely be the most popular side on this slate.
With that in mind, here are three players to consider -- especially for tournament formats -- who may fly under the radar.
Kelechi Iheanacho, FWD/MID, Leicester City
FanDuel Salary: $14
It's hard to know what to make of Arsenal at the moment. They finally turned things around with a win last weekend, but barely squeaking by against Aston Villa -- conceding two goals in the process -- is far from a reassuring performance. Leicester City have been horrific at home this season, and Arsenal are large favorites. But the Foxes should have some opportunities to get on the scoresheet.
Arsenal have conceded a goal in five straight games, which includes fixtures against Everton and Aston Villa. Leicester City enter this weekend off a three-goal loss to Manchester United but had a combined 10 goals in their three games before that, including four each against Tottenham and Aston Villa.
Iheanacho is riding a bit of a hot streak. He has two goals and three assists combined across his last three matches, with FanDuel point totals of 10.6, 38.9, and 43.9 during that period. His odds to score (+220) are even with those of Bukayo Saka ($21) and only slightly worse than those of Gabriel Martinelli ($19; +200).
Arsenal may have gotten things back on track last weekend, but it's possible they aren't fully back yet, keeping Iheanacho in consideration for large-field tournaments this weekend.
Jarrod Bowen, FWD/MID, West Ham
FanDuel Salary: $17
West Ham have just one win in their last 11 Premier League fixtures but have done well in their recent FA Cup matches with wins over Derby and Brentford. While it didn't result in any wins, the Hammers have played OK versus a stout schedule in their last three fixtures against Newcastle, Chelsea, and Tottenham. They secured a draw against both Newcastle and the Blues before falling to Spurs last weekend.
Enter Nottingham Forest, who are coming off an impressive draw against Manchester City but could be in for a bit of a letdown on the road. Away from home this season, Nottingham Forest have won just one game in the Premier League, a one-goal victory over Southampton in early January. Their two away goals scored are the second-fewest in the league this season, while their 11 away goals conceded are tied for the third-most. Despite recent results, the odds present a positive look for West Ham, with Forest having the second-worst win odds of any side on the slate.
Bowen has been incredibly consistent since the start of 2023, failing to score at least 9.9 FanDuel points only once in six appearances. His odds to score (+230) are similar to Saka's and better than the clips for Bernardo Silva ($15; +280) and Jack Grealish ($18: +290).
West Ham may go overlooked as people flock to City and Arsenal. That makes Bowen and West Ham a fun option.
Patrick Bamford, FWD/MID, Leeds
FanDuel Salary: $16
The relegation showdown of the week is a meeting between bottom-of-the-table Southampton and 19th-placed Leeds.
Southampton are coming off a shocking one-goal win over Chelsea, but it's difficult to know how much stock to put in results against the Blues this year, as Chelsea have struggled against nearly everyone. Leeds are winless in their last 10 Premier League fixtures and have been unable to build off their impressive draw against Manchester United at the start of February.
Both sides will be desperate for points in this one, but public confidence in anyone outside of James Ward-Prowse ($17) will be very low, which should lead to several players ending up with low draft percentages. That includes Bamford, who has started four straight matches for Leeds and has failed to score in all of them.
Despite those struggles, he has impressive odds to score (+135) as the striker for a home favorite. His odds to score are the third-best on the entire slate, behind only Manchester City's duo of Haaland (-170) and Julian Alvarez ($17; +115).
Shying away from this bottom-of-the-table clash is understandable, but there could be goals to be had for both sides in this one.