FanDuel Premier League Matches to Target in Matchweek 26
|Saturday, February 3rd|
|West Ham at Brighton|
|Huddersfield at Manchester United|
|Swansea at Leicester|
|Stoke at Bournemouth|
|Southampton at West Brom|
|Everton at Arsenal|
With just one of the top four teams on the slate, there is only one heavy favorite. Arsenal, Leicester, and Bournemouth are given slight edges, while two games have an over/under of three goals, the biggest number on the day.
Many of this weekend's games will have an impact on the tight relegation battle. Only eight points separate 10th from 20th with each week meaning more than the last, so we'll start with one of those battles.
Bournemouth vs. Stoke
Bournemouth is the 10th-place team as they host Stoke, who have allowed 30 goals on the road, but have two clean sheets in a row under new manager Paul Lambert.
History states there will be goals in this matchup despite Stoke's defensive form. There have been at least three goals scored in four of the last five league matches between these sides. There have been over 2.5 goals scored in seven of Bournemouth's last eight league matches. They are coming off a massive 3-0 victory against Chelsea and also had a victory over Arsenal last month.
Callum Wilson has been a threat over this recent improved stretch with six goals in his last six Premier League games.
Stoke's form has improved slightly under Lambert with a win and a draw in the last two matches. They did not score on Wednesday against Watford, but they managed more shots on target and almost doubled the number of dribbles won. Stoke were easily the more aggressive team.
They did make three additions during the January window, including aggressive midfielder Badou Ndiaye, who was secured from Galatasaray just before the close of the window. Stoke's focus was more on defense, but Ndiaye and right back Moritz Bauer can both contribute offensively.
A win by Bournemouth means breathing room from the relegation zone, but they will not feel comfortable yet. Stoke are only one point out of the bottom three and must fight for every point. Also, the most expensive player in this game is Wilson at $9,000. That mixture usually makes for an interesting game with good returns.
Arsenal vs. Everton
There are so many storylines ahead of the clash at Emirates Stadium. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang should make his Arsenal debut while Henrikh Mkhitarayan gets his first start as a Gunner. Meanwhile, Arsenal failed to make any significant signing for their back line, which remains a liability.
Former Arsenal player Theo Walcott is coming off a two-goal performance and has also added an assist since moving to Everton. Seamus Coleman returned in matchweek 25 for the first time in 10 months and Everton secured their back line with the addition of Eliaquim Mangala on loan just before the end of the transfer window.
There are narratives aplenty and a lot of moving parts. However, there is also a history of goals in this game. Arsenal have seen over 2.5 goals in five of their last six against Everton. Arsenal have scored at least two goals in 13 of their last 15 home games.
The Gunners are still struggling on the other side of the ball. Arsenal have not had a clean sheet in Premier League play since December 16th and have allowed 34 total goals on the season, which is far and away the most of the top seven and the same as 15th-place Brighton.
The prices will be higher in this game, but there can still be good value depending on the formations rolled out on Saturday. This is the last game of the day and the higher prices may scare others away, but should serve as a way to surge up the leaderboard.
Douglas Smith is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Douglas Smith also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username aquemini03. 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.