3 FanDuel Premier League Under-the-Radar Plays for Matchweek 27
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 owned by the masses and finding others who you think have a similar point projection but will come at much lower ownership can really separate yourself from your opponents.
The same goes for DFS Premier League. 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 5 matches.
|Saturday, February 22nd|
|Newcastle at Crystal Palace|
|Bournemouth at Burnley|
|Aston Villa at Southampton|
|Brighton at Sheffield United|
|Manchester City at Leicester City|
The 27th main slate of the season features a single big-six side in Manchester City and is highlighted by their clash with Leicester City, who currently sits in third in the league table. Despite being the only big-six side on the slate, Manchester City isn't the largest favorite. That honor belongs to Southampton, who has an implied win probability of 61.5% at home against Aston Villa, per FanDuel Sportsbook. Manchester City is right behind them, with an implied win probability of 59.2%.
Rounding out the slate is Crystal Palace and Sheffield, who both have an implied win probability of 51.2%. Burnley is the smallest favorite on the slate, with an implied win probability of just 47.6% at home against Bournemouth.
If there was ever a slate where Manchester City is both the only big-six side available and potentially worth fading, it's this one. Do so at your own risk, but their implied goals scored is only .02 higher than Southampton's, and City's stars will likely carry the same lofty ownership they usually do.
With that in mind, here are three players to consider this weekend -- especially for tournament formats -- who may fly under the radar.
Shane Long, FWD/MID, Southampton
FanDuel Salary: $15
With Southampton being the largest favorite on the slate and having a near-identical implied goal total to Manchester City, their forwards are worth a look. Long is the cheapest option, but at $15, he isn't so cheap that he will likely pick up a ton of ownership for being a great value play. Plus, Danny Ings ($19), Long's teammate, will probably be one of the slate's highest-owned players.
Long has started the last five matches he's been available for and played 70-plus minutes in all of them. In those matches, he only once failed to record a shot on goal, and he took a combined 10 shots and created 7 chances. He has the ninth-best odds to score on the slate and the sixth-best of any non-Manchester City player, per FanDuel Sportsbook.
Long's outlook is propped up by a meeting with Aston Villa. Villa has conceded 14 goals over their last six matches, the most in the Premier League during that stretch. Over their last six away matches, they have conceded 11 goals, tied for third-most in the league in that split, and their 50 total goals conceded across all Premier League games so far this season is the worst among all teams. Aston Villa is a dream matchup for any striker, and Long may go overlooked despite being in an arguably better spot.
Mbwana Samatta, FWD/MID, Aston Villa
FanDuel Salary: $14
While the matchup against Aston Villa is excellent for Southampton's strikers, it's also a decent matchup for Villa's strikers coming back the other way. Southampton has been hit or miss at home this season, producing some inspired performances, including a shutout win over Tottenham, as well as numerous poor performances.
Their last two home matches saw them conceded two goals to Burnley and three to Wolves. Aston Villa has the second-highest implied goal total of the underdogs this weekend, and this game could see goals on both ends.
Samatta has done well in his two appearances for Villa since arriving from KRC Genk near the end of January. He scored against Bournemouth, producing 31 FanDuel points, and created two chances in a tight contest against Tottenham. Samatta has the talent to get it done and remains largely under the radar on a Villa side that has been poor. At a salary of $14, he isn't a screaming value, which should further suppress his ownership.
On a slate lacking top-end strikers, Samatta is an intriguing option for tournaments this weekend.
Oliver Norwood, FWD/MID, Sheffield United
FanDuel Salary: $11
Sheffield currently sits sixth on the league table, but their outlook this weekend is more in line with the majority of mid-table sides in action. Their implied goal total of 1.5 goals is the third-highest on the slate -- well behind the top two and slightly above Crystal Palace's and Burnley's.
Due to their position on the table and the lack of big-six sides on the slate, Sheffield's strikers may see higher ownership than usual if the public considers them the best option after Manchester City. Due to that, their midfielders are intriguing for tournaments, especially Norwood, who has had productive runs this season operating in the middle of their 3-5-2 formation.
Norwood is the engine in the middle of the pitch for the Blades, and that should be a valuable role versus a Brighton side that is winless in their last five away matches. Brighton conceded an average of 2.0 goals per game during that split of five away fixtures and just recently allowed West Ham to put three past them. Sheffield could be in for a nice day this weekend, with Norwood at the center of it.