FanDuel Soccer: EPL Under-the-Radar Plays for 7/4/20
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 EPL. 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 four matches.
|Saturday, July 4th|
|Crystal Palace at Leicester City|
|Bournemouth at Manchester United|
|Arsenal at Wolves|
|Watford at Chelsea|
Matchweek 33 includes four sides separated by just three points in the race for the last two available Champions League -- Leicester City (55 points), Chelsea (54), Manchester United (52), and Wolves (52). Manchester United is in exceptional form and is the largest favorite on the slate with an implied win probability of 86.67% at home against Bournemouth.
Chelsea, fresh off their shock loss to West Ham during the week, is the next largest favorite with an implied win probability of 72.22% at home against Watford. Leicester City, in the midst of a terrible run of results, is next in line with an implied win probability of 60.78% at home against Crystal Palace, while Wolves round out the slate as slight home favorites in a pick'em against Arsenal.
Following Chelsea's midweek defeat, Manchester United enter this weekend in the best form of the group and should command high levels of ownership. Bruno Fernandes ($21) figures to be the most popular player on the slate and is coming off a 46.9 FanDuel-point performance against Brighton. He is averaging 33.8 FanDuel points per game since the EPL resumed. Despite their form and matchup, Manchester United's star trio of Bruno, Anthony Martial ($20), and Marcus Rashford ($18) are very reasonably priced, which should lead to their inclusion in a majority of lineups this weekend.
Given their form, price, and matchup, fading Manchester United is a risky bet, but the presence of Chelsea, a recently rebounding Arsenal side, a Wolves side with three wins in a row, and the always involved Jamie Vardy ($17) at least gives you plenty of other options to turn to.
With all that in mind, here are two players to consider this weekend -- especially for tournament formats -- who may fly under the radar.
Pierre Emerick Aubameyang, FWD/MID, Arsenal
FanDuel Salary: $20
Aubameyang's inclusions in an under-the-radar piece might seem strange until you glance at the top of the player pool and see the other available options. Bruno, Anthony Martial, Willian ($20), and Marcus Rashford are all either in better form, have a better match up, or both. The perception of Arsenal as a side that has significantly underachieved this season is a fair one, but they have quietly started to turn things around with three wins in a row (including an FA Cup victory) and have scored a combined eight goals in those contests.
Aubameyang won't ever truly fly under the radar, but he should be less owned than the options listed above, and he really should be considered alongside them for large-field tournaments despite the tough matchup at Wolves. Coming off a 2-goal, 61.3 FanDuel-point performance against Norwich, Auba is now averaging 31.1 FanDuel points per game over his last three with an impressive 14 shots taken (7 on goal) during that span. When the opportunity presents itself to roster an elite talent at reasonable-to-low ownership, it's well worth considering.
That becomes even more true when you consider that two of Manchester United's stars have been inconsistent fantasy performers despite the Red Devils' recent dominance. Rashford has yet to score since the EPL resumed and is averaging just 12.1 FanDuel points per game in that time, while Martial has FanDuel performances of 8, 64.3, and 1.3 points over the last three fixtures. Aubameyang has a more difficult task ahead of him this weekend against Wolves, but don't overlook him.
Patrick van Aanholt, DEF, Crystal Palace
FanDuel Salary: $15
The curious case of Leicester City. Once 14 points clear of fifth, the Foxes have collapsed, winning just one of their last eight matches and posting two draws and two losses in four matches since the EPL resumed. On paper, they should finally rebound this weekend against a Crystal Palace side with little left to play for. Leicester City is the favorite, but that's more in part to their talent and not their recent form. If the Foxes can't pull this one out, the sky is officially falling.
Enter Patrick van Aanholt, who has been a consistent force for Palace all season and is averaging 16.9 FanDuel points per game since the restart. PvA is tied with Cesar Azpilicueta ($15) and Aaron Wan-Bissaka ($15) as the most expensive defenders on the slate, and he should be the lowest owned of the trio given Chelsea's and Manchester United's matchups. Paying up for defender with the plethora of attacking options available will create a differentiated lineup. Doing so and selecting PvA should create a very unique lineup.
PvA's role on set pieces combined with his ability to accumulate points on both ends of the pitch makes him an excellent fit for the unpredictable outlook of this Foxes-Eagles fixture. If Leicester rebound, PvA will still be able to pay off his salary with defensive involvement, and if Leicester continue their free fall, he will have opportunities in the final third, as well.