SOCCER

FanDuel Soccer: EPL DFS Helper for 2/4/23

As always, we're covering FanDuel's main slate, which kicks off at 10 a.m. EST on Saturday. All betting lines come from the soccer odds at FanDuel Sportsbook and FoxBet, and they may change after the article is published.

Slate Overview

Liverpool (-115) at Wolves (+310)
Over 2.5 Goals: -126 | Most Likely to Score: Salah (+155)

Leicester (+280) at Aston Villa (-105)
Over 2.5 Goals: -116 | Most Likely to Score: Watkins (+175)

Bournemouth (+850) at Brighton (-290)
Over 2.5 Goals: -138 | Most Likely to Score: Ferguson (+125)

Crystal Palace (+800) at Manchester United (-260)
Over 2.5 Goals: -122 | Most Likely to Score: Rashford (+130)

Southampton (+300) at Brentford (-115)
Over 2.5 Goals: +102 | Most Likely to Score: Toney (+120)

West Ham (+500) at Newcastle (-160)
Over 2.5 Goals: +110 | Most Likely to Score: Wilson (+155)

Positional Breakdown
Forwards/Midfielders

The EPL is back with a bang as we get a six-match main slate. The two teams we should most want exposure to are Manchester United and Brighton, and both are stackable.

Given United's big-name players, they'll likely be the chalk side. They're -260 to win at home versus Crystal Palace and are -182 to score at least twice. Both of those numbers are the second-best marks on the slate.

Marcus Rashford ($20; +130 anytime goal odds) has been back to his best this season and carries team-leading goal odds. Bruno Fernandes ($21; +200) is always a high-upside option, and he will likely handle more set-piece work with Christian Eriksen out. Also, I think there's a chance Bruno -- who is -140 to score or assist -- is on penalties, although it's hard telling since United have taken only one pen in the league, which Anthony Martial ($17; +135) handled. Speaking of Martial, he's a superb pick, as well, if he's in the starting lineup. Martial is a match-best -155 to score/assist.

But it's not United who are in the premier spot on this slate -- it's Brighton. The Seagulls are a slate-high -225 to score at least twice in their home matchup with Bournemouth. Brighton are -290 to win, which is another slate-best clip. Brighton are seventh in expected goals (xG) scored, per FBRef, while the Cherries have shipped the third-most xG. This could be an onslaught, and I would rather stack Brighton than United.

Evan Ferguson ($17; +125) owns Brighton's best goal odds, and Kaoru Mitoma ($15; +150) can't stop scoring, including this beautiful footwork against Liverpool in cup action. Mitoma has amassed four goals and one assist across his last six matches in all competitions. Ferguson is a fitness question mark, and Danny Welbeck ($16; +150) would likely start at striker if Ferguson can't go. Pascal GroƟ ($19; +340) is a team-best -160 to score/assist, although he'll be less appealing if he is deployed at full-back.

After those two sides, Newcastle (-133) and Liverpool (-125) have the best over 1.5-goal odds. Liverpool are at Wolves while the Magpies are hosting West Ham. You can make a case for either.

With Liverpool, for me, it comes down to their expected popularity. If it looks like the masses will stay away, I want in. If it seems like Liverpool's name value will cause them to be chalky despite their poor form, I'll mostly fade the Reds. The chance to get Mohamed Salah ($20; +155) at anything other than a huge draft percentage is certainly appealing. I like the idea of an overlooked Darwin Nunez ($19; +165), too. There's a better chance the masses sleep on Nunez than Salah, and the goal odds are close to the same.

Through the lens of the league table, Newcastle-West Ham looks like a mismatch, but via xG, it's not quite as lopsided, although Newcastle have definitely been the better side. West Ham sit 16th in the table and 7th in xG differential. Newcastle are third in xG differential and third in the table. This match is just +110 to go over 2.5 goals, compared to -126 odds for Liverpool-Wolves. If I get a piece of Newcastle, I'll prioritize Joelinton ($15; +300) or Allan Saint-Maximin ($18; +300). While the goal odds are lacking for each of them, Joelinton has been productive in midfield, and ASM's goal/assist odds are -110.

Brentford's Ivan Toney ($22; +120) is well worth a look. The Bees are +100 to go over 1.5 goals and are only slim -115 moneyline favorites at home versus Southampton. I like their chances a little more than oddsmakers do. Brentford have generated at least 1.3 xG in each of their past six home EPL matches, and Toney will be on penalties. His slate-high salary may scare away some people.

Added time -- Ollie Watkins ($16; +175) has the best odds to score in the Villa-Leicester match. ... Liverpool have kept a clean sheet only twice in their past 10 matches (in all comps), so taking a flier on a Wolves attacker isn't a bad idea. Matheus Cunha ($13; +260) sports the best goal odds on Wolves. ... Antony ($17; +195) and Alejandro Garnacho ($12; +180) are plenty viable for Manchester United if they start.

Defenders

United's full-back duo of Luke Shaw ($12) and Aaron Wan-Bissaka ($10) should be able to get forward early and often against Palace. Of the two, Shaw brings more to the table attacking-wise, but he'll also probably be way more popular than AWB. He deserves to be, though, based on the betting numbers. Shaw is +230 to score/assist while AWB comes in at +600. Shaw's $12 salary is easy to get behind.

On the flip side of that game, Palace's Chris Richards ($10) and Marc Guehl ($10) will be busy, giving them high floors.

The same can be said for Bournemouth's Marcos Senesi ($10) and Chris Mepham ($11) in their matchup with Brighton. Jordan Zemura ($9) and Jack Stephens ($8) would be serviceable low-salary plays if they start.

Newcastle's Kieran Trippier ($15) has become the best defender in EPL DFS this season. His outputs are just ridiculous as he's doing it all for the Magpies. Last time out, he generated 40.7 FanDuel points without a goal or assist. Wild stuff. He is averaging 21.9 FanDuel points for the campaign. West Ham aren't a great on-paper matchup, but Trippier needs to be considered whenever he's on the slate.

Continuing the theme of possibly getting Liverpool's stars at depressed popularity, Trent Alexander-Arnold ($13) is almost always a chalk defender. That may not be the case on Saturday. He's a stellar +155 to score/assist. Teammate Andrew Robertson ($12) is +210 to score/assist.

Added time -- Brighton's Tariq Lamptey ($7) is a fantastic value cog if he starts. He's +170 to score/assist. He will be a core play for me if he's in there. ... Wolves' Nathan Collins ($10) and Maximilian Kilman ($10) offer decent floors versus Liverpool. ... West Ham's Nayef Aguerd ($11), Angelo Ogbanna ($10) and Thilo Kehrer ($8) deserve a mention and will probably be active throughout the match at Newcastle.

Goalies

The top win and clean-sheet odds belong to David de Gea ($13) and Robert Sanchez ($13). DDG and Sanchez are -111 and -110, respectively, to keep a clean sheet, and both are significant favorites to pick up the win bonus.

Between the two, I side with Sanchez. Bournemouth should have a really tough time creating chances, and they've scored only one goal across their past five league outings. Yikes.

Nick Pope ($13) and David Raya ($11) check a few boxes, too.

Pope is at home versus West Ham and is priced at +115 to keep a clean sheet and -160 to win. West Ham offer enough going forward that we can expect some decent save volume, which gives Pope a big-time ceiling. Newcastle have surrendered just 17.7 xG through 20 matches, the third-fewest in the league. Salaried the same as de Gea, Pope may not be that popular.

Raya is hosting a Saints side that has netted the fourth-fewest goals and totaled the fourth-fewest xG. He's +145 to keep a clean sheet and -115 to win.

Added time -- Taking a shot on one of the keepers in the Villa-Leicester match makes some sense. I prefer Emiliano Martinez ($11) between the two of them. Villa are +170 to keep a clean sheet. ... Alisson ($12) is a bet-on-talent play, but Liverpool are just +175 to blank Wolves. ... Wolves' Jose Sa ($8) isn't a bad shout as a low-salary dart. The Reds have scored just twice over their past four matches (in all comps) and should be able to force Sa into some saves.