The long awaited final is here, and it’s the last game of the whole 2017-18 fantasy season. Despite just the two teams left to choose from, mini-leagues and scores will be settled by the choices made for this match.
Here is the UCL Final fixture:
Saturday May 26th, 2018
UCL Fantasy League managers now have 5 free transfers to adjust their teams, and we can select up to 8 players per team.
Everyone will be picking from the same small player-pool, so there’s little chance left to grab a differential or move up in the rankings. However, you can make some moves on the final day with one or more of these gambits:
- Wait for Lineups — The game allows you to see the lineups before the transfer deadline. It may be useful to see if an unexpected player gets a start, or if an expected starter is left out. For example, the lineup could determine whether Gareth Bale, Marco Asensio or Isco gets a nod. On the other side, maybe Emre Can gets a surprise call, and becomes worth a gamble for your team. (And you certainly want to react to any surprise absentees!)
- Gamble! — Average fantasy managers will hedge their bets by looking for a balanced team with hitters from either side. However, doubling-down on a pre-match prediction could be the key to a big point swing. Use your entire 8 player allotment on your predicted winner so a goals + clean sheet result yields a huge point haul — enough to claw your way past your mini league rivals.
- The Defensive Blitz — Play hard for a clean sheet by filling out your entire defense (and keeper) with players from one team. If they get the clean sheet, big points will roll in that can separate you from all those balanced lineups.
- Stash the Trash / Burn the Bench — No manager substitutions for one match means no need to consider a bench. Settle on your starting lineup and load your bench with min-price fillers. You’ll need the money elsewhere.
Now let’s check out the player picks for the UCL Finals:
Loris Karius (Liverpool - 5.6m)
Liverpool are the favorites in this tie, and their defense has been notably more solid lately. Karius is in excellent form as well.
Keylor Navas (Real Madrid - 5.7m)
The Costa Rican stopper could be boosted by Mr. Perez’s recent endorsement and will be key in this matchup.
Virgil Van Dijk (Liverpool - 6.0m)
Since his arrival, the Dutch center back has had a huge influence in improving Liverpool’s defensive capabilities. He’s also a big threat on set pieces.
Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool - 4.3m)
The youthful right back has capped a fine breakthrough season with a surprise selection for the England World Cup team. At his price, he’s definitely a great option and also has a mean free kick in his locker.
Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid - 6.1m)
The Real Madrid captain is Mr. Dependable in the heart of the Madrid defense and will look to lead the charge from the back. He has a solid reputation for delivering from set pieces in big games.
Marcelo (Real Madrid - 6.1m, 6.3m)
The Brazilian left back is more of a left winger than a defender with his frequent forays forward. His goals in the knockout rounds showed that Marcelo is nothing short of a fantasy gem.
James Milner (Liverpool - 6.7m)
Most of the meat on the Liverpool bone is in the forward line, but Milner gets the crosses in to the Liverpool attacks that could bring forth an assist or two.
Toni Kroos (Real Madrid - 8.0m)
The German midfield general is the one who springs many a Madrid counter attack with enviable passing range and distribution. He’s also on free kicks.
Luka Modric (Real Madrid - 6.9m)
The creative Croatian dynamo has the ability to stamp his authority on the tie and has the potential to score goals and deliver assists from his deep midfield role.
Giorgino Wijnaldum (Liverpool - 7.4m)
He gets his chance to start the final owing to the long term injury suffered by Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. His goal scored in the semifinal second leg presents him as a viable midfield option.
Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid - 12.8m)
He broke the record, so every additional consecutive Champions League game will further cement his legacy. He owns the tournament.
Mo Salah (Liverpool - 10.1m)
There is just no stopping him. Unstoppable in both domestic and European competition, this man is having the season of his life and will hope it leads to a Champions League trophy.
Karim Benzema (Real Madrid - 9.6m)
Despite pockets of criticism throughout the season, the French striker is a guaranteed starter and focal point for the Madrid attack. He presents something of a differential option in the final game.
Sadio Mane (Liverpool - 9.3m)
The enigmatic Senegalese front man is a live wire and a wildcard option in the Liverpool attack. He has something of a greedy streak, which bodes well as a fantasy option.
Gareth Bale (Real Madrid - 9.9m)
The Welshman has found a rich vein of form towards the end of this season that will put him at the forefront of Zidane’s thoughts. His Clasico performance may have done just enough. IF he earns a starting berth, he’s definitely worth a shout (see tactic #1).
Roberto Firmino (Liverpool - 9.7m)
The Brazilian hitman is the final cog in the fearsome Liverpool front-3 and will definitely have chances to hurt the Madrid defense.
How are you doing in your mini leagues? Which player(s) are you bringing into your team this round? Who will win it all? Please share your thoughts in the comments.