It’s the final round of the UEFA Champions League Group Phase.
For UCL Fantasy managers, this round is traditionally difficult to navigate. With several teams having already either qualified or been eliminated, the risk of rotation is real.
Benfica, Club Brugge, Crvena zvezda, Galatasaray and Olympiakos cannot finish in the top 2 but do have a place in the Europa League to battle for. Lokomotiv Moscow, Lille, Genk and Slavia Prague are confirmed 4th place finishers.
For UCL Fantasy managers, the permutations of matchday 6 are an early prelude to the knockout phase when the number of “investable” teams are reduced by half. It’s important to target the fixtures with something on the line where you know that the teams will be motivated and will field their best players.
It’s also important to keep an eye on the team news for clues on rotation. Jose Mourinho (Spurs), Zinedine Zidane (Real Madrid) and Ernesto Valverde (Barcelona) have already promised to rest their stars and give opportunities to fringe players - news that will lead many fantasy lineups threadbare.
Personally, I’ve always found matchday 6 to be the best time to deploy a booster chip to stack my team with players in deciding fixtures. With a clean slate offered ahead of the knockout round, I can use this chip as a virtual free hit while my mini league rivals grapple with a slew of rested stars.
I’ve decided to use the Limitless Wildcard chip for this round which allows me to cherry pick the best players in meaningful fixtures without budget constraints. I’ll also keep an eye on a few fringe players who are out to impress elsewhere.
Here are the fixtures for UCL Matchday 5:
Tuesday 10th December
- RB Salzburg vs Liverpool
- Napoli vs Genk
- Borussia Dortmund vs Slavia Prague
- Inter Milan vs Barcelona
- Benfica vs Zenit St Petersburg
- Lyon vs RB Leipzig
- Ajax vs Valencia
- Chelsea vs Lille
Wednesday 11th December
- Dinamo Zagreb vs Manchester City
- Shakhtar Donetsk vs Atalanta
- Club Brugge vs Real Madrid
- PSG vs Galatasaray
- Bayern Munich vs Tottenham
- Olympiakos vs Red Star Belgrade
- Atletico Madrid vs Lokomotiv Moscow
- Bayer Leverkusen vs Juventus
Jan Oblak (Atletico Madrid vs Lokomotiv Moscow, 6.0m)
A must win home fixture against an already eliminated Lokomotiv team is ripe for a clean sheet for Atletico Madrid’s Slovenian goalie.
Alex Meret (Napoli vs Genk, 4.5m)
The Italian goalie is an affordable option for a Napoli side that host an already eliminated Genk, needing a win to qualify for the next round.
Keylor Navas (PSG vs Galatasaray, 5.6m)
The Costa Rican stopper should see little action for already qualified PSG for the visit of Galatasaray to the Parc Des Princes.
Andre Onana (Ajax vs Valencia, 5.0m)
Ajax are at home and in need of a win to secure qualification to the next round. This bodes well for their Cameroonian goalie in a game that could see save points and possible clean sheet returns.
Roman Burki (Borussia Dortmund vs Slavia Prague, 5.5m)
BVB’s Swiss shot blocker will need to be at his very best to repel a fearless Slavia Prague outfit, who have nothing to lose when they visit the Westfalenstadion in UCL Matchday 6.
Anthony Lopes (Lyon vs RB Leipzig, 5.0m)
The Portuguese goalkeeper will need to step up to the plate in front of the Lyon defense, who need a win to guarantee progress to the next round in UCL Group G.
Nicolas Tagliafico (Ajax vs Valencia, 5.2m)
The Argentinian full back is second in the overall scoring chart for defenders by virtue of his attacking returns. Look out for more positive returns against visiting Valencia.
Kieran Trippier (Atletico Madrid vs Lokomotiv Moscow, 6.5m)
The England right back has become a vital cog in the Atletico Madrid defense. With set pieces in his locker, he could be in for a strong haul against Lokomotiv Moscow.
Trent Alexander-Arnold (RB Salzburg vs Liverpool, 6.9m)
The English defender is always an attacking threat with set pieces and an avalanche of crosses from the right back position.
Achraf Hakimi (Borussia Dortmund vs Slavia Prague, 5.8m)
The Moroccan full back is the top scoring defender in the Champions League so far, so is an automatic pick for a Dortmund team in need of a win to progress to the next round.
Reece James (Chelsea vs Lille, 4.4m)
Chelsea young English defender has made the right back position his own in recent weeks with a run of strong performances. His crucial equalizing goal against Ajax in Matchday 4 showed his potential for attacking points.
Thomas Meunier (PSG vs Galatasaray, 5.7m)
The Belgian full back always gets into attacking positions to add to his strong clean sheet potential against already eliminated Galatasaray.
Jadon Sancho (Borussia Dortmund vs Slavia Prague, 9.0m)
The England winger is a relentless attacking threat and is a strong goal threat for Lucian (Favre’s men in Matchday 6.
Hakim Ziyech (Ajax vs Valencia, 8.0m)
With Quincy Promes out through injury, the weight of responsibility will fall upon the mercurial Moroccan winger to fire Erik Ten Hag’s men to the next round.
Christian Pulisic (Chelsea vs Lille, 7.9m)
“Captain America” has been Chelsea’s best winger in recent weeks and should be in the thick of the action for Frank Lampard’s men when they host eliminated Lille.
Pizzi (Benfica vs Zenit St. Petersburg, 6.0m)
Benfica’s Portuguese winger is their strongest attacking threat from midfield and is a great punt for returns against visiting Zenit.
Federico Valverde (Club Brugge vs Real Madrid, 5.4m)
With qualification already in the bag, Zinedine Zidane should ring the changes for the trip to Brugge. Valverde has been the revelation of the season so far for Los Blancos and will relish the chance to add to his growing reputation.
Serge Gnabry (Bayern Munich vs Tottenham, 8.2m)
Bayern Munich will host a youthful Tottenham outfit in Matchday 6. In their last encounter, Gnabry grabbed himself a hattrick and will be keen to add to his tally against familiar foes.
Lautaro Martinez (Inter Milan, 5.5m)
Antonio Conte’s men need to pull of a win against Barcelona in Matchday 6 to qualify to the next phase. The Catalans have already qualified and will rotate their squad, so the Argentinian in tandem with Romelu Lukaku will need to deliver the goods.
Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich vs Tottenham, 10.7m)
Bayern Munich have hit a slight blip under new manager Hansi Flick, but the Polish striker will be looking to add to his already impressive season tally against a second string Tottenham team.
Kylian Mbappe (PSG vs Galatasaray, 10.5m)
The mercurial French striker will be looking to fill his boots against an already eliminated Galatasaray.
Dries Mertens (Napoli vs Genk, 8.5m)
The clinical Belgian front man will be Napoli’s tormentor in chief as they target the win that will see them through to the next round.
Tammy Abraham (Chelsea vs Lille, 6.5m)
Chelsea’s young English target man will be relied on heavily to deliver the goods at Stamford Bridge men against an already eliminated Lille.
All eyes are on the colorful Dutch front man to deliver the goals that can fire Lyon through to the knockout stage against a plucky Leipzig outfit.
Have you picked your team yet? Whom do you have your eyes on who has been mentioned above? Will you be using any booster chips? Is there anyone who has been left out of this article that you would recommend? Which match do you most want to watch this week? Please let us know in the comments!