Besides the looming World Cup, the story of the week is the number of key players who are either out or questionable. These forced rotations mean that other players have a chance to fill the holes. Fantasy managers may need to make tough decisions for players whom they have on discount.
Fortunately, before we hit save one last time, we get to see confirmed lineups for four games (eight teams), most notably Manchester City... and well... Manchester City.
Danny Ward (EVE vs LEI, $5.49)
Ward is cheap, and Leicester has given up only one goal in his last four. The Toffees have been climbing up the table, but Everton’s defense has had more to do with that than its offense. Even if the Toffee attack does test Ward, he’s made five saves in each of his last two games. Those points add up.
Dean Henderson (NOT vs BRE, $9.85)
He’s a risky pick, for sure. But Forest is much better at home, and Hendo is capable of putting up big points on his day. Meanwhile, Brentford has been struggling to score on the road, AND they are without their best player, Ivan Toney.
Edouard Mendy (CHE vs ARS, $4.42)
It looks like Mendy will get his first start since September, having seemingly reclaimed the #1 jersey from an injured Kepa. This isn’t a particularly favorable match against top-of-league Gunners, but it is a big one. He’s going to big called on to make some saves if the Blues are to get something out of this one.
Sven Botman (SOU vs NEW, $10.65)
Botman has been a key element in Newcastle’s defensive success. He’s not always spectacular, but he’s often solid. You’re going to pay extra for spectacular, so if you’re looking for some mid-range options, he’s a reliable source of points. And who knows — maybe he’ll even be spectacular.
Manuel Akanji (MCI vs FUL, $3.61)
He’s still the most affordable route into the City defense, which means he doesn’t need much to return value. A clean sheet will more than cover it. Also, you get to see the lineup first.
Luke Shaw (AST vs MAN, $6.43)
He’s still a surprisingly affordable choice. Manchester United has conceded only once in four games, and he has been a part of that. Like other players I’m looking at, Bruno’s suspension means he could take extra set pieces too.
Christian Eriksen (MAN vs WHU, $8.36)
With Bruno out, he may push forward even more. That’s a good sign for a player who has seen success in that role in the past.
Bernardo Silva (MCI vs FUL, $10.15)
This is really more of a general recommendation for an attacking midfielder from City. But in particular I feel Bilva is due. You, of course, are free to pick your poison. But do pick at least one, if not two, from the confirmed lineup. City scores goals at home... lots of goals.
Miguel Almiron (SOU vs NEW, $12.25)
It’s now six goals in six games. Can he make it seven in seven? Many bet against him last week and paid the price. Can you afford to ignore the fifth highest scoring midfielder in Fantrax?
Allan Saint-Maximin (SOU vs NEW, $6.16)
ASM got into the game late last weekend, meaning that he could be ready for a full shift this time. Six bucks and some change is a value price for a player who can terrorize teams, and he will be looking to make his mark against a mediocre Saints side. He’s a full $4 cheaper than Wilson too.
Yoane Wissa (NOT vs BRE, $5.22)
Some Bee will need to lead the hive in Toney’s absence. Wissa could be that player. Plus, I’m always looking at assets facing the most abysmal team in the EPL.
Marcus Rashford (AST vs MAN, $10.76)
He scored last game and has been productive in his last three. With Bruno Fernandes suspended, Rashford may also be on some kicks, increasing his value even more.
Callum Wilson (SOU vs NEW, $10.21)
Like Newcastle, he’s rolling. Three goals in his last two, plus he’s on PKs.
Darwin Nunez (TOT vs LIV, $6.85)
This is a bit of a flier against a solid Tottenham defense. Nunez was so close so many times last weekend, and he scored midweek against UCL cometition. It always feels like he’s on the verge of breaking out... but then so does Liverpool. He’s a cheap differential worth a look... or a watch for the barn door with Saints next.
Lucas Moura (TOT vs LIV, $1.60
With injuries mounting for Spurs, Moura should get a chance this week. He has been a peripheral figure in the squad so far this season, so his price has dropped to rock-bottom. He won’t need to do much to earn back his value, and at home against a sketchy Liverpool defense, he could end up doing more than a little damage. Saving here to spend elsewhere could be a good plan this week.
Which players are you buying this week? Which are you selling? Are you holding onto any discounts? Are you eyeing any differential options? Please log in and share you thoughts in the comments!