The Premier League season is winding down and despite the top 2 sides meeting on Sunday, the most interesting action is taking place among the relegation threatened portion of the table. Saturday’s matches features a “6 pointer” between Burnley and Leicester where each team could gain or lose 3 points from the relegation zone. Most of the matches are relatively balanced, outside of what should be another Manchester City romp. Here are the players we have our eye on.
Joe Hart – ($5,400) – Manchester City – City have had their fair share of issues at the back this season, but it’s just as important to focus on their opponent. In this case you’ve got an anemic Villa attack, though the revitalized Benteke could spoil the clean sheet. Saves are always difficult to predict but Hart has easily the strongest chance at a win and a clean sheet, and that’s all we can really plan for.
Julian Speroni – ($5,100) – Crystal Palace – There is some risk with Speroni due to Palace being in no man’s land in terms of their place in the table, particularly facing a desperate Hull side. But Pardew is managing for his job and we are dealing with some young professional players in the process of proving themselves, so there is no good reason to expect Palace to lay down. The play well at Selhurst Park and should be able to contain a weak Hull attack.
Others to Consider – Asmir Begovic, STO ($5,000), Simon Mignolet, LIV (5,300).
Kieran Trippier – ($5,500) – Burnley – Selecting the league leader in crosses is hardly advice, but we would be remiss if we didn’t remind you that Burnley have an outside chance at keeping a clean sheet or letting in just one goal. Leicester have been prolific in attack of late, but considerably stronger sides have come to Turf Moor and left empty handed. If the game gets out of hand with goals we are covered, because that likely means Trippier is living in the attacking third.
Aleksandar Kolarov – ($4,800) – Manchester City – Kolarov has been shuffled in and out of the lineup this year, but with Gael Clichy already ruled out and Kolarov coming off a strong performance in a win, we feel pretty comfortable recommending him. He loves to get forward and send in crosses, often at the expense of City’s defense. However, with Villa incapable of maintaining possession in this match Kolarov should have considerable opportunity to rack up fantasy points.
Ryan Taylor – ($2,000) – Newcastle – Taylor has become a mainstay of many Draftkings lineups due to his minimum price and consistent crossing. He was recently moved to the midfield as Newcastle gets fit at the back, which could limit his crossing duties, but is still so inexpensive that he should be considered. He also happens to have an opportunity to get a clean sheet or 1GA bonus, which just cements his candidacy.
Others to Consider – Joel Ward, CP ($3,100), Pablo Zabaleta, MCY ($4,200), Geoff Cameron, STO ($3,000)
David Silva – ($7,900) – Manchester City – If you happened to catch the Man City match last weekend you may be surprised to see Silva here, seeing as he was stretchered off with a broken face, but it sounds like he checked out fine. Assuming he draws the start (and you can late swap Navas at absolute worst case) he has nearly double the touches in opponents’ final third of the next highest midfielder in the Premier League in the past 4 weeks, and is the catalyst for the City attack. He doesn’t supply many crosses but we can’t have everything.
Yannick Bolasie – ($7,500) – Crystal Palace – Hull are a terrible defense, particularly away from home, and Bolasie is in tremendous form. He totaled 15 FP without a goal or assist last week to follow up with hat trick from the week before. We haven’t actually sat down and studied form in as much depth as we’d like yet (the hot “foot” theory?), but there is little downside to playing hot players in great matchups.
Marc Albrighton – ($4,400) – Leicester City – Albrighton has gone from afterthought to 90 minute midfielder for a surging Leicester side in a matter of weeks. For our purposes he has averaged 9 crosses over the past two matches and is due to have one converted into an assist. Burnley is weak in the middle of their defense and prone to headers.
Others to Consider – Raheem Sterling, LIV ($8,600), Ahmed Elmohamady, HUL ($6,400), Matty Phillips, QPR ($4,000)
Sergio Aguero – ($10,200) – Manchester City – EPL’s top goalscorer, back in form, against a bottom 5 side at home, at a pretty reasonable price on a day when there are some strong budget-saving defenders and midfielders? You could fade him in a really large league, if you want to get cute, but you can probably find better places to be creative.
Charlie Austin – ($9,300) – QPR – West Ham are injured, unmotivated and a sieve at the back. Charlie Austin is among the most prolific goalscorers in the EPL this season. He’ll probably hurt you a bit if he doesn’t score, but he’ll hurt you quite a bit more if you don’t take him and he nets a brace.
Danny Ings – ($6,300) – Burnley – While “form” does seem to have some potential predictive power, we’re just as happy to look at a player that is “due” and Ings most certainly qualifies in that regard. 8 games have come and gone without a goal, but he is still taking shots and still serving as the focal point of the Burnley attack.
Others to Consider – Mame Diouf, STO ($6,100), Leonardo Ulloa, LEI ($6,000), Jamie Vardy, LEI ($5,800), Glenn Murray, CP ($5,700)
Jesus Navas – ($5,100) – Manchester City – Navas has worked his way back into Pellegrini’s good graces and has been particularly effective sending in crosses and working in tandem with Aguero. You also want players in the late game occupying your flex spot on the off chance of a late injury or a surprise player not starting, so Navas fits the bill.
Wilfried Zaha – ($4,200) – Crystal Palace – Zaha has fallen behind Bolasie and Puncheon in popularity among Palace midfielders but he was quietly effective against West Brom and numbers suggest Hull is weakest on their defensive left side. Which is precisely where Zaha will be going to work on Saturday.