It’s our last dance with the Champions League until its hibernation ends in early February, and DraftKings has one more slate in which to play from.
Wednesday’s options are dynamic and many, especially in midfield and attack. There’s a lot of different ways to go in this one, whether you want to build around Barcelona/Bayern or not. Let’s dive in…
Petr Cech ($3,900): Arsenal needs a strong result–a two-goal win of some kind or a one-goal win by scoring three or more goals–in Greece. Cech should be a busy man; a clean sheet will be extremely difficult to see happening, but a handful of saves and a win would be what you’re looking for in return.
Wojciech Szczesny ($4,400): For different reasons, Szczesny carries just as much risk as Cech. The opposition is a better matchup than his former Arsenal teammate, but, on the whole, Roma’s defense has been sieve-like in the Champions League. Roma win and they’re through, or hope that Barca get a result at Bayer Leverkusen. It’s a home start for an overwhelming favorite, so Szczesny carries merit to be used on Wednesday.
Sven Ulreich ($3,500): It looks like Manuel Neuer gets the night off for Bayern Munich against Dinamo Zagreb. But with Bayern showing they’re human and losing this past weekend, Pep Guardiola may not run out a complete B team in this one. The saving in itself lends you to use Ulreich, and if Bayern bounce back, you’ll have double digits from the backup.
Oleksandr Shovkovskiy ($4,200): Dynamo Kyiv need a win at home to advance to the round of 16, against a pointless Maccabi Tel Aviv side. Motive, opportunity…the pricing isn’t superb, but Shovkovskiy should get the win and a clean sheet could be in the offing as well.
Thibaut Courtois ($3,700): The situation is near perfect, the price excellent. But Chelsea’s struggles as of late gives me pause to suggest Courtois. The winner takes the top spot in Group G, while a draw sees Chelsea through in second place. If Kiev win, Porto will need to push for a win, and that would mean Courtois sees more action in an open game.
Matz Sels ($3,100): This is my punt of the slate; Gent will face a Zenit side with several starters being rested, including offensive fulcrum Hulk, playmaker Axel Witsel and others. Gent advances with a win; if he’s facing a below strength Zenit side Sels is an excellent play in order to spend elsewhere.
Arthur Masuaku ($2,500): If you’re looking to spend down at defender, Masuaku is one of a small group to choose from. The young French left back has a limited upside, but double digits aren’t out of the question and if you want to spend up for Messi, etc–sacrifices will need to be made.
Adriano ($2,700): Here’s another sub $3K option, likely to be a strong chalk option throughout play on Wednesday. In place of the suspended Dani Alves, Adriano isn’t likely to repeat scoring as he did on Matchday Five but double digits again should be within reach.
Joao Cancelo/Jose Gaya ($3,900/$3,800): Valencia have to win, and under new manager Gary Neville it’s hard not to imagine seeing a lot of involvement from his full backs. Neither are cheap, but both should be heavily involved going forward.
Danilo Silva ($3,300)/Eli Dasa ($2,400): Silva is a really nice play in that middle-to-upper tier, especially when you know Kiev must attack to get through to the round of 16. Dasa’s another budget play; if he gets 6-8 points, you’ve gotten more than you could hope for, really.
Miguel Layun ($3,900): If you’re spending up at defender, Layun is your man. Set pieces will give Layun the chance to pick up crosses to hit his floor; anything on the scoresheet is towards that ceiling.
Danjiel Milicevic ($3,700): A very strong play on Wednesday, Milicevic might still be relatively underowned despite the matchup and a 35-point performance last match for Gent. With Gent gunning for a win, a repeat isn’t out of question. Double digits are the floor. Teammate Thomas Foket ($3,000) is a nice play as well if you’re stocking up on Gent.
Willian ($6,100)/Andre Andre ($4,500): Both have strong cases to be used on Wednesday. Willian, since the scoring changes here at DraftKings, has been possibly the most consistent producer of points to a man–but that price tag has crept higher and higher. Using him will require sacrifices elsewhere, especially if you’re using Barca forwards. Andre Andre is cheaper, and he’ll be in Porto’s front three most likely and could get you to double digits at a much lesser price.
Rodrigo de Paul ($2,600): If de Paul starts in the place of Sofiane Feghouli, de Paul gives you a lot of value for the price tag. He should start in the front three for Valencia, and easily could hit value and afford you the opportunity to spend up elsewhere. To a lesser extent, Dani Parejo ($3,400) is an option to use from Valencia because of his share of free kick responsibilities.
Mathieu Valbuena ($5,400): Cheaper than Willian, Valbuena is just as consistent point production wise but I don’t like the matchup as much as others. Even so, Valbuena is hard to avoid–he’s hit 16+ points in his last four matches without a goal or assist to his name.
Franck Ribery ($6,200)/Arturo Vidal ($5,000): With Arjen Robben, Mario Gotze and Douglas Costa out for Bayern in Zagreb, this pair should be ready to pick up the slack alongside a trio of forward options we’ll get to in a minute. Ribery is your more classical option since he’ll be on the wing, but at that price tag he is very much the contrarian option to a Willian, etc. Vidal will have a more attacking role and Bayern could look to take the frustrations of the weekend out on Dynamo Zagreb.
Hakan Calhanoglu ($4,400)/Karim Bellarabi ($5,400)L Another check your starting lineup alert here; one might start. Both could, and Calhanoglu’s price tag is superb even though the matchup is not. Bayer has to win, has to attack, against Barcelona at home. Not the perfect recipe in real life, but this could be DFS gold for Bayer options.
Miralem Pjanic ($5,000)/Alessandro Florenzi ($3,000): This is mostly about Pjanic; Florenzi is a really nice option if Rudi Garcia uses him in the front three of Roma’s lineup. But Pjanic is another chalk play for good reason; a consistent point producer on the Willian/Malbranque level. He should have even more free kick chances with Roma pushing for a win.
Mesut Ozil ($6,300)/Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain ($4,100): Arsenal needs to attack in spades, and these two should be heavily involved. Ozil is likely not going to hit double digit crosses like others I’ve mentioned, but Ozil could hit the scoresheet through goals or assists against Olympiakos.
Lionel Messi/Luis Suarez ($10,200/$9,000): Even before Neymar’s injury in training on Tuesday, chalk knowledge is to go with Barca’s forwards against a Bayer defense that has given up 11 goals in five games, without any clean sheets. Yes, Bayer is the team that has everything to play for in this one, but no pressure? A bit of showtime for Barcelona.
Robert Lewandowski ($8,800)/Thomas Muller ($7,700)/Kingsley Coman ($5,000): Coman should be highly owned; the price tag and his past two matches almost beg you to use him at a Flex spot. Bayern could coast and win/lose draw with a goal or two, or they could be Wednesday’s Madrid and run it up if Guardiola cracks the whip. Lewandowski is the contrarian play if you drift away from using Messi and/or Suarez.
Olivier Giroud ($6,700)/Joel Campbell ($4,000): Both will be relatively lower owned for differing reasons; Giroud’s price tag is in that awkward middle tier while Campbell is incredibly goal dependent. Normally, I’d drift away from both, but with Arsenal needing to attack you have to consider both.
Edin Dzeko ($6,000): In comparison, I like Dzeko a lot more than Giroud in this one. Better opponent to take advantage of with a similar attacking impetus at play, Roma will look to Dzeko as its primary option to score. BATE’s given up 12 goals (less than Roma, for the record) and Dzeko has three goals in his last five for Roma.
Dimitri Mozolevski ($3,200): A huge punt and contrarian option in one, Mozolevski faces a Roma defensive front that just loves to concede goals. He is BATE’s lead striker and all you’ll need is a goal to return value. With Roma pushing forward, it’s well within chances that he scores no matter what the scoreboard shows in the end.
Admir Mehmedi ($5,000)/Javier Hernandez ($6,000): Hernandez is goal dependent on returning value, and we’ve gone over how Bayer will need to attack Barcelona to advance. I like Mehmedi a lot more than Hernandez; he is the pivot if you want to diversify away from Coman, or you can use both in your lineup. He’s scored in his last four Champions League matches.
Paco Alcacer ($3,500)/Alvaro Negredo ($4,500): Whomever starts for Valencia up top is a nice value option at a forward or Flex spot. Both are goal dependent, but Valencia need a win and they’d be the lead striker for a goal desperate side.
Andriy Yarmolenko ($4,800): As you’ve guessed, I like Kyiv options in this one–I can suggest Moraes (lead striker) or Derlis Gonzalez (opposite winger) in addition to Yarmolenko, but the latter is your best bet as the most consistent point producer of the trio. It comes down to set pieces in the end.
Laurent Depoitre ($4,000): Gent’s lead striker has not done it in the Champions League, but at home, needing a win and with low ownership, he’s worth keeping in mind.