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Corner Kick: UCL DFS Picks for Group Stage with Cristiano Ronaldo | 10/20/21

Jovanni Vidal

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Welcome to the English Premier League DFS coverage for Saturday, April 16. Below are the top EPL DFS picks today on DraftKings and FanDuel for Matchday 33, which consider all aspects of the slate, from Awesemo's expert fantasy soccer projections to pricing to popularity for DFS fantasy soccer. These EPL [main-page-link sport="soccer" link="10"] should help with creating highly projected lineups in DraftKings and FanDuel fantasy soccer tournaments and cash games. The main slate consists of three matches with teams postponing games due to FA Cup participation. The heavy favorites of the slate are Manchester United sitting at home with a return of -455 (BetMGM). They take on Norwich who seems relegation bound and have had trouble preventing goals on the road with an expected goals of 2.21 per match. Southampton welcomes Arsenal who have collapsed under the pressure of securing a top four spot in the EPL. Southampton and Arsenal have conceded two plus goals each a piece in three of their previous four matches across all competitions. Goals are likely in this outing with the value plays coming from the home side. The matchup of interest to me is Brentford going on the road against Watford. Watford is awful in all aspects of defense and Brentford is red hot with two plus goals in four of their last five outings. Brentford is a +155 (BetMGM) on the money line return and the prices make them an interesting target over Arsenal and Manchester United's ownership shares. EPL DFS Picks Today: DraftKings & FanDuel Fantasy Soccer Forwards/Midfielders Ivan Toney (DraftKings: $9,500, FanDuel $19) Christian Eriksen (DraftKings: $7,500, FanDuel $17) Brentford have pulled themselves out of relegation zone as they head to take on Watford. Watford sit dead last in the EPL in defense at home, allowing an expected goals of 1.88 per match. To add insult to injury, they concede the most fouls in the EPL at 14.6 per match. This would bode well for the core play from Brentford in Christian Eriksen. Eriksen handles the set shares and averages 7.27 crosses per match with 3.83 scoring chances created, the most for Brentford by a wide margin. His shot volume tallies 1.59 per match which is a bit concerning but the 57% on target accuracy makes his price on FanDuel a fair asking price for the floor he provides. The upside is greater on DraftKings, where his floor is enough for a return of 1.25-1.75x value. He is a core play in all formats. The goal hunting option is Ivan Toney. Toney leads the club in scoring and contributes on 42% of the club's overall scoring. His shot volume sits at 2.40 per match with an on-target accuracy clip of 33.3%. Toney needs a goal in this outing as he comes in at the top of the attacking price list. The core play for attackers and ownership will be with Cristiano Ronaldo and Bruno Fernandes. The main pivot off the Manchester United attack would look to be Bukayo Saka and Alexandre Lacazette, given the asking price. Brentford has a better matchup than both Manchester United and Arsenal so Toney looks to be the best pivot in GPP. The attacker alongside Toney, Bryan Mbeumo, has come alive in recent form on the goal contribution department. He averages north of two shots per match. His asking price is high for a cash play but would look like a discounted way in GPP to get a share of the Brentford attack. He would free up the salary for any of the mentioned above Manchester United or Arsenal attackers. James Ward-Prowse (DraftKings: $8,300, FanDuel $17) Armando Broja (DraftKings: $4,900, FanDuel $14) Arsenal's defense has looked a shell of their former self in recent outings. Southampton has lost the scoring touch. Something has to give in this matchup. James Ward- Prowse is coming in a bit too cheap on the asking price for his floor. He handles all sets for the Saints and averages 8.19 crosses per match while contributing on 31.4% of the home side's overall scoring. Arsenal allows 1.6 expected goals on the road, average in the EPL. The Saint's offense is by no means a safe option, but they would seem to be as low on the ownership as Norwich. Ward-Prowse is the core play for the floor. The attacking of Armando Broja does little to draw ownership. The matchup is not great, and his minutes never look to run past the 75-minute mark. The price is worth a GPP shot for the salary relief. He averages 2.30 shots per match and the on-target rate sits at 43%. It would not destroy the lineup should he fail to score, but he needs some attempts at the net. The visitors have options like Saka and Lacazette as mentioned above. A GPP play of interest is Martin Odegaard. His asking price is around that of Eriksen without the floor. Odegaard seems to be the last man standing when Arsenal start deploying offensive subs. He contributes on 20% of their overall scoring and sits second on the goals list for the club. His shot volume is second on the team sheet at 2.43 per match with a created chances rate of 4.40 to lead the club. Odegaard would fill the attacking role of Arsenal with salary relief to roster Brentford and Manchester United's combo of goal hunters. Other Options: Cristiano Ronaldo (DraftKings: $8,900, FanDuel $22), Bruno Fernandes (DraftKings: $9,300, FanDuel $21), Bukayo Saka (DraftKings: $9,100, FanDuel $20), Emile Smith-Rowe (DraftKings: $6,600, FanDuel $17). Che Adams (DraftKings: $6,300, FanDuel $15), Teemu Pukki (DraftKings: $6,200, FanDuel $15), Milot Rashica (DraftKings: $6,500, FanDuel $13). Defenders Alex Telles (DraftKings: $7,000, FanDuel $12) Alex Telles is the highest priced defender on DraftKings. He handles the indirect set shares for Manchester United. Manchester United's offense sports a 1.61 expected goals at home which sits top six in the EPL. Norwich would be pressed back and open up crossing volume for the home side. Telles averages 6.27 crosses per match and with 2.37 created scoring chances. His floor is enough to see 1x volume and a clean sheet bonus is in play against a side that scores the fewest road goals in the EPL, at one every other match. Telles makes a solid pairing with one of Fernandes or Ronaldo in a favorable matchup. Other Options: Rico Henry (DraftKings: $3,500, FanDuel $9), Kyle Walker Peters (DraftKings: $4,400, FanDuel $10), Hassane Kamara (DraftKings: $4,200, FanDuel $14), Cedric Soares (DraftKings: $4,900, FanDuel $9). Goalkeepers David Raya (DraftKings: $4,800, FanDuel $11) David De Gea (DraftKings: $5,900, FanDuel $14) [SHARETHISCONTENT] [SOCCERPAGE]

Welcome to the Champions League DFS coverage for Wednesday, Oct. 20. Below are the top UCL DFS picks on DraftKings and FanDuel for Group Stage, which consider all aspects of the slate, from Awesemo’s expert projections to pricing to popularity for DFS fantasy soccer. These UCL DFS soccer picks should help with creating highly projected lineups in DraftKings and FanDuel fantasy soccer tournaments and cash games.

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**All Odds from BetMGM**

Benfica (+650) vs. Bayern Munich (-250), O/U 3.5

Chelsea (-1,100) vs. Malmo (+3,000), O/U 3.5

Zenit (+260) vs. Juventus (+120), O/U 2.5

Lille (+230) vs. Sevilla (+125), O/U 2.5

Manchester United (-130) vs. Atalanta (+360), O/U 3.5

Young Boys (+220) vs. Villareal (+115), O/U 2.5

Forwards/Midfield

Cristiano Ronaldo (DraftKings: $9,300, FanDuel: $22)

Bruno Fernandes (DraftKings: $9,200, FanDuel: $20)

The go-to cash spot points to Chelsea in a plus matchup against Malmo at home. GPPs require leverage spots. Manchester United hosts Atalanta as a slight favorite, but Atalanta struggles on defense. Atalanta has allowed 1.56 expected goals, ranking below average in Serie A. On the road they are near the bottom, with 1.7 expected goals allowed per match. Manchester United has a full arsenal of attack, which places fifth in the EPL in expected goals. At home Manchester United ranks fourth in the EPL, with 1.75 expected goals per match and 2.5 actual goals per match.

The leader up front is Cristiano Ronaldo. Ronaldo builds his floor off shot volume, with 4.77 per match and an on-target accuracy clip of 38.1%. He is a brace threat whenever he steps on the pitch and has a low enough price under $10,000. His on-target shots give him the floor on FanDuel, and the scoring upside makes him a play in all formats.

Bruno Fernandes lacks the floor, but he is not shy to shoot, and the matchup calls for an uptick in 3.16 shots per match volume. He contributes on 37.5% of the host’s scoring and creates 5.92 scoring chances per match. The open-play average of 3.29 crosses per match add to his value and makes him a core play of the Manchester United stack. The wingers are rounded out with Mason Greenwood and the possible return of Marcus Rashford. Both have scoring upside and make an interesting combo with one of Ronaldo or Rashford for salary relief if targeting Chelsea’s key men.

Ivan Rakitic (DraftKings: $4,500, FanDuel: $16)

Rafa Mir (DraftKings: $6,500, FanDuel: $17)

Sevilla goes on the road to battle a defense of Lille, which is a shell of last year’s championship run. They are allowing one expected goal per match and were trampled by RB Salzburg in their previous Champions League outing. Sevilla is not an imposing offense but a step up from the quality of Ligue 1 and the Austrian Bundesliga. Ivan Rakitic comes in too cheap, and Rafa Mir headlines the attack for Sevilla.

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Rakitic averages just 1.75 shots per match and 2.25 scoring chances created. His value is in PK sets, which he has taken throughout the Champions League early stages. Lille have been one of the better sides at committing fouls, so Rakitic sits as a GPP play with the direct free kick sets and upside should a penalty come about.

Mir leads Sevilla in goals and averages 4.41 shots per match. The on-target accuracy is concerning at 33.8%, making him hard to justify on FanDuel. The discounted price on DraftKings allows salary relief. For a cash play, Marcos Acuna will handle a large share of the indirect sets. His open-play volume complements the average 6.17 crosses per match, and his scoring chances make him a go to in the defender spot at under $5,000 on DraftKings.

Robert Lewandowski (DraftKings: $12,500, FanDuel: $23)

Christian Fassnacht (DraftKings: $5,100, FanDuel: $13)

Robert Lewandowski comes in with a massive price. Bayern averages 19 shots per match, ranking third in the Champions League. This mark is capped by Lewandowski at 4.67 shots per match. He handles the PKs and hits target 57.6% of the time. Lewandowski will need a brace to pay off the price, but he is certainly capable of it and is a top option in GPPs. For cash, Romelu Lukaku and Ronaldo are better. Leroy Sane, Thomas Mueller and Serge Gnarby offer a significant discount, and the matchup is hard to ignore.

Those punts can be found on Young Boys. They have a home matchup against Villareal. Villareal is a tough defensive outing, but the Young Boys are a resilient side at home. Christian Fassnacht leads the home side in goals and averages 3.17 shots per match. Fassnacht allows for the spend up for Bayern and one of the EPL giants mentioned above. In cash a core punt can be found with Michel Aebischer and a defender below. Should one miss the match, the other will handle full set shares. Both are $5,800 and are likewise affordable on FanDuel at under $12. The underdogs in this match come off an upset win at home against Manchester United, so confidence will not be an issue. As with Sevilla, Young Boys would not be a go to stack, but the one-off pieces are necessary.

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Other Options: Romelu Lukaku (DraftKings $9,500, FanDuel $21), Federico Chiesa (DraftKings $8,400, FanDuel $18), Gerard Moreno (DraftKings $7,700, FanDuel $20), Joshua Kimmich (DraftKings $8,100, FanDuel $15), Ruslan Malinovskyi (DraftKings $7,400, FanDuel $16). Duvan Zapata (DraftKings $8,200, FanDuel $19)

Defense

Ulisses Garcia (DraftKings: $5,800, FanDuel: $10)

Ulisses Garcia handles the set shares for Young Boys. He does not need to score to pay off the price. His average 6.37 crosses per match complement the 2.17 won tackles/interceptions per match to build a solid floor. Should Young Boys find themselves at a disadvantage on the time of possession, Garcia can contribute on defense. He has contributed on just 12.5% of Young Boy’s scoring. He takes his chances at net with 1.50 shots per match.

Other Options: Luke Shaw (DraftKings $5,500, FanDuel $12), Ben Chilwell (DraftKings $6,000, FanDuel $13), Douglas Santos (DraftKings $5,600, FanDuel $12), Juan Cuadrado (DraftKings $5,900, FanDuel $15)

Goalkeeper

Yassine Bounou (DraftKings: $5,100, FanDuel: $11)

David von Ballmoos (DraftKings: $4,600, FanDuel: $9)

Thanks for reading to the end of this article! If you appreciate this free content and want to see more of it every day, you can help us out by sharing this article on social media! Looking for more EPL DFS picks content? We have loads of articles, data, DraftKings and FanDuel cheat sheets and more on the Stokastic EPL DFS home page.

Jovanni Vidal is accountant and finance analyst, with lifetime passion for fantasy sports. He has provided content and player analysis for season-long fantasy sites. He joined Awesemo to help new and current DFS soccer players learn new approaches to the game and how to succeed, with an overall goal to grow the DFS soccer sport and various league content offerings. You can reach him on Twitter @fluff_marsh.

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