DraftKings Fantasy Soccer: Saturday EPL Picks
DraftKings Fantasy Soccer: Saturday EPL Picks

This article is part of our DraftKings Fantasy Soccer series.

For detailed odds and stats, check out the Fantasy Premier League: Saturday Cheat Sheet, which is available to all RotoWire subscribers. Not a member? Try us out free for 10 days, no credit card required.

MATCHES (EST)

10:00 a.m: Crystal Palace v. Leicester City
10:00 a.m: Watford v. Cardiff City
10:00 a.m: Huddersfield v. Newcastle
10:00 a.m: Tottenham v. Burnley
10:00 a.m: Wolverhampton v. Bournemouth
12:30 p.m: Fulham v. West Ham

FORWARDS

Harry Kane, TOT v. BUR ($10,900): The reasons for rostering Kane are very simple: he's taken the second-most shots among all players on the slate, he leads them in shots on goal, he has the best anytime goal scorer odds while leading the line for the team with the highest implied goal total and he's facing a Burnley defense that's conceded the second-most goals, most shots and second-most shots on goal this season. Even with the highest salary on the slate by a $1,400 margin, Kane could certainly be the highest owned player in cash games and GPPs. His floor is generally from his shots, as he's scored six goals on 39 shots, including 21 on goal, in his last eight games, while also adding 24 fouls drawn. However, it's worth noting that 15 of those 24 came in two games (home against PSV Eindhoven in the Champions League and home against Chelsea in the Premier League), and he hasn't drawn a foul in his last two starts. Making matter worse (if you're a regular Kane-fader) is that the forward pool is brutally low on high-floor options, which will likely push even more people toward Kane. You might be able to handle one goal if you fade him in cash games, but if he scores a brace you're likely dead. Oh, and his odds to score two goals are higher than the one-goal odds for all but seven players, including some who may not start. Speaking of not starting, it's possible Kane is rested after going the full 90 against Barcelona on Tuesday, but he didn't start the previous weekend so I don't think it's likely he is rested again. Rotation could also bring Erik Lamela ($8,700) into the side, and while he generally has a role on set pieces when he starts, his upside isn't nearly high enough to counter Kane's unless he's assisting all of Kane's goals. There is also theoretically a path for Son Heung-Min ($9,500) to end up with set pieces, as was the case last weekend against Leicester City when he finished with one goal on four shots, one assist and eight crosses, and he could be a viable Kane pivot if the dominoes fall the right way.

Demarai Gray, LEI at CRY ($4,600): The second forward spot (or both forward spots if you fade Kane) is where things start getting tricky. Andros Townsend ($8,000) is likely to get plenty of looks despite a relatively high price, but Crystal Palace are just horrible without Wilfried Zaha ($7,100), who is suspended for the match, and Townsend really hasn't performed well in his absences even if they aren't winning. Palace are still favored Saturday, but they have the worst win odds and tied for the lowest implied goal total among the favorites, making an $8K salary a bit tough to swallow. Meanwhile, Gray has a decent floor, taking at least two shots in five of his last six games and winning multiple tackles thrice in that span. He hasn't had any role on set pieces, and is unlikely to have one Saturday, but his very low salary makes him viable because of the lack of options elsewhere, and it doesn't hurt that Palace concede the fifth-most crosses among teams on the slate.

Aleksandar Mitrovic, FUL v. WHU ($7,800): Mitrovic is the shot-dependent forward that Kane-faders could turn to, as he comes in averaging more shots per 90 minutes than any of the top 25 shot takers on the slate, and Raul Jimenez is the only player not from Tottenham who has better anytime goal scorer odds. Considering Mitrovic should also make people look, even briefly, at Andre Schurrle ($7,700), though he hasn't taken more than two shots in a match since Oct. 20. Then again, the floor play might be Ryan Sessegnon ($5,900), who continues to have a role on set pieces, though that's only equated to four shots and 10 crosses in his last four games. We also shouldn't ignore that Fulham are actually the underdog in this match, and if you're looking for a reasonable forward on the other side, Chicharito is averaging 2.67 shots, including 1.41 on goal, and 2.51 fouls drawn per 90 minutes this season, which equates to 6.59 fantasy points per 90 versus Mitrovic's 6.40 from 3.56 shots, including 1.29 on goal, and 1.55 fouls drawn.

MIDFIELDERS

Christian Eriksen, TOT v. BUR ($9,000): Eriksen could be a popular play, especially for those who are fading Kane, because it allows you to get access to the primary set-piece taker for the team with the highest implied goal total. His set-piece floor is higher if Kieran Trippier ($6,800) sits out again, and while he's only reached double-digit crosses once this season, he's now facing the side that's allowed the third-most crosses, most accurate crosses and most chances among teams on the slate.

Robert Snodgrass, WHU at FUL ($8,100): Snodgrass has been a very reliable cash-game option lately, as he sent in 45 crosses in his last five games, helping him create 16 chances and assist on three goals. He also chips in with tackles won and fouls drawn, but his role on set pieces is really where the safety comes in. He'll now face a Fulham side that has been an absolute sieve defensively, conceding the most goals, most assists, second-most shots, most shots on goal, second-most crosses and second-most chances among teams on the slate. Felipe Anderson ($8,900) is a solid GPP play who becomes more cash viable if Snodgrass is out because he'd likely take over on set pieces, and you shouldn't rule out Grady Diangana ($3,600) if he starts because of how active he is when he plays, though he's played more than 75 minutes just once this season. Additionally, those who fade Kane may end up with money to spend up on more than two high-priced midfielders, which puts James Maddison ($8,600) and Ryan Fraser ($8,500) in play because they both do almost everything for their sides, though Maddison has the easier matchup.

Wilfried Ndidi, LEI at CRY ($4,400): Looking to pay down at midfield will inevitably lead you to either Ndidi or Ki Sung-yueng ($4,300). Both players offer similar floors but very different paths to those points, as Ki has taken over on set pieces for Newcastle, which gives him added opportunities for crosses, while Ndidi is third in the Premier League in tackles won, and he averages nearly two shots per 90 minutes. Ki presumably has assist equity because of these set pieces, but he has just one this season, which he got as a substitute, despite 30 crosses and 13 chances created. Meanwhile, Ndidi theoretically has goal upside because of his shots, but he has just one on 29 attempts (five on target). Looking at their matchups, Ki faces a Huddersfield defense that has allowed the fifth-fewest shots, fewest crosses and fewest corners among teams on the slate, while Ndidi matches up against a Crystal Palace side that's allowed the fourth-fewest shots but most tackles won. It's splitting hairs, but I'll side with the guy who isn't almost totally dependent on set pieces, which can be lost at any time, to reach his floor.

DEFENDERS

Jose Holebas, WAT v. CAR ($6,500): Holebas leads all players on the slate in crosses this season, and while almost half of those have come from corners, he's fully expected to have his regular set-piece monopoly if he starts, which is helpful since Tottenham are the only side with a higher expected corner total, according to the oddsmakers. He now faces a Cardiff side that's allowed the third-most corners among teams on the slate, and with Watford the second-biggest favorite, it's easy to see why Holebas could be a very popular cash-game option.

Chris Lowe, HUD v. NEW ($6,100): There are multiple defenders worth paying up for, including Trippier if he starts, but Lowe could be a better play because of a potential monopoly of set pieces in the wake of Aaron Mooy's knee injury that is likely to keep him out until February. Huddersfield are the highest-crossing team on the slate (and second-highest in the Premier League), and they'll now face a Newcastle side that has conceded the most crosses and second-most corners. Lowe doesn't provide huge upside, but his set pieces make him pretty safe for cash games, even with other options like Ben Davies ($5,900) and Matt Doherty ($5,800) slightly cheaper.

Ruben Vinagre, WOL v. BOU ($3,700): Vinagre has no role on set pieces, but he is lining up as a left-wingback for a home favorite, so it's a bit odd that he's priced below $4,000 when the player he is replacing, Jonny, is $5,000 while right wing-back Doherty is $5,800. Either way, Vinagre provides decent salary savings and comes in with 18 crosses, five tackles won and six interceptions in his last four games. It's not overwhelming production, but that's why we get a discount.

GOALKEEPER

Kasper Schmeichel, LEI at CRY ($4,600): Playing off the struggles that Crystal Palace have without Zaha, Schmeichel will face a side that's forced the third-most saves this season while scoring the second-fewest goals, and while some of those saves were attributed to Zaha (seven of his 10 shots on target were saved), Schmeichel should still get a few opportunities, and it also doesn't hurt that he has the same clean sheet odds as Rui Patricio against Bournemouth, except he costs $600 less.

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Andrew M. Laird plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: kingmorland, DraftKings: andrewmlaird, Yahoo: Lairdinho.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Andrew M. Laird
Andrew M. Laird, the 2017 and 2018 FSWA Soccer Writer of the Year, is RotoWire's Head of DFS Content and Senior Soccer Editor. He is a seven-time FSWA award finalist, including twice for the Football Writer of the Year Award.
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