Saturday presents another Premier League slate with big early season implications, as Chelsea host Manchester City in a battle of EPL heavyweights and Manchester United are favored to keep their hot start going against last-place Crystal Palace. Let’s look at how the slate breaks down with the top targets and values at each position.
David De Gea – $6,000 – Manchester United – De Gea and United have kept a clean sheet in five of six games this season and now host a reeling Crystal Palace squad that have yet to score a goal through the first six games of the season. If you have the funds to spend at the GK position, De Gea is the safest option to lock up a clean sheet and win bonus.
Others to Consider – Joe Hart (West Ham; $5,300), Ben Foster (West Bromwich Albion; $5,200)
Thibaut Courtois – $4,500 – Chelsea – Courtois is up against a Manchester City attack that has scored the most goals in the league to start the season, but were dealt a big blow with Sergio Aguero suffering an injury in a car accident on Thursday. With both teams jockeying for positioning at the top of the Premier League table, Courtois looks like a good value in what should be a tightly contested affair.
Aaron Cresswell – $5,800 – West Ham – Through six games Cresswell leads the league with 58 crosses, topping the likes of Christian Eriksen, Kevin De Bruyne and Xherdan Shaqiri. While his high-volume crossing has driven his price up, we wouldn’t hesitate to play a midfielder or forward with the same kind of production at less than $6k. A home game against Swansea puts Cresswell in a good spot to top double digits in both crosses and points for the fourth consecutive game.
Others to Consider – Daley Blind (Manchester United; $6,000), Davide Zappacosta (Chelsea; $5,300), Charlie Daniels (Bournemouth; $5,100)
Ashley Young – $4,400 – Manchester United – Young has a combined three points in his last two appearances, but given the home matchup against lowly Crystal Palace, he’s worth a long hard look at this price. He’s fully capable of contributing in the attack through shots and crosses, and considering Palace have yet to score in six games this season, he has a good shot at collecting an easy three points if Manchester United keep the clean sheet. With teammate Antonio Valencia questionable, keep an eye out for starting lineups as Valencia’s inclusion would likely send Young back to the bench.
Others to Consider – Kiko Femenia (Watford; $4,500), Kieran Gibbs (West Bromwich Albion; $4,300)
Xherdan Shaqiri – $8,400 – Stoke City – Shaqiri continues to cross the ball at a high rate, averaging 10 crosses per game in the five games that he’s logged 90 minutes in. He hit 14 last Saturday against Chelsea, and in what should be a competitive game at home against Southampton, look for Shaqiri to continue to fuel the Stoke City attack.
Others to Consider – Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City; $9,500), Henrikh Mkhitaryan (Manchester United; $8,600)
Cesc Fabregas – $6,200 – Chelsea – Fabregas came off the bench at Stoke last weekend, but that was likely done to keep him fresh for Chelsea’s midweek Champions League fixture at Atletico Madrid, where he swung in seven crosses and finished with 10 points. He leads Chelsea in crosses, corners and chances created, and in a match featuring EPL heavyweights, we can expect Fabregas to be involved once again at home against Manchester City.
Others to Consider – Dusan Tadic (Southampton; $6,300), Jordon Ibe (Bournemouth; $4,300), Steven Davis (Southampton; $3,700)
Romelu Lukaku – $11,300 – Manchester United – With Aguero suffering an unfortunate injury in a car accident on Thursday, that leaves only one elite option at the Forward position, and that’s Romelu Lukaku. The Belgian hitman has a goal or more in six straight games across all competitions, and he’s tied for the league lead with six goals in as many matches. Lukaku is up against the same Crystal Palace team that Aguero and Manchester City just lit up for five goals, and given Lukaku’s recent run of form, it’s hard to envision a letdown in this spot.
Others to Consider – Alvaro Morata (Chelsea; $8,700), Gabriel Jesus (Manchester City; $8,400), Marcus Rashford (Manchester United; $8,000)
Nathan Redmond – $5,100 – Southampton – Redmond leads Southampton with 21 shots, and he’s surprisingly fifth overall in the EPL — just two back of Sergio Aguero and Mohamed Salah. Stoke City have conceded at least two goals in three straight and are dealing with some injury concerns along the back line, making Redmond an attractive play with multi-position eligibility.
Others to Consider – Jay Rodriguez (West Bromwich Albion; $6,000), Richarlison (Watford; $6,000), Jermain Defoe (Bournemouth; $5,700)
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