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DraftKings Fantasy Soccer: Saturday Premier League Picks

Andrew M. Laird

Andrew M. Laird, the 2017 FSWA Soccer Writer of the Year, is RotoWire's Senior Soccer Editor and a fantasy football contributor. He is also a two-time finalist for the FSWA's Football Writer of the Year Award.

MATCHES (EDT)

10:00 a.m: Southampton v. West Ham
10:00 a.m: Bournemouth v. Watford
10:00 a.m: Liverpool v. Crystal Palace
10:00 a.m: Leicester City v. Brighton
10:00 a.m: Burnley v. West Brom
12:30 p.m: Stoke City v. Arsenal

PLAYER RECOMMENDATIONS

GOALKEEPER

Kasper Schmeichel, LEI v. BHA ($5,400):
Jack Butland ($3,900) is the lowest-priced home goalkeeper, but playing Arsenal after they scored four in the opener seems like a recipe for failure. Meanwhile, Schmeichel is the fourth-most expensive keeper but provides a solid save upside with a potential win and clean sheet. Leicester were the ones who shipped four goals to Arsenal last week, but a bounce-back effort at home against a newly promoted side that were shut out in their first Premier League match this season is likely. While his eight clean sheets last season were far from dominant, only four keepers on Saturday's slate made more saves than Schmeichel, and he played at least five fewer games than each of them.

DEFENDER

Cedric Soares, SOU v. WHU ($5,700):
Cedric began his Premier League season with a solid 11 fantasy points thanks to two shots and seven crosses, among other peripheral stats and a clean sheet. Thanks to his reliable open-play crossing, Cedric provides more safety than teammate Ryan Bertrand($5,400), who took a few corners last week but still finished with one fewer cross. Southampton are big favorites against West Ham, which means Cedric should be able to move forward enough to keep crossing; it only gets better if Charlie Austin starts ahead of Manolo Gabbiadini.

Trent Alexander-Arnold, LIV v. CRY ($3,900): Alexander-Arnold has taken a few set pieces for Liverpool of late, as he continues to fill in very well for the injured Nathaniel Clyne ($5,200). Alexander-Arnold is likely to lose the set pieces if James Milner ($7,400) gets a start, whether in midfield or at left-back, but Alexander-Arnold could still provide enough to make value, particularly with a good shot at a clean sheet against a Palace side that will be without Wilfried Zaha (knee).

Matthew Lowton, BUR v. WBA ($4,100): Burnley had the most shocking result last weekend, a 3-2 victory over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge. Lowton picked up an assist in that match, while fellow fullback Stephen Ward equaled his goal total from all of last season by finding the back of the net once. Neither defender should be looking at a repeat performance, though Burnley at home are a much different animal than they are away. Additionally, West Brom allowed the fifth-most crosses per game last season, with two relegated teams ahead of them, so there may be additional opportunities for Lowton and Ward to move up into the attacking third.

MIDFIELDER

James Ward-Prowse, SOU v. WHU ($6,300):
Ward-Prowse took a majority of Southampton's corners last week, finishing with 11 fantasy points in 71 minutes of a scoreless draw. Teammate Dusan Tadic ($7,800) is viewed as having more upside than Ward-Prowse, though it should be noted that the latter had one more goal and one fewer assist in Premier League play last season.

Granit Xhaka, ARS at STK ($3,700): Xhaka took eight of Arsenal's nine corners last week, finishing with four shots, six crosses and two assists on five chances created. He may have to play a little more defensively Saturday if he starts alongside Aaron Ramsey instead of the more defensive-minded Mohamed Elneny, but getting a piece of the Arsenal set pieces at this price is really attractive for cash games. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is coming off a great opening match, but his $7,300 salary is a bit steep for a player with no long track record of contributing to as many peripheral stat categories as he did last Friday.

FORWARD

Mohamed Salah, LIV v. CRY ($8,500):
The Liverpool attack is tough this week because you can make just as strong a case for Salah as you can for Sadio Mane ($8,600) and Roberto Firmino ($9,100), especially since all three are forward and midfield eligible. None are likely to take all set pieces (even though Firmino took one corner last week), none are big open-play crossers but each has solid anytime goal-scoring odds. You could theoretically play two of them in cash games, though getting the right combination seems to be as much as a dart throw as figuring out who might score between Glenn Murray and Jonathan Walters. We might get lucky and see manager Jurgen Klopp not start one or two of them after playing a midweek Champions League qualifier against Hoffenheim in Germany, and while some people may turn to Daniel Sturridge ($7,000) in GPPs, Salah, Mane and Firmino are all safer plays.

Riyad Mahrez, LEI v. BHA ($8,400): Jamie Vardy ($7,500) bagged a brace last Friday at Arsenal, and while he has solid anytime goal-scoring odds for Saturday's match, Mahrez remains the far safer play. He takes a share of set pieces and will be facing off against a Brighton side coming off a 2-0 loss last weekend against Man City. Mahrez continues to be a hot topic on the transfer rumor mill, but as long as he's still with Leicester and they're at home against a promoted side, he should garner solid fantasy consideration.

Charlie Austin, SOU v. WHU ($7,200): Austin has the fourth-highest anytime goal-scoring odds and he could lead the line for a Southampton side with the third-highest expected goal total. Manolo Gabbiadini ($6,800) could get the start ahead of Austin, as he did last weekend against Swansea, but Austin is likely to take more shots if he's in the first XI and is more likely to score multiple goals of the two. All that being said, he's purely a GPP play.

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, TheSix: Lairdinho.