English Premier League 2/27/21
Welcome back everyone for another Ram’s Random EPL Breakdown! We had more Champions League action this week, which saw Man City and Chelsea both win their away legs in the knockout stages. Neither team is on the main slate Saturday as City take on West Ham 7:30am EST on Saturday while Chelsea host Manchester United on Sunday at 11:30am in what should be a great game. Enough about them though for now, let’s get into the 3 game Saturday slate with staggered start times at 10am EST, the next at 12:30pm and the last kicking off at 3pm. As always, let’s start by looking at some odds.
West Bromwich Albion vs. Brighton (-105)
Leeds United (+115) vs. Aston Villa
Newcastle United vs. Wolves (+125)
-We get 3 pretty blah games on the day, the best game is the Leeds-Villa game but Villa will be without Captain Jack Grealish. The other two games are bottom dwellers in desperate need of points for survival, West Brom is sure to go down but Brighton and Newcastle are both hoping to stay ahead of Fulham for that last relegation spot. Let’s dive into our Game by Game Breakdown to find out.
West Bromwich Albion vs. Brighton-
Brighton is only 4 points clear of Fulham in the relegation battle. As I mentioned before, West Brom are definitely going down to the Championship after just an awful season in the Premier League.
West Bromwich Albion:
Very little to love on this squad, but it definitely all starts with Matheus Pereira ($14/$9000) who is very reasonably priced on FD but extremely expensive on DK even with his monopoly of set pieces and open play value. Brighton have been pretty stingy (4 goals allowed in last 6 matches), but Mbaye Diagne ($17/$6500) has seemed to start to settle into PL life and has been pretty active in the final third. Conor Gallagher ($15/$4900) is a slam dunk play if Pereira is on the bench for some reason but even if he’s in, Gallagher seems to contribute something every game (10 DK points last game with no goal/assists). Matt Phillips ($10/$5200) could steal some sets if he’s in; he has been pretty solid when given a role. Darnell Furlong ($6/$4500) is still super cheap on FD (12.8 pts vs. Burnley) and Ainsley Maitland-Niles ($7/ $3500) is super cheap on both sites for decent upside as he plays more of a wing-back or winger than a defender. Sam Johnstone ($8/$4200) like I’ve said many a time before is a really good keeper on a bad team. He had a nice outing vs. Burnley, even with them going down to 10 men very early on.
3 attackers are in play for Brighton: Leandro Trossard ($17/$8500), Pascal Gross ($16/$9300) and Neal Maupay ($18/$7500). I like Trossard a lot because of his open play value (double digit DK points in each of his last 5 starts). Gross has some set piece duty and has a little safer floor than Trossard but similar upside since he just doesn’t shoot as much (21 shots vs. Trossard’s 40). Maupay I think is a fade for me, but he does seem to be on PK duty again for the Seagulls. Defensively, Joel Veltman ($13/$6300 (midfielder on DK) has taken over the majority of set pieces and has been electric (17.3 and 22.9 DK points his last two games). Dan Burn ($7/$3900) is a nice cheap option and he should be able to help out a little on attack vs. a weak West Brom side. Robert Sanchez ($11/$5400) is the most expensive keeper on DK, I just don’t think he sees enough shots or has a good enough chance at the win/clean sheet to be a lock.
Prediction: West Bromwich Albion 1 – Brighton 1
Leeds United vs. Aston Villa:
This is the marquee match of the day, but it is missing its biggest star power in Jack Grealish. Villa will be without their captain again and Leeds is feeling much better after a convincing 3-0 win over Southampton last weekend. Villa dropped a tough one to Leicester City 2-1.
Raphinha ($19/$10700) is my favorite spend up spot on the slate. The guy is absolute fire when given the chance. Double digit DK points in 9 of the last 10 games he has played in, and he goes 90 in almost every single one. Tyler Roberts ($6/$5700) was a guy I absolutely loved vs. Southampton last weekend and he crushed with 15.8 DK points with an assist. He should be right back out there and has started to really look the part for this Leeds squad. Patrick Bamford ($21/$8800) is their big goal scorer but his floor is about 5 points. Diego Llorente ($7/$3100) came back on the weekend, last time he started and I played him he got hurt inside 10 minutes… so that was great. He’s a really active defender who can get forward too, a great punt play. Luke Aiyling ($12/$4800) is a decent full back but just doesn’t seem to get forward enough consistently for me. Illan Meslier ($13/$5000) is a good keeper, but Villa is a dangerous side in attack, even without Grealish, risky for the price.
Did I mention no Jack Grealish? Ha, yes he is that important to the squad but they are still pretty good without him. Ollie Watkins ($22/$7100) has a great nose for goal (10 on the season). Bertrand Traore ($13/$7400) and Anwar El-Ghazi ($11/$7900) have each had some hot moments for Villa this season and are decently priced for an average matchup. Ross Barkley ($14/$5900) is the guy I’m looking at though for a little salary relief but still great upside on the attack. Ahmed El Mohamady ($6/$4600) is still cheap on FD because they just reload the previous week’s salaries in… they really don’t care about their soccer product unfortunately. He’s a decent play since he will get forward and do some defensive work (16 FD points last game vs. Leicester without a CS). Emiliano Martinez ($7/$4600) is my GPP keeper I believe, he is a stud in between the pipes and even though Villa is without Matty Cash, that CB duo is one of the strongest in the league.
Prediction: Leeds United 2 – Aston Villa 1
Newcastle United vs. Wolves:
Newcastle continues their free-fall toward relegation as they’ve lost 8 of their last 10 total games. Wolves seem to be righting the ship a bit with back to back wins over Southampton and Leeds.
Callum Wilson is out again for the Magpies and they will be missing his attacking presence. Ryan Fraser ($8/$7300) when given a start, has been really solid but is no guarantee and this is the late game. Miguel Almiron ($16/$6400) had a big game earlier this month but mostly is quiet. Allan Saint-Maximin ($15/$6700) is probably the safest player unless we get Jonjo Shelvey ($12/$5100) as the only guy on the pitch for set pieces. This defense is not good, and doesn’t get many DFS points; I’d fade them as unit. Martin Dubravka ($5/$4300) may get his first start of the season here and he is minimum price on FD, he should see a fair amount of shots and Wolves aren’t the most prolific scorers.
Like I mentioned earlier, Wolves have been playing much better football lately and Pedro Neto ($18/$9500) has been their best player of the season, he has double digits in his last 5 games. Willian Jose ($14/$5400) is finding his PL groove as well and is a nice cheap play in an excellent matchup. Nelson Semedo ($12/$4900) was outstanding in the Leeds match (3 shots on goal even) and is playing a more attacking wing back role now. Rui Patricio ($12/$5200) is the cash goalie for me, Newcastle is desperate but not good, which is a nice recipe for easy saves and being left open to counter attacks.
Prediction: Newcastle 0 – Wolves 2
I hope you enjoyed this breakdown and will join us on the DFSKarma discord channel and check out our core plays at https://www.dfskarma.com/shop/all/soccer/
-Ram (DFS Karma Soccer Lead)