EPL Fantasy: Draft Kings Classic – Week 8

ON the eve of the much-awaited weekend pitting the undefeated title favourites against each other, we’re ready to take a look at the best DFS options heading into the eighth round of the Premier League season.

We’ll be basing our selections on Draft Kings Classic 8-Player format as we analyse the best inclusions for your Saturday night DFS lineups.

MARQUEE MUST HAVE

Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur)
$11,100

The inimitable Spurs and England marksman surely needs no introduction. Harry Kane is on track to become the most prolific and consistent goalscorer in Premier League history, with a record so far-fetched it almost reads like a fairytale. The 25-year-old has scored 21, 25, 29 and 30 league goals respectively during the last four seasons. In a league so wacky and unpredictable it recently crowned 5000/1 underdog Leicester City champions, it seems the only constant has become Harry Kane not only scoring a bucketload of goals – But somehow outdoing his previous total.

Despite a relatively slow start to this year’s campaign, which has become a signature blemish of sorts, Kane has already scored 5 times in 7 appearances, not to mention his exploits in the Champions League group stage. Only Chelsea’s Eden Hazard has scored more (6).

This weekend, Tottenham Hotspur who sit 4th,in the table, host 19th placed relegation favourites Cardiff City, who have the joint worst defensive record in the league (16 goals conceded). Neil Warnock’s outfit have not looked up to par following their promotion from the Championship, and the HurriKane will likely consider this the perfect opportunity to strut his stuff and pad his total.

VALUE PICK

Troy Deeney (Watford)
$6,100

A cursory glance at the numbers would suggest Watford’s talismanic frontman has not, thus far, enjoyed the best of seasons. Two goals and one assist in seven matches seems a modest return for a striker who is club captain and the first name on the team sheet for the Hornets; who are enjoying their best ever start to a Premier League season, and currently sit in 6th place. But nothing could be further from the truth, because Deeney’s influential and bruising performances tell an entirely different story.

The 30-year-old is playing some of the best football of his career, and has proven integral to Watford’s success and the way Javi Gracia sets up his team. Deeney is a pure beast in physical terms, a nightmare to defend against, authoritative in the air, and possesses brilliant instincts in and around the 18-yard-box.

This week, Watford host 7th placed Bournemouth at Vicarage Road, which is not an easy contest by any stretch of the imagination, but likely less daunting than others they have already faced and flourished in. Deeney and co. will be well aware that Bournemouth were thumped 4-0 during their last game on the road, at Turf Moor against Burnley.

BASEMENT BARGAIN

Aaron Lennon (Burnley)
$5,000

The 31-year-old England international electrified Turf Moor in their crushing display against Bournemouth, and will be hoping for a repeat performance in front of the home faithful.

These days, it’s difficult to predict what you’re going to get from the small-statured, lightning-quick winger whose career veered off track a little earlier than expected.

But when you consider that Burnley have appeared to turn the corner on their season with two consecutive wins, and that they host last placed Huddersfield – Who boast the joint worst defensive record in the league and have yet to win a match – They’re conditions that could easily inspire stars like Lennon, capable of producing something a little out of the ordinary, to shine.

At a meagre $5,000, it seems a worthwhile roll of the dice.

THIS WEEK’S MANAGERIAL PHILOSOPHY

Last week we discussed the importance of fielding players from home teams, given their dependable historic dominance – If you examine the 2017 season, for example, home teams scored 607 goals compared to 457 away (57% of all goals were scored at home) and 49% of games were won by the home team, compared to 29% for the away team. These are significant differences and important considerations for fantasy footballers, particularly when deciding which players to field in very closely contested matches, like Watford Vs Bournemouth for example.

This week we offer a team fielding exclusively players from home teams, all of which play for clubs ahead of their opponents on the Premier League table, with the exception of Palace’s Wan Bissaka.

So this weeks philosophy need not be complicated – Home teams, form clubs, and form players. A reliable recipe for success.