Streaming defenders is an essential tactic in Draft Fantasy Football, so we’re here to outline useful hints and tips on a weekly basis.
We pick out the best options for a clean sheet to be found in a Premier League defence with potentially low ownership, as well as players who look set to start for a top 6 side on a given gameweek. Pick up a free agent from one of these sides to give your team a better chance of victory!
We use the ownership statistics as per Draft Fantasy, with the rules being each player we highlight is required to have ownership of 30% or below.
Top Tip: Leicester City
The Team: Last weekend Leicester put in a tremendous performance to beat Cardiff, after the horrific events of the previous weekend. They also kept a clean sheet, and we’re backing them to do it again in GW12 as they face an out of form Burnley side at the King Power Stadium. Emotions will be running high once again, as Leicester play in front of their own fans for the first time since the tragic death of their owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha.
The Players: The back four will consist of Pereira, Morgan, and Chilwell, with Evans most likely to replace the injured Maguire. Chilwell (23% ownership Draft Fantasy Football) has to be the best option here – he’s been a regular feature in our Hot List this season, and gained an assist to go with the clean sheet last weekend. Pereira (40% DFF) is also a great alternative, and is potentially a free agent in Draft Leagues after his recent rotation in and out of the team. Now that Daniel Amartey has suffered an unfortunate injury, Pereira will be able to make the right back slot his own over the coming weeks and months. Elsewhere, Morgan (1% DFF) comes into contention as a solid option after the injury suffered by fellow centre back Maguire. We know he’s not the best of footballers, but Puel likes him and he’s still starting regularly. Evans (5% DFF) will probably come into the side for Maguire, and is an option in leagues where the other Leicester defenders are taken. Schmeichel (61% DFF) is also a great shout if you need a goalkeeper for GW12, but its unlikely he’ll be available.
The Opposition: Burnley have been shocking so far this season. Miles away from their performances of last season! Many thought they would get back to their best after exiting the Europa League, but this has not been the case. They are conceded 13 goals in the last 3 games, and have largely struggled in front of goal. They did score two last weekend, but we think Leicester will be able to keep them out.
The Prospects: It might be worth picking up a Leicester defender for the coming weeks, as they face Brighton, Watford, and Fulham in the games following this weekend.
West Ham United
The Team: West Ham got back to winning ways in GW11, as they thumped Burnley 4-2 at the London Stadium. The Hammers now face Huddersfield, and will be expected to take home the three points once again. We think West Ham will be able to keep out The Terriers this weekend, and bring home a clean sheet to go with the victory.
The Players: In terms of the players you should be targeting, there are two standout options. Summer signings Balbuena (2% ownership Draft Fantasy Football) and Diop (2% DFF) have settled into life in the Premier League pretty well, and are the best prospects out of the West Ham defenders. Balbuena in particular, as he features in our Hot List at the moment. Elsewhere, Fabianski (46% DFF) is obviously a great option if he’s a free agent in your Draft League – he picks up plenty of save points as well as the potential for a clean sheet. Veteran defender Zabaleta (5% DFF) is likely to continue at right back, and Cresswell (20% DFF) or Masuaku (1% DFF) will be at left back – steer clear from those two for now though!
The Opposition: Huddersfield actually scored a goal in front of their home fans in GW11 – and took home their first win of the season! That being said, they were playing Fulham, who are on the worst form in the whole league. We’re not expecting The Terriers to repeat these antics in GW12, as their attacking players are extremely poor. Only Aaron Mooy is really good enough to be playing at Premier League level in our opinion.
The Prospects: Pretty fantastic. West Ham only face one of the Top Six between now and GW22… snapping up their assets is highly recommended. Diop and Balbuena should be high on your watch list!
The Team: Bournemouth kept three clean sheets in a row prior to the GW11 fixture against Manchester United, and we’re expecting them to get back on track with a win and a clean sheet this weekend against Newcastle. The Cherries have looked surprisingly good at the back this season.
The Players: Eddie Howe has been chopping and changing his formations regularly in recent weeks, so it’s hard to tell what the full defensive lineup will be. One thing we can be certain of is that Ake (39% ownership Draft Fantasy Football) and Steve Cook (33% DFF) will be lining up as the centre backs. If you’re looking for a Bournemouth defender then look no further than these two – both have attacking potential from set pieces. Elsewhere, Francis (1% DFF), Daniels (5% DFF), and Adam Smith (8% DFF) will feature if Howe opts for wing backs, but we’re unsure who would miss out if a flat back four was the formation. GW11 Daniels sat out with Francis and Smith as full backs. Begovic (30% DFF) will continue in goal, as ever.
The Opposition: Similar to Huddersfield above, Newcastle did actually score a goal last weekend, as they surprised Watford to gain an unlikely victory. However, the Magpies have been poor in front of goal this season, and have plenty of injury concerns going into GW12. Bournemouth should have enough to shut out the likes of Rondon and Kenedy.
The Prospects: The upcoming fixture list is fairly tough for Bournemouth, as they face Arsenal, Man City, and Liverpool in three of the four games following GW12. They do face a poor Huddersfield side in GW15, however.
Looking Elsewhere: Saed Kolasinac
Saed Kolasinac (13% ownership Draft Fantasy Football) made his first appearance of the season in the 1-1 draw with Liverpool in GW11, and we’re backing him to be the next full-back to star in Fantasy Football. He looked set to be back in favour at Arsenal under Emery, after featuring heavily in pre-season. Unfortunately he suffered an injury on the eve of the season, and has only just returned to full fitness. If the Bosnian can regain the form and confidence shown at the start of last season, he’ll be a great asset to any Draft Fantasy squad! He’s already been certified Hot in our Hot or Cold Player Rankings.
This weekend Arsenal face a Wolves side who have lost three games in a row, and look there for the taking. Let’s face it though, we’re backing Kolasinac due to his attacking instincts rather than his clean sheet potential. The Gunners may keep out Jimenez and co, but it’s more likely Kolasinac will bag a goal or assist against a defence that has been poor in recent weeks. Arsenal have been on great scoring form recently, and they will surely bag a couple this weekend.
Check out our GW12 Punting For Gold article here!
The quoted ownership statistics were taken from Draft Fantasy. Check them out if you’re after an online platform for your Draft Fantasy Football league!