I am convinced that the disagreement between Antonio Conte and Diego Costa was entirely caused by my writing earlier in the week that the Chelsea player is my top choice for GW21 and there is nothing that you can say or do to make me change my mind. Luckily, the news about Diego Costa's exclusion (due to his back problems, of course) came with plenty of advanced warning to allow us to replace him in our fantasy lineup. Our weekly recommended player list has supplementary names to cover these kinds of unexpected last minute incidents.
With Gameweek 21 behind us, let’s turn our attention to the English Premier League Gameweek 22. Seven games will be played this coming Saturday, January 21. DraftKings will feature six of the seven games for their daily contests. The matches featured by DraftKings are:
Crystal Palace – Everton
Stoke City – Manchester United
Manchester City – Tottenham
West Brom – Sunderland
Middlesbrough - West Ham
Bournemouth - Watford
Our recommendations for your fantasy lineups are below. The standard lineup of each DraftKings contest has one goalkeeper, two defenders, two midfielders, two forwards and one utility player. In doing the search for a winning fantasy lineup, we are sensitive to the requirements of the dreaded salary cap. Our recommendations include players who have a favorable scheduled match and whose salary will allow you to field a well-balanced team. In addition, our recommendations for your lineup are based in part on the odds set by English bookmakers for each game.
Our recommendations for your GW22 fantasy lineup are:
Goalkeeper (choose one): Ben Foster (West Brom), David de Gea (Manchester United)
Defenders (choose two): Leighton Baines (Everton), Mason Holgate (Everton), Gareth McAuley (West Brom), Calum Chambers (Middlesbrough)
Midfielders (choose two): Junior Stanislas (Bournemouth), Matt Phillips (Middlesbrough), Paul Pogba (Manchester United), Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City), Christian Eriksen (Tottenham)
Forwards (choose two): Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Manchester United), Romelu Lukaku (Everton), Harry Kane (Tottenham), Salomon Rondon (West Brom)
Utility (choose one): Raheem Sterling (Manchester City), Dele Alli (Tottenham), Marko Arnautovic (Stoke City, I know that he is facing the Red Devils, but he was the Diego Costa replacement last week and gave my fantasy team two goals)
Note that several midfielders and forwards qualify at both positions, in addition to utility, on DraftKings. Unfortunately, that may not help your salary cap, as all of these players are quite expensive. Our strategy is to insert low-salaried defenders into the mix.
Follow Pasko on Twitter @varnica123. His essays about sports in ancient Roman times can be found at SportsInAntiquity.com