MLS Fantasy Starting XI: Key injuries, bargain goalkeepers and Jimmy Nielsen vs. Bill Hamid

MLS Fantasy Soccer: Manager Experts Jason Saghini and Andrew Wiebe are back with another episode of Starting Lineup (above), answering the questions you submitted to @MLSFantasy and our Starting Lineup blog that comes out every Tuesday.

We get some great questions each and every week so keep sending them in. If you don’t see your question down here, make sure you check out the video above. It’s loaded with great tips!

1. Dave O'Toole asks: Should you avoid starting players whose teams are playing each other in a round, like RSL and Colorado this week? (Starting Lineup blog comment)

This is something that is bound to happen many times as the season progresses. It would take extreme planning to avoid this. Ultimately, it depends on who you think is more likely to produce. If you have Real Salt Lake defenders, I would start them with confidence. At the same time, if you have Deshorn Brown, you’ll likely want to start him as well because he already scored against RSL a couple weeks ago. It’s a lose-lose situation, so if you can avoid it without accruing any extra penalties, I would do it.

Tip: Personally, I like to try and avoid these dilemmas. If you have cash and transfers available that will allow you to accommodate these changes, make them. But as I said before, this will surely happen multiple times throughout the season unless you plan ahead.

2. Neil Hampton asks: Should I start Fabian Espíndola over Andrew Jacobson? Espíndola's injury could mean he only comes on at the end, but if he starts I think he has a good chance at scoring against Chicago. However, Jacobson has been performing very consistently (especially considering his low price). Thoughts? (@MLSFantasy comment)

Fabián Espíndola is going to be a game-time decision, but even if he’s healthy, I believe Péguy Luyindula has done enough to earn the starting nod and most of the minutes up top. Jacobson has been very solid for FC Dallas, and with the amount of attacking options at his disposal, he could be in line for an assist sooner rather than later. I would stick with Jacobson.

Tip: The latest word on Espíndola is that he’s training separately from the team. Injuries are not something I like to take chances on, but if you really want to go with him, throw him in your lineup and put Jacobson as the first sub option on your bench. That way, if Espíndola doesn’t play, Jacobson will automatically take his spot.

3. Greg Mendonca (@gregmendonca) asks: Looking for a bye-week GK replacement, cheapest who's going to play would be nice! (Starting Lineup blog comment)

Clint Irwin for the Colorado Rapids is the cheapest starting goalkeeper you can go with this weekend. He only costs $4.2m and is facing a injury depleted Real Salt Lake side at home. RSL are a superior opponent, but they could be without both Robbie Findley and Joao Plata at the attacking end. Álvaro Saborío should be back in RSL’s starting lineup this weekend and Javier Morales could provide some offensive firepower as a sub later in the game.

Tip: Joe Bendik ($4.6m) from Toronto FC is another option, but Stefan Frei ($4.8) made the gameday 18 last week and could debut as the starter as early as this week. Your next option after that is around the $5.0m range.

4. Matthew Pollard (@HurricanelDoter) asks: Jimmy Nielsen or Bill Hamid as my keeper? (@MLSFantasy comment)

It’s hard to find a reason why Jimmy Nielsen shouldn’t be your guy this weekend. D.C. United might possess more of an attacking presence than the Montreal Impact, but word on social media is that they could be without their star midfielder Dwayne De Rosario. If this is the case, Nielsen will have a much greater chance at a shutout in Sporting Park, especially considering D.C.'s struggles going forward this weekend.

Tip: Wait to finalize your team until tomorrow’s starting lineups are released. If DeRo isn’t in the lineup, go with Nielsen. Honestly, I’d go with him regardless. Sporting KC are a dominant force at home.

5. Luke Dodd asks: Jose Villarreal is listed as a forward on the Galaxy’s website and has only played forward so far this season, but is listed as a midfielder for fantasy. Are there any plans to making midseason position updates for the fantasy rosters? (Starting Lineup blog comment)

This is something that is established prior to the launching of the game on a yearly basis. Once a player is given an initial position in Fantasy Soccer: Manager, it cannot be adjusted. After the year is over, all positions will be reviewed and updated.

Tip: Initially, Villarreal was expected to play more of a midfield role given the options the LA Galaxy possess at forward.

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That does it for Round 6 of Q & A with the Experts. Tweet your questions to @MLSFantasy and continue commenting on our fantasy articles and blogs. And if you haven’t had a chance to check it out yet, take a look at the “Stats” section we added to FS:M. It has all the information you need to help you field your Best XI on a weekly basis.

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