Reid and Mike are joined by Parker Cleveland from Dirty South Soccer to breakdown down the events from the ongoing Round 31. That's right, it's an early preview of Round 32 before the games from the current week are over. They look at which teams have now secured a spot in the MLS Cup Playoff, which teams are still on the bubble, and if that should impact your choice of fantasy players.
They also take some time to break down each game for Round 32 to let you know which teams are worth investing in and which are just a... YAWNNnnnn...
Round 31 was short, but it was packed with several great games that proved quite profitable for Fantasy managers. There were plenty of 100+ point scores, with Filip Trubalski, manager of TRU(E)LAND, at the top of the list with 120 points. Congrats!
All of the Double Game Weeks and Bye Rounds are now behind us and it’s just business as usual for the last two rounds of the season…well, almost. As more teams either fall short of their MLS Cup dreams or secure their place in the postseason, player rotation once again becomes a concern for Fantasy managers.
Below is my list of some of the players who I think have a great chance to continue to play in Round 32 and return good fantasy totals.
Chart Topper: Chicago gave their backup 'keeper some experience in their recent Double Game Week, but I expect Matt Lampson ($4.9) to be back in the starting XI on Sunday against Philadelphia (5:00 pm ET; MLS LIVE). My top ‘keeper pick this week, Lampson has been a strong option at Toyota Park this year, as the Fire have allowed just 12 goals in their 16 home matches. That success is likely to continue on Sunday against a Union team that’s scored among the fewest road goals in MLS.
Playoff Bubble: If you’d rather look to the Western Conference for your keeper, consider Seattle’s Stefan Frei ($6.9). With Sporting KC’s Tim Melia injured, Frei claims the title of best ‘keeper in the West. Dallas have struggled to score on the road all season, so Sunday’s game (7:30 pm ET; FS1, Fox Deportes in the US | MLS LIVE in Canada) could easily see Frei earn his third clean sheet over the past four rounds.
Offensive Powerhouse: If you want to extend your midfield coverage with an out of position player, then Orlando’s Yoshi Yotun ($8.4) is your man. Over his past five games, he’s only scored fewer than three points once and has been a great source of offensive bonus points. He’s also a great differential option at just 1.4 percent ownership and is likely to challenge Columbus’s defense on Sunday (5:00 pm ET; MLS LIVE).
Double Up: If you want a defender to match your ‘keeper, Chicago’s rising form, strong home record and favorable matchup make them the ideal option. Now that they have their starters back, you’ll also have a range of prices to pick from to meet your budget. If price is not a factor, Johan Kappelhof ($6.5) is my top pick due to his ability to generate bonus point producing stats.
Away Option: If you’re planning to have an away player this round, it needs to be Real Salt Lake’s Albert Rusnak ($10.3). While most teams struggle when they travel to Colorado (5:00 pm ET; MLS Live), RSL already have two wins under their belt against the Rapids. Needing a win to sustain their playoff hopes will just make this rivalry hotter. Rusnak has only earned one assist over the previous two meetings, but he’s the key to RSL’s offense and one of their most consistent creators.
Budget Option: The New York Red Bulls’ Tyler Adams ($5.3) has emerged in recent weeks as a great budget play for MLS Fantasy managers. Over his past four games, he’s helped make the Red Bulls’ attack potent again by scoring two goals and earning three assists. He’ll face a tough game when New York host Atlanta on Sunday (5:00 pm ET; FS1, Fox Deportes in the US | MLS LIVE in Canada), but with the Five Stripes missing a few regular starters, Adams could continue his scoring streak.
Return to Form: As previously mentioned, Chicago’s return to form and favorable match make their players excellent fantasy options for this round. A big part of their recent success is Nemanja Nikolic’s ($10.6) uptick in scoring. Over his past five games, Nikolic has scored five goals and jumped to the top of the Golden Boot race. The Union’s road defense has been OK, but I don’t think it will hold as the Fire push for second place in the East.
Switcheroo Potential: He flies under the radar a bit, but Vancouver’s Fredy Montero ($9.5) is a good differential option for Round 32. He’s almost the definition of a streaky goal scorer, but he rarely has a game where he does not have several chances. With a first round bye not yet secure, the Whitecaps have a lot of play for and Montero should put a lot of pressure on a San Jose defense that has struggled on the road on Sunday (7:30 pm ET; TSN1, MLS LIVE).
WHICH PLAYERS are you considering for Round 32?
FOR MORE fantasy advice, be sure to check out the articles and charts posted at MLSFantasyBoss.com.
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