Reid, Mike, and Blayne are joined by Matt Pollard from Last Work on Soccer to preview all of the upcoming action for the final round of the 2018 MLS Fantasy Season! They have a great discussion about the fantasy value of all the teams still trying to make it into the playoffs and touch on which teams that are jockeying for home field advantage are most likely to see rotations. Everything is wrapped up with a breakdown of Round 35 where everyone reveals which teams they are leaning on most for fantasy points and which offer the best value.
It feels like only yesterday that the 2018 MLS Fantasy season kicked off, but here we are at Round 35, the last round of the season.
There have been a lot of ups and down throughout the year, and I don’t expect Decision Day presented by AT&T to be any different. Many teams have something to play for this weekend and Fantasy managers should look to marque players to put up big point totals. We’re also likely to see some players rested for the Audi 2018 MLS Cup Playoffs, so keep an eye on the lineups so you can pick up the most promising differentials.
Below is a list of some of my favorite players to help you end the season on a high note.
Double-Game Week: None
Bye Teams: Real Salt Lake
By the Numbers: Orlando City SC may have grabbed a win at home last week, but they are still scoreless in their last four road games. This poor run of form makes Luis Robles ($10.4) a great, if expensive, option for ‘keeper. This pick is not all about the Lions (4:30 pm ET | TV & streaming info), though, as the New York Red Bulls have the best home defense this round and Robles has earned four clean sheets over his last five games.
Budget Friendly: If you want to move more money into your attacking players without sacrificing the quality of your ‘keeper, consider Stefan Frei ($7.3). San Jose (4:30 pm ET | TV & streaming info) are winless over their last seven games and failed to score the last time these teams met. Meanwhile, the Seattle Sounders have ridden their four-game winning streak right into the playoffs and a win this week secures a home Knockout Round game.
Budget Differential: Early in the season, betting against the LA Galaxy’s defense was a solid choice, but since taking over as manager, Dominic Kinnear has helped shore up the backline. The Galaxy have earned two clean sheets and only conceded two goals in their last four games. If you want to roll the dice on another good result against Houston (4:30 pm ET | TV & streaming info), consider Rolf Feltscher ($5.6), who’s generated good bonus points and been an offensive threat.
Lineup Watch: If you decide not splurge on a Red Bulls ‘keeper, be sure to pick up at least one defender so you can take advantage of Orlando’s aforementioned poor road form. Kemar Lawrence ($8.3) is a great option who also adds an offensive threat to your backline, but he missed last week so there may be an injury concern. Connor Lade ($4.5) filled in as his replacement last week and could become quite the value pick if he starts again.
History of Form: The playoff picture in the Eastern Conference is mostly set, but the West could see a lot of changes this week. A win for the Galaxy punches their ticket, and success could largely depend on Romain Alessandrini ($12.0). He’s scored a goal or earned an assistant in four of his last six games and tends to play well against the Dynamo, with a record of two goals and one assist in his three previous meetings.
To the Wire: Another midfielder who could benefit from a Decision Day victory is Montreal’s Ignacio Piatti ($12.3). Their fate is not entirely in their own hands, as a win will not secure a playoff spot without the result of Columbus-Minnesota breaking in their favor. Piatti has scored four goals and three assists over his last six games, though, and will be key to breaking down New England’s (4:30 pm ET | TV & streaming info) leaky home defense and keeping the Impact’s hopes alive.
Top Spot: Several of the top forwards could see rotations this week, as many playoff spots have been decided, but Golden Boot leader Josef Martinez ($12.1) could still see the field, as he has a chance to bring the Supporters’ Shield home to Atlanta United. I have some concerns that Martinez’s dip in form may continue until Miguel Almiron returns, likely during the playoffs. But if Toronto FC (4:30 pm ET | TSN4 – Full TV & streaming info) rotate their starters, he’s a great third forward option.
Turnaround: If Montreal do not make it into the playoffs, it will be due to Columbus Crew SC, who need a win over Minnesota United (4:30 pm ET | TV & streaming info) this weekend to keep hold of the East’s sixth spot. In order for this to happen, players like Gyasi Zardes ($6.1) will need to break out of their current slump and chip in some goals, as the Loons have been scoring on the road. Zardes has the ability to find the back of the net and is a bargain as a third bench forward.
WHICH PLAYERS are you considering for Round 35?
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