With just a few hours remaining until the quarter-finals of Brazil 2014 get underway, we turn our attentions to PlayON’s World Cup Game this morning. Bearing in mind that all eight group winners are still in with a chance of winning the tournament, there are plenty of in-form options for us to consider in our assessment of the PlayON Player Price List:
There’s a MASSIVE £2,500 POT on offer today just for the Quarter-Finals Gameweek. You can enter up to three different teams into the game, with the deadline for entries closing at 15.00 today. You can enter the £2,500 game here.
Goalkeeper – Jasper Cillessen
Available for £8.4m, the Holland number one is the fifth most expensive keeper remaining in the tournament ahead of a clash against Costa Rica. Granted, Louis Van Gaal’s side have managed just one clean sheet thus far but with their opponents mustering a mere two goals in their previous three fixtures, hopes of a Dutch shut-out are high heading into tomorrow’s match. With most of the eight sides looking likely to score, though, price may be the overriding factor when selecting our stoppers. In the same showdown, Keylor Navas comes in at just £7.8m and is poised to shrug off a shoulder problem to continue his heroics between the sticks for Jorge Luis Pinto’s side. Elsewhere, Belgium’s Thibaut Courtois has conceded once from open play in four games and sets you back £8.0m for a testing clash against Argentina.
Defender – Mats Hummels
Having missed the Matchday 4 win over Algeria due to illness, the Germany centre-half is fully fit for a showdown with France. Available for £8.7m, Hummels’ return at the heart of the back looks vital for Joachim Low’s side as they attempt to keep Karim Benzema and co quiet, whilst his attacking threat in the opponents’ box has already served up a goal against Portugal in the group opener. Holland’s clash with Costa Rica brings Daley Blind back onto our Fantasy radars. Setting you back £8.6m, the versatile Ajax defender has already provided a trio of assists and could be shifted into central midfield this time around if Nigel de Jong fails to recover from injury. Marcos Rojo’s one-match suspension looks set to bring Jose Maria Basanta into Argentina’s starting XI for the first time in the campaign. Coming in at £8.7m ahead of a showdown with Belgium, the left-back affords us the cheapest route into a defence that has two clean sheets in the last three.
Midfielder – James Rodriguez
We keep faith in our pick from Matchday 4 ahead of an all-South American showdown against hosts Brazil. The only player to have scored in all four rounds of fixtures so far, the £9.4m-priced Rodriguez leads the way for the Golden Boot with five strikes and a pair of assists to his name – bearing in mind that Jose Pekerman’s side have scored at least twice in every match to date, they’ll be far from intimidated against a backline that has mustered a single clean sheet in their four fixtures. Arjen Robben cannot be overlooked for Holland’s clash against Costa Rica. The priciest midfielder in the PlayON Player Price List at £9.5m, his role up top in a 3-4-1-2 has already brought three goals and an assist, with Robben also earning the penalty that led to the late winner over Mexico – if Louis Van Gaal’s side are to prevail, he’ll surely have a major say. For those eyeing up a midfield budget enabler, Costa Rica’s left winger Christian Bolanos is available for a mere £8.0m and has assisted two of his side’s five goals in the tournament to date.
Forward – Lionel Messi
One of only two forwards to produce returns in every round of the tournament so far, the Argentina striker is the priciest option around at £12.0m for a crunch encounter with Belgium. With four goals and an assist to his name, though, Messi has played a part in five of his side’s seven strikes – as his assist for Angel di Maria’s winner over Mexico showed, his contribution will be essential to the South Americans’ chances of getting the better of an obstinate Belgian rearguard. Thomas Mulller has also scored or assisted in all of his four fixtures, yet is only the fifth most expensive forward at £11.4m. With four goals and a pair of assists accrued, the Bayern man is the only Germany player to have had a hand in more than one of their nine strikes ahead of a difficult clash with France. Finally, Belgium’s Divock Origi could be one to consider. After catching the eye with a couple of impressive displays off the bench, the youngster was handed his first start of the tournament last time around and sets you back just £10.1m for the game against Argentina as Marc Wilmots’ side attempt to justify the pre-tournament hype and earn a place in the last four.
The quarter-finals deadline arrives at 15.00 today, so get picking for the £2,500 game at www.playon.co