Champions League

The best players to own and captain for opening round of UEFA Champions League Fantasy

UEFA Champions League Fantasy managers have just a few hours left to select their squads for the new season.

Make sure you read up on our introductory articles for the game, as the clock winds down until the Matchday One deadline.

As you add the finishing touches, we have provided some last-minute tips and advice on captaincy, team selection and chip usage.

Champions League match tickets, Playstation 5 consoles and cash in the UEFA store are up for grabs, while Premium Memberships will also be dished out to the leaders in our Fantasy Football Scout mini-league (PIN: 65KAB8EHX307).

Captains Sensible

In the UEFA Champions League Fantasy game, managers can pick two captains per week; one on Tuesday and one on Wednesday.

That means we can afford to take a more balanced approach to the game with ‘sensible’ and ‘differential’ options available on both nights.

Tuesday, October 20

Sensible

If you want a sensible call for Tuesday’s games, it has to be (arguably) the best player of all time at home to the Hungarian minnows Ferencvaros.

Yes, Lionel Messi (€12m) and his Barcelona side lost 1-0 to Getafe at the weekend, but they rested Philippe Coutinho (€9m) and Ansu Fati (€8m), who we’ve already seen work well with the Argentinian so far this season.

We all know Messi can score a hat-trick whenever he feels like it and this seems like the perfect fixture for the Blaugrauna to redeem themselves for the weekend and re-announce themselves onto the European stage. Messi has to be your man for this Tuesday night fixture.

Differential

Selecting a differential for Tuesday is a tough prospect, as most of the good options for Tuesday evening are fairly highly owned.

However, the deadline for transfers is at kick-off, so we will have the luxury of seeing the start line-ups.

Therefore, assuming he starts, I’m recommending Artem Dzyuba (€8m) as the differential option for the armband.

With just 1% ownership, Zenit’s talisman has seven goals and four assists so far this season and is on penalties for the Russian giants, who have a plum fixture at home to Club Brugge. 

Wednesday, October 21

Sensible

Six goals in his last two league games, playing in the best team in Europe, European Player of the Year, 102 goals in his last 100 games. Am I missing anything?

Oh yes, 15 goals in 11 games in last season’s Champions League-winning campaign. He might be playing Atlético, but this is Robert Lewandowski (€12m). The form man of Europe.

Differential

There are some great differential options for Wednesday’s games and I could only whittle them down as far these two: Duvan Zapata (€9.5m) and Romelu Lukaku (€11m).

Zapata is only owned by 2% and will start as the main striker for Atalanta against Danish minnows Midtjylland. The Italian outfit have a ruthless habit of scoring four or more goals a game, which they’ve already done in three of their four games so far this season. If they do it in Denmark, Zapata will be involved. 

Lukaku seems less of a secret, but he is still only in 4% of squads. The former Manchester United striker scored for Inter in the Milan derby this weekend to make it four goals in four Serie A games under Antonio Conte.

Their fixture at home to Borussia Mönchengladbach, who currently sit 11th in the Bundesliga, makes Lukaku a very appealing prospect for this week. 

The 1% Club

When there’s 32 teams in a football tournament, there is always an instant saturation of good options in every position. As such, I didn’t think the standard 10%, or even 5% ownership, could be considered quite different enough to be a real ‘differential’.

Even then, I’ve found eight great options with 1% ownership or less which could fire your team to glory. Welcome to the 1% Club.

Up first are three midfielders priced between 8.5-9m. Florian Thauvin (€8.5m) is Marseille’s talisman, scoring against Bordeaux at the weekend playing as part of a front two. He’s also on penalties (although he missed one at the weekend). 

Next up is Dortmund’s Marco Reus (€8.5m), who came off the bench to score the winning goal on Saturday. He looks back to full fitness and sharpness while both him and Erling Haaland (€11m) were benched on Saturday to make sure they’re fully fit for the game against an unconvincing Lazio side on Tuesday evening. 

When both mentally and physically fit, Atalanta’s Josip Ilicic (€9m) is the most feared piece in one of Europe’s most feared attacking teams. He returned to the Atalanta side with 63 minutes in the loss to Napoli this weekend and should be ready for the trip to Denmark on Wednesday. Assuming he finds his form of last season, he could be the most dangerous differential of the lot.

Two 5m defenders from big teams also find themselves in the 1% Club. PSG’s Alessandro Florenzi (€5m) and Juventus’s Danilo (€5m) both seem nailed in their respective teams.

Both have four great group games of the six, and Florenzi is becoming a key piece for PSG at both ends, scoring in their victory against Amiens on Friday evening. 

The final few are slightly lesser known players, but by no means lesser options. I discussed Zenit’s Dzyuba above, but the man who’s been playing behind him in the league also has 1% ownership.

Attacking midfielder Alexsandr Erokhin (€5.0m) has three goals in his last three games for Zenit and if he keeps that form up with games against Club Brugge and Lazio, he could be a massive bargain.

Olympiacos’ Youssef El-Arabi (€8m) and Rennes’ Sehrou Guirassy (€6.5m) are both 1% owned and have the potential to score big in the group stages.

Both have form coming into this Champions League campaign too. El-Arabi scored a hat-trick in just 50 minutes on the pitch this weekend. In groups full of favourable defences including Porto, Krasnodar, Marseille and Chelsea, they should both tick along nicely as the talisman of their respective teams.

Game Strategy

I’ll finish with a few key points to discuss how to make the most of your 15-man squad in the group stages.

First up, it is important to make sure you’ve got 15 players who’re likely to start, split fairly evenly across the two Gamedays of each Matchday, so there will always be good options to substitute in between Gamedays.

This is a key feature of the game so it’s important to be hands on in changing your team between Tuesday and Wednesday evening.

As I mentioned above, it’s also a good idea to make sure you have a strong captaincy option for both days of each Matchday, to give yourself the best chance of catching a mega-haul every week. 

Also, have an idea of when you want to use your Wildcard. It is normally most sensible to use it at some point in the group stages, due to the massive amount of transfers available throughout the knockout stages and the unlimited transfers after the group stage. 

While the Wildcard would often be employed after the first two Matchdays, this year the group stage is split into two three week chunks, separated by an international break.

As we saw in the most recent IB, stars such as Cristiano Ronaldo (€12m) and Jules Kounde (€4m) were ruled out by COVID-19. We can only expect similar trends in the next international break so it seems sensible to hold the Wildcard until after then, potentially for Matchday Four or Five. 

The other chip available in UEFA Champions League Fantasy is Limitless. Similarly to FPL’s Free Hit, you can change your team entirely for one week.

Unlike this more familiar chip, there is no budget when you use your Limitless chip, meaning you can afford big hitters at every position if you so desire.

I usually use this in conjunction with my Wildcard in the group stage – either the week before I Wildcard or for Matchday Six.

The final round of matches often features rotation of teams who have qualified for the knockout stages early and some big performances from teams desperate to sneak through at the last – so this can be a great way of making up points. 

Best of luck to everyone in picking their Matchday One squads.

I’ll be back on Wednesday with a review of the first Gameday and tips for the second.

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For further UEFA Champions League Fantasy reading and discussion, head over to our Community article page.

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444 Comments Post a Comment
  1. JimJoshBoy
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 3 Years
    1 month, 12 days ago

    Rushing to get Kane in over players who might well get some points next week... Casual or smart

    Robbo + Jimi > Kane + Ayling (-4)

    What do we reckon?

    1. Pedersen
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 2 Years
      1 month, 12 days ago

      Casual seems to be the way this year.. wouldn't sell robo though

      1. JimJoshBoy
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        1 month, 12 days ago

        Only way kane gets into the team is to sell one of

        A)Sterling to 9m mid
        B)J.Rrod to 5m mid
        C)Robbo to 4.5m def
        D)Salah to 9.5m mid

        1. zotter
          • 11 Years
          1 month, 12 days ago

          Do you have Trent

    2. zotter
      • 11 Years
      1 month, 12 days ago

      Hmm. Wouldn’t this week. But who knows. If you captain Kane and with that Liverpool defence

      1. zotter
        • 11 Years
        1 month, 12 days ago

        Robbo and Jimi could get 8. Kane c could get 34!

        1. JimJoshBoy
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 3 Years
          1 month, 12 days ago

          i knoooooww

  2. zotter
    • 11 Years
    1 month, 12 days ago

    Predictions for this weekend fwiw

    Villa v Leeds. 2-1
    West Ham v Man City. 1-3
    Fulham v Palace. 1-1
    United v Chelsea. 2-2
    Liverpool v sheff u. 3-0
    Saints v Everton. 2-1
    Wolves v Newcastle. 3-0
    Arsenal v Leicester. 2-2
    Brighton v WBA. 1-0
    Burnley v Spurs. 1-4

    1. Joey Tribbiani
        1 month, 12 days ago

        Villa v Leeds. 0-0
        West Ham v Man City. 1-3
        Fulham v Palace. 1-1
        United v Chelsea. 1-1
        Liverpool v sheff u. 4-0
        Saints v Everton. 1-1
        Wolves v Newcastle. 2-1
        Arsenal v Leicester. 2-1
        Brighton v WBA. 2-0
        Burnley v Spurs. 1-2

      • Hakim Ziyech
        • 1 Year
        1 month, 12 days ago

        Villa 2-0 Leeds
        West ham 2-2 City
        Fulham 2-1 Palace
        Utd 2-5 Chelsea
        Liverpool 4-0 Shu
        Saints 1-3 Everton
        Wolves 2-0 Newcastle
        Arsenal 2-1 Leicester
        Brighton 4-1 Wba
        Burnley 1-3 Spurs

        1. zotter
          • 11 Years
          1 month, 12 days ago

          Can’t call any of your predictions wild this year. In fact more realistic than a 1-0!

    2. VICTORIOUS SECRET! !
      • 7 Years
      1 month, 12 days ago

      So this is how my team looks

      Martinez / McCarthy

      Dunne / reguilon / saiss / Justin / Mitchell

      Sterling / Salah / podence / Rodriguez / anguissa

      Kane / DCL / Jimenez

      2FT

      How about
      Jimenez + sterling --------> Aguero + son

      Yay or nay ?
      Suggestions please
      Cheers ☺️

      1. zotter
        • 11 Years
        1 month, 12 days ago

        Not this week anyway. Jimi nice fixture. And sterling looks more potent than Aguero

      2. JimJoshBoy
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        1 month, 12 days ago

        Do it

      3. TNB
          1 month, 12 days ago

          I think you need to fit Son(aldo) in there!

        • zotter
          • 11 Years
          1 month, 12 days ago

          I would just downgrade McCarthy this week

      4. Woy_is_back
        • 3 Years
        1 month, 12 days ago

        TAA captain next gw. Its time

        1. zotter
          • 11 Years
          1 month, 12 days ago

          Agree with half of that !

        2. TNB
            1 month, 12 days ago

            Good luck with that 😉

        3. Yankee Toffee
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 5 Years
          1 month, 11 days ago

          Should I drop Jorginho (4 points) for Casemiro (home to Shaktar)?