Champions League

UCL Fantasy Panel: Round of 16

The Champions League is back and getting down to business as the knockout rounds begin. Matchday 7 is upon us and with it comes a free Wildcard!

We’ve assembled our panel to once again answer three key questions to help you shape your team and propel you up (or stay on top of!) your mini-leagues.

On the panel this week are Fantasy Football Scout’s Community Members and seasoned UCL players Darth_Krid, Stats Don’t Lie, JK, AK, FFFrog and Pirlo’s Pen.

Each panellist was asked to name their best captain choice, best differential (below 10 per cent ownership) and best-value player as the thinning out of teams naturally leaves the stronger sides in the tournament and thus higher-priced assets in general.

Who is the best captain for Matchday 7?

Darth_Krid – With Ilkay Gundogan’s fitness questionable at the time of writing, I’m backing Raheem Sterling for the armband as he’s as close to nailed as you can get for City, who have one of the easier fixtures and are arguably the most in-form team in Europe currently.

Stats Don’t LieIlkay Gundogan has already shown a tendency to be surprisingly the best asset among Man City players, but his recent goal-scoring form in the Premier League makes him a must-have for me as well as one of the standout captains. City have arguably one of the best ties of the round and Gundogan’s goal-scoring prowess combined with a penchant for ball recoveries makes him an all-round threat.

AK – I like to go with solid captains usually, and I can’t look past Robert Lewandowski. Playing an average Lazio side who lie seventh in the Serie A table, I expect Bayern Munich to ease past them with Lewandowski scoring quite comfortably.  

JK – It’s hard to look past knockouts monster Cristiano Ronaldo against Porto.

FFFrogLewandowski against an average Lazio side has to be the pick here. He’s fresh from scoring all three of Bayern’s goals in the Club World Cup, has netted 24 times in 19 league games, and is on penalties.

Pirlo’s Pen – Knockout phases is when Ronaldo comes alive, he’s got an easy game on paper in Porto, and I expect him to score well.

Who is the best differential (<10% ownership) for Matchday 7?

Darth_KridLuis Suarez at four per cent ownership for the La Liga leaders is borderline criminal, especially against a Chelsea team still adapting to life under Thomas Tuchel.

Stats Don’t Lie – There are A LOT of players that I could mention here but as a keen Fantasy Bundesliga player, the name of a personal favourite springs to mind: Christopher Nkunku, a cheap gem in the UCL game last year has returned to the RB Leipzig side and returned to form. With two goals and an assist in his last four and facing up a suspect Liverpool defence, I think there is potential for Nkunku to send you flying up the ranks.

AKRaheem Sterling with just eight per cent ownership is too good to turn down. With City going on an unbeaten run in the league and looking invincible, I think they’ll be comfortable winners against Monchengladbach and I expect Sterling to find some form in the UCL.  

JK – Playing a leaky Dortmund defence, Sevilla’s Yousef Eyn-Nesri is owned by just two per cent.

FFFrogLuis Suarez is only owned by four per cent of teams currently, despite being the La Liga top scorer for runaway leaders Atletico. He plays Tuchel’s distinctly average Chelsea side and should have the quality to fire Simeone’s men into the next round.

Pirlo’s Pen – We all know the power of Joao Cancelo, and at six per cent ownership, he’s a must own for me.

Who is the best value pick for Matchday 7?

Darth_Krid – It’s impossible to look any further than Jules Kounde (€3.9m). Sevilla are in terrific form with seven clean sheets on the bounce and play against a Dortmund team who are struggling domestically.

Stats Don’t Lie – There is little doubt in my mind that the best-value pick will continue to be the criminally under-priced €3.9m Sevilla defender Kounde. Sevilla are on a tremendous run losing just one of their last 19 games in all competitions and conceding a mere eight goals in that time, including none in the last seven. To add further appeal, Dortmund have struggled to defend set-pieces this season. Kounde is simply a must-have.

AK – I cannot look past Jules Kounde (€3.9m) playing against a very out-of-form Dortmund side. Sevilla are no pushovers and it’s difficult to pick out a winner here. At that price and playing for a side that good, Kounde is definitely the best value in game for me.

JK – Costing just €6m, playing behind the striker and on penalties (if Sabitzer remains out), Dani Olmo could be an excellent pick against a Liverpool side struggling for clean sheets.

FFFrog – Playing in a Sevilla defence who now haven’t conceded in seven games, Jules Kounde is €3.9m and has a great fixture against a Dortmund side in disarray. A real must-have, who even scored in their recent cup win over Barcelona.

Pirlo’s Pen – Ball recoveries monster Romero is the current highest scorer in the game, even if he doesn’t keep a clean sheet you can still expect five to six points.

Hopefully this helps you make some crucial decisions on your Wildcard!
As always, Community Articles about UCL are the best place to discuss the Champions League fantasy game. All FPL-related content will be removed from the comment section here, so we can have a focused discussion on the key UCL topics!

25 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Geoff
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • Has Moderation Rights
    • 8 Years
    2 months, 16 hours ago

    Some very interesting decisions here..

    I'm currently trying to decide on GKs. They're so expensive but I had Ederson and Szczęsny. Might go budget instead with Szcz. What's everyone else doing with GKs?

    1. Stats Don\'t Lie
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      2 months, 15 hours ago

      That's the pairing I had originally but it feels like way too much spent on my gks, so I have now moved to Bounou and Navas as my combo of choice. I feel like Bounou is the best value goalkeeper of those left in the competition!

      1. Geoff
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • Has Moderation Rights
        • 8 Years
        2 months, 15 hours ago

        Yeah 5m is nice. I'm actually just on Ederson and Kelleher at 3.8m and putting the money into my outfield players. But with substitutions that's probably not the right play

  2. Geoff
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • Has Moderation Rights
    • 8 Years
    2 months, 16 hours ago

    Fully agree with the Lewandowski and Ronaldo picks, and Kounde. All in my team for sure

  3. Best Champions League picks
    Geoff
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • Has Moderation Rights
    • 8 Years
    2 months, 15 hours ago

    With Champions League starting up again, who are you going for?

    Who are the sure picks in your team? Who are the differentials? How is captaincy playing out?

    Remember, this Community Article will be only focused on CL, so bookmark it for UCL-specific chat for now, until the next CL Community Article comes out!

    1. Elfozzie 42
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 10 Years
      2 months, 14 hours ago

      Aargh, I really need to stop working and get this selection sorted now!
      I was also planning on doing the FanTeam one as I've enjoyed the season long PL game there (or at least I enjoyed it when i was in the top 100, slightly less now!)

      1. Geoff
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • Has Moderation Rights
        • 8 Years
        2 months, 14 hours ago

        Ronaldo, Lewandowski, Kounde, Ederson seems like a decent start!

  4. Geoff
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • Has Moderation Rights
    • 8 Years
    2 months, 15 hours ago

    Another question - are you looking at stacking up and focusing on a few teams that you think will make it through? Which teams are you focusing on?

    I'm looking at Ederson Cancelo Foden Gundogan - but that might change

    1. St Pauli Walnuts
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 2 Years
      2 months, 14 hours ago

      You happy to take the risk that Gundo will be fit to start in 8 days? I'm leaning that way myself but does feel odd picking an injured player on what is basically a wildcard.

      1. Geoff
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • Has Moderation Rights
        • 8 Years
        2 months, 14 hours ago

        I think so.. I'm not too worried about the game after. I am considering alternatives though.

        Who else at that price are you looking at?

        1. St Pauli Walnuts
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 2 Years
          2 months, 14 hours ago

          Chiesa is interesting me, but he is my likely Cuadrado replacement. Pretty sure I'm sticking with Gundo. I love the man!

          Good luck.

          1. Geoff
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • Has Moderation Rights
            • 8 Years
            2 months, 13 hours ago

            Yeah lots of time for him to get fit. Should be fine

    2. Elfozzie 42
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 10 Years
      2 months, 14 hours ago

      I mixed it around in the group stages and that felt a better strategy - especially for substitutions and rotation.

  5. Elfozzie 42
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 10 Years
    2 months, 15 hours ago

    I'm late to the party and now have 2 hours to decide on my entire KO stage strategy.
    Good to see the love for Gundogan, but I sense he's going to get rested a little more now, with groin strain and returning KDB.

  6. pundit of punts
    • 8 Years
    2 months, 14 hours ago

    Team done -

    Ederson - 3.8
    Kimmich - Stones - Angelino - Danilo - Rudiger
    Salah - Conan - Foden - Gundogan - Olmo
    Lewandowski - Benzema - En Nesyri

    Good luck all 😀

    1. Geoff
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • Has Moderation Rights
      • 8 Years
      2 months, 14 hours ago

      Very similar to mine! Like it a lot. I'm on Salah too

      1. pundit of punts
        • 8 Years
        2 months, 14 hours ago

        Cheers

      2. Elfozzie 42
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 10 Years
        2 months, 14 hours ago

        Salah? Yesterday's news surely? 😉

        1. Geoff
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • Has Moderation Rights
          • 8 Years
          2 months, 13 hours ago

          Liverpool have to start winning soon right? Right?

          Maybe an Everton win first 😉

  7. Stats Don\'t Lie
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    2 months, 14 hours ago

    I have a couple of key facets to my strategy. Firstly, I thought it essential to have 4 good captaincy candidates across the 4 days. It is unlikely that anyone will replicate the heroics of Ilicic (c) last season but having Salah, Ronaldo, Lewy and Gundogan as my 4 options I feel gives me the best possible opportunity of coming close.

    I have then decided to strike a balance between backing favourites in their ties and yet playing the field, my team currently has representatives from 9 sides, including 4 double ups and a triple up. I prefer this approach for the first leg and may go a bit more bold for the second leg if any ties turn out particularly one-sided.

    1. Geoff
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • Has Moderation Rights
      • 8 Years
      2 months, 14 hours ago

      Yeah I like that a lot, same 4 captains as me. I really do feel like there's opportunity to punt with the captaincy, on attacking defenders for example, but I like the security of those big names. I wish City played earlier, then I'd punt on Cancelo.

      1. Elfozzie 42
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 10 Years
        2 months, 13 hours ago

        Got a side together, but I think it's fair to say I'm far from convinced.
        Lots of great advice in these articles at least (I hope).
        One thing I'm struggling with is how much I should divide the fixture dates. Substitutes seems absolutely key to success for me in this game.

  8. lugs
    • 3 Years
    2 months, 11 hours ago

    this is what i came up with, goodluck all 🙂

    Szczesny
    Mbemba, Kounde, Pavard
    Salah(c), Kroos, Rakitic, Felix
    Messi, Benzema, Kean

    Courtois, Gundo, Dias, Hermosa

  9. Sepp Blattered
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 11 Years
    1 month, 29 days ago

    Is there a perk to joining this late to the party?

    Like losing out to GW1 starters... is there a knockout league for prizes etc ?