This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Soccer series.
- 10:00 am: Newcastle United vs. Everton
- 10:00 am: Southampton vs. Crystal Palace
- 10:00 am: Watford vs. Aston Villa
- 12:30 pm: Norwich City vs. Tottenham Hotspur
- 12:30 pm: West Ham United vs. Leicester City
- 2:45 pm: Burnley vs. Manchester United
Marcus Rashford, MUN at BRN (£24): Rashford is cheaper than Harry Kane (£27) and Jamie Vardy (£25), and I think he's most likely of the trio to make the starting XI after getting pulled early Thursday. He has at least 7.85 fantasy points in his last five starts, and that includes two matches when he didn't make the score-sheet. His floor may be the best of the top forwards, and it's worth betting on Man United to continue their Boxing Day form. It also helps that Burnley have struggled against top competition, giving up 10 goals in three recent home matches against Man City, Crystal Palace and Chelsea.
Gerard Deulofeu, WAT v. AVL (£17): I'll probably grab a couple Watford players because I love this matchup. Deulofeu has the best floor on the team, reaching at least six fantasy points in each of his last four starts mainly because he does a bit of everything from taking shots to accruing defensive stats. Troy Deeney (£16) is an option if you want to bank on a goal and Ismaila Sarr (£15) should be ready for a full 90 after getting subbed off early last match. As for Aston Villa, they've been outplayed at home in recent matches against Southampton and Norwich, whereas Watford won their last home match against Manchester United. On a short week, I'll take the GPP route and bank on two or three goals from the Hornets.
Danny Ings, SOU v. CRY (£19): Ings has scored in six of his last seven starts and Crystal Palace may be forced to start some new faces on the back line. Southampton are coming off two impressive away wins and their forwards are often the ones to make the score-sheet, which is why Ings needs to be in consideration. If the Saints score, he will likely be involved. Kelechi Iheanacho (£19) could be a popular option if he gets the start on a short week, while there isn't anyone else that stands out if you're looking for a forward in this price range and don't like Watford.
James Maddison, LEI at WHU (£20): Maddison oddly remains cheaper than a slew of other midfielders and after back-to-back losses against the best teams in the league, he's a steal. Prior to those losses, he had reached at least seven fantasy points in 11 straight starts. As long as he's in the starting XI, he could end up being the most popular player on the slate, but I'm not sure I'd fade him in cash games with close to a guarantee of at least five points no matter how the match goes. I'm not sure any other midfielder is worth spending up for, and that includes Jack Grealish (£21), who had zero fantasy points in 90 minutes last away start.
Emiliano Buendia (Emi), NOR v. TOT (£17): I'm kind of worried about Buendia's playing time because he was pushed into a bench role early in the month but has been consistent when in the lineup because of set pieces. In addition to hitting close to 50 passes per match, he's drawing numerous fouls and sending in more crosses than almost anyone else in the league in his last four starts. While Tottenham are the biggest favorite on the slate, they're not dominant and have allowed the seventh-most crosses in the last 10 gameweeks. There are similar players in this range like Jonjo Shelvey (£19) and James Ward-Prowse (£18), but Buendia has had a slightly better floor.
James McArthur, CRY at SOU (£13): If you need to save money somewhere, it usually doesn't hurt to grab a player who reaches around five fantasy points no matter the matchup. McArthur has at least four fantasy points in his last six starts and supplies a variety of stats, which is why he's been consistent. While playing time is an issue for some, there's a chance Roy Hodgson pushes some of his players to the brink because he's already been forced to start numerous backups. In a similar mold, Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg (£15) is a good bet for fantasy production and has a tad more upside as a home favorite.
Djibril Sidibe, EVE at NEW (£15): Sidibe's price has gone up each of his last four appearances, and he's still cheaper than teammate Lucas Digne (£16), who has had a lower floor. Sidibe has at least eight fantasy points in his last four starts and played in a more forward role in the first match under Carlo Ancelotti. In what should be another defensive Everton match, a clean sheet is possible with Sidibe's usual defensive stats. If you don't have to, there's little reason to spend more money on someone like Digne or Jan Vertonghen (£16).
Harry Maguire, MUN at BRN (£15): Maguire has had some down matches, but more often than not, he's around five fantasy points because he often completes more than 60 passes. He has a shot on target in each of his last two starts, which has led to 19.35 fantasy points and neither match resulted in a clean sheet. He has some of the best odds for a clean sheet on the slate and that makes him even more enticing. Luke Shaw (£16) is inexplicably the most expensive Man United defender, while Aaron Wan-Bissaka (£14) is another viable choice for cheaper.
Christian Kabasele, WAT v. AVL (£13): This goes back to my prediction that Watford are going to control this match. Kabasele has four clean sheets in his last five home starts, which is surprising given that he plays for Watford. If that happens again, it should result in at least five fantasy points, and that's all you need at this price. If you need to save more money, Jan Bednarek (£12), Martin Kelly (£11) and Ahmed Elmohamady (£11) are all viable.
Paulo Gazzaniga, TOT at NOR (£10): You may have enough money to spend up at goalkeeper, but there's no reason why Gazzaniga is at the minimum price. He remains in net for Tottenham and is the biggest favorite on the slate. He's had at least eight fantasy points in three of his last four starts, and it's worth it to bet against Norwich, who have often struggled to find the back of the net. Elsewhere, David de Gea (£15) and Alex McCarthy (£13) have the best odds for a clean sheet.