Round 10 has been the source of quite a bit of pain to fantasy managers. Having the top team in the MLS right now, FC Dallas on a bye week was enough to punish fantasy teams, but then the multitude of red cards handed out last week such as Brad Davis ($9.0m) and Jackson ($8.0m), just compounded many managers problems. Also out due to injury is Dax McCarthy ($8.5m) and Landon Donovan ($10.0m).
This week our fantasy blog addresses the above problems and how to plug the holes of your team. Keep in mind that next week is full of doubleheaders so if you're going to make or break your fantasy season it could be the following round. Make sure you capitalize on your players starting in as many games as possible!
Graham Zusi ($10.2m), Sporting Kansas City – With the number of crucial players in the midfield out due to injuries and suspensions, fantasy managers must plug the hole with the best they can find. Zusi is reliable and consistent, and while he hasn't scored in 4 weeks that doesn't stop him for putting up many bonus points and key passes. Favourable match for Sporting and Zusi at home vs Chivas USA.
Brandon Barklage ($6.3m), New York Red Bulls – At $6.3m, Barklage is a good value pick, and this week he's facing a reasonable opponent against Columbus Crew. More importantly is that in Round 11 he faces two favourable opponents with matches against Montreal Impact and New England Revolution. Barklage has slid a little under the radar with the inconsistency of the Red Bulls but with Dax McCarthy injured we feel Barklage could capture his fourth assist this week and perhaps even a bonus point or two.
Team of the week (Round 10), Portland Timbers – With FC Dallas on a bye week, our focus turns to the next best defensive bet this round. The Portland Timbers have the best shot on defense this week at home facing a weak scoring team in the New England Revolution.
Portland's defence possesses some great value for fantasy managers, Rodney Wallace ($5.0m) is the guy to start with, in his last four starts he's average 5.5 points. Next best shot is Mikael Silvestre ($4.8m), Silvestre has had an up and down year so far and while we rather have Wallace at Silvestre's price he could be worth a gamble.
In the middle of the park Portland has four very solid midfielders in Canadian Will Johnson ($7.8m), Darlington Nagbe ($7.8m), and designated players Diego Chara ($7.4m) and Diego Valeri ($7.7m), all of whom have accumulated relatively the same point exposure. We like Diego Valeri though as he brings more crosses and key passes than his teammates. We think if Portland do get on the score sheet there’s a good chance it will be through Valeri.
Up front, the only guy you need is Ryan Johnson ($8.5m). Johnson has either been absolutely great or very quiet in his last four games amassing three goals and one assist in two matches, but also had only getting points for playing 60+ minutes in another two matches. Real hit or miss, he might be a long shot versus a strong New England defence.
As always keep an eye on the latest injury report updates HERE and good luck in Round 10.
For more information on prizing and how to sign up for the Official Whitecaps Fantasy League click: HERE