DraftKings DFS Soccer: Euro Picks for Saturday, June 15

DraftKings DFS Soccer: Euro Picks for Saturday, June 15

This article is part of our DraftKings Fantasy Soccer series.

The group stages of a major international tournament are always difficult to project. Previous match data is limited, and even when available, teams change tactics. For example, Switzerland qualified playing a 4-3-3 formation but has pivoted to a 3-4-3 in recent friendlies. Alejandro Grimaldo is terrific for fantasy when he plays at the club level, but will that translate to the national team if he starts?

Keep this uncertainty in mind when building lineups. Roles are fragile, but that could be something to take advantage of in GPPs. Also, there will likely be some surprises for starting lineups. When possible, you'll want to make sure you have flexibility to make changes. The best way to keep up with any lineup surprises is to join the RotoWire Discord.

MATCHES (ET)

For detailed stats and odds, check out the

DraftKings Fantasy Soccer: Saturday Euro 2024 Cheat Sheet

FORWARDS

Lamine Yamal and Nico Williams (ESP vs. CRO, $7,800/$7,500): Spain have near-even money win odds against Croatia and these teams actually faced off last year in the UEFA Nations League final. Although Spain played a slightly weaker squad, I think it's notable that Croatia managed 46-percent possession and forced the final to end in penalty kicks. Spain's players are still good options, but I don't expect them to have an easy time against Croatia. Both Yamal and Williams are projected to start and they should split set pieces.

The group stages of a major international tournament are always difficult to project. Previous match data is limited, and even when available, teams change tactics. For example, Switzerland qualified playing a 4-3-3 formation but has pivoted to a 3-4-3 in recent friendlies. Alejandro Grimaldo is terrific for fantasy when he plays at the club level, but will that translate to the national team if he starts?

Keep this uncertainty in mind when building lineups. Roles are fragile, but that could be something to take advantage of in GPPs. Also, there will likely be some surprises for starting lineups. When possible, you'll want to make sure you have flexibility to make changes. The best way to keep up with any lineup surprises is to join the RotoWire Discord.

MATCHES (ET)

For detailed stats and odds, check out the

DraftKings Fantasy Soccer: Saturday Euro 2024 Cheat Sheet

FORWARDS

Lamine Yamal and Nico Williams (ESP vs. CRO, $7,800/$7,500): Spain have near-even money win odds against Croatia and these teams actually faced off last year in the UEFA Nations League final. Although Spain played a slightly weaker squad, I think it's notable that Croatia managed 46-percent possession and forced the final to end in penalty kicks. Spain's players are still good options, but I don't expect them to have an easy time against Croatia. Both Yamal and Williams are projected to start and they should split set pieces. Unfortunately, they are also liabilities to be subbed after 70 minutes. While I'd rather not go there in cash games, Alvaro Morata ($7,000) is affordable and is tied for the slate's best anytime goalscoring odds.

Italy are the biggest favorite of the slate facing off against Albania. In matches against Czechia and Poland, two other teams that qualified, Albania was held to around 40-percent possession. I expect Italy to control this match while Albania try to attack on the counter. Federico Chiesa ($8,900) is one of Italy's top attacking threats, but I'm not expecting him to take set pieces. Still, open play points will be available for Italy, so I think he is a good play. Gianluca Scamacca ($9,100) is a sub risk but has the same goalscoring odds as Morata. I don't think Scamacca will play much past 70 minutes, but his price should keep his GPP rostership from getting out of control.

Switzerland are favored against Hungary, but I don't think it's a good idea to underestimate Hungary's attacking players. Roland Sallai ($7,900) is a too expensive for cash games, but he averaged just over 10 floor points per 90 minutes in group stages. He's one of my favorite large-field GPP plays. Switzerland's Dan Ndoye ($5,700) is an intriguing spend-down option. He'll likely start as a wing-back, but he showed a passable floor for Bologna in Serie A for this price. 

I am professionally obligated to point out that eternally frustrating Armando Broja is just $4,100. There are no punt plays on this slate that stand out to me and Broja has fine goal odds for his price. This makes him an acceptable play, but a two-point floor is definitely a frequent event in his range of outcomes. Italy have a 55-percent chance to keep a clean sheet and it wouldn't be shocking if Albania failed to score a goal in the group stages.

MIDFIELDERS

Lorenzo Pellegrini (ITA vs. ALB, $7,700): I'm seeing some outlets project Davide Frattesi ($7,300) to start instead of Pellegrini, but Pellegrini should split corners if he starts. It's a great matchup for Italy, so if he starts he's a great option, even if he only plays 75 minutes.

Midfield is definitely the strongest position overall. Dominik Szoboszlai ($8,600) is a set-piece monopolist for Hungary and he plays a more forward role for country than he does with Liverpool. My one concern about Szoboszlai is that he struggled to score fantasy points against Serbia in both matches in qualifying, and most of his output came from bullying weaker opposition. Xherdan Shaqiri ($8,100) will split set pieces for Switzerland and took two penalties for them in qualifying. Despite his Chicago Fire form, he can be a good option.

Ruben Vargas (HUN vs. SUI, $6,400): The mid-range for midfield doesn't have a lot of great options and it's viable to skip it entirely. That said, Vargas has a decent floor for Switzerland and will split set pieces with Shaqiri. He's unlikely to make it past 75 minutes, but I think his price is appropriate for his floor given the sub risk.

Rodri ($6,700) needs to be mentioned since he converted two penalties for Spain in a March friendly against Brazil. I'm not convinced he has that role moving forward, but it wouldn't be surprising if it's his role moving forward.

Croatia have some value in midfield even though it's a tough matchup. Lovro Majer ($6,100) has been good in recent friendlies and takes some corners over Luka Modric ($6,600). Ivan Perisic ($5,000) might take some set pieces as well and is a reasonably affordable winger should he start.

Nicolo Barella and Jorginho (ITA vs. ALB, $4,600/$4,400): Barella is questionable to start, but he is probably the best punt overall if he is available. He has some upside to take a few shots if Italy dominate Albania as expected. Jorginho seems like an acceptable compromise if Barella is unavailable. He'll take Italy's penalties and the game environment is strong so he could end up with some shots assisted.

Nedim Bajrami ($4,500) had a decent fantasy floor in qualifying and split set pieces with Jasir Asani ($5,600, F) in qualifying. He's a reasonable option, though I'm not sure how many set pieces Albania will have. Marc Cucurella ($4,000) might start at left-back for Spain and is somehow midfield eligible. He's not a particularly strong attacking player, but he's at least cheap.

DEFENDERS

Federico Dimarco (ITA vs. ALB, $6,500): Dimarco plays more minutes for Italy when he starts than he does for Inter and he should take left-sided set pieces. I like him better than the mid-range forwards and midfielders, and he is a priority for me in all formats. Even if he gets subbed early, his role and open-play floor should still pay off this price.

Alejandro Grimaldo ($6,200) was electric for Leverkusen this season, aggressively shooting, crossing, and splitting set pieces. If I knew I was getting this version of Grimaldo, he'd be one of the first names in my lineups. However, it's a downgrade to play as a left-back in a back four and outside of taking corners in a friendly against Colombia in March, Spain's wingers seem to have priority on corner kicks. Still, Grimaldo is a set-piece specialist and it would not be shocking to see him on some direct free kicks. He assisted in his lone start in qualifying against Cyprus. I'll take some chances on Grimaldo in GPPs.

Giovanni Di Lorenzo ($4,900) is a good option if he is playing as a full-back or wing-back, but I've seen some outlets project him to play right-center-back in a back three. I don't think this is likely, but pay attention to Italy's starting XI before putting Di Lorenzo in your lineups just in case. Andrea Cambiaso ($4,700) took corners in Italy's most recent friendly against Bosnia and Herzegovina. I don't think he'll start ahead of Dimarco, but it's a dynamic worth being aware of.

I'd like to play Di Lorenzo as my second defender or even in a utility spot, but I also think it's fine to spend down at your second defender position. Mario Mitaj ($2,800) is a more defensive-minded left-back, but he is cheap and might be valuable if you need to satisfy the three-team requirement. 

GOALKEEPER

Gianluigi Donnarumma (ITA vs. ALB, $5,700): For some reason, the Euro 2020 Player of the Tournament is priced as backup to Guglielmo Vicario ($5,800). I'll happily take the $100 discount on Donnarumma. On three-match slates, I'm more likely to spend up at goalkeeper and Donnarumma's clean sheet odds are strong at 55 percent. In cash games, I'll pay down for Thomas Strakosha ($3,600) or Etrit Berisha ($3,700) if I need the salary. That said, I'm not as convinced of spending down at goalkeeper in international play compared to Premier League or Champions League matches. International matches are generally more cagey affairs and there might not be as many opportunities for saves for underdogs.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jack Burkart
Jack covers fantasy soccer for RotoWire and has twice won the FSWA's Soccer Writer of the Year award (2022 & '23). He is a Minnesota Loons fan and long-suffering Tottenham Hotspur supporter.
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