Champions League Fantasy Football: What the numbers say
Ahead of Matchday 13, UEFA.com crunches the numbers to find out which players are predicted to perform well on #UCLfantasy, presented by Playstation.
Predicting which Fantasy players are going to perform on a given matchday is a difficult task. Through crunching the numbers, a projected points total for each player has been calculated based on the player’s historical performance in the UEFA Champions League. Goals, assists, clean sheets and the likelihood of playing are the main parameters used in our projections.
The top five projected players for both Manchester City and Inter are given below. As ever, check the latest team news and predicted line-ups before making your selection.
Road to the final: Every Man City goal
|Kevin De Bruyne||€10.6m||Midfielder||8.4|
Although Kevin De Bruyne is not City’s highest points scorer, his Fantasy output in the knockout stage means he tops the final projections. The Belgian midfielder has 42 points in his last five Champions League appearances for Pep Guardiola’s treble-chasers at an average of 8.4 points per game, his four Player of the Match awards this season more than any other player set to feature in the final.
Erling Haaland has still accumulated more Fantasy points than any other Man City player despite failing to find the net in the last two matchdays. The Norwegian is the only player to have reached double figures for goals in this season’s competition, his 25-point haul against Leipzig on Matchday 8 a Fantasy record.
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City have kept seven clean sheets in the Champions League, and many Fantasy managers will be investing in their defence. The algorithm’s favoured choice is Rúben Dias, who has played the most minutes among his defensive team-mates in Europe this season, the Portuguese centre-back’s tendency to rack up ball recovery points an additional boost.
Midfielders Bernardo Silva and İlkay Gündoğan complete the top five. Bernardo played a starring role on Matchday 12 against Real Madrid when he returned a massive 17 points, while Gündoğan has been in excellent goalscoring form domestically over the last month, scoring three doubles.
Every Inter goal on their road to the Champions League final
With eight clean sheets in the Champions League this season, including five in the knockout stage, the Inter back line features strongly in the projected top five. Alessandro Bastoni leads the way on Fantasy this season having registered 73 points overall. The centre-back has featured in all eight of those clean sheets and has supplemented his score with three assists, 39 ball recoveries and a Player of the Match Award.
Federico Dimarco has outscored Bastoni when it comes to assists though, the wing-back setting up five goals in the Champions League, including three in the last three matchdays. Dimarco is likely to be more of an attacking presence than Bastoni given his position in the team.
Mural celebrates Champions League finalists
At the other end of the field, Lautaro Martínez is an obvious pick in the top five given his recent form in both domestic and European football. The World Cup winner has stepped up in the latter stages, scoring and assisting against Benfica on Matchday 10 and getting the only goal of the game against Milan on Matchday 12. In all competitions, the Argentinian has nine goals in his last ten games.
The pick of Inter’s midfield is Hakan Çalhanoğlu, who has featured in all but one of the Italian side’s Champions League games in 2022/23. The Turkish international has three Player of the Match awards while three goal involvements and 37 ball recoveries – including nine on Matchday 12 – make him a strong Fantasy candidate.
The algorithm has not forgotten about goalkeepers, particularly given Thibaut Courtois’ performance in last season’s final. André Onana rounds off the top five having made 45 saves in Inter’s European campaign.