Sleeping Giants Rise: Fantasy Football Tips for Serie A Round 17

Football fantasy enthusiasts face a rather novel situation ahead of this Serie A weekend. With few exceptions, most of the big teams and important stars, have been involved in emphatic victories during the past couple of matches. With so much at stake and little time left on the clock, big players need to show up as Roy Keane might say. This weekend, we’ve every reason to assume that they will.

With that in mind, we’ve been forced to go further in-depth and nitpick more than ever in our bid to find the players best suited for your fantasy draft. Here are our picks ahead of Round 17.

Players to Consider

Yes, the new year seems to have reignited the big Serie A teams’ ambition. We expect the marquee names to shine brightest. However, we are also taking into account the list of fixtures which for many teams will be more complicated than last time around. Here are some of the league’s elite players and the reasons why your fantasy football draft could benefit from including them.

Heroes of the Serie A

Lautaro Martinez – The giant spotlight that was shined on Martinez following his breakout 2019-20 season may have unsettled the Argentine forward. He’s had to fight for his spot in the starting eleven. However, Martinez’s form has improved dramatically. He has scored four goals against Verona and Crotone. It’s true that he was wasteful at the mid-week against Sampdoria. That defeat should help mobilize the Nerazzurri and Lautaro Martinez will be looking to add to his goal tally against tough opponents Roma.

Danilo – The wing-back seems to be an essential part of almost every winning football side in the modern era. Still, Danilo’s performances of late hadn’t quite convinced us to put him up on the with the very best. We were in for a surprise a week ago when the Brazilian international offered a memorable display for Juventus. A steady performance against Milan followed.

The Italian champions have no reason to slack off against Sassuolo, a team anxious to prove that their recent form has been no mere fluke. If Danilo’s able to play as he has recently, he can be a great contributor to your fantasy team’s final points tally.

Federico Chiesa – We are forced by circumstances to add another Juventus player to the list. Chiesa may not have been high on our radar when the season started. Yet, he’s proven himself through a handful of great showings. He scored a brace last week against Milan. Gaining a starting spot on Andrea Pirlo’s side is not a matter to be taken lightly. Chiesa will be anxious to show more of the same this weekend.

Special note: Usual suspects like Romelu Lukaku, Ciro Immobile, Duvan Zapata and Cristiano Ronaldo have been in fine form, should be fit, and could score you points through their goals. If stuck on ideas, also consider selecting Manuel Locatelli, Wojciech Szczesny, or Sergej Milinkovic-Savic who’ve been on a good run of form recently.

Undervalued Gems

Piotr Zieliński – Gennaro Gattuso seemed like a man vindicated by the end of Napoli’s convincing victory over Cagliari. Sticking to his tactics stubbornly had paid off and Zielinski, finally, came through. The same didn’t happen at the weekend as the Partenopei were humbled by Spezia. Still, chances seem to come easily for Gattuso’s side and Zielinski often plays a part in this.

Sure, the display against Cagliari was, by far, Zielinski’s greatest performance of the season, but ourselves and the Gli Azzuri faithful are hopeful this was no mere flash in the pan.

Mattia Zaccagni – In Serie A this winter, perhaps, no other player is as sought after as Hellas Verona’s Mattia Zaccagni. Napoli, Juventus, Milan, and Atalanta are all rumored to flooding the Gialloblu with calls about the midfielder. Zaccagni has been Verona’s best player this season, scoring four goals and providing two assists. He has helped the team to an unexpected 8th place by New Year. And, were it not for the player running down his contract, Verona would be unlikely to consider selling him. He’s a must-have in your fantasy league.

Wilfried Singo – We’ve said it before and we stick to our opinion. Torino has a squad that includes a few terrific players in spite of their miserable run of form. Of the younger generation, none has shown more potential than Wilfried Singo. The midfielder’s talent is earning him more and more minutes in the team’s starting 11. Last week he scored against Parma and will be looking to put another good display against Verona. Certainly, this will be a match monitored closely by scouts across the continent.

Players to Avoid

For every hero of the league, a corresponding player that is less fortunate has to exist. We’re not saying that these are players worthy of being shipped out to the outer regions of the Asian lower-leagues. We wouldn’t risk placing them in our squads either.

Overpriced Players

Ivan Perisic – The Croatian’s ability on the ball and his effectiveness in a number of roles makes him arguably one of the best players in Serie A. However, he is not exactly one of Antonio Conte’s favorite players. In fact, since December his appearances have been sporadic. When he has played, generally, he’s failed to live up to his own hype. We’d recommend holding off picking Perisic this weekend.

Arturo Vidal – The infamous Chilean midfielder remains something of a mystery. He is one of the league’s most experienced players, but his performances have oscillated. Antonio Conte still has faith in him. We, on the other hand, would not risk selecting him ahead of the Nerazzurri’s match against Roma.

Federico Bernardeschi – We’re not questioning Federico Bernardeschi’s talent. We’re just not convinced he has much of a future at Juventus. He’s been given the chance to play here and there. But, by and large, it looks like the midfielder is already considering his future plans. Better stay away for now.

Poor Performers

Marko Pjaca – We’re fans of Marko Pjaca, but even even the most loyal of supporters have to admit that the Croatian forward hasn’t been the biggest threat in front of goal this season. He hasn’t scored since the start of December. Pjaca will be worth reconsidering further down the line, but now this weekend for your Fantasy draft.

Roberto Inglese – Parma must have known this was coming. Their strong start to the season was ultimately followed by a string of defeats in December. Inglese has struggled for form throughout the campaign and hasn’t scored once. An away match against Lazio hardly seems like the place to start.

Sandro Tonali – He has been praised as the new Andrea Pirlo. This kind of attention is unlikely to have done Tonali much good. Recent performances have been lackluster. He missed playing Juventus after earning himself a red card in the previous game. For all those reasons it seems better to avoid selecting Tonali against Torino.

3 Simple Tips When Choosing Your Fantasy Football Draft

Card collectors! It’s no secret that some players build their careers as hardmen of the game. The downside is that they tend to pack the cards as the season advances meaning that you’ll be left without an important player when you expect it least.

The wing-back is the new playmaker! That’s a bit of an exaggeration for most teams, perhaps. However, the modern wing-back can score points like no other when he plays as per manager instructions. Passes, tackles, assists and, even, goals are all part of the course for the greatest players taking on this role.

Giant slayers! Some players seem to come alive just when their team is faced with the toughest of opposition. These are harder to select, certainly. But, you can expect to try and take up responsibility when many of their teammates might be overwhelmed by the scope of the games.