In order to steal a march on your rivals in EURO 2020 Fantasy Football, your squad will likely need to include one or two players who have flown under the radar when it comes to ownership. With that in mind, UEFA.com highlights some differential options in each position that may take your fancy.
The slight uncertainty over who will don the gloves for England at UEFA EURO 2020 perhaps explains why the ownership of Jordan Pickford (€5.5m) is just 2% at present, but the Everton man seems best placed to be Gareth Southgate’s first-choice goalkeeper come Matchday 1. England kept their opponents out in five of their eight qualifying games, while their 11 matches since have yielded seven clean sheets.
With a European Championship medal already under his belt, Rui Patrício (€5.5m) is set to line up again for defending champions Portugal and the Wolves goalkeeper has been largely overlooked by the masses, presumably because of a tricky-looking group featuring Germany and France. Portugal start off against Hungary though, and for those planning to use one of their chips on Matchday 2, Rui Patrício is worth considering to start off with.
They don’t come much more of a differential than 0%-owned Unai Simón (€5.0m), who could well be Spain’s first-choice goalkeeper if recent international matches are anything to go by. The Athletic Club keeper has started his country’s last six games and may be fancied by Spain boss Luis Enrique ahead of David de Gea, who has fallen down the pecking order at Manchester United.
Other differentials: Wojciech Szczęsny (€5.0m), Yann Sommer (€5.0m), Lukas Hradecky (€4.0m)
We begin with England again as John Stones (€5.5m) is shaping up to be a crafty differential off the back of his best season in a Manchester City shirt. The centre-back has struck five times for his club in all competitions this season so offers goal threat from set-pieces as well as clean sheet potential, and with a mere 6% of Fantasy managers selecting him at present, he is worthy of consideration.
Andreas Christensen (€5.5m) is an interesting proposition in a Denmark defence that kept clean sheets in four of their final five games during qualifying, while they also did not concede a goal during their three FIFA World Cup qualifying games in March. The Chelsea centre-back is present in just 1% of Fantasy squads at the moment.
If you’re on the lookout for an attacking full-back, then Jordi Alba (€6.0m) is surely in the reckoning. The Barcelona star has struck eight times for Spain over the course of his career and his assist potential in particular is what makes him a viable candidate for any Fantasy squad.
Other differentials: Oleksandr Zinchenko (€5.5m), Presnel Kimpembe (€5.5m), Kieran Tierney (€5.0m)
His lofty price tag has likely deterred Fantasy managers so far, as seen by his lowly 4% ownership, but Welsh talisman Gareth Bale (€9.5m) has the potential to produce major attacking returns. Bale scored in all three group games at UEFA EURO 2016 and Wales will be relying on him to produce more moments of magic this time around. If injury free, the 31-year-old will be one of the first names on the team sheet and could be an excellent Fantasy asset.
Five goals in his last four international appearances – including a stunning hat-trick against Germany in the UEFA Nations League last November – puts 5%-owned Ferran Torres (€8.0m) firmly in the exciting differential category. The Manchester City man has started each of Spain’s last five competitive fixtures and a recent hat-trick for his club has only served to enhance his Fantasy appeal ahead of the finals.
The generously-priced İlkay Gündoğan (€7.5m), following the most prolific goalscoring season of his career, is one to watch with the German’s ownership currently standing at a relatively modest 8%. As well as finding the net regularly for recently-crowned Premier League champions Manchester City, Gündoğan has scored six in his last 12 starts for Germany and could well be on spot-kick duty for his country.
Other differentials: Leroy Sané (€9.5m), Diogo Jota (€8.5m), Tomáš Souček (€6.5m)
Memphis Depay (€10.0m), who features in 6% of teams, has enjoyed an excellent season for Lyon having hit the 20-goal mark for the first time in Ligue 1 and has proved he is capable of translating that form to the international stage. Having bagged six goals during Netherlands’ successful UEFA EURO 2020 qualifying campaign, Depay has also scored five in his last six games for his country – in the World Cup qualifiers and in the UEFA Nations League – and similar form could be a huge boost to your Fantasy team.
Only Antoine Griezmann scored more goals at UEFA EURO 2016 than Álvaro Morata (€9.0m), and the Juventus loanee looks likely to lead the line for Spain again this time round. The 28-year-old, who notched four goals in seven appearances in qualifying, is approaching his best season in terms of club goals and could be the difference-maker in Fantasy squads with Spain facing Sweden in their opener.
Teemu Pukki (€7.0m) presents himself as an outside-the-box choice ahead of Finland’s European Championship debut. The Norwich striker was deadly in qualifying with his ten goals proving crucial and a further 26 for his club this season is further evidence of his consistent threat. Providing he recovers from injury in time, Pukki should be strongly considered given his modest price tag.
Other differentials: Antoin