Fifa World Cup fantasy football 2018 picks and tips: which players should I transfer for round 3?
With Monday’s deadline for transfers looming, it’s time to start thinking of who to sign and who to get rid of
You should be getting a rough idea by now whether you screwed up your World Cup fantasy football team – and if you did, help is at hand.
The third and final round of group matches kick off on Monday, so make sure to use that one free transfer available to you on Fifa’s official World Cup fantasy football game. Any additional transfers will set you back minus 4 points each.
You’ve got until 10pm Hong Kong time tonight, when Russia kick off against Uruguay and Saudi Arabia play Egypt, to make changes.
If you need a few ideas, here are some handy tips:
WHO SHOULD I SIGN?
Harry Kane (€11 million, 26 points) has made himself a fantasy must-have, shooting to the top of the points-scoring charts with his hat-trick in England's 6-1 win against Panama. He is now the leading scorer in Russia, too, with five goals.
You may also want to bring in Kane's England teammate John Stones (€5.5 million, 16 points), who headed home two goals against Panama. The defender is the third-most valuable player in terms of points scored per million (2.9).
Kane's scoring heroics put him ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo (€12 million, 22 points), who got his fourth goal in a man-of-the-match display for Portugal in their 1-0 win over Morocco. Over 122,000 fantasy users have already transferred Ronaldo into their side for round 3.
That’s nothing on Denis Cheryshev (€5.5 million, 20 points). He has been transferred in by more fantasy users (155,000) than any other player for round 3.
The Russian backed up his two goals against Saudi Arabia with another in the 3-1 win against Egypt, and is looking like one of the fantasy bargains of the tournament.
Diego Costa (€9 million, 16 points) is doing what he does best, scoring goals, with another to help Spain beat Iran 1-0 after his double in the 3-3 draw with Portugal.
At that price, the striker is a relative bargain, and fantasy football players clearly agree – he’s the third-most transferred in player (132,000 users) for round 3.
Romelu Lukaku (€10 million, 19 points) is also riding high in the scoring charts, with another double against Tunisia making it four goals in two games. He looks like he's on a hot-streak, but Belgium will be facing much tougher opposition in England next, and the Manchester United striker is known for struggling to score against top teams.
Lukaku's teammate Eden Hazard (€10 million, 17 points) has also sparked into life, scoring twice in the 5-2 win over Tunisia. Unlike Lukaku, though, Hazard has no problem turning it on against the big teams. England beware, and fantasy users take note.
Luka Modric (€9 million, 16 points) is also reinforcing his reputation as one of the best midfielders in the world, masterminding Croatia’s 3-0 defeat of Argentina with his second goal of the tournament. Modric is the fourth-most transferred in player (76,000 users) for round 3.
Jose Gimenez (€5.5 million, 18 points) got another clean sheet for Uruguay in their 1-0 win over Saudi Arabia, and looks a good defensive bet.
In fact, that whole miserly Uruguayan defence is a good shout if you want some of those sweet clean sheet points. Former Manchester United defender Guillermo Varela (€4.5 million, 12 points) and Fernando Muslera (€5.5 million, 14 points) are also proving great value.
Dejan Lovren (€5 million, 12 points) and Ivan Strinic (€5 million, 12 points) are also cost-effective additions who have racked up a couple of clean sheets for Croatia.
You may want to take a punt on Mile Jedinak (€6 million, 14 points) too. The Australia midfielder has smashed home two penalties in two games, and will surely rise to the occasion for the must-win clash against Peru.
And while plenty are cutting their losses on Mohamed Salah (€8.5 million, 8 points) despite his goal from the penalty spot against Russia, he may be worth a look.
Egypt can no longer qualify for the last 16, but it might be wise to keep him around for one more match – the Liverpool man could feasibly fill his boots against a poor Saudi Arabia team, who are also going home.
Signing Philippe Coutinho (€9 million, 14 points) is also a wise move – the Brazilian midfielder is on fire with two goals so far.
WHO SHOULD I DROP?
If you hadn’t already chucked Lionel Messi (€12 million, 2 points) after his missed penalty in the 1-1 draw with Iceland, then you want to rectify that.
Messi was anonymous in the 3-0 defeat by Croatia, and has been transferred out by more users (62,000) than any other player for round 3.
Neymar (€12 million, 7 points) may have got a late goal in Brazil’s 2-0 win over Costa Rica, but it seems many aren’t convinced by his form, and over 50,000 users have got rid of him.
Maybe it was the awful play acting where he tried to con the referee into giving him a penalty – it almost worked, but VAR rode to the rescue.
Just what Carlos Sanchez (€4.5 million, minus 2 points) was thinking getting himself sent off with a deliberate handball in the third minute against Japan, no one knows. The Colombian is the lowest-scoring player in the whole tournament in terms of fantasy points.
Ousmane Dembele (€8 million, 3 points) has also proved to be a costly failure for fantasy users. He did barely anything against Australia and was dropped to the bench for France’s win against Peru.
Fantasy users have also had their say on another France forward, Antoine Griezmann (€10 million, 10 points), with over 48,000 people transferring him out of their sides. His penalty against Australia aside, The Griez has yet to really spark into life and it may be tempting to use that money elsewhere.
That makes Griezmann the third-most transferred out player, and Edinson Cavani (€9.5 million, 4 points) is not too far behind, with over 38,000 users chucking him. The striker has failed to fire for Uruguay, and clearly not many people have faith that he will get on the scoresheet against Russia.
Bernardo Silva (€8 million, 3 points) has also failed to have a points-scoring impact, and it could be wise to look elsewhere, though he does have goals and assists in his locker.