The 2022/23 UEFA Champions League (UCL) begins on Tuesday – and so does the competition’s official Fantasy game.
We’ll have plenty of coverage on UCL Fantasy over the next day in preparation for the big kick-off, as well as articles throughout the season.
If you’re new to the game or just need a reminder of the rules, check out our ‘how to play’ guide below and don’t forget to join the official FFScout UCL League (Pin code: 75L4Q5EA10).
Our series of preview articles continues by looking at the best UCL goalkeepers on offer.
With a squad of 15 players and substitutions possible between the evenings of a Matchday, having a playing goalkeeper from each half of the group draw is a great way to maximise points. You know that there’ll be an option on both days.
That being said – as reliable as premium goalkeepers can be – they’re rarely worth their price tags. Many teammates in defence offer a better points total thanks to potential attacking returns and recovery points. For many, the ideal goalkeeper combination costs between €8.5m and €10m.
Most of the options discussed in this article are worth 5m or below and, with the Limitless and Wildcard chips available as well as two weekly transfers, only the first two fixtures for each keeper will be considered.
Ederson (€6m) – Manchester City
Yes, he’s pricey and contradicts the comment above – especially when an extra €0.5m bags you a swashbuckling Joao Cancelo – but with an opening fixture versus a currently toothless Sevilla, he’s the one premium goalkeeper of Tuesday that looks truly capable of keeping a clean sheet.
He’s also nailed to start every game in a relatively simple group, unlike the defenders in front of him. Perhaps not the optimal pick, but he’ll certainly be the one that doesn’t give you a headache each week.
Odysseas Vlachodimos (€5m) – Benfica
A slight price rise from last season has indicated that his ability between the sticks has been noticed, playing for a well-balanced Benfica side that has a more flattering group than most give them credit for.
Sure, PSG are frightening but, with arguably the nicest opening fixture of any team in the whole competition followed by facing an out-of-sorts Juventus side that barely scraped fourth in last season’s Serie A, there are points to be gained here.
Mattia Perin (€4m) – Juventus
Didn’t I just say that Juventus were struggling and had PSG as the first opponents? Well, he’s the cheapest playing goalkeeper in the game, due to a recurring Wojciech Szczesny (€5.5m) ankle injury.
It allows managers to punt on Tuesday knowing that there is the safety of a Wednesday pick if it all goes horribly wrong. The saved funds can then be redistributed throughout your outfielders. Not one for the long-term but he’s an easy Wildcard departure once the regular number one is back.
Marc-Andre ter Stegen (€5.5m) – Barcelona
Barcelona are whipping boys no longer, with just one goal conceded in four games this season. They’ve essentially bought an entirely new back four and, although it’s working so far, the thought of having to successfully guess which four will play makes me want to bang my head against a wall.
The answer is ter Stegen. Barca have sold their backup stopper and there’s no threat to his throne. Likely to be ignored because nasty fixtures against Bayern and Inter are around the corner, using a Matchday 2 chip has never looked sweeter with this guy. Up first for the Catalans is Viktoria Plzen (Pluh-zenia) of the Czech Fortuna Liga.
Diogo Costa (€5m) – Porto
Recent heroics in the top-of-the-table clash with Sporting a few weeks ago is just another indicator as to why we don’t want to sleep on this guy. Costa is someone who not only plays in a defence-minded team but is more than capable of raking in the save points.
With no real stand-out performers in defence, the Porto keeper looks like the ideal choice from the second round of fixtures onwards when Brugge and Leverkusen visit the Estadio do Dragao.
Ivo Grbic (€4m) – Atletico Madrid
A late entry to the list. Similar to Perin, a groin injury to Jan Oblak (€5.5m) casts doubts over his game time so Grbic offers us a rare opportunity to pick a €4m goalkeeper from a team that is famously defensive and are favourites to finish top of their group. One to keep an eye on, for sure.