#UCLfantasy: What the numbers say

Ahead of matchday nine, UEFA.com crunches the numbers to find out which players are projected for big points hauls.

Lionel Messi is once again expected to deliver for Barcelona
Lionel Messi is once again expected to deliver for Barcelona ©AFP/Getty Images

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 major parameters used in our projections.

The top projected players for each position for matchday nine are given below. As ever, check team news before making your final selections.

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GOALKEEPERS

Player Price
Club Opponents Home/Away Gameday Projected
André Onana 4.6 Ajax Juventus H Wednesday 10 April 6.2
Marc-André ter Stegen 6.0 Barcelona Man Utd A Wednesday 10 April 6.2
Ederson 5.5 Man City Tottenham A Tuesday 9 April 3.8
Alisson 5.6 Liverpool Porto H Tuesday 9 April 3.5
David de Gea 6.0 Man Utd Barcelona H Wednesday 10 April 3.4

The top projected goalkeeper is Ajax's André Onana, who has kept two clean sheets in four home matches in this season's competition. Onana also offers substantial save potential having made the most saves this season with 33 – good enough for nine save points.

Marc-André ter Stegen of Barcelona travels to a Manchester United side that have failed to score in three of their four home UEFA Champions League matches this season. The remaining trio are all Premier League goalkeepers; none of Manchester City's Ederson, Liverpool No1 Alisson or Manchester United's David de Gea are projected to keep a clean sheet, they make the top five based on their likely number of saves.

DEFENDERS

Player Price
Club Opponents Home/Away Gameday Projected
Jordi Alba 6.6 Barcelona Man Utd A Wednesday 10 April 7.2
Gerard Piqué 6.0 Barcelona Man Utd A Wednesday 10 April 6.9
Nicolás Tagliafico 4.7 Ajax Juventus H Wednesday 10 April 6.2
Matthijs de Ligt 5.0 Ajax Juventus H Wednesday 10 April 6.0
Sergi Roberto 5.4 Barcelona Man Utd A Wednesday 10 April 6.0

Just two clubs are projected to keep a clean sheet on matchday nine – Barcelona and Ajax, so we see a combination of their players in the defenders list, with the order in which they appear based on their attacking potential. Top of the list is Jordi Alba, whose high position up the pitch already resulting in a goal and three assists this season. Alba's Barcelona team-mate Gerard Piqué is second having found the net against Lyon in the round of 16, his 13th European goal.

In third spot is Ajax left-back Nicolás Tagliafico, who caught the eye with a 17-point haul in matchday one, and has since added a further goal. Priced just €4.7m, there isn't a cheaper defender who offers the same #UCLfantasy value. Ajax's Matthijs de Ligt and Barcelona's Sergi Roberto are also both expected to start and keep a clean sheet.

MIDFIELDERS

Player Price
Club Opponents Home/Away Gameday Projected
Leroy Sané 8.6 Man City Tottenham A Tuesday 9 April 7.2
Raheem Sterling 9.6 Man City Tottenham A Tuesday 9 April 5.4
David Silva 9.2 Man City Tottenham A Tuesday 9 April 5.4
Philippe Coutinho 8.5 Barcelona Man Utd A Wednesday 10 April 5.4
Jesús Corona 6.9 Porto Liverpool A Tuesday 9 April 5.1

The top three projected midfielders for matchday nine also happen to be the current top three scoring midfielders in #UCLfantasy – Manchester City trio Leroy Sané, Raheem Sterling and David Silva. Sané registered a hat-trick of assists and a goal in the 7-0 defeat of Schalke in the last-16 second leg, giving him 46 points in just 388 minutes of action – an average of 10.67 points per 90 minutes played. Sterling and David Silva are predicted to score the same number of points, having scored six goals and registered three assists between them this season.

Fourth is Philippe Coutinho, who registered a goal and an assist in Barcelona's last trip to England, at Tottenham in the group stage; the Brazilian is more familiar than most of his club-mates with quarter-final opponents Manchester United. Porto's Jesús Corona has recorded attacking returns in four of his six appearances this season with three goals and two assists, and is selected by just 1% of all #UCLfantasy managers.

FORWARDS

Player Price
Club Opponents Home/Away Gameday Projected
Lionel Messi 11.6 Barcelona Man Utd A Wednesday 10 April 8.4

Moussa Marega

8.0 Porto Liverpool A Tuesday 9 April 6.1

Dušan Tadić

7.5 Ajax Juventus H Wednesday 10 April 6.0

Sergio Agüero

10.3 Man City Tottenham A Tuesday 9 April 5.8
Harry Kane 11.2 Tottenham Man City H Tuesday 9 April 5.7

A combination of premium strikers and more budget-friendly options make up the top five projected forwards, with Barcelona's Lionel Messi unsurprisingly topping the list as both the top-scoring forward in #UCLfantasy and the joint-top scorer in this season’s competition, having already amassed eight goals and three assists.

Porto have scored in every match in this season's competition, including three or more in five of the last six; of their 19 goals, Moussa Marega has been involved in eight (six goals, two assists). Dušan Tadić has reached double figures in Fantasy points on three occasions already this season and has six goals to his name; his €7.5m price makes him exceptional value for money. Sergio Aguero's Manchester City have scored 26 goals already this season, although the Argentinian could be an injury doubt; Harry Kane, meanwhile, has registered attacking returns in five of the seven games he has featured in this campaign.

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