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With one game to open up the daily fantasy scene for the World Cup, Thursday's showdown between Saudi Arabia and Russia will be a great venue to start out the World Cup DFS season. With a single-game slate comes new rules for each site and different lineup strategies. Below we bring you seven players you should consider as World Cup DFS lineup picks for Matchday 1 (on June 14th, 2018).

Not all are top-tier options, as there is a range of DFS value picks, sleepers and high-risk players mixed in.

Consider all of these players for your DFS lineups this week; however, at the end of the day, it is always your decision. Good luck, RotoBallers.


WC DFS Forwards to Consider

Fedor Smolov - F, Russia (DK - $13,300, FD - $15)

The most expensive player on the slate, Smolov averages a goal roughly every three games for his national side and should be the main attacking option against a suspect Saudi defense. Although he will take up a significant portion of your budget, Smolov is still the favorite for captaincy on FanDuel and the first name on your roster in DraftKings, making him a high ownership option with considerable scoring upside in this one-game slate.

Mohammad Al Sahlawi - F, Saudi Arabia (DK - $6,900, FD - $11)

The 31 year old veteran is the main attacking threat of the Saudis, scoring 28 goals in 40 games for his national side. With over 100 goals for club team Al-Nassr, Al Sahlawi is known for scoring a goal or two, and if anyone is likely to put one in the back of the net tomorrow for Saudi Arabia, its Al Sahlawi. Although he will also take up a significant portion of your budget on DraftKings, he presents good value on FanDuel as a cheaper alternative captain choice to Smolov.


WC DFS Midfielders to Consider 

Alan Dzagoev - M, Russia (DK - $8,500, FD - $12)

Although he seems quite overvalued on FanDuel, Dzagoev is a good DraftKings flex play due to his offensive from the center of midfield. The CSKA Moscow player has scored nine times for his country in 57 games, and finds himself as one of the first names on the team sheet for the match against Saudi Arabia. Consider Dzagoev with one of your first selections, as he can provide both goals and assists against the Saudi defense.

Denis Cheryshev - M, Russia (DK - $11,000, FD - $7)

Although he is not expected to start for the Russian national team tomorrow, Cheryshev could still work his way into the lineup and is a great pick for FanDuel in this slate. Cheryshev is a true X-factor, as the ex-Real Madrid man is a creative threat on the wings who could come on as an impact substitute or even start the match. At his price on FanDuel, he is worth the bargain price - but stay away from him on DraftKings, as the uncertainty over his starting spot will make him a risky pick given the price that he is going at currently.


WC DFS Defenders to Consider

Osama Hawsawi - D, Saudi Arabia (DK - $4,700, FD - $6)

On the off chance that Saudi Arabia are able to record a clean sheet, it will be down to Osama Hawsawi as the defense's leader to make that happen. The 34 year old is expected to be a starting center back for the team tomorrow, and at his price is well worth the bargain for one of your DEF slots on FanDuel and a low-priced flex spot on DraftKings. Just be careful not to confuse him with fellow Saudi defender Omar Hawsawi, who is also expected to start for the national team at center back in Matchday 1.

Yuri Zhirkov - D, Russia (DK - $9,500, FD - $8)

The expected starting fullback for Russia and the highest-priced defender in this slate, Zhirkov may well be worth the price tomorrow. As the only defender with elite upside to assist or score for his team, the ex-Chelsea fullback/wide midfielder should bomb up the pitch the entire match and will likely outmatch the respective fullback for Saudi Arabia. Zhirkov may be too expensive on DraftKings, but because you need to roster defenders on FanDuel, he should be one of the first names on the team in your rosters.


WC DFS Goalies to Consider

Yasser Al-Mosailem - G, Saudi Arabia (DK - $6,200, FD - N/A)

In single game contests, the goalkeeper position is a bit of a wash for DFS players. DraftKings is the only site out of the two that includes goalkeepers in its lineups, and even then it is not a required position. Nevertheless, if you believe that the game will be a low scoring affair or are hoping to score on the low ownership percentages of goalkeepers, you can consider Al-Mosailem as a cheaper alternative to Russia's goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev. He may not keep a clean sheet but has the potential to make a couple of saves. However, it may be best to stay away from the goalkeeper position in this matchup.

Good luck this weekend!