The second set of match days for Group B are slated for Wednesday, and Peru can all but clinch itself a spot in the quarterfinals with a victory over Ecuador. But the bigger story is that Brazil, which in some ways was lucky to emerge with a draw against lightly regarded Ecuador, probably needs a big scoreline against Haiti to make sure it, too, reaches the round of eight.
Before delving into potential player selections, let’s be very blunt: there is no compelling reason to select anyone on Haiti’s roster given Le Selecao’s high rout potential Any goal Les Grenadiers may score will be outweighed by the likely three or four they will concede. For this matchday, the goal is to mix and match the best players from the three South American teams in Group B.
These picks cover the matches for June 8, using a 4-4-2 formation and salary cap of $90,000 as part of Fan XT’s Daily Fantasy rules for the Copa America tournament.
Goalkeeper: Alisson, Brazil ($7,310). Alisson only made one save in the draw versus Ecuador, and there’s a very good chance he won’t exceed that number against Haiti. While he may not get you many in-match points, that clean sheet bonus is something to always keep in mind, more so with a mismatch like this.
Defenders: Dani Alves ($7,560), Gil ($7,340), Marquinhos ($8,880) and Filipe Luis ($7,940), Brazil. Is it overly simplistic to pick the entire Brazilian back line under the belief they will provide at least eight clean sheet points by way of a shutout? Yes. But it’s also very possible one of them could find the back of the net on a corner kick, and the seven points gained there could make a whole world of difference to your fantasy team.
Midfielders: Philippe Coutinho, Brazil ($9,000). Playing a team like Haiti, which will concede a majority of possession as it bunkers in its defensive third means Coutinho is going to have time and space with the ball. The latter is important because Jonas will likely struggle to find space within Haiti’s defense, and Coutinho isn’t bashful about taking long-range efforts. This is a match in which Coutinho will need a little bit of patience and let his teammates’ runs develop.
Willian, Brazil ($9,000). As Coutinho tries to cycle possession, Willian will again be Brazil’s danger man on set pieces, giving him potential assists on both corner kicks and free kicks. Both he and Coutinho should have the lion’s share of possession for Brazil, and this match has the potential for both to stack up points.
Antonio Valencia, Ecuador ($7,500). The Manchester United winger still has the pace to make defenders nervous, and after a strong showing versus Brazil, he should be able to find some space on the flank to set up goal-scoring chances for Enner Valencia.
Renato Tapia, Peru ($7,170). Given the tenacity of Ecuador’s back line, it may be difficult for Paolo Guerrero to find space to continue his goal-scoring exploits. Tapia, an up-and-coming youngster for La Blanquirroja and a midfielfer for Dutch side Feyenoord may have the talent to create some scoring chances for himself on the counterattack for Peru.
Forwards: Ennar Valencia, Ecuador ($7,690). With the bulk of Brazil’s scoring chances likely to originate with Willian and Coutinho, here is a calculated gamble the other match will provide goals from strikers. Valencia played well against Brazil, putting a free kick on goal and being a physical presence. He may have to tone down that aspect of his game, though, since he’s carrying a yellow card and can ill-afford to miss the group finale against Haiti.
Gabriel, Brazil ($7,750). This is a hedge pick, and if there’s any hesitancy in selecting a teenager, remember this lineup gives you the flexibility to swap out Gabriel in favor of Peru’s forward Paolo Guerrero. There are few things that rile up Brazil’s fan base and media more than a scoreless draw. Given the bunker mentality Haiti likely has for this match, it may make more sense for Dunga to turn loose the 19-year-old starlet, nicknamed “Gabigol” for his proficiency thus far at Santos, to see if his pace stretches Haiti’s back line. Who knows, there may even be a late goal for him that pads the scoreline to restore order to Le Selecao.