MLS Fantasy returns once again on a Friday night, as Round 9 kicks off with RSL traveling to Vancouver for a Western Conference showdown!
This week is shaping up to be a very interesting one, with possibilities galore for fantasy managers. Round 9 matches are pretty well-spaced apart across the board throughout the weekend… and with three Sunday matches to go along with a Friday night fixture, there will be plenty of time for managers to actively manage their lineups throughout the weekend.
We will get into more details about which matches we plan on monitoring for mid-round lineup changes. In the meantime, here are our choices for Round 9!
Switcheroo Picks - Bench
• GK - Andre Blake (PHI)
• DEF - Michael Parkhurst (ATL)
• DEF - Greg Garza (ATL)
• MID - Jack Price (COL)
Switcheroo Picks - Starting Lineup
• GK - Sean Johnson (NYC)
• FWD - Carlos Darwin Quintero (MIN)
• DEF/plug - Marco Farfan (POR)
• DEF/plug - Chris Richards (FCD)
To state the obvious: Atlanta is a very difficult place to play. Therefore, we've gone ahead and added Michael Parkhurst and Greg Garza to our bench in the hopes of picking up an early clean sheet and not having to worry about slotting in replacement defenders following Atlanta's match on Saturday afternoon.
Philadelphia's Andre Blake and NYCFC's Sean Johnson make up our goalkeeper switcheroo this round. Philly/DC is shaping up to be a very low scoring affair, so if Blake earns the shutout during the 3:30pm EST fixture on Saturday, we'll be able to ship out Johnson for a 4.0m Portland goalkeeper and apply that extra 3.3m elsewhere.
Lastly, Minnesota's Darwin Quintero has been nothing short of explosive for the Loons. If he manages to come away with yet another productive outing on Saturday, we will likely send out Jack Price to ensure Quintero automatically switches in at the end of the round.
• DEF - Maxime Chanot (NYCFC) - Potentially unavailable
• MID - Miguel Almiron (ATL)
• MID - Ezequiel Barco (ATL)
• MID - Frederico Higuain (CLB)
• MID - Maxi Moralez (NYCFC)
• FWD - Carlos Vela (LAFC)
• FWD - David Villa (NYCFC)
One thing to note before jumping in here: Maxime Chanot may be unavailable on Sunday due to a personal issue. We will be monitoring NYCFC's lineup and replace him with another NYCFC defender should he not participate this weekend.
Of our remaining starters, it's once again a Who's Who of MLS stars with home fixtures - I'm beginning to sense a theme here...
As we mentioned above, we're very high on Atlanta this weekend, so Miguel Almiron and Ezequiel Barco were our first two picks in the midfield this round.
Carlos Vela has been unstoppable both at home on the road in every match thus far. No reason to believe it won't continue in Round 9.
After an embarrassing loss against a supposedly-struggling Portland team, we anticipate NYCFC will rebound very strongly at home. Maxi Moralez and David Villa are our picks here.
Lastly, Pipa Higuain provides a very solid floor this weekend, facing a San Jose club that has given up quite a few goals on the road this season.