The Coach: Five Fantasy Bundesliga must-haves in the final stretch

It’s hard to stomach that the 2016/17 Bundesliga campaign will be over in just two weeks’ time!

This season has been incredible from surprise package success stories to thrilling individual performances, but the inaugural season of Official Fantasy Bundesliga has most definitely been a highlight for me.

Now with just two rounds of fixtures remaining, the aim is to finish strong. With all nine games kicking off at the same time, though, these next two Matchdays pose some unique challenges of their own.

You only have one crack at picking your best eleven and captain, but there’s no chance you’ll get caught out by coaches unexpectedly rotating their sides as you’ll have all 18 confirmed line-ups to choose from before the transfer deadline closes at 14:28 CEST on Saturday. Accordingly, myself and my fellow experts will all be picking a five-a-side team of players we feel would be worth having for the final two games of the season.

For me, Borussia Mönchengladbach, 1899 Hoffenheim, Borussia Dortmund, FC Schalke 04 and Cologne have the most favourable run-ins and, given that they’re all still jostling for position, are all unlikely to suddenly drop any of their stars. As a result, I’ve picked one player from each team to balance out my choices!

Benjamin Hübner (DF, 1899 Hoffenheim, 12.6M, 223pts)

Despite suffering a 2-1 loss to Dortmund last time out, Hoffenheim haven’t given up hope of finishing in third and, therefore, automatically qualifying for the UEFA Champions League. Niklas Süle has been immense at the back, but in terms of fantasy points, Benjamin Hübner has stolen the show, having racked up double digit returns in 11 of his 25 appearances this season. Up against Bremen and Augsburg, Hübner should be able to add to that tally.

Nico Elvedi (DF, Borussia Mönchengladbach, 6.75M, 139pts)

Gladbach still have an outside shot of finishing in the top six, but have to win both of their final games to stand a chance. Fortunately for the Foals, their last two encounters, against Wolfsburg and Darmstadt, feature two sides in the bottom third of the table. Dieter Hecking’s charges have kept 10 clean sheets this season and Nico Elvedi is the cheapest way to benefit from Gladbach’s defensive record. The fact he wins an average of over 10 challenges a games is a bonus!

Marco Reus (MF, Borussia Dortmund, 14.35M, 108pts)

In the four games since returning from injury, Reus has provided strong fantasy returns, having picked up a total of 35 points. However, I feel like the wing wizard is due a huge performance – I’m thinking 20+ points. His dribbling abilities means he wins his fair share of challenges and, with Dortmund needing to hold off the challenge of Hoffenheim, he’ll be a key figure for Thomas Tuchel for the games against Augsburg and Bremen.

Leon Goretzka (MF, FC Schalke 04, 12.55M, 222pts)

For me, Leon Goretzka has been one of the unsung heroes of Official Fantasy Bundesliga’s inaugural season. Even when Schalke are defeated, the young German is a regular source of points as proven by the fact he has averaged just under 10 points in his last six appearances. The Royal Blues are in mid-table limbo, but are aware a seventh-placed finish could be good enough to qualify for Europe next season, so won’t be taking things easy against Hamburg and Ingolstadt.

Anthony Modeste (FW, Cologne, 17.25M, 316pts)

With Cologne a point off of sixth-placed Hertha and two behind Freiburg in fifth, the Billy Goats are in a prime position to end their 25-year absence from Europe. In Leverkusen and Mainz, the Cathedral City side face two tricky opponents battling the drop, but I’m backing Cologne to clinch a top-six finish. Modeste’s goals will prove key in determining their fate. His 18-point haul last weekend ended a run of six games without hitting double digits and I’m expecting similar results this weekend.

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