Team USA are in the knockout stage as heavy underdogs against Netherlands, who are back in the Round of 16 after failing to even qualify for the 2018 World Cup. Netherlands have a 49 percent chance to win in regulation, but an implied total of just 1.46 compared to 22 percent chance to win and an implied total of 0.96 for team USA. That said, Team USA have defied the odds throughout the tournament and are playing with a chip on their shoulders after an undefeated group stage.
CASH GAME STRATEGY
Cody Gakpo ($32) is the highest-priced player on the slate and it's not hard to see why, his +180 goal-scoring odds are second on the slate behind only Memphis Depay ($24). Despite the return of Depay, Gakpo has dominated set-pieces for Netherlands. In a match that Netherlands will hope to control, Gakpo is hard to fade even at such a premium price he's pretty much a lock in cash lineups. The concern with Gakpo, and the only reason I'd consider to fade him, is if you believe Depay will take back control of set pieces, in which case Depay becomes an immediate lock, especially at the major discount. Davy Klaassen ($28) comes at a hefty price and even with his +300 goal-scoring odds, I find it hard to justify paying up for him with Gakpo and Pulisic already sitting near max price. Steven Bergwijn ($15) is worth mentioning at his price, though he's not projected to start. If he does, he would immediately become an interesting play in GPP and cash with +210 goal-scoring odds.
Switching to the US side is another cash-game lock in my eyes, Christian Pulisic ($29). Again, it is a premium price and a hefty one to commit to two players, but it's impossible to ignore Pulisic who has dominated US set pieces and had a hand in every United States' goal throughout the group stage. Pulisic was cleared Friday and if it is physically possible, he almost certainly will go the full 90 in a match that means so much for team USA. Behind Pulisic it's harder to trust the other US creative players, neither Brenden Aaronson ($20) or Giovanni Reyna ($19) are expected to start, though either would eat into Pulisic's value on set pieces.
If you're looking towards a scoreless 90 and penalties, Matt Turner ($19) and Andries Noppert ($20) have both impressed and could be very viable strategies in the Superstar (captain) position. Noppert in particular is intriguing, Team USA scored only twice in the group stage and have an implied goal total under one. For cheaper options down the slate, Jurrien Timber ($15) is worth mentioning in the same vein. He also has the upside of aggressive tackling and clearances which help him tally strong defensive volume. If the US looks to break on the counter it will be through the pacey Haji Wright ($18) but at that price, and with +320 goal-scoring odds, it's hard to pay up for Wright in cash. Some interesting US options with Turner would be Tim Ream ($15) or Cameron Carter-Vickers ($16), both of whom will likely see plenty of action.
This is a strange one. Netherlands are the heavy favorites but the hype around Team USA could make Netherlands a surprisingly viable target in GPP. Frenkie de Jong ($30) has a massive price but is probably the best midfielder on the pitch Saturday. I can't justify him in cash, though that price tag could knock down his utilization in tournaments. If you fade Gakpo and Depay, Klaassen would be an interesting combination with de Jong, Klaassen has +300 goal-scoring odds, the third-best of projected starters on the slate. Virgil van Dijk ($19) is likely to avoid some utilization due to being the highest-priced defender on the slate, but his seven-point floor throughout the group stage and slight +900 goal-scoring upside could put him in GPP contention.
If you want to target the underdogs with Team USA it gets a bit murkier. Weston McKennie ($23) still sits at a premium price and is averaging a floor below a single point across the first three matches. He simply hasn't been very good by any metric, be it fantasy or the eye test. Still, Giovanni Reyna is firmly in the doghouse and McKennie's awful form and relatively high price could see him go against the grain in GPP. As I said above, Haji Wright is hard to trust in this spot as his +320 goal-scoring odds don't exactly inspire confidence, but he could be the outlet for the US attack and all it takes is one counter for Wright to get where he needs to be. Matt Turner should be under siege from a Dutch side that loves to take long shots, giving him a strong save upside. Turner would be especially notable in constructions targeting a 1-0 USA win, in combination with players such as Ream, Carter-Vickers (or Walker Zimmerman ($14) if he starts), and Wright. Of course, if he were to be brought out of the doghouse Reyna would immediately become an interesting play in all formats, though it seems manager Gregg Berhalter is closer to subbing himself in than even looking at Reyna.