Fancy yourself as a fantasy Premier League wizard? Well, if you’re dreading the prospect of going over a month without the buzz, don’t – there’s an official 2022 World Cup fantasy football game!
With even more impetus on picking correctly to ensure your side is packed with players that are going to feature beyond the statutory three group-stage matches, managers have their work cut out to select from a whole host of unfamiliar names.
With $100m to spend, here are ten goalkeepers that 90min thinks could be fantasy football gold in Qatar.
Group B will be a very competitive group, determined by fine margins. Up against England, the United States and Iran, Wales have a real possibility of advancing to the knockout stages in their first World Cup appearance for 64 years.
A major factor in the Dragons’ qualification was Wayne Hennessey, Cymru’s friendly giant who put in a sensational showing against a talented Ukraine side in the play-off final in June – with a place in the last 16 at stake, expect Nottingham Forest’s second choice to produce more heroics.
Pitted against Belgium, Croatia and Canada in Group F, Morocco have the capacity to surprise a few in Qatar.
A key component in any success they achieve this winter will surely be Sevilla’s number one Bono who, priced at just $4.5m, is a tempting risk to take for fantasy World Cup managers.
At $4m, Uruguay’s Sergio Rochet is an absolute bargain. Despite the competition and experience of Fernando Muslera, Rochet is expected to be his country’s starter at the World Cup.
An unknown quantity for many fans, plying his trade for Nacional in Uruguay’s top flight, the 28-year-old has made all eight of his international appearances in 2022, keeping six clean sheets in the process.
Competing with an Uruguay side tipped by many as dark horses, Rochet has to be considered.
It’s difficult to predict whether Spain will go home happy or disappointed in December, but Athletic Club’s talented shot-stopper Unai Simon will play a large part in their campaign whatever happens.
Accustomed to resolute defences at club level, Luis Enrique’s first choice goes into the 2022 World Cup with three clean sheets in his last four caps for Spain.
At $5.5m, he’s on the expensive side for a goalkeeper but, if you’re backing Spain this winter, he’s a sure bet.
Remko Pasveer will be competing in his first World Cup – at the age of 39. His ‘never too late’ story is one for the ages, rising to first-choice status for the Netherlands courtesy of fine form when given the opportunity at Ajax.
Now with two caps and two international clean sheets to his name, he’s certainly one to watch for a strong Netherlands side in Qatar; and, at $4.5m, he’s a steal!
Hugo Lloris has been there, done that, got the t-shirt and got the medal.
He’s the joint most expensive goalkeeper in fantasy World Cup but, for a France side always capable of glory, he’ll be a stalwart and a crucial performer – as he always is for his nation.
Thibaut Courtois is also priced at a healthy $6m, but it’s little surprise.
The Belgian has been at the top of his game – and, arguably the game – for the past couple of years. Having proven his match-winning capabilities between the sticks on the biggest of club stages for Real Madrid, he’ll be key should the Red Devils finally take advantage of the quality they boast.
Definitely do not sleep on Denmark this winter.
It may have been 30 years since the Danes won a major tournament, but they have the robustness, spirit and class to cause a serious upset. As one of the leaders at the heart of a strong Denmark camp, $5m-rated Kasper Schmeichel is key for his country and certainly worth a punt.
Alisson may be the most obvious choice, but there’s good reason for that.
The Brazilian will be one of the favourites’ starting goalkeeper in Qatar and is a certainty to progress into the deeper rounds of the competition, with a realistic view of glory. He’s an expensive option at $6m but he’ll be worth every penny.
Argentina will also be gunning for the crown, with the ambition of winning their third World Cup.
They lifted the Copa America, with a victory over Brazil in the final, last year – and Emiliano Martinez was integral to that success.
He may have endured a bumpy start to the campaign with Aston Villa, but the man simply does not concede on the international stage, keeping 14 clean sheets in his 19 caps with nine of those coming in his last ten.
With Martinez set to play a large part in what could be a triumphant World Cup campaign for Argentina, $5.5m is a price worth paying.