With the 2022 World Cup kick-off fast approaching, fantasy managers will be scrambling to finalise their squads.
Premium players are essential but with $100m to spend, you’ll need to find a few budget (cheap) players too.
Assuming you have two of Kevin De Bruyne, Lionel Messi, and Kylian Mbappe, that leaves $6m per player for the remaining 13 of your squad.
Throw in a couple more premium options and that $6m becomes even less!
Interestingly, there are players priced at $3.5m or less. However, given the importance of your bench in the World Cup format, these options aren’t too advisable.
Here are the best budget players to select for your World Cup fantasy team.
- Price: $4.5m
- Fixtures: Tunisia, France, Australia
- Picked by: 20%
Maehle made a name for himself during the Euro 2020 campaign and the attacking full-back is one to watch once more.
Having the benefit of being part of a strong defensive unit, the Atalanta left-back provides both defensive and attacking threat.
It seems a good deal when one of the cheap players in the game scored 5 goals in World Cup qualifying – and is a defender too!
During qualification, his side conceded only 3 goals as they won 9 and lost only once.
Denmark are expected to get clean sheets against Australia and Tunisia. Respectively, they have a 69% and 63% chance of doing so.
Maehle is also one of our picks for best defenders in World Cup fantasy as well.
- Price: $5m
- Fixtures: Iran, Wales, USA
- Picked by: 32%
Likely to be starting in a wing-back role, Trippier has improved his output from set pieces.
England fans will be hoping for another wonderful free kick similar to the one netted against Croatia in the 2018 World Cup.
Having an impressive campaign for Newcastle so far, it is clear to see why he is such a popular selection in FPL.
He looks to be ahead of his number one competitor for the right-back role, Trent Alexander-Arnold.
Poor form and a seeming lack of trust raised questions as to whether he’d even make the squad should Kyle Walker and Reece James had been fit.
Favourable fixtures for England mean that Trippier will be spending the majority of his time going forward.
At the same time, clean sheets will be expected in at least two of the three games which should result in easy points.
Trippier has averaged 2.3 key passes per game and provided 3 assists so far this season. It would hardly be a surprise to see him grab an assist or two.
- Price: $6m
- Fixtures: Portugal, South Korea, Uruguay
- Picked by: 2%
Backing Ghana in such a tough group is certainly a gamble.
Sometimes in World Cup fantasy, gambles will pay off in a greater way than sure bets. With the World Cup being played out over just seven matchdays, gambles will be required to compete at the very top of the rankings.
Kudus is one such gamble. He is however very likely to be at the heart of any attacking output for Ghana.
Having a non-penalty xG of 0.9 per game this season for Ajax, the attacking midfielder has stepped up his game.
Averaging 4.21 shots per game for Ajax proves how involved Kudus is when it comes to attacking play.
He has scored 9 times in 20 appearances including 4 Champions League goals. This shows an ability to perform on the big stage.
Goal contributions from midfield are always more sought after and it could be argued Kudus should have been listed as a forward.
This gives an opportunity to have an extra forward in the squad and maximise potential returns.
Kudus is also featured in our World Cup fantasy best midfielders to pick article.
- Price: $7m
- Fixtures: Brazil, Cameroon, Switzerland
- Picked by: 3%
While $7m seems like a lot, especially in comparison to defenders, Mitrovic is a differential and saves you at least $3m in comparison to Messi, Neymar and Ronaldo.
Averaging a goal every 114 minutes, Mitrovic has been in fine form for Fulham this season.
Forming a strike partnership with Dusan Vlahovic ($8.5m), Serbia have the potential to cause some upsets during the competition.
The entire setup of the team is to get the ball into the box which will no doubt suit the 28-year-old.
You can’t go far wrong with a natural goal scorer and Mitrovic continued his clinical form following a record-breaking campaign in the Championship last season.
- Price: $6.5m
- Fixtures: Cameroon, Brazil, Serbia
- Picked by: 1%
Update: Embolo isn’t currently available on the World Cup fantasy game.
Being in the same group as Serbia and Mitrovic, it may come down to personal preference on which side will perform better.
Embolo has thrived since a move to Monaco and is likely to take over from Seferovic in the striker role for Switzerland.
During World Cup qualification, Embolo netted three goals and set three up for his teammates in only four appearances.
If that sort of form can translate, Embolo will be a valuable asset in World Cup fantasy at a very reasonable price.