The best UCL Fantasy players to own or captain for semi-final first-leg matches |

Just four teams and three games are left in this seasons’ UEFA Champions League. The first semi-final kicks off this evening between Chelsea and Real Madrid, with PSG and Manchester City playing on Wednesday night. This is a preview of those games for the UCL Fantasy game.

Real Madrid v Chelsea

This is unlikely to be a high-scoring game. Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea come into this game on the back on three clean sheets and a very impressive recent win over Manchester City. However, even missing Sergio Ramos (€6.5m) at the back, Real Madrid have not conceded in four games. Both sides have recently played out disappointing goalless with smaller teams; Chelsea against Brighton and Real against Getafe and Real Betis. 

Real Madrid are missing some key pieces at the back, with Ramos and now Ferland Mendy (€5.9m) both out injured. However, since their 3-1 aggregate win over Liverpool, Raphael Varane (€5.8m) and Dani Carvajal (€5.3m) have both come back from injury. Sat behind Casemiro (€6.3m), they should still have the strength to give Chelsea a good game. 

Casemiro now has 77 balls recovered so far in the competition and has not scored fewer than five points in his last four matches. For his price, he is a solid option with a low basement of points. 

Going forward for Madrid, Karim Benzema (€10.4m) is the best choice. The Frenchman is their penalty taker in Ramos’ absence and top-scorer by some distance this season. Given the massive lack of good forward options left in the game, Benzema is a great pick. 

Alongside him, Vinicius Junior (€8.1m) and Marco Asensio (€8.1m)were the best options in the quarter-final, with the latter in better form than his Brazilian counterpart. Against Chelsea’s tight defence, Benzema might be the only Real attacker worth investing, especially with those spot-kick duties.

From Chelsea, Ben Chilwell (€5.4m) is beginning to become a stand-out option at both ends from left-back. His cute assist against West Ham at the weekend followed his excellent first-leg goal in the quarter-finals and he is clearly enjoying his football under Tuchel. He is probably the best Chelsea defensive option ahead of this game. The centre-backs are all good value, but I would prefer to wait and see which one starts before bringing any of them in. 

Going forward, Jorginho (€6.2m) recovered 12 balls in the second leg against Porto and is likely also still on penalties. Both him and Mason Mount (€6.9m) are good value and key players in this side. Aside from these two, Kai Havertz (€8.9m) has shown brilliance in flashes but probably not enough to warrant a place in our UCL Fantasy sides although, of course, he was rested against West Ham at the weekend.

Chilwell strikes me as the best captaincy option in this game. Benzema and Mount are also both strong options through their attacking prowess.

PSG v  Manchester City

UEFA Champions League Fantasy Football is back - what you need to know 1

This huge encounter pits the two strongest teams left in the competition against each other. Both are in great domestic form and desperate to get their hands on the coveted Champions League trophy. While UCL Fantasy managers are best placed choosing defenders from Tuesday’s match, Wednesday’s clash is where you should pick up your attackers.

Kylian Mbappe (€11.2m) and Neymar (€11.6m) performed brilliantly in the quarter-final and appear to be really clicking under Mauricio Pochettino. The former scored twice at the weekend and now has five goals in his last three league games. Meanwhile, Neymar has taken on more of a creative role, which is has somewhat restricted his Fantasy output. Mbappe is clearly the superior option from a Fantasy standpoint for this reason.

From Manchester City, there are a glut of midfield options. Kevin De Bruyne (€11.4m), Riyad Mahrez (€9.0m), and Phil Foden (€7.3m) have had the best recent output and should all line-up on Wednesday in Paris. Considering his price, bringing Foden in seems like a no-brainer. His youthful confidence will lend itself well to games like this and he might just bring the skillset needed to break down PSG. 

At the back, I fancy John Stones (€5.2m) as the best option. The centre-back is a real goal threat from set pieces and should be nailed-on to start as he’s suspended in the league. While I’m not sure how well he’ll cope against Mbappe, he is the cheapest way into this City defence and has the highest attacking threat. 

From this game, Mbappe is clearly the strongest captaincy choice. City’s defence has looked vulnerable at best recently, especially on the break, and Mbappe should be well placed to capitalise. The young Frenchman thrives in big games and they do not come much bigger than this. 

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