Which Dream Team World Cup players are likely to bank HUGE points during the first round of fixtures?

THE last thing Dream Team World Cup managers want is to stumble out of the blocks when the football is underway in Qatar.

You’ll make life so much easier for yourself if you can get ahead of your mini-league rivals early doors and force them to get funky with their team selections.

With that in mind, let’s consider which players are most likely to produce plentiful points during the first round of fixtures.

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gettyA ‘defender’ is the loosest possible sense[/caption]

Denzel Dumfries (£4.5m) is confident he’ll be fit enough to start for Netherlands against Senegal and that match-up now looks to be a favourable one for him after Sadio Mane was forced to withdraw from the World Cup through injury.

The African Cup of Nations champions are not a one-man team by any means but there’s no doubt the Bayern Munich forward was their primary goal threat and so the chance of Louis van Gaal’s side keeping a clean sheet in their opening game have increased.

The Oranje’s flying wing-back is also a serious threat going forward, he scored two goals and provided an assist in four outings at Euro 2020.

Argentina vs Saudi Arabia certainly looks like a fixture to target.

The Copa America holders haven’t lost a game in well over three years and are the pre-tournament second-favourites with most bookmakers.

All 26 members of the Saudi squad play their club football in their homeland so they’re something of an unknown entity to western audiences but they will have to produce something very special to deny Lionel Messi (£7.5m) and Lautaro Martinez (£5.5m).

getty/dream teamMessi isn’t the only Argentina forward to consider[/caption]

Nothing really needs to said about the former but it may be worth doubling up Argentina attacking assets ahead of Tuesday morning’s fixture – the Inter forward has scored ten goals in his last 15 international appearances.

Emi Martinez (£4.5m) looks a good shout for a clean sheet too – he’s currently the most-popular goalkeeper in the game by a huge margin.

France have been disrupted by injuries but still they should overwhelm Australia on Tuesday night.

Let’s be honest, if Kylian Mbappe (£7.5m) is in the mood there’s not much Graham Arnold’s side can do to stop him – the 23-year-old has scored 19 goals in 20 games for PSG this season.

And before you make some sarcastic remark about the quality of Ligue 1, just consider how many Aussie defenders would get into the starting line-ups of the French sides Mbappe has put to the sword in recent weeks.

Looking ahead to Wednesday, Germany and Spain take on Japan and Costa Rice respectively and both European giants will be looking to send a message to the other.

There are serious question marks about Die Mannschaft at the back but Dream Team World Cup bosses should be tempted by at least one of their midfielders.

gettyMusiala will win plenty more admirers this winter[/caption]

Leroy Sane (£6m) and Serge Gnabry (£5m) are expensive options so perhaps Jamal Musiala (£3.5m) fits the bill better?

The 19-year-old has arguably been the Bundesliga’s best player this season and there are increasing calls for Hansi Flick to build the national team around him.

As for Spain, everyone knows Alvaro Morata (£5m) is not the most clinical finisher in the world but he’s a proper No9 who is serviced by a host of technically-gifted playmakers.

The ex-Chelsea striker may not be one for the latter stages but against Costa Rica he could well be worth a whirl.

Finally, it may sound obvious but Kevin De Bruyne (£7m) versus Canada looks ripe for a double-digit haul.

The north Americans have some exciting players in attack, Alphonso Davies and Jonathan David most notably, but their defenders won’t have faced players anywhere near the quality of Man City’s midfield maestro during qualification for this winter’s tournament.

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