2024 Round 18 DiffeRANCHals

Every week, I’m going to go over my suggestions from last week, and determine if they were a good or bad pick based on position and points. To describe in detail the ranking system, here is the metric: bust = 3 or fewer points (or not starting/on the bench), average = 4-5 points, good = 6-8 points, great = 9+ points. Players not available for selection I am disregarding and not counting as a positive or negative in the article.

DGW Scoring: Bust = 6 or fewer, Average = 7-9, Good = 10-12, Great = 13+

Week 17 Final Results: 


  • Sigurd Rosted – Bust (1 points)
  • Mikael Uhre – Good (7 points)


  • Asier Illarramendi – Bust (2 points)
  • Mateusz Bogusz – Great (9 points)


  • Ranko Veselinovic – Bust (2 points)
  • Kevin Kelsy – Bust (2 points)

2024 Full Season Results: 14 Great, 14 Good, 17 Average, 55 Busts

Matt Results: 4 Great, 4 Good, 7 Average, 20 Bust

Brandon Results: 6 Great, 3 Good, 6 Average, 18 Bust

Ranch Results: 4 Great, 7 Good, 4 Average, 17 Bust


Welcome back to week 18 of the diffeRANCHals article! An international duty DGW is the perfect time to take a peek at some of the differential options that can be offered. With a lot of big name players away, someone has to step up to fill the void. Which one will you take?

Matt: Mo Farsi, $5.9m (Defender – Columbus)

It has been hard to gauge Columbus this season. But with CONCACAF Champions League in the rearview window, the Crew have jumped back into league play with a 3-2 away win at NYC. A surprise member for that attack was Mo Farsi, who not only scored but also led the team with 6 shot creating actions. I don’t necessarily expect clean sheets away at Miami and home against SKC, but I do expect Columbus to score lots of goals and for Farsi to be involved in that attack. In a week where there aren’t many inspiring defensive choices, someone like Farsi gives us a solid sneaky option to get an attacking piece in our backline.

Ranch: Brayan Vera, $m (Defender – Real Salt Lake)

When it comes to diffeRANCHals, you can’t go an entire season without mentioning a player on yellow card watch during a double game week. Although Vera is on watch (if he gets another yellow he is suspended), he is the optimal defender choice for RSL. Brayan takes set pieces occasionally, will score absolute bangers, and has a good clean sheet chances this week. Why not roll the dice?

Brandon: Hector Herrera, $9.8m (Midfielder – Houston)

Hector, Hector, Hector. After spending the first eight weeks of the season on the injured list, then four and a half more getting back to full speed, Houston’s midfield leader is finally pulling in the solid scores of last season. In a double gameweek with two relatively favorable games (in theory) at home against Seattle and on the road in DC, Herrera could be a relatively safe and reliable option to cover any fails on the bench — or, inserted directly into your XI with the middling group of midfield options this week.

Ranch: Albert Rusnak, $10.0m (Midfielder – Seattle)

Call it a homer pick, but Rusnak has been part of the reason that Seattle has started to turn their season around. When looking at his fantasy points, Rusnak has an average of 6 points over his last 5 games. That is perfect for a 12 point week this DGW. With floor players being reliable on DGWs, Rusnak has that floor while also being able to produce a ceiling since he is on set pieces. Best of luck versus the two Texas teams!

Matt: Christian Benteke, $11.7m (Forward – DC United)

This week Bouanga, Chicho and Cucho have all the love (and probably rightfully so). But Benteke loves to hit when no one owns him, so this could be a great week to grab him. Two home games against Atlanta – who he scored a hattrick against in week 12 – and Houston – who love to conceded goals on the road – is setting him up well to score big. On top of that, DC United loves to score on deadball opportunities, scoring 6 set-piece goals which is the third most in MLS this season. Houston and Atlanta, have both given up 4 set piece goals this season, tying for the 8 most in the league. Mr. Aerial Duels has a recipe for success this week and offers a great differential opportunity for those making up ground. 

Brandon: Kerwin Vargas, $7.5m (Forward – Charlotte)

Is this pick point-chase-y? Sure. But sometimes, going with the hot hand pays off (wink wink, Bogusz last week) – and with a goal and an assist across Charlotte’s last two matches, Vargas could be a sneaky option, especially for those hunting down budget options (late starts, anyone?). Vargas has also collected a bevy of bonus points over the course of the season when not contributing through goals and assists, and, much like Bogusz last week, is up against an Orlando side missing two key defensive pieces in Pedro Gallese and David Brekalo. Add to that, a second match against a faltering Philadelphia that just conceded a loss to a nine-man Inter Miami side — and the post-match comments from Kai Wagner, plus, the response from Union head coach Jim Curtin — and Dean Smith’s crew may just get out of this week with two more wins under their belts.

About Tyler Norman

Moderator of MLS Fantasy Boss Discord, new contributing writer for mlsfantasyboss.com. Soccer and fantasy sports enthusiast.

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