Maybe I shouldn’t even consider this piece noteworthy. There were many individuals I collaborated with during the season. This was also the first season I used Twitter to aid the FPL decision making process. The word “lemmings” comes to mind as this social media outlet is but a small cross-section of a very LARGE online gaming community. That said, I had my “regular” users, sites and podcasts I turned to during the season.
First off I don’t want to dismiss anyone, as many people I interacted with helped me along the way. While the end result wasn’t what I expected, it was great to have other opinions, popular or not to help make decisions. However, I feel there were some individuals, websites and podcasts that dominated my weekly FPL fix. By no means was it limited to these few that I want to spotlight.
First off I want to say thanks to @ChefDaleH for the creation of the #FPLBeerClub, not sure he had the foresight to see just how much this group would grow, adding beer to a game we all love. The interaction and banter, as well as beer really made the second half of the season memorable. During the off-season, we’ve renamed it to #SummerBeerClub, where we will drink some great craft beer while we watch the 2018 World Cup from Russia.
This DM group also saw the creation of the #30SecondBeerReview. While not FPL related, it did spawn a series of #30SecondReview featuring budget differentials starting with GW23 and Cenk Tosun hitting a brace. Thanks to the guys at FPL Academica, I started a series on their site and Twitter feed featuring my selections in a 30-second video. It appears this shorts will continue next with collaborating with the teachers of the game.
Two guys I really looked forward to reading on a regular basis were Peter Blake (mathsafe_fpl) of Mathematically Safe and Rob Reid (FPL_VET), who’s articles you could read over on Fantasy Football Geek. Both fantasy managers provided some excellent insight throughout the season, as I looked forward their articles weekly to help me through the season.
FPL Hall of Famer, James Egersdorff also provided a wealth of information, coming from a interesting perspective of being a perennial star in the FPL community, based on his consistent finishes year after year. Also neat to get this sort of opinion and see how they approach the game (usually playing boring, but that equals success, right).
Also want to give thanks to sportswriters, David Munday (@DavidMunday815) formerly of the Plymouth Herald and Ken Rooney (@KenRooney) of the Irish Examiner wrote excellent weekly columns for their associated paper. You could also get up to date FPL infromation from these two writers. Next year I look forward to seeing both play a role in the FPL, as David will be on staff at Fantasy Football Scout. I wish him all the best in his endeavors!
Ben Crellin (@benCrellin) for all the time and effort he put into his DGW/BGW spreadsheets. These documents were imperative for planning player strategy weeks ahead of these games being announced or postponed. While some in the community got frustrated with him, I paid for his spreadsheet service and found the spreadsheets excellent for the price, which helped me ahead of the DGWs. Hopefully we see his spreadsheets return next season.
AZ (@ffscout_AZ), I bring AZ up because his squad and strategy appeared to be similar to mine this season. I found myself agreeing with many of his opinions and thoughts on the FF Scoutcast. While my team didn’t perform as well as his, I did appreciate the like-mindedness between the two teams. However, the end result saw a poor chip strategy fail and ruin my season. Then again Kane did that long before I played my first chip
FPL_Guidance (@FPL_Guidance) is the final individual Twitter account I single out. Much like AZ, my thoughts and idea paralleled what Guidance was doing with his team this season. Opinions and ideas passed to him for his recommendations were usually on par with my thoughts. Great to have something in common with better fantasy mangers than myself, especially as I still learn strategy and how to play the game, even after 5 years.
While it’s impossible to thank every Twitter account I follow, there are so many others who made this season the most memorable. Many accounts posting great news, information, injury reports, as well as statistics, comparisons and graphics on a weekly basis. My thanks to all of you for making this the most fun year I’ve had playing FPL.
Unlike the previous four years, my interest in websites appeared to wain, but I still had a core group of websites I used week in, week out for various data and information to aid my decisions. I went as far to pay for a few subscriptions, as I felt the information was excellent, as were the individuals behind the scenes doing the work for many fantasy managers in the community.
First up, Fantasy Football Geek, as I was given the opportunity to provide content over a larger audience than promoting my musings on my 6thGoal site. Geek was more than willing to allow me to submit articles at a regular interval to be posted in my ‘Think Differently’ series that followed my squad over the season and some of the different decisions I made, unlike remaining conventional or boring. Regardless of my writing there is a great group of writers who provide content along with Geek; Joseph Crilley, Rob Reid, Alex Ball and Keith Spencer.
Next up, Fantasy Football Scout, probably the most well known of the FPL sites, providing news, notes and oodles of data in their members area, along with their weekly Scoutcast. These guys, along with their base users provided was amazing all season long. While I didn’t use the site as much as I did last year, I did pay for the subscription this season, allowing me more data, which allowed me to make more own decision and help provide content I would go on to write. Jointy, Paul, Mark, David Wardale and now David Munday will continue to create some excellent pieces moving forward.
Fantasy Football Fix, while not a news content site, it uses algorithms for prediction purposes to aid in transfer decisions to score more points that the next fantasy manager. This was another site I supported with a subscription to. I really enjoyed using the iOS app every weekend to track my Gameweek Live standing, which at times got to be damn frustrating watching your team lose that clean sheet and 6 points in the 89th minute. We’ve all been there, right?? Some great graphics when categorizing statistics during the season, along with the all important price changes and potential starters.
Finally, Starting 11, the daily fantasy game. I learned about this from the interview that Always Cheating provided ahead of the season. Never having played a daily fantasy game, I liked the look of the app and it add a few twist to the game. I also found out I was pretty good at it, posting the highest score in the world a few times over the course of the year. It was always fun to “challenge the cheaters” and those who played in the community.
This is probably the toughest category, as there are many more podcasts than I can shake a stick at or have time to listen to. Given I commute to work five days a week, 45 minutes each way I usually got about five podcasts in a week to help me each week. Most formats were similar, as pundits looked at their previous weekly points, looked forward to match ups, captains, differentials and took some FPL community questions.
Always Cheating was a new pod I started with his season and quickly became a patreon supporter, as Josh and Brandon made the game fun. Two guys you could sit around with in the Black Horse Tavern, knock back a few beers and watch some football. It was the Cheaters who introduced me to Starting 11, the daily fantasy game and “challenging the cheaters,” which yielded a small FPL prize pack for being the high scorer among fantasy managers who challenged either manager.
Another new website I stumbled upon was Who Got the Assist (WGTA), as Nick and Tom provided similar content with an English flair, following the season of Allan Nyom in #Nyomwatch, while providing physiological reasons behind some of our decision making processes. Their Anti-Meta team was interesting to follow early on, as they did quite well, but as the season went on it was apparent that templates would form around certain players. They also provided some website content during the pre-season of players new to the EPL or they were spotlighting.
While I never originally listened to Fanfeud FPL Show, hosted by Amigo Don (FPL_Marple), I quickly took to his new new venture, partnered with Chef Dale (@ChefDaleH) and marz (@marz05). The on-air jabs, coupled with marz bad singing and lighthearted look at FPL made this a favorite with me. Gotta mention any podcast that calls themselves, 3 Amigos Podcast, using the theme song from the movie is class, in my opinion. Solid opinions, great guests and their ‘Get to Know You’ (GTKY) series was wonderfully entertaining. How many bullet wizzes did Ben Dinnery actually have?
Maybe it goes without saying that the Fantasy Football Scoutcast was the first podcast, followed by their video stream I started watching a few years back. Hosted by Mark, with Jointy, Andy, Az and sometimes Granville. The play and interaction of this group was quite impressive, as was their knowledge, which goes without saying. This has been the longest running podcast I have followed since being introduced to FPL, as this group went in depth to provide a variety of opinions and options over the course of the year. It was also great to hear from some of their guests this year, including Jay Egersdorff.
Finally the last podcast I had time during the week, the Planet #FPL Podcast with Suj (West Ham) and James (Spurs) hosting a plethora of shows during the week. Can’t forget a hashtag mention to #manchild! They brought an entertaining and fresh approach to the community. One thing I found they prided themselves on was interaction with their listeners. That’s not to say the other pods didn’t do that, but these guys seemed to go above and beyond on a weekly basis. Strong analysis interspersed with an entertaining flare, dotted with a few James’ F-bombs.
There were a few others I tuned into, but weren’t part of my regular, weekly listen; Let’s Talk FPL, The 59th Minute, along with a number of Watford podcasts, as Hornet supporters struggled through a rough mid-season.
So thanks to EVERYONE who made this the most enjoyable season I have experienced! This is really the first time I got more involved providing information from my Twitter account, which links to my FPL website, 6thGoal.com. Also thanks to those sites that gave me an opportunity to provide content for them, from FPL Academica, to Fantasy Football Geek, as well as Tactics FC and 90maat.
It’s been a really busy year and another in which I have improved how I play the game, while looking at it differently. Next year I hope to apply what I learned this year to jump up the overall rank and be more competitive than I was this year. The 2018 World Cup is in site and I have lots of beer to review but am already looking forward to building my fantasy team for next year. Cheers!