Pay to Play

I’ve spent the better part of 35 years involved in fantasy sports, beginning in 1983 when a group of friends created a fantasy NFL league. Back then, there was no infrastructure to support the hobby like there is today. The Internet was in it’s infancy and I was logging into an online service called The Source, in an effort to get all the latest scores and updates, to be a step ahead of the morning newspaper, manually tally points for the weekend action.
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Watford Attacking Assets

Watford traveled to Austria to begin their pre-season training ahead of the 2018/19 Premier League season, playing twice last week; 1-1 draw with 1. FC Köln and a 3-1 victory over Fortuna Düsseldorf. The transfer window has introduced new players to the Hornets over the last few weeks, looking to make an impact and impress manager, Javi Gracia. The recent bid by Everton of £50 million, for the 21-year-old, Brazilian, Richarlison has sent shockwaves through the FPL community. On the back of just 5 goals in 41 games last season, he’s being courted by Marco Silva.
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5-Man Defense Feasibility

Lots of talk on how to approach this FPL season, as August 11 is coming towards fantasy managers, like Mo Salah blazing down the right flank. It’s interesting to see some early teams and the run of formations popping up. No real surprise that a 3-4-3 still seems to garner most of the attention. This, along with a 3-5-2 provides the most attacking potential from a midfield and forward perspective, while the four and five defender formations haven’t garnered much support.
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Keys to FPL Success

The leak of the FPL prices list, followed the unexpected release of the 2018/19 FPL game has taken many fantasy managers by surprise. In fact, I had just downloaded the PDF from Who Got The Assist when I noticed team ID numbers being posted on Twitter. Quick in signing up, naming my team and auto draftomg, I was number, 446. While these numbers are irrelevant in the grand scheme of things, it’s the earliest I have seen the official game launched, in my 5 years playing and the lowest ID I’ve recorded.
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FPL Accolades

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.
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It was anxious moments when Spurs forward, Harry Kane limped off with an ankle injury after 33 minutes in a 4-1 victory away to Bournemouth. Speculation began as to the severity of the injury and the duration he’d be sidelined, rehabilitating the ankle in order to return to fitness. In just 2 weeks Kane put in a 16 minute cameo appearance in a 3-1 loss to Chelsea last week. Where does that leave fantasy owners for the run in?
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When Is Sanchez Salah?

As promoted by Josh and Brandon, the “cheaters” of Always Cheating, “set your bus team.” Meaning, if you get hit by a bus, at least you have a team set for the upcoming FPL games. Morbid as it may seen, it’s a good practice to follow, as I was caught by the New Year’s Day deadline and forget set my team for Gameweek 22. However, it worked out and I scored 64 points and a green arrow.
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Advanced Planning – 2FT

As mentioned in the Monday retrospect from Gameweek 23, things weren’t necessarily rosy. Finished the week on 66 points, which saw a small red arrow, down 8k to an overall rank of 417k. Compare this standing against last season and I am 819k spots better off. Not saying much, as I expected to be near the top 100k by this point of the season, but not all decisions have fallen favorably for me.
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Potential Help

Yesterday, I briefly discussed rolling the Gameweek 21 FT over, allowing me 2 FT ahead of the Spurs double gameweek in order to reacquaint myself with Harry Kane. In a calculated move after Gameweek 13, I offloaded Kane in order to bolster a 5-man midfield. We all know how that has gone, based on the last 2 weeks, which has seen Kane net 6 goals ahead of Spurs BGW. While the short term is currently in order, it’s not too early to look ahead at the new year and what transfers could help fantasy teams.
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FPL Squad Mirroring Watford

As a fantasy manager my run of success came to an abrupt end after Gameweek 16, posting a season low, 35 points. As a Watford supporter, its been a run of frustration since the 4-2 loss in Gameweek 9 to Chelsea, a match in which we were up 2-1 into the 70′ minute. The past 2 gameweeks have a trend developing in FPL, which mirrors the struggles Watford have faced since that Chelsea loss. Subsequent losses to Stoke City, the come from behind win by Everton, coupled with the 1-0 heatbreaker at Burnley and yesterday’s collapse in the final minutes to drop more points, 2-1 away to Palace.
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Fantasy Football Thanks

As a fantasy manager I have some strong convictions when it comes to how I plan my squad and strategize over the course of the FPL season. That statement could be applied to nearly all fantasy mangers in the game. This year, more than the past 4 years I feel I have a better knowledge and understanding of how the game is played. The misconception of participating in fantasy (NFL) football for 38 years gave me a false sense of understanding the English game. Understand the players, understand the game, but there is much more to FPL.
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