My FPL and FanTeam Team Reveal: Justifications and Team Structure

I reveal my team for FPL and for FanTeam’s season long €250,000 fantasy tournament, and provide justifications for choices as well as a word on team structure

If you haven’t already heard, FanTeam, are offering a Premier League season-long game with a prize pot of an incredible €250,000 – yes, you did read that right and yes, it is guaranteed! All for just a €25 stake.

You can view all the details of their incredible offer here >> 

Direct link to site >>

FanTeam Team

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FPL Team

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Because of how similar the prices are in both FanTeam and FPL, my team is the same as you can see above.

There are however, some notable price differences between the two formats and I will be writing a piece on this tomorrow.

Justifications For Selections

Premium choices

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I’ve gone with 2 premium options this year in Mohamed Salah and Raheem Sterling, as opposed to 3.

The reason for this is that, of the viable premium options available, I felt that Mohamed Salah and Raheem Sterling were the best two, based on their previous scores last year, the fact that they are still considered midfielders by the boffins at Official FPL and the fact that I believe they will both have similar seasons, vying it out for the top point scorer in the game.

I like Harry Kane and Aubameyang, but having them in my side, I feel, imbalances my team too much for the other selections I’d like and as such, I’ve made the decision to go without them for the time being.

Strong Defence

Having at least 1 Liverpool defender is a no-brainer with a double up definitely being a viable option despite the high price.

I’ve gone with Andrew Robertson as mine, as I expect him to start more games than TAA, and I’ve chosen the Scot over VVD, as I feel the attacking threat is greater.

Lucas Digne and Oleksandr Zinchenko are my other defenders. Zinchenko simply for City DEF representation at the cheapest possible price (easy to switch to AWB/Maguire when Mendy comes back) and Lucas Digne for Everton’s brilliant opening fixtures and his high attacking threat, with him taking corners/free kicks and his general threat from open play.

Midfield + The Punts

I’ve spoken about Salah and Sterling above – they need no justification.

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Kevin de Bruyne, the architect, has been selected because he’s simply a genius player, and because he excites me when I watch him. He holds a great threat from open play and set-pieces in the goals and assists department for the best team in the league – what’s not to like?

Ross Barkley (7% ownership) and Callum Robinson (0.5% ownership) represent my two punts.

Barkley has had a sizzling pre-season under Lampard, with 5 games 5 goals and 3 assists. What’s most interesting to note, is that, when he was on the pitch, he took the penalties, scoring 2/2. Tammy Abraham took the other penalty, but that was when Ross wasn’t on the pitch.

Lampard has used the 4231 in pre-season so it looks like he’s fairly set to go with this formation, meaning that Barkley would likely operate in the number 10 role behind the striker. At £6.0m, and looking at the other potential options who could play CAM, it feels like a risk that’s definitely worth taking.

I’ve chosen Robinson as my other punt based on information from my close friend, who’s a Blades supporter, who has suggested that he will play OOP up front for Sheffield United*.

*For more info on how Sheffield United are likely to set up, you can view our ‘Team Guide’ on them written by my close friend who’s been a season ticket holder for 15 years here >>

Cherry Attack

How many times have you picked one of Callum Wilson or Josh King, only for the other to hit a purple patch? Well no more! Wilson – King conundrum? Completed it mate.

I’ve gone with both for the start of the season – given their beautiful opening 10 fixtures:

Screenshot 2019-08-06 at 15.03.01.png

I want to optimise the points on offer here so a double-up in Bournemouth attack feels right, based on their fixtures and their ability to score 3+ goals against the weaker sides.

Team Structure/Balance

Generally speaking, I like to have a premium option in each position (GK aside), so I can can cover premium bandwagons like Harry Kane, if he explodes into form quicker than I’m anticipating, for example.

This is a solid way to set up your team each year and gives you the best flexibility.

However, this year, I haven’t decided that this is the best way to go, and this is based on the fact that out of the premium options available, I want Salah and Sterling first before the likes of Agüero, Kane or Aubameyang, as I’ve mentioned above*.

*this is purely my own opinion and isn’t part of my overall advice on strategy, as you may feel that the premium FWDs are worth having and don’t affect the balance too much for your choices, which is absolutely fine, it is only based on MY selections. 

Moving on…

Having 3 out of those 5 premium options, imbalances my team too much for my liking.

Screenshot 2019-08-06 at 15.12.55

Now, if it is that you have also decided that you don’t want a premium attack, then like me, you’re going to have to think of a contingency plan in case Agüero/Kane/Aubameyang take off like a NASA rocket going into space!

If Kane hits a hat-trick in GW1 vs Aston Villa, there’s going to be a mass amount of transfers for him for GW2 and his ownership will sky rocket.

From 28.2% owned, you could be looking at the highest owned player in the game come GW2 and then every time he scores and you don’t own him, you’re looking at big red arrows, as he’ll be a popular captain option for most GWs.

Ask yourself the following question; “how many moves would it take for me to get Agüero/Kane/Aubameyang in?”

Well for myself, I’ve chosen Wilson not solely for his potential to score me a good amount of points in the opening fixtures, but because of his price.

I like having a £9.5m price point in midfield, as I’m unlikely to ever get rid of Salah/Sterling (unless the unthinkable happens and their form dips significantly or they get injured of course), so KDB is at a price where, I only have to create £3m – a move to Perez/Tielemans for example – in order to upgrade Wilson (£8m) to Kane/Aubameyang, so 2 transfers.

Because I own Sterling and KDB, I’m less worried about Agüero, as one of Sterling or KDB are very likely to play a part in Agüero’s goals.

KDB’s price also covers a fair few other good options like Eriksen, Son, Alli, Pepe, Pogba who at some point, I may want to switch to – so this is an easy 1 transfer swap.

I’ve chosen to go 3 at the back simply because I think the most value is still in midfield, but there is plenty of value at the back too, and a 442 formation is certainly viable this year with a double Liverpool defence set up.

The Bench – Don’t Splurge!

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As you can see, I have limited my spending for the bench, spending only £17m whilst maintaining at least 1 regular starter in Martin Montoya, with Diego Rico a possible other nailed-on starter.

It might be obvious to say, but you need to focus your funds on the starting 11 – where it matters the most!

I think it’s important to have at least 2 starting bench players who are as nailed-on as we can possibly tell however, because at the start of the season, there are bound to be some surprises.

A lot, including myself, are quite sure Ross Barkley will start, but how sure can we possibly be? Only Frank Lampard knows so it’s wise to ensure you have some bench options just in case.

I’ve opted to go with Connor Wickham as my bench striker, simply because there’s a lack of options at the £4.5m-£5.0m price for 3rd strikers and it’s simply to avoid a potential mass price drop on Mason Greenwood if it is he doesn’t get any game time at all.

It’s wise to preach caution when choosing highly owned cheap players for your bench, as you could end up with a situation where an asset you’ll never use is rotting your team value from the bench.

I like the look of Martin Montoya this year. With Graham Potter taking over and having used a 343 formation in pre-season with Montoya operating as a wing back, I expect this formation to be utilised for the season, and with a decent start to the PL fixtures wise, I like him at £4.5m.

Diego Rico looks a good option for the time being but even he is a risk with Charlie Daniels there. See our article on ‘Assessing the £4m defenders’ for more on Rico and the rest of the £4m defenders here >>

The Goalkeeper Situation

This is probably the most interesting aspect about my team (for me), as I’ve only incorporated this from last season.

I’m opting to go with 1x £4.5m goalkeeper and sticking with him as a set and forget keeper with a bench fodder goalkeeper (Button).

I’ve done this, because every year, we always get 2/3 £4.5m GKs from lower sides in the Premier League having great seasons, making lots of saves and getting circa 10 clean sheets and they end up scoring 140+ plus points, thus being brilliant value.

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I really fancy Nick Pope to manage that this year, though Heaton and Henderson are good options also.

He’s a top quality keeper who has, of course, done it before in the 17/18 season where he amassed a brilliant 152pts from 11 clean sheets and 113 saves!

Now that Tom Heaton has left, he’s only fighting Joe Hart for the number 1 spot and is expected to start the season.

I think it’s reasonable that he could hit above 140pts and rather than attempting to rotate with another GK and risk missing out on bench points (which will happen if you use that strategy – it’s inevitable), I’m just going to stick with Pope all the way through and get all his hauls, including the ones you wouldn’t expect him to get.

It also maximises my spend on the outfield positions where the ceiling for points is higher.

Sign Up To FanTeam’s Season Long Tournament

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DO NOT MISS OUT on the chance to win a share of an incredible €250,000 with FanTeam. Again, you can check the details here >> 

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