In the second of a multiple part series, we give all the top tips for getting ahead of the casual FPL players, friend or foe.
Helping you with tips you’ll wish you knew when you started!
Making Decisions based on Value
Of all the topics discussed, this is the one I see that has the most debate, but the least understanding. We all know that the more a player is transferred in, the higher their value will go. I see many people commenting and asking if they should take a hit because X/Y might go up or down. The problem is every single one of these is unique based on that managers’ strategy for their teams’ future.
Yes it’s obvious that trading out Richarlison before he drops, and grabbing Walcott before he rises, was a good idea. This only works if you weren’t planning on swapping 3 players next week for Alonso who you really wanted but needed 2 free transfers, and now your team is lacking in defence and you’re missing out on the wingback points.
I almost always comment saying “Post your team, it’s hard to answer that without seeing the rest of your players.” Decisions shouldn’t be made in black and white.
Here are some tips for making a hard decision easier
1. Using fplstatistics.co.uk to see if a player is likely to drop or rise in price. Not 100% accurate but it should help. I know it’s posted once per day on the FPL subreddit but checking regularly, particularly Saturday and Sunday will give you the heads up on whether a player will suddenly be out of reach come 2am.
2. Make the decision quickly. If you want to transfer a player due to injury, red card, or blank, waiting could seriously damage your Team Value. Yes, knee jerking is out full force this year. Yes, when Richarlison got carded we would have loved to have a few days to figure out what was what. There was, however, no way Walcott was staying at his current value for even a day.
So we jumped ship hoping Walcott was a great sideways hold before Rich got back, and his value shot up that very day. Now obviously hindsight is 20/20 and we all know how Walcott turned out, but we can at least now straight-trade Walcott back without any fuss. You need to make your decision on the day something happens, or your Plan B might get too expensive, forcing your hand. If you’re sticking, then stick, but if you want to twist then get to it!
3. Taking hits so we don’t lose value can be a slippery slope. Of course, if you want to sideways jump knowing a Walcott increasing in value is a sure thing then go for it, but if it’s going to cost you -4 then is it worth it? I’ll give you an example: I had Peltier (3.9) since GW1. He was a punt just like Wan-Bissaka but without the awesome points per game ratio. I kept him through his price drop while I searched for a replacement with some money in the bank.
I noticed during the international break that Doherty (4.4) played pretty well in GW4 despite his price drop, so after a 0.5m upgrade the Wolves wing back yielded quite a hefty GW5 return! So the price drop didn’t actually affect the team at all, and a good replacement was found a few weeks later. Remember, this FPL thing is nearly 40 weeks long! Don’t think you need to take hits to halt small value decreases. There will always be options.
Having a GW-by-GW Plan
When going into any game week, you should have a general idea of which parts of your team you want to improve. Taking hits every week shouldn’t be a habit you pick up. There are much more fun habits out there! Instead you should think about grabbing a pencil and jotting down each transfer you’d like to do for the next 5 game weeks baring any injuries or bans. A hit or 2 is fine as long as you have a game plan.
This part of FPL seems obvious, but you’d be surprised at how many RMT-posters I talked to didn’t have a clue what they wanted to do with their team for even the next few weeks. It’s so beneficial to have a solid strategy in place. We all need to be versatile as managers and that’s part of the fun!
But knowing who you want to transfer in this game week, next game week, and the game week after brings huge benefits to your team, such as helping with those pesky knee-jerk symptoms, using ITB funds to the best of their ability, and keep on top of differential potential.
It’s always a relief to know you are getting the player you want in at the right time for the right fixtures without having to take a hit or lose out on current team value. Have a plan and stick to it!
My Personal Plan
During the international break I knew I had some dead weight on my team: Peltier, Ralls and Neves. I also transferred out Richarlison for Pedro and I will want to grab Rich back at some point too.
Now, it can be argued that Neves isn’t technically dead weight, but I have 1.0m in the bank and I feel like I could be doing better. So my game plan to sort this out is as follows:
- For GW5: Peltier (3.9) to Doherty (4.4). Doherty had impressed in an already impressive Wolves squad. He went down in price after his own goal and his fixture vs Burnley looked great.
- For GW6: Neves (5.1) to Fraser (5.6). I left this for GW6 so I didn’t have to take any hits, Fraser wasn’t 100% playing GW5 and Neves had a decent GW5 fixture. I figured, therefore, that getting a fully fit Fraser would be a great upgrade from Neves. Neves seems more likely to get an assist of an assist than real return.
- For GW7: Pedro (6.6) to Richarlison (6.6). Richarlison will be back GW6 from his suspension for the away game against Arsenal. Pedro plays West Ham which I think will be an easier fixture, and Rich’s value is locked until after the deadline anyway. I don’t mind waiting until after the Arsenal game to bring him in. This way, again, no hits!
- For GW8: Ralls (4.9) to Cairney (4.8). Cairney has dropped significantly due to his injury, and with more frustrated managers, the Fulham play-maker’s price keeps dropping. He was essential for them last season and has to do better than Ralls who has been playing okay in a very poor Cardiff side. So I see this as a decent way of getting rid of him without losing out on his price drop.
So this is a look into a very simple 4 week plan. Obviously if any injuries happen I may need to reevaluate, but there is nothing there that MUST be done. It’s all fairly versatile. So I’d highly recommend looking ahead like this and see how you’d like to improve your team over the course of the next few games at least!
How do you make your decisions?
These are the best tips I was given by my mates when I first started out. Since taking this very frustrating, gut-wrenching, heart racing, deplorable game seriously I’ve managed a respectable top 65k OR by following these guidelines as much as I could.
Hopefully these tips will enable able help you to improve your game too. Let me know how you get on, and if you have any questions about anything I’ve talked about don’t be scared to reach out! I wish you good fortune in the wars to come.
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