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Winning the Real Fantasy Football

Fantasy Football enjoyment is not just about the accumulation of points. There are many different levels on which we eke pleasure out of the game and can be the real victors.

Fantasy Football’s Real Victories Explained

Of course we enjoy getting lots of points and a green arrow each week. But what can you do with that, really?  Chances are there will be many other Fantasy managers with a far better weekly score.

The types of highs that really make Fantasy football enjoyable are not point based at all. Some are from making the right call on a particular player. Ditching the right player just before a lean spell, for example, or keeping a player in time for his first goal of the season. These are the levels of fun that Fantasy managers really aspire to. Here are the top six key victories that set the real champions of Fantasy Football apart from the rest.

  • I brought this player in before his big run of points and price rises
  • I dumped this player before he stopped scoring
  • I gave the armband to an unheralded player who scored well
  • I bought a really cheap player who suddenly started scoring
  • I resisted buying that player everyone said was essential just before he blanked
  • I flouted some time-honoured Fantasy Football rule, such as never captaining Everton’s Leighton Baines and still did well.

Gameweek 8’s Real Victories

This forthcoming Gameweek’s key decisions are a case in point. For those that drafted in Angel Di Maria weeks ago and have already pocketed his 43-point haul, victory is almost within their grasp.  It would surely be secured if they were to ditch him now and the Manchester United man failed to score against West Brom. Imagine the kudos, especially over the 125,000 late reacting managers that have waited until this Gameweek  to draft him in.

For those with Diego Costa, and that is most Fantasy managers currently, there is the chance to get even more glory by not only opting to place the captain’s armband elsewhere but cutting loose the Chelsea man altogether.  Imagine then that he scrapes through with six points while the alternative captain or new recruit gets a double-digit haul.  You see where I’m going with this. What is better, getting a great weekly rank or being able to say you were first or different and still did well?

Tips on Winning The Real Fantasy Football

So what can you do to make sure you win these small, banter-laden victories, even when you’re not winning the fight for overall rank?  First, buy players who are not scoring. I mean, where’s the glory in just soaking up the same Costa points everyone else is getting?  Lose Costa and look for a player who’s not scoring like, say, Robin van Persie.  Of course he’s expensive and might unbalance your team, but think about how much fun it will be to lord your prescience over your rivals when he does score.

Armband selections require a similar kind of discipline. We’ve all heard the tropes about picking the player you think is likely to score the most points.  That’s taking the easy way out.  If you want to rule the comment boards  and lord it over your rivals you need to dig deep and find the courage to captain West Ham’s Stewart Downing or Leicester’s Leonardo Ulloa. Nobody ever made a splash on a Fantasy Football comment board by saying, “sweet, I captained Costa, and stayed in the top 1,000!”  What you want is to say, “sweet, I captained Sunderland’s Jack Rodwell, and rose from 1,800,000 to 1,100,000!”

Other key questions to ask when making transfer decisions are not “which midfielder has been scoring well?” Instead you, the real victors in Fantasy Football, will be thinking, “who else will have brought in a Leicester midfielder like Esteban Cambiasso to make an impact this week?”  When you make that gutsy call and put an unheralded player your starting 11 you set yourself up for a richly rewarded gloat. Admit it, “I got a sweet assist and clean sheet from Cambiasso” feels so much better than “yeah, yeah, I too got the 13 points from Di Maria”.

Conclusion

If you keep your eye on the ball, you can set yourself up for hours of enjoyment at the expense of your rivals.  I urge you to transcend points and find the true heart of the game, where those who take a different path can mock others for a few minutes on the weekend and be the real champions of the game.

25 Comments Post a Comment
  1. J0E
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • Has Moderation Rights
    • 11 Years
    6 years, 15 days ago

    Excellent article...I love getting points myself but must admit getting the right differential at exactly the right time is a nice victory to have too.

    1. Solenya
      • 9 Years
      6 years, 14 days ago

      I am all for this kind of light-hearted stuff. Brilliant.
      So much for Mechanical Fantasy Football, we need more Fantasy Fantasy Football 🙂

      1. Solenya
        • 9 Years
        6 years, 14 days ago

        Lol. Inverse reply fail. Meant to be a post.

    2. Gamoriola of the Galaxy (Eu…
      • 8 Years
      6 years, 14 days ago

      Thanks Jonty. The editing makes it much better for public consumption than the self-indulgent riff I originally submitted. But I just want everyone to know this was intended as much more of a joke than a real argument: I far too often obsess about the small victories and lose sight of the points, so I wanted to mock that a bit.

      1. J0E
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • Has Moderation Rights
        • 11 Years
        6 years, 14 days ago

        No worries. Its a great piece with a really powerful message that gets forgotten sometime - its a game that should be fun. I think you've reminded alot of people of what makes Fantasy Football so addictive.

      2. 1966 was a great year for E…
        • 10 Years
        6 years, 14 days ago

        Are you planning to release the director's cut?

        1. Gamoriola of the Galaxy (Eu…
          • 8 Years
          6 years, 14 days ago

          🙂 Probably not--I'm going to assume that the bits that got cut were a lot funnier inside my head than out of it. I think the word "banter-licious" was in there somewhere, as well as the phrase, "how you like me now, biotch?!". Best just to leave it on the cutting room floor.

  2. Holmes
    • 7 Years
    6 years, 15 days ago

    Exactly my words 🙂 That feeling is awesome when you make some differential move and its pays off... Even if not, it atleast makes me feel good.
    A person who follow template from time to time can easily be in top 1k but whats fun in that... Atleast I dont like to play that way. Thanks!!!
    * abuse incoming * 😀

  3. Tiggsy
    • 6 Years
    6 years, 14 days ago

    This is a top article. I love trying to 'get one over' by being a bit left field at times. This season's 'Punty' armbands have been Clyne (week 6 - Fail) and Downing (week 7 - partial success). I made a Mata -> Herrera move at just the right time (week 5 - Mata was dropped and Herrera scored). All made me feel awesome.

    That said, I make a fair few goofs as well, for example: Rooney instead of Costa from the start, Nugent instead of Ulloa, benching Siggy week 1. All part of the fantasy football fun.

    The main thing though, is trying to win the league I'm in with my mates.

    1. Gamoriola of the Galaxy (Eu…
      • 8 Years
      6 years, 14 days ago

      The funny thing is, when I ask myself what really matters, it's overall rank. But what ruins or makes my weekend? Always that armband risk that pays off, or a blank from that template player I took the risk of dropping.

    2. Jon Walter's Hatty
      • 7 Years
      6 years, 14 days ago

      This - winning ML is plenty enough kudos as it is being king of your mates. 3rd season and not been knocked off perch yet (but got 44 others to fight off this time). This would also explain why I've not made those ballsy moves like you mention - needs must if you are chasing rather than consolidating...

  4. Az
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • Has Moderation Rights
    • 11 Years
    6 years, 14 days ago

    Great article, Fantasy football does become a stress at time, and the easiest way to alleviate the stress is to bring in Di Maria, or captain costa, because at least if they dont do well, no one has done well.

    Would be lovely to turn this on its head and go for some real differentials, but i just dont have the balls, and come the end of the season, i'm ecstatic with < 50k finish.

  5. Billy Gilmore
    • 8 Years
    6 years, 14 days ago

    This might explain my infatuation with Lord Aleks. Always enjoyable when you're on the receiving end of one of his hauls 🙂

    1. Gamoriola of the Galaxy (Eu…
      • 8 Years
      6 years, 14 days ago

      Kolarov was definitely one of my downfalls all of last year. I kept holding out for his big haul even though I knew I could spend that 5.0 on a player who would play every match and ultimately rack up more points. I'm afraid I play weekend to weekend, even though I know it's wrong.

      1. Billy Gilmore
        • 8 Years
        6 years, 14 days ago

        Yeah, I still remember calling (and regret not getting) Kolarov's massive haul two years ago. I told Rohan on the site to captain him, but he didn't, and he ended up getting 20 points (goal, assist and CS or something like that)

        Those are the things this game is made of. 🙁

  6. Johan Queef
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    6 years, 14 days ago

    Spot on. I'm leading my mini-league's amongst friends which is making me play it safe in some areas. There was nothing more satisfying than the confused snapchats I got from friends when they noticed I'd brought in this unknown Southampton points grabber 'Pelle' earlier this season.

    Going rogue and captaining Sessegnon two seasons ago when he got a 13 points haul was another fine moment.

    Everyone wants to be at the top, but the real thrill is benefitting where other people falter.

  7. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 10 Years
    6 years, 14 days ago

    😆 Sweet. 😉

  8. ViperStripes
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 11 Years
    6 years, 14 days ago

    I'm considering ditching Pelle for Aguero, instead of the obvious Vardy > Aguero. Quite like teh jeopardy of going against the flow and with Leicester's fixtures very favourable it could pay off.

  9. Costa in Wengerland
    • 8 Years
    6 years, 14 days ago

    Nice article
    i think we should take risks , the reward is sweeter 😉

  10. Sticky Mockwell
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    6 years, 14 days ago

    This is an excellent article. I agree that one of the main joys of FPL is going against the conventional thinking.

    On that basis, I'd suggest that last season's real champion was the person who finished in the top 1k despite not owning Suarez all season (http://fpldiscovery.wordpress.com/2014/05/26/final-top-1000-teams/)

    1. PÍE
      • 6 Years
      4 years, 7 months ago

      Cheers, that was me.

  11. Gamoriola of the Galaxy (Eu…
    • 8 Years
    6 years, 14 days ago

    Thanks to those who went to the trouble to read this and leave kind feedback. Much appreciated, and I'm glad it made sense to you.

  12. Giggs Boson
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 9 Years
    6 years, 14 days ago

    Love the article. This is the reason why Mavericks > Dullards 🙂

  13. SneakyPete
    • 9 Years
    6 years, 13 days ago

    I have done Baines one so many times successfully. captained him successfully 75 % times Including both his braces against WBA and West Ham

  14. Mr Frost
    • 10 Years
    6 years, 13 days ago

    Everyone here watch 'The League'. It's a Canadian show about a few guys in their own mini league and the small victories therein. Illustrates this article effectively and is a good laugh :mrgreen: