Pro Pundits - Az

The importance of showing patience as an FPL manager

Oh, Fantasy Football, what do you do to us?

There are some weeks when you just have to laugh. I’ve escaped a tricky Gameweek 23 with a decent-ish score (£48m) and a green arrow but others haven’t been so lucky.

I have my own tales of woe, but that’s nothing compared to some of the stories that I’ve seen banded around the community over the last few days.

Having done the Scoutcast for a couple of years now, and being in charge of grabbing the “Roughs with the Smooths”, I’ve seen my fair share of “Roughs”.

But this Gameweek has made me wince.

The people that have traded their faltering Wolves players for soaring Saints, such as Raul Jiménez (£7.5m) for Danny Ings (£6.9m) you have my sympathy.

For anyone that (like me) that left Adama Traore (£5.7m) on the bench, I feel for you.

For anyone that, probably against their better judgement, removed long-standing goalkeepers, such as Paulo Gazziniga (£4.6m) or Nick Pope (£4.6m), and replaced with Double Gameweek ‘star’ Lukasz Fabianski (£4.9m) or budget ‘hero’ Alex McCarthy (£4.4m), you have my condolences.

For anyone that took punts on Richarlison (£8.1m), Ryiad Mahrez (£8.5m) or Djibril Sidibé (£5.4m)… you did not deserve the fate that the cruel, cruel FPL gods had in store for you.

This game can be a nightmare. We talked last year about the impact it can have on mental health, as more and more people’s enjoyment of a weekend is intrinsically linked to their FPL score. But know that you are not alone. Everyone has bad weeks. Everyone suffers when seemingly good decisions go against them. Everyone has weeks that make them want to close FPL forever and get a new hobby. But don’t. Go outside. Take a breath. Consider why you removed Jiménez for Ings (Jiménez’s fixtures do turn really bad! Ings had scored 80 points in the last 12 Gameweeks!).

To me, “Black Box Thinking” has never been about beating yourself up over making these kind of decisions, the ones where hindsight tells us it was a mistake, but general strategy tells us it was the best move.

I’m not that annoyed I benched Traore, or that I sold Pope, because I really did think it was the right thing to do with the tools at my disposal.

However, what I’m learning more and more this season, is that when it comes to 50/50 calls, when you just don’t feel that certain, the best move may be to show patience.

My last 12 Gameweeks have been the best I can remember, with just one red arrow in this period. I was trigger happy in the first 11 weeks, and when faced with a decision (to transfer, or not to transfer) I would do it.

But actually, the players we have in our teams are those that we have backed for whatever reason, and unless there is really clear evidence that they are now no longer the player we originally signed – perhaps ditching them isn’t the best move.

I’ve shown more faith in players that I’ve selected, allowed them to have a few weeks to perform, and been rewarded. 50/50 decisions for me lately have tended to go in my favour, as I have elected to do nothing, rather than make wholesale changes (often involving hits that do not pay off).

The main reason I’m not going for Mohamed Salah (£12.3m) – see my last article for the ins and out of this – is because it would tear my team apart, particularly my midfield which currently consists of Jack Grealish (£6.5m), Sadio Mané (£12.4m), Kevin De Bruyne (£10.7m), Anthony Martial (£7.9m) and/or Traore.

These players have been fundamental to my rise up the rankings, and the thought of binning these players off to chase a haul from one player fills me with dread.

The fact that I’m not that confident that Salah really will outscore these midfielders by such a considerable margin tells me that I shouldn’t be following the crowd.

Instead, it looks like I will be turning my attentions to a certain Robert Firmino (£9.4m) – who had a goal very cruelly ruled out against Manchester United on Sunday.

I said I wanted to see something to tempt me towards the Brazilian, and he’s been good the last few weeks, with a goal against Spurs and an unfortunate VAR call last week.

Firmino’s away form has been quite appealing as well heading into two matches outside of Anfield. In the last four away matches, for example, he has four goals compared to Salah’s one and Mane’s two – and 16 goal attempts compared to 14 for both the Liverpool midfielders.

For more detailed information on Firmino, read THIS MEMBERS ARTICLE.

Looking further ahead, I’m wondering what other players may come into our considerations. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (£10.7m) is going to be back in a few weeks, after the dust has settled from the Double Gameweek. The golden boot chaser could easily be a major factor for those chasing the pack.

Similarly, a certain Sergio Aguero (£11.9m) has now hit consecutive double-digit hauls but remains a player who is being overlooked in favour of Liverpool’s star assets right now.

More budget-friendly options, such as Leandro Trossard (£5.8m), Lucas Digne (£5.7m) and Ismaïla Sarr (£5.6m) (injury depending) are also looking like options that can help you soar up the table. The key, it seems, is picking them for the right reasons, and sticking with them through uncertain times.

FPL can be the ultimate test of patience. But what I am increasingly learning is the importance of honing your ability to filter out poor Gameweeks, assess what happened and react – or crucially, not react – accordingly.

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Az Follow me on Twitter : @ffscout_az” Follow him on Twitter

1,815 Comments Post a Comment
  1. eamonhegg
    • 2 Years
    27 days, 20 hours ago

    GTG??

    McCarthy
    TAA / Williams / Rico
    Salah / Mane (TC) / KDB / Son
    Vardy / Ings / DCL

    1. KINGS
        27 days, 20 hours ago

        Nice TV

      • eamonhegg
        • 2 Years
        27 days, 20 hours ago

        Bench - 4.0 / Lund / Kelly / Dendnock

    2. KINGS
        27 days, 20 hours ago

        Bench Rico, Kelly or Soy this week?

        1. Greenbackbøøg…
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 5 Years
          27 days, 20 hours ago

          Rico

        2. Bumbaclot
          • 9 Years
          27 days, 20 hours ago

          Rico

      • Maddamotha
        • 3 Years
        27 days, 20 hours ago

        Gtg here?

        Ryan
        TAA, Robbo, Soy
        Salah, KDB, Maddison, Martial
        Vardy, Abraham, Greenwood

        Button, Targett, Dendo, Lundstram

      • Greenbackbøøg…
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        27 days, 20 hours ago

        Do you guys think Ings is rested tomorrow?

        1. eamonhegg
          • 2 Years
          27 days, 20 hours ago

          No chance

        2. JamieNumber4
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          27 days, 20 hours ago

          Most likely

        3. Bumbaclot
          • 9 Years
          27 days, 20 hours ago

          Nope

        4. farmerfat
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 4 Years
          27 days, 20 hours ago

          Yes

        5. Pukki Party
          • 2 Years
          27 days, 20 hours ago

          Yes

        6. Greenbackbøøg…
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 5 Years
          27 days, 20 hours ago

          cheers guys

        7. yosim
            27 days, 20 hours ago

            not sure, no game then till Feb 1st?

        8. lindeg
          • 1 Year
          27 days, 20 hours ago

          Play one:

          A: Mount (ARS)
          B: Greenwood (BUR)
          C: Doucoure (avl)

          Cheers!

          1. Greenbackbøøg…
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 5 Years
            27 days, 20 hours ago

            B by far

        9. Fit_to_drop
            27 days, 20 hours ago

            What about Rashford to Martial?

            Its a -4 that I was't planning to take (given Martial is counted as Midfield).

            But Upside is 2 home fixtures and Martial surely will get chances

            thoughts?

            1. caldracula
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 4 Years
              27 days, 20 hours ago

              I wouldn’t take a -4 to get Martial in, surely you can just do Rashford to another forward?

          • Deeney-is-a-god
            • 3 Years
            27 days, 20 hours ago

            Thinking more and more about using TC this round. Especially given the fact that loverpool have their two matches quite far apart and most of the team willl be rested on the weekend

            1. Reiger
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 4 Years
              27 days, 20 hours ago

              Agreed. Can’t imagine a better TC scenario than this

              1. Obi-Wan Kenobi-Nil
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 4 Years
                27 days, 20 hours ago

                I mean, I could imagine one where they’re playing easier teams at Anfield.

                1. Reiger
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 4 Years
                  27 days, 20 hours ago

                  Haha, fair enough

          • Nespinha
            • 4 Years
            27 days, 20 hours ago

            Looking for a 1-2 week punt mid bellow 6.3.

            Thinking about Doucoure, Noble or CHO

            1. Greenbackbøøg…
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 5 Years
              27 days, 20 hours ago

              Trossard

              1. Nespinha
                • 4 Years
                27 days, 20 hours ago

                humm

            2. Miguel Sanchez
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 3 Years
              27 days, 20 hours ago

              Trossard

            3. Darlo
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 2 Years
              27 days, 20 hours ago

              For a 1-2 week punt, Doucoure for me. Nailed, nice fixtures and playing a bit more advanced than normal. The loss of the creativity of Sarr is a downer though.

              1. Nespinha
                • 4 Years
                27 days, 20 hours ago

                this player will in fact replace my dear Sarr lol

            4. dunas_dog
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 4 Years
              27 days, 20 hours ago

              Trossard or Doucouré

              1. dunas_dog
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 4 Years
                27 days, 20 hours ago

                * or Snodgrass for punt

            5. Pukki Party
              • 2 Years
              27 days, 20 hours ago

              Snoddy

          • NoWayJose
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 4 Years
            27 days, 20 hours ago

            Pope to McCarthy for free a move worth making?

          • HiredHelp
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 3 Years
            27 days, 20 hours ago

            Vardy out, Firmino in. Leads to a drop 0,5 in value for Vardy. OR Jimenez and Kelly out, TAA and Greenwood in for a -4?

            1. joeyc_3
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 1 Year
              27 days, 20 hours ago

              Would prioritize TAA over Firmino.

          • The Fantasy Doctor
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            27 days, 20 hours ago

            With the midfield as Az, I’m in total agreement re: Salah.

            1. The Fantasy Doctor
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              27 days, 20 hours ago

              *same

          • the dom 1
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 5 Years
            27 days, 20 hours ago

            which keeper to play?

            a. Pope

            b. McCarthy

            Cheers

            1. Miguel Sanchez
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 3 Years
              27 days, 20 hours ago

              B

              1. the dom 1
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 5 Years
                27 days, 20 hours ago

                Cheers

            2. FirMinaMiMo
                27 days, 20 hours ago

                Already answered !
                Cheaper and BETTER! 🙂

                1. the dom 1
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 5 Years
                  27 days, 20 hours ago

                  Oh i see what you mean now lol hahaha

                  1. FirMinaMiMo
                      27 days, 20 hours ago

                      Cheers 🙂

              • Halftime
                • 8 Years
                27 days, 20 hours ago

                I'm guessing it's not worth a -4 to swop Gomez to Robertson. Is Gomez safe even with Matip back, have his performances been that good?

                1. the dom 1
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 5 Years
                  27 days, 20 hours ago

                  Pretty sure its Gomez place to lose now mate.

                2. FirMinaMiMo
                    27 days, 20 hours ago

                    Thats my major doubt !
                    If matip plays at cup ...
                    Then gomez will play at league ... 🙂

                3. goldengove
                  • 1 Year
                  27 days, 20 hours ago

                  Hoping for a couple more answers...

                  Ryan Button
                  TAA Stephens Soyunco Lundy Kelly
                  KDB Mane Salah Cantwell Grealish
                  Vardy Maupay Jimenez

                  2FT with 0.4 ITB... would like to use a transfer... was thinking:

                  a) Kelly => Holgate
                  b) Maupay => DCL
                  c) Other?

                  1. The_Fish
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 1 Year
                    27 days, 20 hours ago

                    B and save the other.

                4. The_Fish
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 1 Year
                  27 days, 20 hours ago

                  Hendo 4.0
                  TAA Robbo Soy Lord Williams
                  Salah KDB Martial Maddison Hayden
                  Vardy Jimmy Ings

                  0.4, 2ft

                  I can’t see any move I’d like to make this week and may end up burning a transfer. Have I missed anything obvious?

                  Sort of tempted by Maddison to Grealish but I've enjoyed the patient approach recently.

                  1. markloe
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 9 Years
                    27 days, 20 hours ago

                    Would give Maddison/Soyuncu the West Ham game.. Hayden -> Cantwell maybe?

                    1. The_Fish
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 1 Year
                      27 days, 20 hours ago

                      0.3 short of that.

                  2. CROCosta
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 1 Year
                    27 days, 19 hours ago

                    I would do Soy-> Baldock or Lascelles rather then waste a transfer, I think you might want to get rid of him soon anyway and Williams is good to play as 3rd defender this week.

                5. lindeg
                  • 1 Year
                  27 days, 20 hours ago

                  Mistake earlier, any help appreciated!

                  Play two:

                  A: Mount (ARS)
                  B: Greenwood (BUR)
                  C: Doucoure (avl)

                  Cheers!

                  1. The_Fish
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 1 Year
                    27 days, 20 hours ago

                    AC

                  2. Miguel Sanchez
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 3 Years
                    27 days, 20 hours ago

                    BC

                  3. Greenbackbøøg…
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 5 Years
                    27 days, 20 hours ago

                    Greenwood and Doucoure then

                  4. the dom 1
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 5 Years
                    27 days, 20 hours ago

                    BC

                6. Please Answer Me
                  • 5 Years
                  27 days, 20 hours ago

                  Would you rather own A or B if you had Salah already.
                  A) Mane Ayew
                  B) Firmino Martial

                  1. the dom 1
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 5 Years
                    27 days, 20 hours ago

                    B

                    1. Please Answer Me
                      • 5 Years
                      27 days, 20 hours ago

                      What about Robertson and Son?

                7. cnewman7
                  • 5 Years
                  27 days, 20 hours ago

                  My team feels a bit naked without Mane going into a DGW.

                  If he hauls that’s my season over. (Have TAA and Salah).

                  A) KDB —> Mane
                  B) Abraham to Firmino (go without Mane)

                8. True Deadzoner
                  • 8 Years
                  27 days, 20 hours ago

                  McCarthy

                  Gomez Sidibe Holgate Lundstram Stephens

                  Salah Mane KDB Son Hayden

                  Vardy Ings DCL

                  Save ft?

                  1. True Deadzoner
                    • 8 Years
                    27 days, 20 hours ago

                    Have decent sub so think Gomez is worth less 2.6M than TAA

                9. Reiger
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 4 Years
                  27 days, 20 hours ago

                  Two consecutive red arrows have put a dent in my dream season. Now down to around 4k, but hoping for a strong DGW/TC bounce. Thoughts on this squad?

                  1FT, 0.0 itb.

                  Ryan (McGovern)
                  TAA Holgate Williams (Dunk Lundy)
                  KDB Salah(tc) Mane(v) Maddison Grealish
                  Vardy Ings (Maupay)

                  1. Fit_to_drop
                      27 days, 19 hours ago

                      I wouldnt touch it personally. You could take a punt on Madds out if you think Leic are on the wane but Ndidi returning could change all of that so he might still be a hold.

                  2. Boris Bodega: Holly's …
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 4 Years
                    27 days, 20 hours ago

                    Maddison to Martial worth a -4? Or do it next week? Have the exact funds, always annoying as always I'm bound to be priced out after this weekend!

                    1. InSaneMan-e
                      • 6 Years
                      27 days, 20 hours ago

                      I'm considering richarlison to martial myself. Mainly as I dont know if richarlison will play.
                      I'd wait a week. For free would be worth it. Not for a -4 imo

                    2. Fit_to_drop
                        27 days, 19 hours ago

                        When is Ndidi back for the Foxes. His absence has been one of the main reasons that Leic have misfired

                    3. Obi-Wan Kenobi-Nil
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 4 Years
                      27 days, 20 hours ago

                      I want to TC Salah but it was pointed out to me that I may be better off using it on Mane to ‘protect’ my OR (37k) as he’s more widely owned and likely to have a higher EO. Thoughts?

                      Gazzaniga
                      TAA Soy Holgate Kelly
                      Salah Mane KdB
                      Vardy Haller Ings
                      (Button Traore Lundstrum Cantwell)

                      1. Reiger
                        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                        • 4 Years
                        27 days, 20 hours ago

                        I look at it this way... TC Salah can be a nice strong differential to move up in the ranks.

                    4. Rik Waller
                      • 2 Years
                      27 days, 20 hours ago

                      2ft and happy with entire squad except Rash, so...

                      Rash + Den > Son + Greenwood?

                      Son is the only player in that price bracket I see as an option

                    5. markmcr
                      • 4 Years
                      27 days, 20 hours ago

                      Is it worth using free hit to get 3 whu players in? Tough fixtures but would be temporily replace mount, traore and lundy?

                      1. faux_C
                        • 7 Years
                        27 days, 20 hours ago

                        No.

                        1. InSaneMan-e
                          • 6 Years
                          27 days, 20 hours ago

                          Absolutely not.
                          Use FH on a later dgw

                      2. Pukki Party
                        • 2 Years
                        27 days, 20 hours ago

                        Save it

                    6. Ragnar Lothbrok
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 3 Years
                      27 days, 20 hours ago

                      Do you like my team? Please do

                      Ryan (Button)
                      TAA / Sidibe / Dunk (Lund / Kelly)
                      Salah (tc) / Mane / KDB / Grealish (Dendon)
                      DCL / Ings / Vardy

                      Thanks!

                      1. Fit_to_drop
                          27 days, 19 hours ago

                          Wouldnt change too much with it TBH

                      2. faux_C
                        • 7 Years
                        27 days, 20 hours ago

                        Who to bench from these?

                        Grealish, KDB, Vardy, DCL, Maupay

                        1. FirMinaMiMo
                            27 days, 20 hours ago

                            Kdb ! Vardy ! Not sure yu are trolling or serious! 🙂

                          • Ragnar Lothbrok
                            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                            • 3 Years
                            27 days, 20 hours ago

                            None if you can help it! But I'd have to go with Maupay. Never KDB

                          • I Member
                            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                            • 4 Years
                            27 days, 20 hours ago

                            Maupay

                        2. eamonhegg
                          • 2 Years
                          27 days, 20 hours ago

                          Maddison & Rashford > Son & Ings?

                          Y or N?

                          1. Rik Waller
                            • 2 Years
                            27 days, 20 hours ago

                            If not a hit, then yeh

                            1. eamonhegg
                              • 2 Years
                              27 days, 20 hours ago

                              No hit

                        3. Woy_is_back
                          • 2 Years
                          27 days, 20 hours ago

                          Any injury updates on Rich and Reece James?

                          1. Would Ed Woodward
                            • 1 Year
                            27 days, 20 hours ago

                            James 'hopefully' involved tomorrow, if not, definitely at the weekend.

                            1. Woy_is_back
                              • 2 Years
                              27 days, 20 hours ago

                              Probably rested then. Robbo in?

                        4. the dom 1
                          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                          • 5 Years
                          27 days, 20 hours ago

                          Which or these 2 would you have in your team if you had Salah and VVD already?

                          a. Mane
                          b. Firmino

                          Thanks in advance.

                          1. Bumbaclot
                            • 9 Years
                            27 days, 20 hours ago

                            Mane safe option
                            Firmino if you need to gain

                            1. the dom 1
                              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                              • 5 Years
                              27 days, 20 hours ago

                              Need to gain 🙂

                          2. FirMinaMiMo
                              27 days, 20 hours ago

                              Mane ! Imo mane could spike this dgw! 🙂

                          3. Bumbaclot
                            • 9 Years
                            27 days, 20 hours ago

                            Votes please guys or I’ll never decide. Who to triple captain.

                            A. TAA
                            B. Mane
                            C. Bobby

                            Thanks everyone

                            1. Woy_is_back
                              • 2 Years
                              27 days, 20 hours ago

                              A

                            2. Greenbackbøøg…
                              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                              • 5 Years
                              27 days, 20 hours ago

                              trent for me