Pro Pundit Teams

How ‘Endowment Effect’ alters judgement of underperforming FPL assets

In my previous article, I talked about how ‘Loss Aversion’ (our tendency to fear losses about twice as much as we value gains) can cause FPL managers to hold on longer than they should, to players who are underperforming. This week, I’ll be discussing an arguably even more irrational cause for the same behaviour: the ‘Endowment Effect’.

Like Loss Aversion, the Endowment Effect is a cognitive bias which describes our tendency to overvalue something we own, irrespective of its objective value. 

For some reason, most studies of the Endowment Effect seem to have focused primarily on the economics of coffee mugs with various findings such as that, when somebody takes possession of a mug, they are found to typically want twice as much money to sell that mug as they would be willing to pay for the exact same type of mug. Some people are unwilling to even consider selling their mugs, seemingly at any price, with one notable example involving a student turning down $1,000 from their professor for a mug they had just been given. I know what you’re thinking; what a mug.

Some scientists believe that the Endowment Effect is simply an extension of Loss Aversion and there is some evidence for that. However, other analysis has suggested that the feeling of ‘ownership’ of something establishes a bond between object and owner. Some have gone so far as to suggest that such an object, whatever it might be, becomes internalised as a part of our personality and, thus, to give it away or even sell it would effectively be to lose a part of our ‘self’. This makes sense from an evolutionary perspective as, without the capacity to form such attachments, we wouldn’t feel attached to anything or anyone.

So how might the Endowment Effect manifest itself with regards to Fantasy Football? Well, anybody who has played a Fantasy Football draft game has probably experienced how difficult it is to make transfers with other managers in your league. They either won’t budge at all or they want something ridiculous like, Harry Kane (£11.0m) for Shane Long (£5.2m) as part of the deal. And this stubbornness seems to apply however fair the proposed deal may be. This is very likely the Endowment Effect in practice.

But we also form these attachments in Fantasy Premier League even when there is nobody else on the other side of the deal. Throughout my time playing FPL, I have definitely chosen players on the basis of sentiment (how else could I explain my three-season ‘Chris Brunt Era’?) and I know I’m not the only one. 

I see people commenting all the time about having a ‘soft spot’ for a certain player or expressing grief because they’ve been forced to transfer them out. Often simply ‘liking a player’ is cited as the primary reason for transferring a player in, above any performance metrics or rational expectation of future points. Alternatively, “he’s done well for me in the past” is another oft-seen justification.

Typically, this parasocial relationship we sometimes have with players seems to originate from them doing well for us in the past and, I’d argue, that this is particularly strong when that player was a differential at the time. I would suggest that these types of players come to form part of our personalities as Fantasy managers and having them in our team reinforces that sense of individual identity. No wonder, then, that we often find it so difficult to transfer such players out. 

As a result of this attachment, however, we are likely to give such players more time than they perhaps deserve or might be conducive to maximising our rank. We might even hold onto them through injury or suspension. This sentimental attachment to underperforming players will inevitably become problematic as it may well cause us to miss out on better opportunities.

How Leeds restricted De Bruyne to unfortunate FPL blank in Gameweek 4

So what can we FPL managers do to avoid the Endowment Effect? The obvious answer would be to try not to get too attached to certain players though, as discussed, this is easier said than done.

Perhaps the best way would be to adopt our own individual objective standards for player-related decisions. That could, for example, involve establishing a rule by which a player can only blank, say, three times before he is transferred out or can only miss one or two Gameweeks maximum through injury.

I wouldn’t necessarily recommend being too intransigent about following through on such a rule if it doesn’t make sense in context (e.g. the player is about to embark on an amazing run of fixtures) but having such it in place will at least help you engage the logical part of your mind over the more emotional one and this should help improve the quality of your decision-making.

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2,012 Comments Post a Comment
  1. tabby98
    • 5 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Mccarthy (Nyland
    TAA, James, KWP, Justin, (Mitchell)
    Salah, Son, Grealish, ASM, (Stephens)
    DCL, Kane, Jimenez

    0.9m ITB 1FT

    A) Hold
    B) TAA out for Chilwell/Zouma/Another defender
    C) TAA + ASM ---> Zaha/Ziyech + Defender for -4
    Or any other suggestions???

  2. FPLGeezer
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 2 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    2FTs and Saiss & Ings have to go.

    Best option out of these groups of player?

    1) Cresswell
    2) Bellerin
    3) Zouma

    A) Werner
    B) Wilson
    C) Bamford

    1. Poison Apple
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 8 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      2A for me. But the 3m for werner can be put to big use for a massive upgrade

      1. FPLGeezer
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 2 Years
        5 months, 6 days ago

        Yep will need to bring KDB in down the line.

        1. Poison Apple
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 8 Years
          5 months, 6 days ago

          If tats the case, assuming its worth a -4 then B. If for free Definitely A

    2. The Knights Template
      • 7 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      3A

  3. the dom 1
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Who to out the Capt & VC on this week?

    a. Salah
    b. Son.
    c. Kane

    currently on Kane & Son.

    Thoughts?

    1. Bobby Digital
      • 3 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Son Werner for me

  4. UshFPL
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Get Chilwell in now or can I wait for tomorrow?

    Also, sell Robbo or Trent?

    1. The Knights Template
      • 7 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Robbo, get chilwell now. Then relax with a coldie.

      1. UshFPL
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        5 months, 6 days ago

        Cheers. Corona already in hand!

        1. The Knights Template
          • 7 Years
          5 months, 6 days ago

          Love your work, have a knighthood.

          Arise, Sir USHFPL!

          1. UshFPL
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 4 Years
            5 months, 6 days ago

            Hahaha I'm honoured!

  5. bso
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Vardy or Werner. Prices going up and won't be able to afford Vardy then.

    1. The Knights Template
      • 7 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Which one would win a 30m race?

      1. YEAH PITCH!
        • 2 Years
        5 months, 6 days ago

        Vardy boii

  6. GRPunk
    • 3 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Bottomed:

    Mitro (-4)>

    A. Kane
    B. Vardy (would allow for a keeper upgrade next GW)
    C. Don’t take the hit?

    1. The Knights Template
      • 7 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Kane v west bromwich awful hard to ignore

  7. Breezyy
    • 2 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Pull the trigger?

    Pulisic and Ings ➡️ Bowen/Ziyech and Vardy -4?.

    1. The Knights Template
      • 7 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Boom

    2. FPL_DON
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Yes, vardy is a great pick

  8. Drogba Legend
    • 3 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Any help appreciated: 1 FT, 0.1 ITB

    Mendy
    Chill - Robbo - Dallas
    Salah - Son - Grealish - Pulisic*
    Kane - DCL - Bamford

    Steer - Saiss* - Stephens - 3.9

    A) Save FT
    B) Pulisic > Ziyech, Zaha, Bowen, Fornals
    C) Robbo > Cress/Coufal
    D) Saiss > Cress/Coufal
    E) Puli + Saiss > Cress/Coufal + Ziyech (-4)
    F) Something else

    Basically comes down to Puli > Bowen/Fornals this week to fund Son > KDB or Puli > Ziyech and I'll have to downgrade Kane or Robbo to fund Son> KDB. Looking to get in City assets (mainly Son > KDB) around GW 9/10 or so.

    1. FPL_DON
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      B

      1. Drogba Legend
        • 3 Years
        5 months, 6 days ago

        To who? Would it be best to go Bowen/Fornals to fund my KDB move or go Ziyech and have Kane/Robbo fund my KDB move?

  9. Luton_Fan
    • 11 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Who scores more in this gw

    A. Zaha - Leeds h
    B. Trossard - Burnley h

    1. The Knights Template
      • 7 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      A

      1. Luton_Fan
        • 11 Years
        5 months, 6 days ago

        Thx

  10. gart888
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Martinez Steer
    Robbo Chilwell Lamptey Kilman Struijk
    Salah Son Grealish Rodriguez Zaha
    Kane DCL Brewster
    0.3 ITB

    How crazy would it be to take a -4 hit to go Robbo, Rodriguez, Brewster to Dallas, Podence, Werner? Potential front line of Kane Werner DCL has me thinking about it...

  11. FPL_DON
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Pulisic to ziyech, done! Couldn’t bear to lose out on that 0.1 lol, Pulisic won’t be fit for 90 anyway....I hope

  12. Viper
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 11 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    A. Sell TAA or Robertson

    B. Buy Zaha or Ziyech?

    1. gart888
      • 6 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      TAA and Ziyech

    2. The Knights Template
      • 7 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Robbo Zaha

    3. The Yorkshire Pirlo
      • 4 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      TAA, Ziyech

  13. arndff_
    • 9 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Is Chilwell much better option than Zouma?

    1. gart888
      • 6 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      I think so, yes. Just as (more?) nailed on and should have more reliable attacking returns.

    2. The Knights Template
      • 7 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Yep

      1. noone
        • 3 Years
        5 months, 6 days ago

        Yes sir

  14. flippetyflop
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 7 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Play Semedo or TAA this week?
    First to 5 votes wins.

    1. fish&chips
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 10 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      TAA

  15. The Yorkshire Pirlo
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Wilson or Bamford?

    1. noone
      • 3 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Wilson looks good to set and forget

  16. noone
    • 3 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    about to do Mane+Mitro for Zaha+Vardy for a -4. how does that look?

    1. noone
      • 3 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      I have Salah if that helps

      1. Breezyy
        • 2 Years
        5 months, 6 days ago

        Not for me sorry I think Mané is actually a great pick this week

        1. noone
          • 3 Years
          5 months, 6 days ago

          Okay

    2. GRPunk
      • 3 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      I’m looking at Mitro to Kane/Vardy myself. Just can’t decide if Kane is worth the extra cash over the long term.

      1. noone
        • 3 Years
        5 months, 6 days ago

        I'd go with Vardy really if you're looking to push rank

  17. fish&chips
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 10 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Play 2

    A) Mitchell (LEE)
    B) kilman (lei)
    C) semedo (lei)

    1. noone
      • 3 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      A,C and maybe B as first sub

  18. dunas_dog
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    First on bench between

    A Saïss
    B Mitchell
    C Brewster

    1. FC Hakkebøf
      • 4 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Saiss

  19. FC Hakkebøf
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Got Maupay, Pulisic, Saiss and Lamptey who are at risk of not playing. Got 2 FT to sort it out.

    A) Saiss -> Coufal
    B) Pulisic -> Ziyech
    C) Pulisic -> Bowen
    D) Pulisic + Saiss -> Ziyech + Coufal
    E) Pulisic + Saiss -> Bowen + Coufal
    F) Maupay + Pulisic + Saiss -> Werner + Bowen + Coufal -4

    Option E leaves enough itb to do Son -> KDB for free after this gameweek.

    1. Disturbed
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Wait for pulisic news. If he’s unlikely to start then D

      1. FC Hakkebøf
        • 4 Years
        5 months, 6 days ago

        Ziyech rising tonight though

    2. Drogba Legend
      • 3 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      I'm in the same boat above. Can't decide if I want Puli > Bowen to fund my Son > KDB move or bring in Ziyech and have Robbo/Kane to fund my KDB move. What are your initial thoughts?

      1. FC Hakkebøf
        • 4 Years
        5 months, 6 days ago

        No clue

  20. Disturbed
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 7 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Any suggestions here folks? 1ft, 0.6m itb.

    martinez
    robbo dallas lamptey
    salah son PULISIC grealish zaha
    kane dcl

    forster Kilman Brewster WARD

    1. Keep Calm and Play On
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Pulisic to Ziyech?

    2. FC Hakkebøf
      • 4 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Puli to Ziyech or Bowen

  21. Winners900
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Will it be press conf tomorrow? Cheers guys

  22. evilfish
    • 5 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Would you play KWP or Taylor?

    1. Luton_Fan
      • 11 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Kwp

  23. arndff_
    • 9 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Which combo is better:
    a) Zouma Bamford
    b) Chilwell Brewster + ~1M ITB (dont like any forwards up to 5.5)

  24. Keep Calm and Play On
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Evening all, need some last minute help!
    Robbo-James-Saiss-Lampt-Mitchell
    Salah-Son-Grealish-Foden-Bissouma
    Kane-Jimi-DCL

    A) Saiss to Coufal and bank FT
    B) Foden Jimi to Ziyech Wilson
    C) Saiss James to Coufal Chillwell

    2FT .4ITB

    1. Garlana
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      My exact defence, your attacking options look fine, wise to sort the defence. A or C . A could be handy over the international break.

      1. Keep Calm and Play On
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        5 months, 6 days ago

        Thanks

    2. Poison Apple
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 8 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      A unless its clear james is not playing

      1. Keep Calm and Play On
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        5 months, 6 days ago

        Thanks

  25. OBAMA
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Hi guys,

    Are saiss and Ryan out now?

    What's the craic?

  26. OptimusBlack
    • 7 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Best replacement for Reguilón
    If u have Gauita Lampety Semedo Chilwell
    A- PVA
    B- Belleriln
    C- Cresswell

    1. Luton_Fan
      • 11 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Cresswell

    2. Bobby Digital
      • 3 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      PVA could be a good un

  27. JURGENAUT
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Werner owners, no fear of benching? He played 90 mins midweek ?

    1. JURGENAUT
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Anyone? Thinking to transfer him in or vardy

    2. Luton_Fan
      • 11 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Keep werner. He will start

    3. noone
      • 3 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Keep

  28. noone
    • 3 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Who should score more points over the season from here on?

    Vardy/KDB?

    1. Luton_Fan
      • 11 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Vardy

  29. davies
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Play one:

    A) Kilman (lei)
    B) Mitchell (LEE)

  30. JURGENAUT
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    5 months, 6 days ago

    Vardy, Chillwell, Coufal
    Werner, Chillwell, Creswell

    Which option?

    1. JURGENAUT
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      5 months, 6 days ago

      Option 1 has 0.4 itb

    2. noone
      • 3 Years
      5 months, 6 days ago

      A