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. NO SALAH
    • 2 Years
    2 months, 22 days ago

    My team for GW8:

    Martinez
    Chilwell Reguilon* Lamptey Kilman
    Sterling Salah Son Grealish
    Kane DCL

    Bench: Brewster Bissouma Targett

    2FT and 0.2 ITB. The question is hold or sell Sterling. Seems i have to remove Reguilon too because his ilness. Any suggestion?

  2. The Red Devil
    • 5 Years
    2 months, 22 days ago

    Start kilman or Taylor
    On kilman currently

    1. NO SALAH
      • 2 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Tough call. I'd go for Taylor i think. It's 50/50

    2. FeverPitch
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Kilman imo

  3. MiguelAngel
    • 8 Years
    2 months, 22 days ago

    Hi there! It’s been a while...

    McCarthy
    Lamptey Zouma KWP
    Salah Son Ziyech Grealish
    Kane(c) DCL Jiménez

    4.0 James Ayling McCarthy

    A) GTG?
    B) Start James instead of KWP?

    1. MiguelAngel
      • 8 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      * Justin not James!

  4. Danny De Gea
    • 6 Years
    2 months, 22 days ago

    Vardy or Werner?

    Vardy great form but next two fixtures aren't

    Werner great fixtures ahead, form just fine

    1. Little Red Lacazette
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Werner on pens now but I prefer Vardy slightly.

  5. Little Red Lacazette
    • 4 Years
    2 months, 22 days ago

    Plan to roll FT & have 2 for international break.

    GTG?

    Martinez
    TAA Semedo Lamptey
    Salah Grealish Son Zaha
    Maupay Kane(C) DCL

    Steer Dallas Bissouma Kilman

    1. Gunner Boy
      • 6 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      G2G

  6. Oggle22
    • 4 Years
    2 months, 22 days ago

    G2G?
    Martinez
    Chilwell Konsa Kilman
    Barkley Zaha Son Rashford Salah
    Jiminez Kane

    Steele Brewster Mitchell Branthwaite

    Cheers

  7. FeverPitch
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 7 Years
    2 months, 22 days ago

    Saiss and Jimenez to Chilwell and Bamford/Watkins for free?

    Thanks

    1. Pukki Party
      • 3 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Can you afford Saiss to Zouma? I'd keep Jimenez,

      1. FeverPitch
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 7 Years
        2 months, 22 days ago

        I can’t unfortunately

    2. Little Red Lacazette
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Maybe just Saiss -> Chilwell.

    3. FeverPitch
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Thanks both. Can’t do Saiss to chilwell without freeing cash up. If I sell Jimi this week I play Soucek in starting 11... but yeah could be wise to keep Jimi. Thanks

  8. Pukki Party
    • 3 Years
    2 months, 22 days ago

    Who is the best West Ham midfield option now with Antonio probably out? Bowen or Fornals? Looking for a Pulisic replacement.

    1. Pieterke30
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Bowen

  9. white lightning
    • 7 Years
    2 months, 22 days ago

    Just after some advice please. I've already used my ft Saiss to Chilwell leaving 0 bank & have this line up:

    Martinez
    Robertson, Chilwell, Lamptey
    Salah, Son, Grealish, Zaha
    Kane (c), Jimenez, DCL

    Steer, Justin, Mitchell, Burke

    Are any of these trades worth a -4 hit:
    (a) Robertson out - Cresswell in or
    (b) Jimenez out - Bamford in

    Thanks.

    1. Little Red Lacazette
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      None are worth a hit.

  10. Pieterke30
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 4 Years
    2 months, 22 days ago

    Isnt Vardy a better long term pick than Werner?

    After WOL (H), Vardy plays Pool who he very often scores against, then FUL (H), SHU (A) who he hates as a Wednesday fan, then BHA (H) and EVE (H) who tend to attack and leave spaces behind.

    Werner vs Vardy is a 50/50 call for me, or yeah maybe even 45/55. But Werner seems to be flavour of the week?

    1. Pukki Party
      • 3 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Good shout. Werner now also on pens seems to be the reason.

    2. NABIL - I had 4 Spurs GW1
      • 8 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Yes, that's why I'm prioritizing Vardy over Werner, even though I can do Brewster to Werner for free this week (while keeping Kane).

      I think Vardy will be in my team next week, and one of kdb or Werner.

    3. Christina.
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 10 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      I would love to own Vardy. One of Kane/Son would need to finance him though.

  11. Gunner Boy
    • 6 Years
    2 months, 22 days ago

    Best Westham Defender?

    Masuaku or Coufal or Cresswell?

    1. Sarri-ball
      • 11 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Creswell if money doesnt matter. Coufal be my pick and bank 0.6

    2. Top Dog
      • 11 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Agree with above

  12. Easy Cheesy
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 1 Year
    2 months, 22 days ago

    Is soucek a season keeper for anyone who has him? Tempted to get in but worried about chance of another price drop

    1. ShaunGoater123
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Not sure about a season keeper, but he’s looked promising

      This run of games coming up will determine if he’s just looks promising or can deliver points.

      I have him and quietly confident

    2. Top Dog
      • 11 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Depends on team structure at the moment I’m going 3 up top, so is a perfect fit for me. Regular starter with some goal threat for 5m.

      Also worth noting that whilst he hadn’t scored yet, fixtures look at lot more attractive for West Ham from now on

  13. Sarri-ball
    • 11 Years
    2 months, 22 days ago

    On a wildcard do i need to keep kane for this weekend?

    Or gamble he blanks im happy with son spurs cover but this weekend scares me no kane

    1. Salan
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 11 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Similar thinking here.... scares if no kane this week.... easily 30+ points swing

    2. I SPEAK ENGELS AND DRINK GI…
      • 1 Year
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Keep Kane and transfer him out for Vardy GW 10

    3. Top Dog
      • 11 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      I’d risk it, especially if you are looking at Werner/Vardy who could easily score themselves this weekend.

  14. manu4life99
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 10 Years
    2 months, 22 days ago

    1FT (£0.2m itb)

    Is Saiss>Coufal enough this week?

    Martinez
    Robbo Chilwell Lamptey*
    Salah Son Grealish Pulisic*
    Kane DCL Bamford

    steer soucek mitchell* saiss*

  15. Jässi
    • 3 Years
    2 months, 22 days ago

    Where can I see press conference times today?

    1. Brosstan
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Aren't most of the pressers already done?

  16. RECKLESS
    • 7 Years
    2 months, 22 days ago

    Who would you rather trust after Tot vs WBA
    1) Jesus + KDB
    or
    2) Vardy + Son +1FT
    Also is Coufal Whm nailed?

    1. Garth Marenghi
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      2

    2. Kabayan
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      I wanna get KDB and Vardy.

      1. RECKLESS
        • 7 Years
        2 months, 22 days ago

        i can fo with -4 of foden to souzek

    3. RECKLESS
      • 7 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      2 allows me to go Cresswell.over Coufal but just non nailed Foden as city cover doesnt feel right

  17. I SPEAK ENGELS AND DRINK GI…
    • 1 Year
    2 months, 22 days ago

    Bench one A) Robertson B) Grealish C) Zaha D) Maupay E) DCL

    Currently on A, I havent benched Liverpool defender for over year..

    My other playing defenders: Coufal, Lamptey, Chilwell

    1. ivantys
        2 months, 22 days ago

        A or bench Lamptey

    2. unitednations
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Morning dzzz, stuck here with 1ft and 0m

      Martinez
      Taa Lamptey James* -- Mitchell* Saiss*.....*rotation prone
      Salah Son Havertz Barnes -- Burke
      DCL Kane Watkins

      A: Havertz >> Grealish but double villa attack vs arsenal?
      B: TAA + Havertz >> Lewis/Kilman + KDB (-4)

    3. Kabayan
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Which one guys?
      A. Play Watkins
      Or
      B. Chilwell (-4 from Saiss)

      1. RECKLESS
        • 7 Years
        2 months, 22 days ago

        A

    4. Goodricke
      • 5 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Keep Foden or change to Bowen for -4. Somebody on here said he would be playing as a striker this week.

      1. Easy Cheesy
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 1 Year
        2 months, 22 days ago

        This.

      2. FeverPitch
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 7 Years
        2 months, 22 days ago

        For free it’s a tough one, not for a hit imo

        1. Goodricke
          • 5 Years
          2 months, 22 days ago

          Can you see him starting against Liverpool or Spurs? Jesus has risen, so even if he plays, he won't be as in the mix as one would like!

          1. FeverPitch
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 7 Years
            2 months, 22 days ago

            I mean who knows! I think he will, they’ve been better with him lately, but that’s pure guess work. For the -4 I don’t like it because if he plays I think he could do ok. There’s also no given that Bowen will get points - the -4 makes it more unlikely than likely that you’ll make a net points gain this week, imo. But if you have a good feeling about Bowen, he could of course do very well haha

    5. Easy Cheesy
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Sell foden or podence for soucek?
      A) Pod - cheaper but gets subbed and lokg term won’t be in the team
      B) Foden - expensive but better LT fixtures, and was thinking he could be a season keeper

      1. FeverPitch
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 7 Years
        2 months, 22 days ago

        Feel like this could be the perfect fixture for Foden. If he starts

      2. ShaunGoater123
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 6 Years
        2 months, 22 days ago

        Podence all day

        1. Easy Cheesy
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 1 Year
          2 months, 22 days ago

          As in I should sell podence?

          1. ShaunGoater123
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 6 Years
            2 months, 22 days ago

            Yes

            1. Easy Cheesy
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 1 Year
              2 months, 22 days ago

              Thanks!

    6. tinear
      • 1 Year
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Is Saiss really lose his spot? Or worth to wait for another gw?

      1. Miguel Sanchez
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        2 months, 22 days ago

        Wait if you can but I think he’s gone

        1. tinear
          • 1 Year
          2 months, 22 days ago

          Martinez
          TAA, Ayling, Zouma
          Son, Salah, Grealish, Havertz
          Kane, Bamford, DCL

          Steer, Saiss, Mitchell, Bissouma

          1ft

          Should I wait or ship him out?

    7. Azathoth
      • 6 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Any update on James?Gonna play vs MU or still recovering?

      1. RECKLESS
        • 7 Years
        2 months, 22 days ago

        Looking Manutd defencr he can score from even bench lol

      2. Miguel Sanchez
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        2 months, 22 days ago

        Liverpool Echo reporting he should be ok

    8. RECKLESS
      • 7 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Which of these seem priority?
      1) Saiss to Coufal/Cresswell
      2) Foden to Souceck
      3) Both for -4 but unsure on return potential of Souceck

      1. Christina.
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 10 Years
        2 months, 22 days ago

        Soucek in for a -4 is crazy.
        (Im playing Soucek this wk)

      2. Miguel Sanchez
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        2 months, 22 days ago

        1

      3. sunzip14
        • 4 Years
        2 months, 22 days ago

        1, Cresswell if you do not have any planned transfer that may require more funds.

      4. Azathoth
        • 6 Years
        2 months, 22 days ago

        1 Cress

      5. RoryzonderR
        • 8 Years
        2 months, 22 days ago

        Option 1, by far

    9. sunzip14
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 22 days ago

      Jimenez>Werner good move? Or save a FT?

      1. Miguel Sanchez
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        2 months, 22 days ago

        Save this week

      2. ivantys
          2 months, 22 days ago

          I'd keep as I don't want to miss Jimmy's Saints' fixture. GW9 is quite a bad week for fixtures since I'm not interested in Manu players.

        • RoryzonderR
          • 8 Years
          2 months, 22 days ago

          Would save, Jimmy more sure starter as well

      3. Lucky Z
        • 3 Years
        2 months, 22 days ago

        GTG?

        Mendy
        Reguilon | PVA | Chilwell
        Son | Salah | JRod | Grealish | Ziyech
        Kane | DCL

        Forster | Mitchell | Brewster | Targett

        0FT, no hits, 0.7ITB

      4. Erez Avni
        • 4 Years
        2 months, 22 days ago

        need some help please

        Martinez
        TAA Robo Justin (KWP Mitchell)
        Salah Son Grealish Foden (poveda)
        Ings Jimenez DCL

        A. TAA, Foden & Ings to Chilwell, Zaich & wilson (-4) sounds good?
        B. Play KWP or Justin?

        cheers!

      5. shapply
        • 7 Years
        2 months, 22 days ago

        Coufal or Cresswell? Worth to bring in Aaron? He costs 0.6 more

        1. Daniel - FH,BB,TC,WC left
          • 11 Years
          2 months, 22 days ago

          It looks like in FPL whoever defender will pick more points is worth the premium, as per stats. The question is whether Creswell with outscore Coufal or they will score similar? How long will you hold him to allow for the paid premium to pay off?

          1. shapply
            • 7 Years
            2 months, 22 days ago

            whu fix looks tasty so I assume I would hold on Cresswell til february

          2. ShaunGoater123
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 6 Years
            2 months, 22 days ago

            I prefer coufal for cheaper personally.

        2. Miguel Sanchez
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 4 Years
          2 months, 22 days ago

          Coufal

      6. Easy Cheesy
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 1 Year
        2 months, 22 days ago

        Exact money for Jimi to martial. WBA next week for martial.
        Do we think martial gets subbed more w cavani now?

        1. Daniel - FH,BB,TC,WC left
          • 11 Years
          2 months, 22 days ago

          I think Cavani won't play much. Similar like the Falkao season for Chelsea

          1. Daniel - FH,BB,TC,WC left
            • 11 Years
            2 months, 22 days ago

            He is past his prime, he is there to be competition and rest fro Martial or so and impact sub for some games unless he explodes

      7. davies
        • 6 Years
        2 months, 22 days ago

        All set lads?

        Martinez
        Chilwell Lamptey Kilman
        Salah Sterling Son (c) Grealish Soucek
        Kane DCL

        Forster Mitchell Brewster Dunne

        Cheers.

        1. Christina.
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 10 Years
          2 months, 22 days ago

          Nice, very similar to me.