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A Deeper Look at Price Points and Defining a Flexibility Rating

I’ve been thinking lately about a broad theoretical framework surrounding price points, especially as they relate to setting up your team to start a new season.

Basically, the price point structure of a team can be taken as an indicator of how flexible the team is for getting new players in with ideally just one free transfer, or two at the very most. I’m not one to obsess over exact price points (e.g. drawing distinctions between £8.0m forwards and £7.5m forwards), so basically I conceive of only three broad price points for midfielders and forwards, and two price points for defenders and goalkeepers. You essentially start the season with a certain number of poker chips, or I’ll call them tokens to avoid confusion with FPL chips like Triple Captain. Premium midfielders and forwards cost 2 tokens each; premium defenders and goalkeepers, as well as mid-priced midfielders and forwards, cost 1 token each; and budget players at all positions fill out the team, costing 0 tokens. (For the rest of this article, I’ll ignore premium goalkeepers, as FPL managers tend to make very few goalkeeper transfers, and the top scoring goalkeeper is often a £4.5m option.) Mid-priced midfielders and forwards, for the purposes of this article, are between about £7.0 and £9.0 million.

How many tokens do you start a season with? I’ll argue that the usual player pricing corresponds to 7 tokens (whether this is deliberate game design, or just what FPL Towers have arrived at over many seasons of trial and error, is left for the reader to judge). Seven tokens are just enough to cover every price point once, except for a premium goalkeeper. In a 3-4-3 formation, with each player shown by the number of tokens they cost:

0

1 0 0

2 1 0 0

2 1 0

The good news is that this is a perfectly flexible team in terms of being able to have one of everything. The bad news is, you can’t have two of anything, except budget players. Often the two best captain options are both midfielders, which can require a significantly less flexible formation.

Before looking at other formations, let’s define a flexibility rating for each possible formation. A perfectly flexible formation that covers all the possible price points would get a perfect 10. If all price points are not covered, we deduct two points for each missing 2-token slot, and one point for each missing 1-token or 0-token slot. We deduct more points for missing 2-token slots because it’s possible to downgrade a higher-priced player to a lower-priced player with just one transfer, whereas upgrading will almost certainly require two transfers.

The only perfectly flexible formations possible, then, are the above 3-4-3, as well as a 4-3-3 version with the budget fourth midfielder replaced with a fourth defender:

0

1 0 0 0

2 1 0

2 1 0

Initial formations that get a flexibility rating of 9 would still have to have a premium midfielder and a premium forward, to avoid a 2-point deduction for missing either of those slots. In fact, they would still have to have exactly one premium midfielder and one premium forward. A 3-premium-attacker formation would eat up 6 points for just the premiums, meaning that two of the 1-token price points would have to be missing. For example, each of the following earns a rating of only 8:

0

1 0 0

2 2 0 0

2 0 0

0

0 0 0

2 2 1 0

2 0 0

0

0 0 0

2 2 0 0

2 1 0

A 1-premium-attacker formation might seem on paper to be more flexible, but in this case a 2-point deduction is incurred for omitting either a premium midfielder or premium forward. On the positive side, there are many more different possibilities in this setup for the distribution of the 5 tokens not spent on premium attackers. For example, such a team could have as many as three premium defenders:

0

1 1 1 0

2 1 0 0

1 0

Or it could be very heavy on mid-priced midfielders:

0

1 0 0

2 1 1 1 0

1 0

What would be the worst possible formation in terms of flexibility? Well, you could have five premium defenders and a premium goalkeeper, leaving only one token to spend elsewhere:

1

1 1 1 1 1

1 0 0 0

0

This structure loses 4 flexibility points for lacking both a premium midfielder and premium forward, as well as 2 additional points for lacking a budget defender and a mid-priced forward, for an overall flexibility rating of 4. Obviously, getting the money out of defence in this setup without wildcarding is essentially impossible.

Returning to almost-optimal formations, formations that would get a flexibility rating of 9 would still have two premium attackers, one midfielder and one forward, but would be slightly less balanced in lacking one of the 1-token slots, such as this:

0

1 1 0

2 0 0 0

2 1 0

Nonetheless, if we are fairly confident that there are no premium forwards worth owning until after our next wildcard, a 2-premium-midfielder setup, even though it only achieves a flexibility rating of 8, is quite acceptable. Later in the season, after team values have risen and more than 7 tokens are available to spend, even a 3-premium-midfielder setup can be quite flexible. By late in the season, a “power-5-mid” formation may be perfectly achievable, such as:

0

1 0 0

2 2 2 1 1

1 0

Even at the start of the season, however, I think a case can be made for a 3-5-2 or 4-4-2, even though it must necessarily omit one of the forward price points. For the 2021-22 season, I like starting with a 3-5-2 because it seems that most of the previous season’s budget forwards have been raised into the mid-priced category, whereas many midfielders have remained quite cheap. Prioritising a price-point structure too strongly over picking the best value players can also be a mistake. I also feel that omitting the mid-priced midfielder slot is a common error, which I avoided in the previous season out of pure luck (having chosen Christian Pulisic over Timo Werner) – but now know that I want to make an effort to do the right thing intentionally. Most Premier League teams now start five players classified as FPL midfielders and only one FPL forward, which is somewhat out of sync with the requirements for the perfectly flexible 3-4-3 I mentioned at the start of this article. So far, I’m on this, with a flexibility rating of 8:

0

1 0 0

2 2 1 0 0

1 0

I can always gain a premium forward easily on my first wildcard if I do not want to stick with only premium midfielders as captain options. In an emergency, I can move a premium midfielder and budget forward to a budget midfielder and premium forward with two transfers, for a hit if necessary.

Hopefully this article has provided some insight into why some team structures are more flexible than others. Price points are not everything, and need to be balanced against the need for the best value players, but should definitely be a consideration in planning your initial team.

Major League Shocker Contrarian stock market investor (which might creep into my FPL thinking a bit too much at times). Resisting groupthink. Overcoming cognitive biases to make more rational decisions.”

46 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Rotation's Alter Ego
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • Has Moderation Rights
    • 9 Years
    5 days, 21 hours ago

    I don't think the heat helped but took me a fair while to get my head around this! Regardless, really interesting write-up. I like your approach to flexibility that is often overlooked - we always see the same metrics created during preseasons looking at points per million etc etc and how we should go big at the back to load on value but this matches far closer to our tried and tested approach to formations.

    Must admit I was very sceptical of your token system when you first mentioned it, but I quite like this - got my brain working.

    1. Major League Shocker
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      5 days, 11 hours ago

      Cheers RAE! You do such a good job with this section.

  2. diesel001
    • 4 Years
    5 days, 20 hours ago

    So the most flexible formations are:

    3-4-3 (with 1 premium defender, 1 premium midfielder, 1 premium forward, 1 mid-priced midfielder, 1 mid-priced forward)
    4-3-3 (with 1 premium defender, 1 premium midfielder, 1 premium forward, 1 mid-priced midfielder, 1 mid-priced forward)

    And the author is going with:

    3-5-2 (with 1 premium defender, 2 premium midfielders, 1 mid-priced midfielder, 1 mid-priced forward)

    1. Major League Shocker
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      5 days, 15 hours ago

      Correct.

  3. snow pea in repose
      5 days, 18 hours ago

      I will certainly consider this article but I am also considering Covid. I think I want a team of 15 starters...

      1. Chemical76
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        5 days, 17 hours ago

        Correct. Seems to be a slow burn on this here

    • Zogzeg
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      5 days, 16 hours ago

      I like the clarity of thinking in this article.
      Excellent signal to noise ratio - thank you for sharing your model.

    • Woyofthewovers66
      • 2 Years
      5 days, 16 hours ago

      Does my team qualify as an 8 token team if it includes the following players?

      Robertson (1)
      Salah (2)
      Fernandes (2)
      Watkins (1)
      Antonio (1)
      Iheanacho (1)

      Also, at what price point does premium defender start? I am assuming 6.0?

      1. Woyofthewovers66
        • 2 Years
        5 days, 16 hours ago

        …and if I swapped fernandes and Antonio for rashford and kane would that make it a 9 token team?

      2. Major League Shocker
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 1 Year
        5 days, 14 hours ago

        Yeah, the model is inevitably an oversimplification at some level. Obviously it's not meant to say that by spending an extra 0.5 to go up a category, that you massively improve your team. If you increase your team value over time, though, you do increase the number of spendable tokens.and likely increase flexibility (in addition to other benefits).

        6.0 minimum for premium defender sounds about right. I've got a 5.5 defender and not counting him as premium.

    • Woyofthewovers66
      • 2 Years
      5 days, 16 hours ago

      Really interesting analysis as to formation flexibility…I like it!

    • SP33K
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 2 Years
      5 days, 15 hours ago

      Appreciate an article on strategy, thanks.

      My set up for first two weeks 4/3/3

      2 premium Defenders
      I premium Mid 2 medium priced Mids
      2 medium priced Forwards
      (If I’ve understood correctly 8 tokens)

      I feel I’ve increased my flexibility as I have 1 million in the bank, This allows me to upgrade one of my medium Mids or Forwards to a Premium priced player. Though for the most costly will need to use 2 transfers (currently not starting with either Fernandes or Kane)

      What’s the thinking on not maxing out your spending when setting up initial team?

      1. Major League Shocker
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 1 Year
        5 days, 14 hours ago

        Could be a good strategy. Mark had a preseason draft team in one of the videos last year with something like 3m in the bank for GW1, with three 6-6.5m forwards, prepared to upgrade one of them or a cheap mid to whatever player looked essential. Ultimately he went for a more conventional team, but it might have been the right year for that approach (given the BGW1 for the Manchester clubs).

    • 3 A
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      5 days, 14 hours ago

      Thanks for this article. Its make me love my team more and more 😀

      This kind of discussion is needed before the season start.

    • RedLightning - Top 10k Any …
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • Has Moderation Rights
      • 11 Years
      5 days, 13 hours ago

      So premium mids and forwards are 9.5-12.5m, and mid-price mids and forwards are 7.0-9.0m, but what is the price range for premium defenders?
      A forward line of 10.0, 7.0, 7.0 (4 tokens) would cost 24.0m.
      A midfield of 10.0, 9.5, 7.0, 7.0, 7.0 (7 tokens) would cost 40.5m.
      If premium defenders are 7.0-7.5m then a defence of 7.5, 7.0, 4.5, 4.0, 4.0 (2 tokens) would cost 27.0m.
      Two goalkeepers at 4.5, 4.0 (0 tokens) would cost 8.5m.
      So that's 13 tokens at a cost of exactly 100.0m.
      I think that's the maximum number of tokens achievable with the current set of players for 100.0m.

      If the minimum price for a premium defender is less than 7.0m then an even greater number of tokens would be possible.
      For example if the premium defender price range was 6.0-7.5m then a defence of 6.0, 6.0, 6.0, 4.5, 4.5 would still cost 27.0m but would increase the number of defender tokens from 2 to 3, and the total number of tokens from 13 to 14.

      I think the system needs refining - it would be more useful if all the 7.0-12.5m attackers (2 tokens each) and all the 4.0-6.5m players (no tokens) weren't at the same two price points.

      1. 3 A
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        5 days, 13 hours ago

        Get perfect 10 with article's model ang get even more, 16 with yours.

      2. RogDog_jimmy
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        5 days, 13 hours ago

        this hypothetical team is;

        Sanchez, 4.0
        TAA, Robbo, 4.5, 4.0, 4.0
        Son, Rashford, James-Rodriguez, Torres, Barnes
        Aubameyang, Adams, Wood

        Not a team anyone would want (on here at least) but a super interesting starting point to me.

        Robbo down to Shaw, 4.0 up to Digne
        Rashford, J-Rod, Torres, Barnes can be mixed and matched across the mids.
        Auba to a 8.5, upgrade Adams & Wood to 7.5

      3. RedLightning - Top 10k Any …
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • Has Moderation Rights
        • 11 Years
        5 days, 3 hours ago

        My suggested refinements to the system would be to award two tokens instead of one to the only 7.5m defender (TAA),
        to award one token to all defenders in the 5.5-7.0m price range (5.5m is a key price point for defenders),
        to award three tokens to not more than two players in the 12.0-12.5m price range (the regular captains),
        and possibly to deduct half a token for non-playing outfield players (4.0m defenders).

        1. Major League Shocker
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 1 Year
          5 days, 1 hour ago

          I strongly disagree on TAA -- he only costs 3.5m more than the cheapest defender. Including him doesn't eat up a massive amount of budget like a premium attacker does. His returns don't make him a 2-token player, they just make him a gift at a 1-token price, comparable to mid-priced mids and forwards. Maybe premium defender should go down to 5.5m.

          My assumption is that people generally own the regular captains, even at 12.0-12.5m. If they were 13.5-14m, then I'd argue that's 3-token territory. As I argued on RAE's old-time pricing thread, I think it would make the game very different from what it is now. It would make it a lot harder to just set-and-forget any premiums; you'd have to regularly take them out to fit in the best captain options. It would make for a stark choice between playing more Lateriser-style and accepting not having the best captain a good share of the time.

          Agree with the last point, I should have mentioned that minimum-priced fodder players are assumed to not be in the XI and probably not even first bench.

          1. RedLightning - Top 10k Any …
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • Has Moderation Rights
            • 11 Years
            5 days, 12 mins ago

            I suppose it depends whether we're looking at cost or value.
            Your model is looking at cost, mine tries to also look at value. As I have shown, if you only look at cost and select players from the lowest end of each price range then it is possible to find many formations which would cost large numbers of tokens (up to 13) but give poor overall value.
            Personally, I don't use price points (apart from making sure that I have one or two regular captains and don't have too many non-players), and believe that I get more accurate results by looking at exact prices rather than price ranges. There are discontinuities when you award the same number of tokens to 4.5m and 6.5m players, an extra token to a 7.0m compared to a 6.5m, the same number of tokens to 7.0m and 9.0m players, an extra token to a 9.5m compared to a 9.0m, and then the same number of tokens to 9.5m and 12.5m players.
            I also believe that there is an enormous difference between TAA and other defenders, especially when you also look at his early fixtures, which is why he is one of the first names on the team sheet in so many squads despite being the most expensive defender.
            And not everyone has both Mo and Bruno in their squads - some have downgraded Bruno to Son, and some attempt to include three premiums - so it might be useful to be able to differentiate between these.

            Or perhaps we just have to accept that generating a squad equivalent to the greatest number of tokens is not the point, and neither is it the perfect way to determine the formation that is likely to return the most points.
            It might however be useful as a starting point that can then be improved on.
            And if you're aiming for maximum flexibility, it might be useful to consider starting with Joe's major price points
            - two premium attackers (12.0-12.5m) and one premium defender (7.5m), which can easily be downgraded later if required - before awarding tokens to the rest of the squad.

            1. Major League Shocker
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 1 Year
              4 days, 23 hours ago

              I agree that value is important too. I haven't gone with the maximally flexible 3-4-3 formation largely because I was surprised that FPL Towers raised the prices of forwards like Bamford/Watkins/Iheanacho quite a bit, but didn't do so as much in midfield. I had expected they would either raise prices substantially in both positions or neither. If a certain bracket features great value, then doubling up on that bracket can be worthwhile, although I still remind myself that I'm doing that at the cost of some flexibility. Since this article is about a flexibility rating, it does not discuss the possible benefits of a not-very-flexible team, which have been well covered by writers who look to maximise value most.

              I completely agree with your statement, "generating a squad equivalent to the greatest number of tokens is not the point, and neither is it the perfect way to determine the formation that is likely to return the most points." The token system is designed to show what structures maximise flexibility better than others. I do also create my initial squad by seeing which premiums I want for captains first, and then I'm never left wanting a certain premium but wondering where all the money went. On wildcards, I plan to do the same.

              You're right about my model being about cost -- hence if we called TAA a 2-token player he would seem less attractive to me rather than more, because it would imply that I'm using up a lot of budget space that would impair my ability to get in other premium assets that I need. Either way, I'm definitely starting this season with him, especially with the run of fixtures he has.

            2. Major League Shocker
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 1 Year
              4 days, 2 hours ago

              I thought about it some more, and this is what I came up with for the best formula for estimating where the boundaries of the categories should go:

              Tokens = (PP - MAVPP)/3.0, rounded to the nearest integer, where
              PP = player price
              MAVPP = minimum actually viable player price for position (as a starter)

              MAVPP looks like 5.5 for mids and forwards, 4.5 for defenders. The edge cases for mids and forwards are 7.0 and 10.0, which come out to exactly 0.5 and 1.5 tokens before rounding. I'd argue for rounding them up. A price of 13.0 would be borderline 3-token, while 13.5 would be clearly 3-token.

              This also supports your idea about negative tokens in that a 4.5 mid or forward would be -1/3 token before rounding.

              1. RedLightning - Top 10k Any …
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • Has Moderation Rights
                • 11 Years
                3 days, 23 hours ago

                Since we're only talking about cost, and not about value, why not use the minimum initial prices (4.0m for goalkeepers and defenders, 4.5m for mids and forwards) instead of the minimum initial actually viable player prices?

                If the multiplying factor remains as 3.0, then Tokens = (PP - MPP) / 3.0 (PP = 3.0 * Tokens) + MPP) results in the following price ranges for tokens:
                0.5 tokens: 5.5-6.5m for goalkeepers and defenders, 6.0-7.0m for mids and forwards
                1 token: 7.0-8.0m for defenders, 7.5-8.5m for mids and forwards
                1.5 tokens: 9.0-10.0m for mids and forwards
                2 tokens: 10.5-11.5m for mids and forwards
                2.5 tokens: 12.0-13.0m for mids and forwards

                1. RedLightning - Top 10k Any …
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • Has Moderation Rights
                  • 11 Years
                  3 days, 22 hours ago

                  Deducting the MPP for each player accounts for the 64m of overheads that we all have to pay.
                  That leaves an optional 36m to spend how we want.
                  At 3-4m per token (depending on whether we go for the cheapest or most expensive in each price range, that is equivalent to 9-12 tokens.
                  The currently most owned players would incur the following token costs:
                  0.5 0.0
                  1.0 0.5 0.5 0.5 0.0
                  2.5 2.5 1.0 1.0 0.5
                  1.0 1.0 0.5
                  This would cost 13 tokens and is therefore not affordable.

                  1. Andy_Social
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 8 Years
                    3 days, 22 hours ago

                    I think, according to your system RL, my draft adds up to 11. Does that seem optimal or should I aim for more?

                    1. RedLightning - Top 10k Any …
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • Has Moderation Rights
                      • 11 Years
                      3 days, 22 hours ago

                      My current draft also adds up to 11.

                      1. Andy_Social
                        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                        • 8 Years
                        3 days, 22 hours ago

                        Excellent. I respect your thinking every pre-season - looks like this one will be no different!

                2. Major League Shocker
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 1 Year
                  3 days, 21 hours ago

                  I hear what you're saying; I just don't like the half price points very much because it would result in completely different conclusions about the possibility of covering all relevant price points, especially in the forward line where you only have 3 slots. Since I think there are only 3 relevant price points to cover, I think it's possible to cover them all with 3 players, like 12.0 9.0 6.0. This is a lot different from a team with, say, 12.0 6.5 6.0, which leaves a big hole at the middle price point.

                  To summarise the whole article in one sentence: 1) There is a perfectly flexible team, that is affordable with a 100m budget; 2) however, there are trade-offs you have to make (specifically, not covering one or more important price points) to have more than one of any non-budget price point in your initial team.

                  1. RedLightning - Top 10k Any …
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • Has Moderation Rights
                    • 11 Years
                    3 days, 19 hours ago

                    The numbers of tokens don't show the best squad structures, which will depend on value, but they do show possible affordable alternatives, and will show them more accurately if they are based on half-tokens than on full ones.

                    The mid-range price points for 2.5, 1.5 and 0.5 tokens for mids and forwards are actually 12.5, 9.5 and 6.5m by my formula.
                    12.0, 9.0 and 6.0m would be equivalent to 2.5, 1.5 and 0.5 tokens.
                    12.0, 6.5 and 6.0m would be equivalent to 2.5, 0.5 and 0.5 tokens, giving an extra 2.5m (1 token) to spend elsewhere. And 9.0 or 9.5m is not a good price point anyway, since I wouldn't want any forwards or mids in the 8.5-11.5m price range (unless I downgraded Bruno to Son).

                    Also, 12.5, 9.5, 6.5m doesn't look at all flexible to me. It forces you to play Kane as a premium forward but doesn't allow you to have both Salah and Bruno as your two premium mids.
                    Setting price points for forwards and mids at 12.5, 9.5 and 6.5m would use up nine tokens, only leaving 0 to 3 tokens to cover your other two mids, five defenders and two goalkeepers.
                    If you set your defender price points at 7.5m, 5.5m and 4.5m then that would cost a further 1.5 tokens, and most of the remaining six players would have to be 4.5ms.

                    I would recommend exchanging the price points for the first forward and second mid, so that the first forward becomes 9.5m and the second mid becomes 12.0m, then reducing the 9.5m price points for the first and second forwards and using the savings to improve the 4th mid or the defence - but what exact price point structure were you thinking of yourself?

                    1. Major League Shocker
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 1 Year
                      3 days, 15 hours ago

                      In the article I'm trying to make general statements about what is usually flexible in any year, not specifically this one. That's why I've argued that covering all three main forward price points (as well as three midfield and two defender price points) is necessary to get the perfect flexibility rating for a GW1 team. Indeed, I have argued that having three premium attackers (such as Kane, Salah, and Bruno) on a GW1 team is very tough and requires significant sacrifices elsewhere -- that's the part where the three structures are shown side-by-side.

                      As stated at the end of the article, my current structure does sacrifice some flexibility by preferring two premium mids over a premium forward:

                      0
                      1 0 0
                      2 2 1 0 0
                      1 0

                      Admittedly it's not as bad this year to go without a premium forward since there are very few options other than Kane. If Kane does start firing before my first wildcard, I'll probably be forced to take a hit to get him in (as opposed to a single transfer to get from one premium mid to a different one). Or if Kane's looking like a great option before the season starts, I will get him for GW1 and drop a premium mid.

                      One certainly could design a more sophisticated flexibility rating that could take into account specific differences in the pool of available players from one season to another. Maybe I'll do this at some point.

                      1. RedLightning - Top 10k Any …
                        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                        • Has Moderation Rights
                        • 11 Years
                        3 days, 5 hours ago

                        You have decided to start with a 3-5-2 formation that includes two premium mids, but in another season it might be better to play 3-4-3, 4-3-3 or 4-4-2, or to have two premium forwards or one premium forward and one premium mid. It might also useful to switch between some of these possibilities instead of sticking to the initial one all season. There might be seasons when it pays to have three premium attackers, or a number of not-quite-premium attackers instead, and sometimes there might be a shortage of good value not-quite-premium attackers. Sometimes it might pay to be big at the back, and sometimes it might not. Sometimes there is an excellent defender who is good value at 7.0-7.5m, sometimes there isn't and sometimes there might even be more than one of them.

                        I think this shows that there are no perfect price points that are the same every season and that will provide perfect flexibility every time.
                        They will vary according to the numbers of players at various prices who provide good value, and this might will not be the same every season.
                        It is therefore useful to have a menu of alternatives such as that provided by my half-token system, which provides more fine-grained options than your full token one which has too wide a range of prices for each token in my opinion.

                        1. Major League Shocker
                          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                          • 1 Year
                          3 days, 1 hour ago

                          Good points. As they say, "the theory should be as simple as possible, but no simpler." My theory may be too simple.

                          A testable hypothesis I could make would be: In the time preceding my first wildcard (currently expecting GW7), I will not struggle to get in: 1) Any midfielder I want at any price; 2) Any forward up to the top of the mid-priced range. Also, I'll predict I won't wildcard earlier than GW7, barring a serious injury crisis.

                          I may want, and struggle to get without a hit: 1) Kane; 2) Another premium defender (but this is more a matter of tight budget plus expected unwillingness to sell TAA than anything else).

        2. Major League Shocker
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 1 Year
          5 days, 1 hour ago

          If you were going to define three separate non-fodder defender price points, I'd argue for calling them 1, 0.5, and 0 tokens, given that a token costs around 3-4m over the minimum price for a position.

    • FPLGOOD
      • 1 Year
      5 days, 6 hours ago

      Hi,

      Havent been very active here but I'll share few thoughts.

      - I understand it's not part for this model, but this year's premium forwards doesnt actually look something for flexibility: basically if you go for premiun forward, then you go for Kane. And then it's very likely you can't switch him for any other premium pick with only one transfer whole season.
      - It would be interesting to read also about how it is very important in this game to find out the players who are overperforming their price bracket. So players that cost 0 or 1 tokens, but perform actually like 1 and 2 token players. Someone on FFS could do a dig in from which price points and from which positions these players have normally emerged?

      Another thing which I havent come across here yet is that which players you are likely to feel okay to play every game of the season? Meaning no transfer is needed to plan for them. If you play only with price points and prepare to transfer anyone, then you would require average 11-week runs for your players or playing bench (with good rotation pairs).

      Of course no one is planning to change GKs and likely you are ready to stick with e.g Bruno+Salah combo for all year so assuming that you would need "only" 8-week runs. But that's pretty hard as well.

      Therefor I have this year gone for a little different direction. I identified the players that I could potentially hold all season and play agains anyone. I got a list of 3 Pool defenders, Son, Kane, Salah, KDB, Bruno (+ 4.5 Gk). Cheapest way to include as many of these in as possible was to have 3 Pool defs, Son and then 1 from the rest; Salah I couldnt choose, Kane I didnt want as a Spurs double-up and overall Bruno anyways just felt the best .. so went with him.

      Apart from that I'm not planning to use any transfers for my 4.5+4.0 Gks and two 4.5 bench players.

      For the rest of the money I currently then have 5.5+5.5+8+7.5+6.5+6.5 with one sitting on the bench every week (which makes just transfer planning easier, and then I have even some bench cover). Finding 6-week runs for players is a lot easier than 8-11 week runs, especially when I can plan to bench them for the odd week. I also like the options I can go to at these price points this year. The premium options doesnt seem to be so many for me.

      Thanks for reading! And thans for the article!

      1. Major League Shocker
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 1 Year
        4 days, 23 hours ago

        Interesting! I'm actually not that big on the idea of "season keepers" (Bruno was my closest last year, coming in GW9 and staying until the end), but maybe it's more of a psychological thing where I don't want to lock myself in to the idea that there is any player who must never be removed. When I wildcard, I feel it is like starting over, and I want to look at what is the best structure and group of premiums for the next stretch of time. Chances are, by the time of my first wildcard I'll have at least 9 tokens worth of team value and will be able to afford 3 premium attackers without sacrificing flexibility.

        1. FPLGOOD
          • 1 Year
          4 days, 33 mins ago

          Yep, thats true, and there is definetely arguments against the season keepers.

          Personally last year I just had way too many hits and want to reduce those this year. I'm also not a fan of two things: 1) playing weaker team players against better teams, 2) having strong bench. So hopefully I can be now more at peace with my team this year with the new approach. But I wouldnt be surprised if I knee-jerk wildcard come week 3 or 4 🙂

          Additional thing that I try not to do this year is: not to rip my team apart for bench boost and double gameweeks. Those never just seem to work in the end, at least for me! And all the hits and planning and waisted normal gameweeks.. 🙂

          Good luck for the season!

        2. FPLGOOD
          • 1 Year
          4 days, 20 mins ago

          Also an interesting point from my current draft: my structure is not near the 'normal' as I'm going with big at the back. But in terms of flexibility I get an okay result from this calculation:

          0
          1 1 1 0 0
          2 2 1 0 0
          1 0 0
          Total = 9 (-2 from not having Kane)

          I also have 2x5.5 defs, 6.5mid and 6.5for. Upgrading mid and for I could get total of 11(-2). But again I would strongly argue that getting a -2 for not having Kane is a bit harsh this year, but I might be a bias 🙂 Who knows Auba or Vardy starts banging!

    • Ould Onion Bagger
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      4 days, 22 hours ago

      Interesting article. I'm assuming premium defenders are 6.0 and up?

      My team at the moment is

      0
      11000
      21100
      110

      and will plan to play 3/5/2 most weeks, but can switch to 4/4/2, 4/5/1, 5/3/2 or even 5/4/1 based on fixtures. Foregoing a 2nd premium really allows week to week flexibility, though getting up to a 2nd premium if it becomes a must do can be a PITA. More at risk for an early wildcard with this setup, but so long as you realize that's an option and adjust to the season, it shouldn't be a big deal.

    • circusmonkey
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 10 Years
      4 days, 19 hours ago

      Oh well, I'm on 4 premium defenders so that's me done.
      00
      11110
      21110
      110

      1. mox81
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 2 Years
        4 days, 18 hours ago

        Lol, indeed, I'm on

        00
        11100
        21111
        110

        This season a 4.5fwd seems good because it costs so much extra to get to a playable fwd - the difference even to Toney is the same as Dias/Cancelo over a 4.0 def.

    • mox81
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 2 Years
      4 days, 18 hours ago

      Love this article, really interesting read so thank you! Agree the pricing this season will shift the approach re formation, premium fwd seems like a commitment too far re flexibility!