Chip Strategy

FPL chip strategy: When to play the Free Hit, Bench Boost and Triple Captain?

Learn to choose your battles. Battles not fought are not lost; simply battles not worth fighting for.

Chips are on the minds of a lot of Fantasy Premier League (FPL) managers. No, I’m not talking about the ones where just one is not enough (clearly FPL has adopted this line of thinking after their Christmas gift) but the ones that could potentially lead to big gains in FPL if lethally deployed.

When I’m looking around, I’ve seen a lot of FPL managers play their chips simply because of ‘FOMO’ (fear of missing out) or because they are presuming their better opportunities will not arrive in the future. Within this article, I aim to cast an eye on what opportunities might arrive in the future and what factors you should think about while deploying your chips. I just want to reiterate at this point that what you should do with the chips is fully dependant on your team. I just want to give more FPL food to chew upon. That’s about it. At this point, I want to just take this opportunity to thank Legomane, Ben Crellin, Talha Nadeem, Planet FPL, Pras and Sonaldo who have been doing excellent work on this topic and serve as the basis of my research.

First off, let’s quickly look again at Double Gameweek 22.

As I already cited in my article last week, no team has a standout pair of Double Gameweek 22 matches on paper with the exception of Watford. In addition, popularly owned ‘single’ Gameweekers like Liverpool, West Ham United and Everton have good fixtures on paper and there is a strong chance you could miss out on some hauls if you Free Hit these players out. There has been enough conversation around Gameweek 22 so I am not going to dwell further on it. Let’s look ahead at potential future opportunities and factors to consider.

Blank Gameweek 27

The Carabao Cup has now concluded there are two games that are going to be postponed because of it:

  • Arsenal vs Liverpool
  • Chelsea vs Leicester City

At this point, I would like to thank regular FFScout contributor Legomane for the planning charts he makes available for us, which help visualise the free midweeks and what is scheduled for the team in play.

There is a chance that Liverpool could have a Double Gameweek 26 (which I will touch upon later). Also, these four teams are not guaranteed to blank in Gameweek 27; one of their outstanding fixtures could potentially be moved to the midweek of Gameweek 27, although that would require them and their opponents not to reach the FA Cup fifth round.

For the purposes of this piece, let’s assume that these four teams blank in Gameweek 27. The ownership from these four, especially Liverpool, is considerably high, which does tell me that there is a potential opportunity to play a Free Hit chip in this week. There are some good targetable fixtures in Gameweek 27 with your Free Hit, too, in my opinion. I’ll just list them down here:

  • Everton vs Manchester City
  • Manchester United vs Watford
  • Crystal Palace vs Burnley
  • Southampton vs Norwich

Blank Gameweek 30

As we can see above, Gameweek 30 is where the FA Cup quarter-finals take place, meaning that a lot of teams should blank. At the moment, we have one confirmed fixture in Gameweek 30 and that is Aston Villa vs Arsenal. This confirmed fixture is also quite important to note, as you can have an overview of things and a little bit of shrewdness with transfers can go a long way.

Given the way the FA Cup draw has fallen so far, we could potentially see a considerable number of teams blanking in Gameweek 30. So the Free Hit chip could be handy to tackle this Blank Gameweek if your team is hit hard by postponements.

Why I mention Arsenal and Aston Villa here is that we know for sure that they have a fixture in Gameweek 30 and both teams have good fixtures (and a potential double or triple for Aston Villa) in the weeks beforehand, which is something to keep in mind before selling players from these teams. It could potentially lead to you dead-ending your team in Gameweek 30 instead of deploying the Free Hit chip that week and then using the Wildcard in Gameweek 31.

Again, there is no straightforward chip strategy that I’m aiming to bring to light with this article. These are simply factors to consider and think about when planning when to deploy your chips. Like I mentioned at the top of the article, there will be many battles to fight until Gameweek 38 and you can avoid ‘FOMO’ by picking and choosing your battles wisely. For example, I am loosely thinking about holding onto Aaron Ramsdale (£5.1m) and Bukayo Saka (£6.4m) with the view of maybe saving a Free Hit for Gameweek 30. Aston Villa are also something to think about.

Potential Double or Triple Gameweek 23

There could be a Double or Triple Gameweek 23, with the potential for games to be scheduled during the FA Cup fourth round or during the international break.

There are free TV slots on Saturday at 5.30pm and Sunday at 2pm in the first weekend of February, which could signal a Double Gameweek (likely for Aston Villa and one of Burnley or Leeds United) – although it’s worth noting that there is a big England rugby game at 5pm on that Saturday.

Additionally, as per The Athletic, Premier League teams could schedule games during the winter break but you would think that this break is for international teams outside of Europe that have matches. Teams with important players from South America (for example) might have a problem with their blanks getting scheduled here.

This is just speculation, of course. But Aston Villa definitely have a game in Gameweek 30 and these are their fixtures in the mid-term.

They have home games against Leeds United, Watford and Southampton and an away trip to Newcastle United in the mid-term. This makes me think that instead of using Free Hit on their assets in Gameweek 23, I’d much rather spend points, take some hits and buy their players because they have good mid-term fixtures and a confirmed match in Gameweek 30 which might help me save a Free Hit there as well. Again these are just food-for-thought musings from my end and you can choose to do what you want with this information.

Potential Liverpool Double Gameweek 26

As we can see in Legomane’s chart above (click to expand), Liverpool have a free midweek in Gameweek 26 in which they play Norwich at home. They also have a home game against Leeds United still to be scheduled and if it falls in Gameweek 26, I don’t think there is ever going to be a better opportunity to deploy the Triple Captain chip with Mohamed Salah (£12.8m) facing Norwich City and Leeds United at home. The one caveat is that Liverpool are likely to blank in Gameweek 27.

Situation after Gameweek 30

At this point, without going into too much detail, I just want to touch upon what happens after Gameweek 30.

Gameweek 33 is where the FA Cup semi-finals take place. The midweek after this is free, giving potential for a large Double Gameweek. Also, teams that are in the FA Cup semi-final could either blank or have their one Gameweek 33 fixture pushed to midweek. So Gameweek 33 is one where some teams could double, some would have a single match and some could have none. A good week for chip deployment, primarily your Free Hit, Bench Boost or maybe Triple Captain.

Similarly, the midweeks after Gameweek 36 and Gameweek 37 are also free and traditionally the former is a big Double Gameweek where a lot of managers look to Bench Boost. You can even think about using your Free Hit chip here should you wish to.

I don’t want to delve too much into post-Gameweek 30 but hopefully this helps you with some planning and primarily your decision with what to do in Gameweek 22. I quickly want to say thanks to Pras and Zophar for skimming through this article. The point I really wanted to make is there will be many opportunities to be aggressive during this season and it won’t be possible to do so all the time. Pick your battles based on your team and based on potential upside.

If you want to know more, you can view our latest episode of The FPL Wire below:


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1,115 Comments Post a Comment
  1. bruuuno
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 3 Years
    14 days, 13 hours ago

    A. Maddison Moura
    B. Bruno Trossard

    1. Francescoli
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      14 days, 13 hours ago

      B

    2. GreennRed
      • 10 Years
      14 days, 13 hours ago

      A

    3. Mufc202020
      • 2 Years
      14 days, 13 hours ago

      B

    4. MikeS
      • 7 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      A

    5. FPL Mentor
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      A

    6. Werner Bros
      • 6 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      A

    7. Tombory
      • 4 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      A

    8. Yank Revolution
      • 10 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      A

  2. Mufc202020
    • 2 Years
    14 days, 13 hours ago

    DDG Sanchez
    TAA Cancelo Coufal Keane Emerson
    Bowen Gray Jota Foden Bruno
    Antonio DCL Dennis

    Would you bench boost this team? If not, pick 3 to bench?

    1. bruuuno
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      I would bench boost

      1. Francescoli
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 7 Years
        14 days, 12 hours ago

        same

  3. tomasjj
    • 7 Years
    14 days, 13 hours ago

    I want Dennis, but who to move?

    Ron? no loss
    Watkins? 0.2 loss.

    1. Mufc202020
      • 2 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      Out of them. Watkins

    2. MikeS
      • 7 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      Wat easy

    3. tomasjj
      • 7 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      Want Wat back tho in two weeks.

    4. Yank Revolution
      • 10 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      Wat

    5. Francescoli
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      Watkins has a juicy double next week and possibly even a triple gameweek! DO NOT SELL.

  4. FPL Mentor
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    14 days, 13 hours ago

    Think I’m rolling with this bunch. All these postponements have sucked the fun out of fpl this season, so just gonna have some fun.

    De Gea*
    TAA Keane Robertson
    Jota Bruno* Maddison* Jorginho*
    Kane* DCL Dennis(C)*

    Gunnarson / Cancelo / Johnson / Bissouma

    Wish me luck!

  5. MikeS
    • 7 Years
    14 days, 12 hours ago

    Anyone doing son to Maddy tonight ?

    1. FPL Mentor
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      Literally just done it

    2. dunas_dog
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      No. Still risk that Burnley game postponed as Burnley close to threshold of 13 outfield players able to play so waiting for press conference

      1. HuttonDressedasLahm
        • 12 Years
        14 days, 12 hours ago

        Selling players should count towards postponements!

        1. Camino Aleatorio
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 3 Years
          14 days, 5 hours ago

          They better play - they sold Wood

          Unless Wood was sold with Wuhan Virus infection

      2. MikeS
        • 7 Years
        14 days, 12 hours ago

        Cheers.. still think I might do it then if it's called off I can just cancel it and use free hit

  6. Scratch
    • 12 Years
    14 days, 12 hours ago

    Going to sell Antonio for -4 but for who

    Kane or
    Dennis (have King)

    1. FPL Mentor
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      Dirty Den

  7. madmafc
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    14 days, 12 hours ago

    Antonio to Kane for a hit?

    1. Tombory
      • 4 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      I've done this to triple captain Kane haha

    2. Eh, just one more thing ...
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 10 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      I wouldn’t

    3. waldo666
      • 11 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      No.

    4. MikeS
      • 7 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      No way

  8. Mane Mane Mane
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 1 Year
    14 days, 12 hours ago

    My team is
    FOSTER
    LAMPTEY, Cancelo, Trent, ALONSO
    Bowen, Jota, MADDISON
    KING, Antonio, Wood.

    Fab, Cash, Gund, Smith Rowe

    1ft and 8.6m itb.
    If I have two free hits available is it worth using one and getting 9 maybe 10 DGW players. Or is there a signing I should make?

    Confused as to what to do as my current team should be reasonably strong next week with a signing or two

  9. onceuponatyne
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 7 Years
    14 days, 12 hours ago

    Got 7m to spend on a MF, currently have: Jota, Maddy, Moura, Bowen and looking to lose Soucek.

    Maybe one of Barnes/Tielemans?

    1. Yank Revolution
      • 10 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      Mount?

      1. Yank Revolution
        • 10 Years
        14 days, 12 hours ago

        Whoops, I see is over 7 mill in price.

        1. onceuponatyne
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 7 Years
          14 days, 12 hours ago

          I think, also, one of those double games is City and two blanks imminent?
          I do like the lad though. 🙂

    2. FPL Mentor
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      Tiele

    3. GreennRed
      • 10 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      Trossard

      1. HuttonDressedasLahm
        • 12 Years
        14 days, 12 hours ago

        Trossard or maybe Jorginho for pens in tight games

      2. onceuponatyne
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 7 Years
        14 days, 12 hours ago

        Tross a good shout.

  10. No Need
    • 8 Years
    14 days, 12 hours ago

    So Spurs DGW could have 2 games against depleted teams or no games at all. Place yer bets…

    1. HuttonDressedasLahm
      • 12 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      Leicester will be on (though maybe not their first game)

  11. Werner Bros
    • 6 Years
    14 days, 12 hours ago

    A: Hwang Son > Dennis Maddison (-4)
    B: Hwang > Dennis/King
    C: Hwang Son > Kane 6.5(who?) (-4)
    D: Free hit

    DDG
    TAA Reg Cancelo White Liv
    Jota Bowen Gray
    Ron Antonio

    Bachmann Son Hwang McArthur

    1. MikeS
      • 7 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      A

    2. HuttonDressedasLahm
      • 12 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      You still have Hwang?!!!!

      1. Werner Bros
        • 6 Years
        14 days, 12 hours ago

        Yep, him and McArthur been burning a hole in my team for ages! Never not had other fires to put out

  12. Old Gregg
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    14 days, 12 hours ago

    Which move please -

    A) Son > Maddison
    B) son > Bruno
    C) son + Broja > Maddison + Kane (-4)

    1. MikeS
      • 7 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      A

    2. Yank Revolution
      • 10 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      C

    3. GreennRed
      • 10 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      A

  13. HuttonDressedasLahm
    • 12 Years
    14 days, 12 hours ago

    DGW essential players in order of importance?? (Assuming all games are on)

    1. Watford striker
    2. Kane
    3. Maddison
    4. Regiullon/ER
    5. DDG
    6. Mount/Jorginho
    7. Trossard
    8. Lamptey/Cuccarella

    1. RogDog_jimmy
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      1. A team that's likely to get relegated have the best options.
      2. Kane is off-form and they're missing their best player
      3. Leicester have question marks over whether they play twice - and a laundry-list of absences
      4. Reguilon is randomly absent occasionally
      5. It's a GK for MU

      ....think I'll be passing on the FH....

      (note I don't disagree with you on the list....it's just a garbage selection)

  14. BlzE_94
    • 7 Years
    14 days, 12 hours ago

    Gtg guys? (-4)
    Have I benched the right players?

    De gea
    TAA Cancelo Reguilon
    Jota Maddison Bowen Moura
    Ronaldo Antonio Dennis

    Steele, B.Silva, Coufal, Livramento

    1. RogDog_jimmy
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      seems good to me! good luck.

  15. Goooo Rickie
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 2 Years
    14 days, 12 hours ago

    Antonio & Son to Dennis & Bruno -4

    Worth moving tonight with Son dropping?

    1. Francescoli
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      yep

  16. Francescoli
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 7 Years
    14 days, 12 hours ago

    Double up on Spurs (Reg and Emerson) or Chelsea defenders (Alonso and Rudi) for DGW22?

    1. Hits from the Bong
      • 3 Years
      14 days, 11 hours ago

      One of each? Who is your other defnder?

  17. CR7 is Home
    • 4 Years
    14 days, 12 hours ago

    Do we think Bruno will start both games?

    1. waldo666
      • 11 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      I do.

    2. Feed tha Sheep
      • 9 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      Yeah

    3. KAPTAIN KANE
      • 5 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      Yeah nailed as can be

    4. Hits from the Bong
      • 3 Years
      14 days, 11 hours ago

      Hope so

    5. lilmessipran
      • 9 Years
      14 days, 11 hours ago

      I am not so sure

  18. Iceball
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 7 Years
    14 days, 12 hours ago

    Plan was to get Ronaldo and Maddisson. Not so confident on that and that also makes Salah back 1 more transfer down the line. Maybe just get Dennis and Bruno(C) as 2 weeks punt and then Bruno to Salah easy and Dennis ready for Norwich also. Ronaldo doubt makes me not that convinced getting him. What do you think? Fronline is actually Laca! Antonio DCL atm.

    1. waldo666
      • 11 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      Ronnie pretty safe imo. Pictured in training and said himself it's a very minor complaint.

  19. Werner Bros
    • 6 Years
    14 days, 12 hours ago

    Son Hwang > Maddison Dennis tonight or wait till as late as possible tomorrow? Will lose 0.1 in total for Maddison's rise, no loss on Son as bought for 10.4

    1. KAPTAIN KANE
      • 5 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      What will the 0.1 loss mean? May as well wait surely

      1. Werner Bros
        • 6 Years
        14 days, 12 hours ago

        Nothing tbh

  20. Ronanm
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      Ok so team has a few problems:
      Sanchez (Ramsdale)
      Keane, Cancelo TAA (livramento* Williams)
      Son* Salah* foden* jota Bowen
      Antonio Dennis Edouard

      With 5 flagged was thinking
      Salah,son,Antonio to Maddison Fernandes and Kane for -8
      Any thoughts?

    • KAPTAIN KANE
      • 5 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      Lukaku anyone? Seemingly back in the good books now

      1. Earwicker
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        14 days, 12 hours ago

        Yeah, been in a few of my FH drafts as I don't trust Kane. I'm going Dennis, CR7 then a maverick Lukkaku or DCL.

      2. Hazz
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        14 days, 11 hours ago

        Not convinced he even starts the City match. Havertz full rest last match.

        It's not like he's managed consistent or big hauls much this season.

        With the blanks coming up, I wouldn't go there. Also Kane & Ronaldo are far more important to the way their respective teams play than Lukaku is for us.

    • CR7 is Home
      • 4 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      Son + Bernard ➡ Bruno + Maddison (-4) ??

      1. CR7 is Home
        • 4 Years
        14 days, 12 hours ago

        Bsilva

      2. Freshy
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 11 Years
        14 days, 11 hours ago

        Thought about Bruno but seems too big a stretch

    • WibblesTeam
      • 4 Years
      14 days, 12 hours ago

      A) Ronaldo -4
      B) Dennis -4
      C) Ronaldo and a defender -8
      D) Dennis and a defender -8

      1. waldo666
        • 11 Years
        14 days, 12 hours ago

        A

      2. _Ninja_
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 11 Years
        14 days, 11 hours ago

        A

    • _Ninja_
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 11 Years
      14 days, 11 hours ago

      Best move here? Cheers

      A. Son -> Maddison
      B Son/Antonio -> Maddison/Kane
      (would bench Coufal in both)

      DDG
      TAA Cancelo Alonso Coufal
      Gray Jota Bowen
      King Antonio Ronaldo

      Steele Gallagher Son Livra

      1. waldo666
        • 11 Years
        14 days, 11 hours ago

        A

    • Freshy
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 11 Years
      14 days, 11 hours ago

      Anyone thinking about doubling up on Dennis and King rather than adding Kane or CR7

    • Taegugk Warrior
      • 3 Years
      14 days, 11 hours ago

      DDG
      TAA,Cancelo,Davies,Dawson
      Salah,Jota,Bowen,Bernardo
      Davis,Antonio

      Foster,watkins,saka,livra

      A. Salah+Davis to Maddison+Kane (-4)
      B. Salah+Bernardo+Davis to Maddison+Moura+Kane/Ronaldo (-8)
      c. FH

    • Randaxus
        14 days, 7 hours ago

        Xhaka is one of the only players where you have to plan to have 10 players in the second half lol