Pro Pundit Teams

From safe to high-risk: Four Free Hit drafts for FPL Gameweek 37

Pras and Sonaldo the latest additions to the FFScout team

What a nice feeling this is, to have a deadline almost 48 hours after the press conferences. Time to relax and reflect. This is, of course, unless you are on a Free Hit. For those of us using this chip, we all have another 48 hours to overthink things!

For my final article this season, I’ll share some thoughts on Free Hit drafts heading into the deadline at 10.30am BST on Sunday. More specifically, I want to talk about what options we have to calibrate the risk profile of the Free Hit, taking into account your rank goals or mini-league state. I’ll go from the straight bat, forward defensive to the ‘six in the stands’ draft. Remember though, the riskier your shot, the higher the likelihood of getting out. 

Template locks

With good reason, I see seven players locked in most Free Hit teams. These are:

  • Jordan Pickford 
  • Matty Cash, Lucas Digne 
  • Mohamed Salah, Son Heung-min 
  • Richarlison, Danny Ings

One could argue that Philippe Coutinho or Ollie Watkins could make it, instead of say, Digne, if they were nailed to start both games. But with Steven Gerrard’s comments yesterday on Watkins’ availability for the Crystal Palace game, it reduces the appeal for both players on a Free Hit: Watkins for obvious reasons but I say Coutinho as well because if Watkins does indeed return against Burnley, there is a risk Villa play two up top with Emiliano Buendia in behind. I’m not suggesting this will happen, I’m just saying it’s a risk. I should also add that for those not on a Free Hit, both Coutinho and Watkins are easy holds. Both could play 120 mins+, which may be enough.

The above seven take up about £61m of the budget. Add another £16.6m for the four bench spots and we have a total £77.6m spend. How can we calibrate risk for the remaining £25-27m?

The safe draft

Using the remainder of the budget to add the two highest owned defenders and a high owned forward is the safest Free Hit draft in my view. There is limited upside but also very limited downside. I have essentially used up the remaining budget on Harry Kane, Jooa Cancelo and Trent Alexander-Arnold (or Andrew Robertson, for those with a low team value).

With this team, I own four of the five most owned players in the top 10k. The missing one is Bukayo Saka, who you can cautiously back against given the tougher fixture on paper away to Newcastle. 

A word on Kane v Kevin De Bruyne. Despite the Belgian’s unreal performance versus Wolves in midweek, I am backing Kane. I think with Gabriel Jesus and Riyad Mahrez likely coming back into the fold, it will change De Bruyne’s role back to the assister. He may do splendidly there as well but when you also add the fact that West Ham are playing their final home game, I expect the Hammers to put in a disciplined performance and stay competitive till the end.

Kane on the other hand will be on a high after the strong outing in the north London derby. Spurs can smell fourth place, and this should mean a strong performance at home to Burnley to keep the pressure up on Arsenal, who themselves have a tough away game at St James’ Park.

The bold draft

In the next version, let’s take away the 86% owned (in the top 10k) City defender, Joao Cancelo. This draft turns him into Diogo Jota or Luis Diaz depending on whoever gets fewer minutes in the FA Cup final on Saturday. To fund this, it also removes Kane or De Bruyne to a 0.27%-owned Jamie Vardy, who doubles vs Watford and Chelsea. If somehow we get news pre-deadline that Vardy starts the Watford game, it may be worth going there.

This gives the draft more upside, both from an effective ownership perspective but also in the fact that it attacks the Southampton fixture that Liverpool may use to make a final push to close the goal difference on Man City.

The very bold draft

The next draft removes another 86% owned (in top 10k) defender in Alexander-Arnold and upgrades Jota to De Bruyne. Is it high risk? Yes? Could it pay off? Of course.

While this team looks really good on paper, I do worry about only having one player in a well-owned Liverpool team against a Southampton side that have looked dire recently. When you add that “risk” to also not owning Cancelo and Kane, two popular players in non-Free Hit drafts, you are indeed in very high-risk/high-reward territory.

The ‘YOLO’ draft

Want to throw everything into this Gameweek? Don’t care if you lose 20-50k in rank, as long as you can tell the grandkids you tried? Well, then sell Mohamed Salah for Sadio Mane. The money saved can go into upgrading Vardy back to Kane, so you’ve got four big-hitters from Liverpool, City and Spurs all in one draft. For those that can’t get to this because of team value, can downgrade Vitalli Mykolenko or Cash to the centre-backs from those teams eg. Mason Holgate and Tyrone Mings.

There are, of course, many other variants to the Free Hit in Gameweek 37. One can add James Maddison, Anthony Gordon and Coutinho and/or change the formation. I stuck to the paths that I have been considering the most. It’s fair to say that I am currently looking at variants #1 and #2, but that is because I am currently ranked at 9.5k, which is close to my end-of-season goal. 

Lots may counter this piece and say, you should simply pick the team that scores the most points. To them I say, I think all these teams score similar points. What differentiates them is the volatility in rank change if things work out better or worse than the expectation.

Good luck whatever path you choose. We’re nearly there, folks!


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2,182 Comments Post a Comment
  1. DA Minnion (Former great)
    • 9 Years
    1 month, 16 days ago

    Easiest transfer of the season incoming.

    1. jason_ni
      • 6 Years
      1 month, 16 days ago

      Mo to Coutinho

  2. jason_ni
    • 6 Years
    1 month, 16 days ago

    So no Mo on my fh then, had been planning on doing it anyways, but likely to be a lot more now!

    1. el polako
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      1 month, 16 days ago

      Which LFC players you're going for ?

      1. jason_ni
        • 6 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Robbo and diaz before this kicked off, with tsimikas on bench in case of robbo no show.

  3. Mozumbus
      1 month, 16 days ago

      Delph, flagged, on the bench. Tsmiskas and Amartey warms rest of the bench.

      Should I bother replacing Delph with a playing MF within 4.5 by doing Anderson > Clyne. Yes or No?

      On FH.
      Thanks

    • Scots Gooner
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      1 month, 16 days ago

      Salah to Son (c) for everyone then

      1. Mr Ozil
        • 7 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        This

      2. NABIL - FPL otai
        • 9 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Ings still

      3. Royal5
        • 10 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Not a dgw'er?

      4. BeaversWithAttitude
        • 3 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Son will be having Golden Boot dreams tonight!

    • SAY MY NAME
      • 5 Years
      1 month, 16 days ago

      i was 50/50 on FH gw37 or gw38, with Salah going off reckon i'll pull the trigger

    • dshv
      • 4 Years
      1 month, 16 days ago

      Fh 37

      Kane for salah!!!!

      1. OptimusBlack
        • 9 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Yes

    • brianutd-why always we? 20
      • 10 Years
      1 month, 16 days ago

      Season over for Mo

    • NABIL - FPL otai
      • 9 Years
      1 month, 16 days ago

      Noooo my Salah Jota double up on FH

      1. BeaversWithAttitude
        • 3 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        At least it was free.

    • ⭐ Bemba_Da ⭐
      • 12 Years
      1 month, 16 days ago

      Welcome Diaz to my team

      1. Royal5
        • 10 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Nothing to play for

        1. Make Arrows Green Again
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 5 Years
          1 month, 16 days ago

          He doesn't seem the type. Gives 100% every game

          1. Camino Aleatorio
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 3 Years
            1 month, 16 days ago

            Correct, different players at LFC. They are not Manchester United guys that quit months ago.

        2. ⭐ Bemba_Da ⭐
          • 12 Years
          1 month, 16 days ago

          Maybe but Southampton are trash

          Id love to triple up on Liverpool attack this week

        3. jason_ni
          • 6 Years
          1 month, 16 days ago

          His place in the team for the cl final.

          Pretty big incentive.

    • Sailboats
      • 6 Years
      1 month, 16 days ago

      Salah > Kane for GW 37 then

      1. jason_ni
        • 6 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Ones a mid, the other is a fade!

        1. jason_ni
          • 6 Years
          1 month, 16 days ago

          Fwd even!

    • RAFA THE GAFFA
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      1 month, 16 days ago

      What happened to Pulisic by the way? Was such a talent

      1. jason_ni
        • 6 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Guessing injuries.

        Can only keep getting put out for months on end before it will start to really have an impact.

        Pretty concerned for reece james long term career with his record to date.

      2. Rotation's Alter Ego
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • Has Moderation Rights
        • 10 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Injuries, originally less favoured under Tuchel, loss of confidence. Still a huge talent, just haven't seen him tear a game up really since Lampard

      3. el polako
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Chelsea is a team which suffocated many talents...
        Lukaku, KDB, Werner, Salah - only to mention few.

      4. NorCal Villan
          1 month, 16 days ago

          Made of glass.

      5. Top Lad Dakes.
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Everyone doing Salah to either Son or KDB then

        1. el polako
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 4 Years
          1 month, 16 days ago

          I'm on FH so entertaining Mane thought.

      6. Maddamotha
        • 5 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        No mo mo

      7. fusen
        • 10 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        That makes not including Salah in the free hit easier

      8. Espanyolie
        • 1 Year
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Would be a nightmare for him after the Ramos move on him to again miss an UCL final due to injury

        1. LE CHARO
          • 2 Years
          1 month, 16 days ago

          He played in the 2019 final at least so it's not that bad

      9. Oscar Slater
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 7 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Salah > McGinn. Done.

        1. Shineonme
          • 5 Years
          1 month, 16 days ago

          I've juts done Salah > saka

      10. Silecro
        • 4 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Was going to sell him for Son anyway

      11. RAFA THE GAFFA
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 6 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        FH draft 210 incoming

      12. TomSaints
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Ah damn it.

      13. brianutd-why always we? 20
        • 10 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        One of the scouts gave the excellent Salah call a month ago to sell

      14. No Need
        • 8 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Gutted Son owner

        1. dabber7
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 1 Year
          1 month, 16 days ago

          Yep gutted too, he was already going to be my captain.

      15. Well you know, Triffic
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 11 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Who is the best Pool attacker to have now?

        Mane
        Diaz
        Jota
        ?

        1. Flynny
          • 7 Years
          1 month, 16 days ago

          Mane?

        2. OptimusBlack
          • 9 Years
          1 month, 16 days ago

          Diaz ?

        3. sulldaddy
          • 12 Years
          1 month, 16 days ago

          Diaz

      16. Hazz
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        So glad I waited before making transfers.

      17. Hits from the Bong
        • 3 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Hmm Diaz, Mane or Jota the best FH option now? Or forget Liverpool attack completely?

        1. Shineonme
          • 5 Years
          1 month, 16 days ago

          After this gw liverpool can't win the league. I expect man city to win their last two games easily

      18. iL PiStOlErO
        • 3 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Alrigthy then.

      19. MIGHTY JOE
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 2 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Oufffff.. What to do with all the free money on FH

        1. Well you know, Triffic
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 11 Years
          1 month, 16 days ago

          Bitcoin

          1. MIGHTY JOE
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 2 Years
            1 month, 16 days ago

            Thats clever!
            Think I’ll rather go for Salah/Mateta -> Luis Diaz/Vardy

      20. MrJobby
        • 1 Year
        1 month, 16 days ago

        That ends my Salah to Son debate this week

      21. BUZZBOMB
        • 7 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        There goes my FH 4 premiums ML differential then.

      22. Royal5
        • 10 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Why is the camera angle so bad in this game?

        1. el polako
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 4 Years
          1 month, 16 days ago

          Needs to be low as British lenses are not used to the sun.

      23. TomSaints
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        1 month, 16 days ago

        Selling Salah in Jan was the answer. Well done those who were bold

        1. el polako
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 4 Years
          1 month, 16 days ago

          Kojak did well.

        2. User Unknown
          • 3 Years
          1 month, 16 days ago

          Still think it was a combination of luck and planning. Ditching him on FH33 proved painful