Fantasy Football Scout community writer Greyhead continues with his series of articles analysing the Fantasy Premier League (FPL) transfers and strategies of some noted Fantasy managers, from serial top 10k finishers to well-known faces.
The Great and The Good this year are the Scouts Joe Lepper, Neale Rigg, Geoff Dance, and Tom Freeman, FPL Wire’s Zophar, from the Hall of Fame Fabio Borges, FPLMatthew, Yavuz Kabuk and Tom Stephenson, Blackbox’s Az and Mark Sutherns, FPL “celebrities” LTFPL Andy, Magnus Carlsen and FPL General plus last year’s mini league winner Les Caldwell.
“So, gather up your jackets, move it to the exits. I hope you have found a friend. Closing time, every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end”
Time gentleman, please! So ends another FPL season with many giddy on the success of their campaigns with wins in their mini-leagues, whilst others stare at the bottom of their half-empty Fantasy glass muttering something about variance.
Amongst The Great and The Good, it was Fabio who was left celebrating with back-to-back wins in this fictional league of legends. Az, Magnus and Andy will no doubt also be happy to buy a few rounds as they all finished in the top 10,000, whilst others will be looking forward to the reset button being pressed on a season that gave them nothing but hangovers.
The final day brought its usual share of madness with IIkay Gundogan (£7.1m) etching his name in the history books with two goals to win Manchester City the title – well done to the 2.6% of FPL managers who owned him – but elsewhere it was the likes of Dejan Kulusevski (£6.3m) and James Maddison (£6.9m) who proved key in determining the final colour of your arrow in Gameweek 38.
Fabio proved again to be the greatest of The Great and The Good, ending his season in the top 300 and recording his sixth straight top 2,000 finish in the process, which is all the more remarkable considering he was ranked outside the top 350,000 in Gameweek 10.
I am going to have to search out some new faces for The Great and The Good next year in order to make it more difficult for him, although I wouldn’t put it past the Portuguese maestro to do the three-peat.
Az and Magnus both had strong seasons and there were just two points between them as they ended in the top 5,000, while Andy took time away from his 24-hour streaming on the final day to score 82 and achieve his fourth top 10,000 finish. Overall, it was a great and good season for most of The Great and The Good as 11 of them finished with five-digit ranks.
Geoff Dance was the best performer on the last Sunday of the campaign with Danny Welbeck (£6.0m) the unlikely hero, and overall, the Canadian Kingpin has had a strong end to the season, outscoring the rest in the last five weeks with a weekly average score of 88 points.
The transfer wheeler-dealer of the season was definitely Yavuz Kabuk, who was aiming for his eighth consecutive top 10,000 finish. Whilst he fell short of this, he was top of The Great and The Good for immediate transfer points (558).
He was also the most active manager with 96 points in hits over the season. Mark was also aggressive with 80 points in transfer penalties, while FPL General took a more hands-off approach with only 40 transfers all seasons.
As for this last week, this is a summary of the transfers in Gameweek 38:
- Az – Toney (Ings)
- LTFPL Andy – Son (Salah)
- Fabio Borges – De Bruyne (Salah)
- Joe Lepper – Toney (Richarlison)
- Geoff Dance – Welbeck (Pukki)
- FPL General – Son (Salah)
- Les Caldwell – Kane, Sessegnon (Watkins, Rudiger)
- Magnus Carlsen – Sessegnon (Cash)
- Mark Sutherns – Toney, Mount, Sessegnon (Saiss, Coutinho, Richarlison)
- FPL Matthew – Robertson, Son (Dias, Salah)
- Neale Rigg – James, Son (Dias, Salah)
- Tom Freeman – Son (Salah)
- Tom Stephenson – Son (Salah)
- Yavuz Kabuk – Vardy, Son, Sessegnon (Dias, Salah, Richarlison)
- Zophar – Mane (Salah)
Son Heung-min (£11.2m) was quite rightly a popular choice and six of The Great and The Good brought him into their squads to make his ownership 100% amongst this group, so they all benefitted from his Golden Boot-winning brace against Norwich.
As mentioned, the most astute transfer was Geoff’s pick of Welbeck. Neale Rigg’s move for Reece James (£6.5m) feels like it deserved more with Watford wiping out his clean sheet points, while Yavuz lived up to his reputation with a late flourish on Jamie Vardy (£10.3m), Son and Ryan Sessegnon (£4.4m) for a minus eight.
Captaincy calls were big business this year with a season dominated by doubles and huge swings of fortunes if you nailed your armband. There was only one victor amongst The Great and The Good, with Magnus winning out in the end.
The Chess Grandmaster was always the one willing to gamble during the season with 19 different picks; the selections of Matty Cash (£5.3m) and Dominic Calvert-Lewin (£7.7m) in the final weeks were my favourite but whatever his methods they worked, with 30 more armband points than any other manager.
Chip strategies were varied this year with all of them adopting slightly different approaches, as you can see from the below table:
FPL Matthew and Magnus came out top on the least popular of the chips, the Bench Boost, with 46 points. I suspect Az will still be talking about his Free Hit chip in Gameweek 28 for years to come but Andy wasn’t far behind with a Maddison-inspired 115 points last week.
Meanwhile, the success of the Triple Captain came down to whether you were in the Gameweek 26 camp as Mohamed Salah (£13.1m) did Mo things against Leeds and Norwich, or whether you were less fortunate with his game-time in Gameweek 29.
THE NEXT GREAT AND THE GOOD
Who will be joining The Great and The Good next year? Well, first a mention to Les Caldwell who performed admirably despite being hacked. He responded with 15 green arrows in the last 15 weeks and throughout the season proved to have a fine eye of the transfer. He has been a brilliant addition to the squad and whilst he brought experience, he is even older than me, and he is replaced by the youthful bravado of Suvansh Singh.
Suvansh was no. 2 in the world and no. 1 in India so it’s fair to say that he deserves his place next year; he also had the challenge of supervising Az in this Community Tournament, so he is clearly used to managing egos. Let’s see whether he can repeat his success next year and maybe even challenge Fabio?
Congratulations also to Tony Yorath, Tanveer Singh and all the others who joined the feeder league and had such fabulous campaigns. The mini-league will be open for new joiners again at the start of the next season so keep an eye out on here and my Twitter if you want to join the battle.
Another year, another 30-plus articles following the fortunes and misfortunes of The Great and The Good, so a few self-indulgent thank yous to finish us off. As always, more than a nod of appreciation to Scout for sharing my ramblings and even promoting me to the big boy slot this year, and particular appreciation to Tom and Neale for editing my words into something consumable by the human eye.
Geoff was the one who got me started and deserves his moniker of the Canadian Kingpin. Thanks also to Az and Mark for taking The Great and The Good onto the BlackBox, although I suspect Mr Sutherns sometimes regrets that decision. Thirdly, thanks to all of The Great and The Good for allowing me to poke a little fun at their expense along the way.
Lastly, thanks to you for reading along. I hope you enjoy following along as much as I do when I’m writing these updates. Now go and enjoy your break, get some fresh air and we’ll be back soon enough arguing over who are the best £4.5m enablers.
Anyway, that’s all from me for now – and remember, don’t have nightmares.
For those affected by any of the topics raised in the above article then you can find me on Twitter at https://twitter.com/Greyhead19
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