This article is meant for those who have never played a seasonal fantasy game. Maybe not even played daily fantasy. Don’t worry, we will keep it simple! After reading this, you should be able to enter a season tournament.
The phrase “fantasy” can be a bit confusing. It is important to realise that the fantasy games actually are based on what happens in the real world. We are not talking about “virtual games” here! We just keep score in a different way, with focus on each individual athlete! If he is part of a team; how much did he help his team during the event? If we use football as an example, the biggest help a player can give, is to score. The second biggest is probably defending well so the team gets a clean sheet. Then there is making an assist – that is very helpful too. So we award points for all of this, and even some smaller ones like yellow and red cards (minus points obviously) and impact (how well did the team do while the player was on the pitch?).
If you are interested in how a player got his points, you can click on his points and get a breakdown of the total. Here Gigot got 13 points, click on that number and get the match information window for that specific player. In this case, Gigot got 6 points from scoring 1 goal, 4 points for keeping a clean sheet, 2 points for playing 90 minutes, and 1 point for his overall impact.
Creating a team
The goal of the game is to create the team that scores the most fantasy points. In football, we want to pick offensive players who frequently score or make assists, or defensive players who play for clubs likely to keep a lot of clean sheets.
Like in the real world, you only have a certain amount of money to buy players for. In the €250,000 GTD season game, your budget is 100 million. For this money, you will need to buy 15 players. Only 11 of them will be active in any given gameweek. You will decide which players to put on the field for each upcoming gameweek. To the left is a list of the midfielders in the season game. Not surprisingly, the most famous players are priced the highest. If you want to have some of them on your team, you need to save money by picking some very cheap players as well. The cheapest ones costs 4.0M, but try to find players who actually will be in the starting XI of their team.
The budget in the season game is fairly tight, so you will often have to ask yourself “Is this player really worth this price?”. Always be on the lookout for a bargain. The money you save will guaranteed come in handy later!
The number of players you have in each position is fixed in the season game. You will need 5 defenders, 5 midfielder, 3 forwards and 2 keepers. You can not pick more than three players from the same club.
Selecting a captain
When you have picked all 15 players, and decided the four that will be on the bench for the next round, you need to pick your captain. The points he accumulates will be doubled, so it is an important decision. Usually, your captain should be one of the most expensive players you have. Decide on vice captain as well. If your captain does not play at all, the vice captain will be the one getting his points doubled.
Saving a team
In order to pick a player, just click on his name in the list. You can experiment with your team to find the best squad. There are two ways to save your first draft.
1. If you do not want to enter the competition yet, you can still save your team, as long as you are logged in. Click on the more options icon and choose “Save as favorite”. At a later time, you can fetch this team by using the same menu and “Load favorite”.
2. If you want to join the competition, make sure you have enough funds in the account and click on the “Enter tournament” button in the top right corner. You can still change this team at any time without any form of penalty, as long as the competition has not started.
Which players should you pick?
It is beyond the scope of this article to present a list of recommended players, but we can give you a few ideas on how to pick players and mention a few names for the Premier League 2019-20 season.
Remember we said that we need offensive players to score? Maybe you know some players in this category that have a reasonable price, or you can check out a bookmaker that offers odds on the “any goalscorer” market for the first matches of the season. If you find a player with lower odds than 2.00, that is an indication that the experts believe he will score some goals this season. Even better, see if you can find odds for who will be top scorer in Premier League this season.
While looking at offensive players, bear in mind that midfielders often offer better value than forwards! The reason is: They get 1 points for clean sheet (forwards get 0) and get 5 points for scoring a goal (forwards get 4). For this reason, we recommend to spend more money per midfielder than per forward.
In defence, there is a trio that performed extremely well last season, and they are still priced reasonably this season: Van Dijk (Liverpool), Robertson (Liverpool) and Laporte (Manchester City). If they get a similar season this time around, they will be some of the best investments you can make in the season game. When you judge defenders for upcoming matches, it can be useful to check out the clean sheet odds for the clubs at the bookmakers.
As for keepers, they will receive 0.5 points per save this season, which is an upgrade from previous years. This is a big advantage for keepers from small teams, who gets the chance to save a lot of shots. Ederson and Alisson, who dominated the keeper lists last season, rarely get the chance of making many saves. For this reason, we believe it could be a good strategy to go with cheap keepers.
Still can’t get below the 100M mark?
Try to pick one ultra cheap keeper and one ultra cheap forward, that you don’t expect to field at all. It is certainly possible to win the season game with only 13 real players in your squad. Don’t go lower than 13 though. Especially with the defenders, you need to have some options that you can rotate, depending on opposition in the current gameweek.
Transfers: Less is more!
Once the league starts, you will get one free transfer per gameweek. A transfer is when you sell a player, and buys a new one. It is possible to save a free transfer, so the maximum free transfers you have for a gameweek is 2. If you want to make more transfers than this, each additional transfer will cost you 4 points. Conventional wisdom is that it is almost never worth it. We know it is hard to resist the urge to buy new players, but stay within your free transfers unless you are desperate to change something. If you move a player from the bench to the pitch, or the other way around, it is not a transfer, and you can do that all long without getting any penalty.
Use a wildcard – if you are desperate
If you still find yourself in a situation where your team is not working out at all, you could consider using a wildcard. You have two of these for the season, the first one is available from the start, the second will be available later on. With a wildcard you can make as many transfers as you would like before the next gameweek starts, and you will still not get any minus points. If you have one free transfer available, but wants to make 7 trades, you would get 6 x -4 = -24p as a penalty for the round. But if you use the wildcard, the penalty is 0. There is no clear cut rule as to when to use the first wildcard, but the second one should be saved until double gameweeks show up in February/March/April.
If you can, try to plan ahead. If a club has a bunch of very soft fixtures ahead, it could be smart to include one or two of their players. But more importantly, have fun along the way!