It’s a game that hooks thousands of players every season. Fantasy Football is where you pick a team of footballers and earn points dependent on how they perform in real life – goals, assists, clean sheets etc. There are plenty of websites and apps that do this, but my preference is Fantasy iTeam, available to download on the App Store and Android Market. It’s very easy to use, with a budget of 75 million and you get transfers every week, find out all about it here.
Here’s my advice when it comes to building your teams, and some of the players I would recommend picking. I may not be an expert, but I did win my mini league last season!
Goalkeepers & Defenders
First off, I would recommend using as few defensive players as possible, so that’s one goalkeeper and just three defenders. All players are given two points for starting a game, and whilst midfielders and forwards can only lose those points if they get sent off, defenders and goalkeepers lose a point each time they concede, whilst they are also more likely to be shown a red card and lose five points. By picking less defenders, there’s less chance you will lose points.
Next, I think the defenders that you do pick should be full-backs. Generally these are the defenders that score more and especially get more assists because they spend more time higher up the pitch. Also try and pick defenders that take set-pieces such as Leighton Baines, as they are also more likely to gain you more points.
Finally, pick at least two defenders/goalkeepers from the same team. Although this means that you will lose two points when you concede, if the team manages to keep a clean sheet, you’ve instantly got 10 points (five from each player). Because defenders are generally cheaper, it shouldn’t really matter even if the two defenders you choose are from Chelsea or Arsenal for example.
My Five Goalkeeper Recommendations (with Fantasy iTeam Prices)
- Thibaut Courtois (Chelsea) – 6.4 million
- Simon Mignolet (Liverpool) – 6.1 million
- Petr Cech (Arsenal) – 6.0 million
- Lucas Fabianski (Swansea) – 5.9
- Maarten Stekelenburg (Southampton) – 5.4 million
My Five Defender Recommendations (with Fantasy iTeam Prices)
- Branislav Ivanovic (Chelsea) – 6.7 million
- Ryan Bertrand (Southampton) – 6.2 million
- Nathaniel Clyne (Liverpool) – 6.2 million
- Luke Shaw (Manchester United) – 5.8 million
- Cedric Soares (Southampton) – 5.8 million
In midfield, there are some bargains to be had, and you need to know where they are. There’s nothing wrong with having the big, expensive names in your squad, but you need to compliment them with cheap hidden gems.
Again, like defenders, wide players may be better options to pick as they could get more opportunities. In the same respect, it’s better to stay away from defensive midfielders because although players such as Nemanja Matic are very good and protect the back four well, they don’t often get on the score goals or directly set them up for team-mates.
Some midfielders may not score loads and loads of goals, but the amount of assists that they get still makes them a worthwhile buy. Set-piece takers are again vital to purchase, as are players who are classed as midfielders on the app, but may often be used upfront in real life. This means that they will probably score more often but get more points than classified strikers as they supposedly midfielders if you understand what I mean.
My Five Midfielder Recommendations (with Fantasy iTeam Prices)
- Eden Hazard (Chelsea) – 8.1 million
- Theo Walcott (Arsenal) – 7.5 million
- Memphis Depay (Manchester United) – 7.1 million
- Georginio Wijnaldum (Newcastle United) – 6.4 million
- Yannick Bolasie (Crystal Palace) – 6.2 million
Like the midfielders, the most expensive strikers are not always the best. Harry Kane was a popular choice for many people last season as he was scoring goals for fun yet was relatively cheap as he was a surprise package.
A few of the strikers from the newly promoted clubs should also be good less expensive buys, as they were scoring goals for fun in the Championship, and will be keen to prove they can perform just as well in the Premier League, which they should be able to.
The best combination may be a prolific expensive striker with one or perhaps two cheaper strikers, who are also likely to score goals, such as the two examples mentioned above.
My Five Forward Recommendations (with Fantasy iTeam Prices)
- Sergio Aguero (Manchester City) – 9.2 million
- Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal) – 9.1 million
- Wayne Rooney (Manchester United) – 9.0 million
- Troy Deeney (Watford) – 6.4 million
- Callum Wilson (Bournemouth) – 6.3 million
Other Top Tips
- Use your transfers wisely. Never take out players who haven’t played in the gameweek yet, even if you think that they won’t do anything. Just by starting they will gain you two extra points.
- Plan your transfers. Think about who you will take out and who you will bring in, looking at when over the weekend they play and how much the change will cost.
- Look at the team news. If you don’t, you might bring in a player who isn’t starting and will have wasted a transfer.
- Look at a players’ upcoming fixtures. Aguero might be scoring goals for fun against weaker teams, but if he’s playing Arsenal, Manchester United and then Chelsea in the next five games, should you keep him in? Furthermore, a striker nearer the bottom of the league is a good buy if he has games against fellow strugglers coming up.
- Be prepared to take risks. Don’t just copy everybody else with your selections. There’s an element of luck about Fantasy Football, so taking a punt on a player could pay off, even if it is in just one game.
I suppose after all of that you want to see my team? Well, here it is as it currently stands, but don’t be surprised to see numerous changes before the start of the campaign.
If you want to compete in the same mini league as me, the PIN is 10804, or you can just search for ‘Official FiT Godfather League’. Enjoy!
Disclaimer: There are as I said, multiple other fantasy football websites out there and you can use any or all of them ahead of the new season!