The Writers Side – GW2

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FPL writers tend to prescribe ideas writer @liambednarski is taking a gestalt approach opening the door to the inner workings of his team.

FPL is full of people advising on strategies, transfers and starting line ups each week. It certainly has its advantages particularly for the ego of the writer but it doesn’t help with the complex situations we face within the game.

You would be hard pressed to find two people who have the exact same team let alone make the same transfer decisions. FPL is an individual game yet you are also competing against everyone else. For those that have ever graced the humble greens of a golf course you would be able to relate. You beat yourself up with every poor putt or transfer. A wild drive off the tee or an eight point hit gone wrong.

Essentially you are competing against yourself so my words of wisdom are

‘Go with your gut’

Remember that everybody makes mistakes and that there are few true experts of the game of football. Especially those with a fantasy football swing on things.

Before I get stuck into the thoughts surrounding my team I am going to break character due to the overwhelming support from our audience. A little bit about myself:

I became heavily involved in FPL after sustaining an incurable sports injury as my passion for football found a new outlet. Having the ability to remember a large amount of sporting information I have been described as ‘Bruce’ (McAvaney) at various points. I must disclose I do not have everlasting love for Cyril Rioli…

Having learnt the basics of every player across every team (Thanks FIFA09) it has become a regular part of life to know something about every player within the Premier League.

Dabbling in writing at various points I completed a Business Degree in Accounting. Yes that’s me with the spreadsheet guys…although a recent career change has seen me purse football related activities, writing, coaching in the hopes of working within sports data in the near future.

Now 23 I have been involved in football since birth. Being a short, slow and well…’round’ teenage body the likelihood of playing a sport at a higher level was slim and injury brought an end to any hope of that.

Injuries are an important component to evaluating fantasy players in my eyes, as well as the likelihood of regular minutes within the team. The luck vs quality debate is never ending, I have yet to find an appropriate answer football because football appears largely random. The ability of players to go on hot streaks of form is a debate between randomness and physiological performance which I enjoy exploring. The search for consistency.

If you have read this far well done. I will conclude with my fantasy record which is certainly not as impressive as some. I don’t think it’s the ultimate judge of footballing knowledge with a major weakness of mine being the inability at selecting captains.

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The Writers Side – GW1 Review

It was a mighty relief to secure 52 points in GW1 after the upset at the KC Stadium with Robert Snodgrass ending my dreams of a blistering start to the season. Mahrez was fortunately on target from the spot but I was left to rue the decision to select Vardy whilst leaving 1.5 in the bank for a potential move to ‘Zlatlan The Great’.

Fuchs did actually have a good chance on goal, it was a pipe dream to consider him capable of a 15 point haul though as McAuley secured a valuable 7 points from the depth of my bench.

Elsewhere Firmino, Tadic & Ramirez all put in strong performances and were perhaps unfortunate not to secure more FPL points this round.

Gray didn’t feature too highly on the highlights package which made me overlook him in ‘The Watchlist’. Having delved a little deeper I was rewarded with the news that he performed strongly. His ability to work off Vokes knocked down balls saw him register 4 shots, unfortunately only the 1 on target this week.

The Writers Side – GW1 Transfer Thoughts

 Instant Ibrahamovic regret was on hand as I quickly looked to pull the trigger on bringing him into my side. I held off mainly put off by the upcoming fixture against Southampton and the fact he only had two shots against Bournemouth.

I fear I may receive a severe backhander if I don’t bring Ibrahimovic into my side and keep faith in Jamie Vardy. Vardy scored against Arsenal three times last season with an extremely poor defence in GW1 from the Gunners combined with a high defensive line the chances of Vardy breaking through seem high.

There is no chance in hell I can pick the right Liverpool midfielder so I have decided to stick with Firmino. He was first selection in my draft team which shows the faith I have in the man as an OOP prospect. I may look to use my wealth of funds to upgrade him to Hazard. Not this week though.

I would really like to move Fuchs (5.5) on with a tough fixture against Arsenal he was really a GW1 punt. Rather poor planning on my behalf. I failed to take my own advice that Hull are ill-equipped for the season but very much have the starting eleven to match opponents on the opening day.

Whether I go up or down in price leaves me in a difficult position as having the funds to secure a trade to Ibrahimovic feels necessary without having to make more then one trade. Chelsea excited me defensively but with Stones and Shaw it is difficult to go with three expensive defenders. I would rather add a 4.5 or even a 4.0 option to my team to allow investment in Ibrahimovic and potentially Hazard in the weeks to come.

The Writers Side – Early Wildcard Consideration

I decided in the pre-season to activate an early wildcard for the first time in a long time. Generally I wait until at least GW8 to activate the wildcard therefore getting a good read on early season form. Rather pragmatic in my approach I am beginning to think later is better already this season.

We did not have a blistering GW1 with a lack of clean sheets and performances from break out contenders. With little changes in price I am not encouraged to activate an early wildcard. This could all change in GW2 & GW3 of course.

The Writers Side – Final Decision

In all likelihood I am not going to trade this week. I had some crazy thoughts of getting rid of Maloney to Redmond. His exciting performance put him right at the top of ‘The Watchlist’. I had to remember they are facing Mou Mou’s Manchester United away from home against 11 not 10 men.

Injury news may change this approach. Additionally there is a chance Christian Fuchs could make his way out of my team. If convinced by Amat’s chances of securing a starting role within Swansea’s defense over the next month. There is no rush to make this change although some may consider Swansea a better chance at a clean sheet then the defenders I have selected to start.

GW2 Lineup

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Please leave your questions, comments and suggestions below as we look to build on the new and interesting content for the season ahead. 

10 comments on “The Writers Side – GW2

  1. BioEdenHazard

    Thanks for sharing mate! I usually don’t like to trade after the first Gw. Top performers may be no more than a flash in the plan, furthermore having 2 trades is so useful if ever you have to change the structure of your team

    • Liam Post Author

      It certainly is but the looming price changes are going to make things difficult next week. Ibra is going to go up as well as Capoue & Hazard. Almost have to move on them now :/

  2. The Swan and Paedo

    Liam, you’ve breathed life into this site and made it my priority for FPL info. Not saying that Matt and the rest of the crew don’t do a great job of course but you have been uber-helpful to everyone and have a ridiculous depth of knowledge.

    Keep it up sir!

  3. theboys

    Awesome stuff Liam – however you’re going at a rate that will be hard to sustain – would prefer a consistent few articles every week rather than a spike and then drop off later in the year. Having said that, loving the content so far!

    Anyways, as for my team. With .5 in the bank, would you go
    A) Gradel to Ramirez (Already have Tadic so not keen on Redmond)
    B) Morgan to Baines (Defence of Shaw, Stones, Friend, Amat, Morgan atm)
    C) Do both A and B for a 4pt hit
    D) Hold transfer

    Cheers!

    • Liam Post Author

      You make a valid point. I’m currently working on the new formats so there is a spike in posts. I believe I can do these two consistently for the entire season.

      The Watchlist will be moving to a single article as soon as the GW finishes in future weeks.

      Early in the season the watchlist is large but as it moves along it will be more focused and the comment section will be for you to ask about any players whom I didn’t mention.

      Both pieces are just written examples of my thinking as my habits are to have a watchlist and ponder changes. Just sharing it with everyone now.

      I hope for two a week, every week at the very least it would be one on a Friday or Saturday.

      Now for your question although late I would have traded in Ramirez for Gradel or Held.

      Held because two trades next GW is a large advantage. Whilst trading because I think Ramirez can go to town on Sunderland.

      What was your decision?

      • theboys

        Went Gradel to Ramirez, phew. have that .5 in bank to go sanchez/vardy to ozi//ibra depending on leic/ars game, or offload morgan/gray if need be. Cheers for feedback

  4. boges11

    Article of the week Liam, thanks for sharing.
    Do you remember the shift in your FPL coaching between 09/10 – 10/11, and 11/12 – 12/13? They were massive moves up the ranks, and you’ve been very consistent since. (We’ll forgive last season, that was a very weird one)

    • Liam Post Author

      One of my weaknesses has been to not invest in the expensive quality asset early enough. Sometimes I can make oversights at the very top of the game which are costly. As it stands my decision not to start with Zlatlan has cost me 20 points this season. Mr Vardy has a lot of work to do…

      I was planning on mentioning it next week but my strength is picking the diamond in the rough at a low price I enjoy spotting fresh talent.

      Looking back 09/10 I nailed the start to the season the only time I have I was top 1000 by GW8.

      The season after I tried to nail the start again and it went rather poorly, took too many risks and it went pear shaped. I think that was the year of Tevez who I failed to invest in regularly enough.

      Since then the consistency has been about staying calm I’ve had slow starts to the season almost every year but tend to come home with a wet sail. Once the teams settle into a style of play I tend to have the ability to make the right decisions.

      Staying calm, using knowledge (which I hope to give the readers from now on) and keeping up with the constant changes to team structures, positioning and break out stars.

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