The Readers Side GW15

Reading Time: 4 minutes


A regular visitor to the site ‘The Swan and Paedo’ has stepped up from the comments section to provide us with the inside running on his side ahead of GW16.

It is a great pleasure to have The Swan and Paedo on board to contribute to FPLAddicts. His questions are extremely insightful and have provided a great sounding board to explore different ideas within FPL. He is a dedicated fantasy player driving halfway across the Australian Outback to secure 0.1 on his team value this week so please make him feel welcome as an FPLAddict.

Note: GW16 Falls on Wednesday Morning Australian Time so make sure you are ready for the midweek fixtures that are about to come thick and fast over the festive season.

Now its over to the Swan!

Heading into GW16 I feel like nailing my next few transfers is absolutely key to achieving my goal of a top 20k finish and winning my cash leagues. With a current rank of around 170k I am in a reasonable position but need to start climbing soon and my decisions over the Christmas period look like being crucial to my progress.

My current team is as follows:


The Swans Side GW15

As it stands, Hazard (10.5) , Sanchez (11.7) and Costa (10.9) are irreplaceable. Brunt (4.9) and Heaton (4.8) will play every week as will Siggy (7.3) while I have him. It is very important to have a strategy for regaining Coutinho (8.3), Aguero (12.9) and possibly Zlatan (11.2) as all three could become very desirable and possibly essential at some point.

My first priority is getting in Marcus Alonso (6.3) for Joel Matip (5.5) (why I have a Liverpool defender, I have no idea). [FPLAddicts: I think it had something to do with My Watchlist Articles Swan – Sorry Mate -]. The Chelsea ‘defender’ is so attack-minded he is basically occupying the same parts of the Stamford Bridge as Damien Duff used to back in the day. To facilitate this I will need to probably get rid of failed punt Kelechi Iheanacho (6.8) to free up some funds. Here are my possible option for the next few weeks.

Option 1: Operation Bellerin

GW16: Save transfer

GW 17: Iheanacho and Matip OUT. Alonso and Grabban IN

GW18: Holebas OUT. Bellerin IN

Swan's Option 1

Swan’s Option 1


-Bellerin (6.4) has incredible fixtures between GW18-25, about as good as it gets

-He will be relatively unique as most teams will have Walker (6.1) or a Chelsea player (6.3) as their premium defender and won’t be able to afford to add Bellerin (6.4)


-I will be restricted to 4-4-2

-I will have a very weak bench of Amat/De Roon/Grabban

-I will be fielding Pieters (4.5) or Amat (4.1) every week

-Will have a Spurs double-up when their fixtures are only average from GW18

-It will be hard to get Aguero (12.9) in if needed later

Option 2: Operation Ozil

GW16: Save transfer

GW 17: Iheanacho and Matip OUT. Alonso and Grabban IN

GW18: Eriksen OUT. Ozil IN

Swan's Option 2

Swan’s Option 2


-As already mentioned, Arsenal’s medium-term fixtures are ridiculous

-Ozil (9.6) will be very unique with Sanchez (11.7) so popular

-The German has finally added consistent goalscoring to his resume and is capable of keeping pace with the big hitters Hazard (10.5) and Sanchez (11.7) and cracking the 200-barrier


-I will be restricted to 4-4-2

-I will have a very weak bench of Amat/De Roon/Grabban

-I will be fielding both Holebas (4.8) and Pieters (4.5) nearly every week

-It will be hard to get Coutinho back when he returns in Jan/Feb as the plan is to keep Ozil till GW25 at least

Option 3: Operation Aguero

Swan's Option 3

Swan’s Option 3

GW16: Save transfer

GW 17: Iheanacho and Matip OUT. Alonso and Campbell/Grabban IN

GW18: Kane OUT. Aguero IN


-I will regain the best player in the game and safest captain option

-The Argentine will be relatively unique as many players have restructured their teams to get Sanchez (11.7), Hazard (10.5) and Costa (10.9) in

-I will avoid the Spurs double-up and can eventually change Eriksen (8.3) to Coutinho (8.3) if necessary


-I will be restricted to 4-4-2

-I will have a very weak bench of Amat/De Roon/Grabban

-I will be fielding Holebas (4.8) and Pieters (4.5) every week

-Aguero (12.9) has arguably not proved himself to be worth the price tag so far

Option 4: Operation 3-5-2


Swan’s Option 4

GW16: Save transfer

GW17: Iheanacho and Matip OUT. Alonso and Campbell/Grabban IN

GW18: De Roon OUT. Sub 6.2 MID (i.e. Redmond) IN


-Don’t have to field two cheap defenders each week

-Slightly stronger bench with Pieters or Holebas first sub


-Not convinced by any of the sub 6.5m midfielders

-Lose De Roon, who plays, for Grabban, who doesn’t

-Difficult to get Aguero back in

Option 5: Operation Play It Safe

GW16: Save transfer

GW17: Iheanacho and Matip OUT. Alonso and Negredo IN

GW18: ?


Swan’s Option 6


-Retains the classic 3-4-3 structure that is favoured by the best FPL players

-Negredo has great fixtures from GW17


-Negredo is injury prone and fairly unimpressive in a defensive side

-Feels very boring

-Leaves nothing in the bank


Overall I am probably leaning to options 2 or 3. My biggest concern however, is abandoning 3-4-3. I always follow the progress of Ville Ronka’s team [Fantasy Football Scout Legend] and one of the most noticeable aspects of his team is that he always retains the same structure- 3-4-3 with balanced price points in each line. Every time I have gone to a different formation than 3-4-3 I usually revert back to it very quickly but as it stands I just don’t like any of the 3rd striker options and feel that the defenders can offer just as much return and more consistency.

FPLAddicts: The side looks great besides the defence which is on a budget, given the firepower elsewhere it is totally understandable. Joel Matip (5.5) is on the chopping block within this side as Swan battles with the budget to upgrade him to a Marcus Alonso (6.3). I would give Iheanacho (6.8) another chance you drove a long way to secure him!

Seriously I would hold him though. He is going to be leading debatably the best attack in the Premier League with Watford (H), Arsenal (H), Hull (A) over the next three fixtures.

I enjoy the future planning on show here is it important to do. FPL is like chess you really need to be two or three moves ahead my only advice would be to not overcommit to a strategy two or three weeks out. Things can change very quickly in this game.

We welcome the thoughts of anybody else out there amongst the readership so please leave a comment below on this new style of article.

15 comments on “The Readers Side GW15

  1. templetontherat

    Congratulations on adding another excellent writer and I enjoyed this piece. And may I thank this site for its excellent advice. Had a horrible start and was 1,559,381 after Game Week #4. Now I sit 53,021 after this last game week.

    • Liam Post Author

      Glad you enjoyed it those early discussion with the Swan were certainly inspiring.

      Well done on your rank climb in a great position to aim for a top 10K finish 😊

  2. EmGee

    Always nice to see additional contributions and new articles to generate some thinking. Welcome to the above the comments section Swannie.

    I was interested to hear why Grabban is your choice for the cash grabbin’ (haha) and not someone like Anichebe or even Diomande shorter term (or Stuani for slightly more)? Is it purely to maximise available funds? I would generally lean towards spending the 0.2-0.4m extra and have a heartbeat on the bench in that third striker slot especially at this time of year when squad rotation means you may need to call on your bench guys.

    It is the age old debate about maximising on field value vs rotation or suspension risk. If Costa gets a fifth booking you would be forced to play De Roon or Amat that week assuming you wouldn’t offload Costa. This might be worth the risk as Anichebe or Diomande aren’t exactly going to go on a rampage but you do need to weigh that up

    • templetontherat

      It’s an interesting question, I had both Capoue and Maloney (never got around to getting rid of him because something else always came up) so this week I upgraded Maloney and think I will just leave Capoue as my M5 who rarely plays

    • The Swan and Paedo

      Hi EmGee, great question.

      Personally I think squad depth in FPL is over-rated. How often do your subs come on and contribute anything meaningful? Often it’s just 0,1 or 2 points which is negligible when set against the extra money you have sitting on the bench. And then there’s the issue of getting trolled by these players. Case in point, pre-season everybody is talking up Capoue as having a more attacking role and being a great 5th mid. Then he does exactly what they anticipated and they start tearing their hair out in frustration at all the points sitting on the bench.

      This game is stressful enough when you have to worry about popular players you don’t own doing well. The last thing I want is to have to worry about players I actually own doing well because I’ll have their huge haul staring at me from the bench!

      I might grab Campbell at 4.4m as he has a slight chance of playing some games and could then see a price rise but as for paying anything more than 4.5m for bench fodder, I don’t see it as a worthwhile investment.

    • Liam Post Author

      Hey EmGee,

      I am wondering if you would you be interested in contributing at all?

      Your questions are often excellent and we are working on flexible schedules dependant on the writers themselves. It may be as simple as moving your questions and answers from below the line to above.

      Contact me on Facebook at Liam Bednarski or Twitter @liambednarski for a bit of a chat if your interested 🙂

      • EmGee

        Cheers Liam I appreciate the offer mate. I’m quite time poor these days unfortunately but will gladly make contact to see if I can offer something to help out. You boys do a great job I enjoy the read!

        Valid points for your position on bench players Swan. I prefer the less risky approach over the Christmas schedule especially compared to the rest of the year but that comes down to more of a personal preference.

        Another consideration is that if you have Anichebe or similar that also opens up the option to rotate one of him, Holebas or Pieters for the last on field spot meaning you can switch between 4-4-2 or 3-4-3 depending on weekly matchups. Some additional flexibility which the extra spend can give you too

        • Liam Post Author

          No worries mate I’m glad you enjoy the content was just wanting to reach out to our most loyal readers first 😊

          Might be as simple as being CC in the email for the return of Q&A and just replying if you have time that particular week.

  3. Shaun Curnow

    Dont forget you get another wildcard in the new year, so you dont have to plan too much. Base your team on this hectic Xmas Period where so many games happen in short space time. You want good bench coverage all over, its this period where you make up huge space on leaders.

    • The Swan and Paedo

      I actually feel the 2nd wildcard could have a massive impact on the season as a whole.

      It is surely best to save it for the DGWs later in the year, esp in conjunction with Bench Boost and TC. However, I think there are some major factors that will see the masses use it up very early which will put them at a huge disadvantage to those who can hold onto it.

      As it stands, people have traded out Aguero and distributed the funds around their sides buying up Sanchez, Costa, Hazard, Alonso and others. However, if Aguero returns with a bang people will want him back in and will have to carve up their sides to do so. Coutinho is also expected back the same game (Liverpool vs City on new years eve) and if the two of them perform then everyone will be cramming them into their teams ahead of fixtures against Sunderland and Burnley.

      There is also the fact that Spurs great little burst of fixtures stops just as we head into January so Eriksen, Kane and Alli will be getting the boot by many. Plus Zlatan will be coming off juicy home games versus SUN and MID that could see him become flavor of the month. There is also a great Arsenal fixture run during Jan and Feb.

      Throw in a few injuries over Xmas to popular players and we could see huge wildcard usage as people try to get rid of Kane, Eriksen, Hazard and others to bring in Aguero, Coutinho, Zlatan and extra Arsenal coverage. Therefore, by keeping my team flexible enough to make these changes using normal transfers I allow myself to preserve my wildcard and hopefully gain a big advantage over the field.

      • Liam Post Author

        I lean towards having as many of the squad of fifteen playing as possible. Anchiebe (4.7) is capable of scoring plenty of goals and remains well underpriced (just really injury prone).

        Forwards spots are extremely valuable because there are only three of them compared to five in midfield but also the quality pool is much smaller then other positions.

        You have less options at a lower price that have a chance to accumulate points IMO.

        For example Zaha / Phillips may have ‘broken out’ lately in midfield. What forward has broken out at that price this season? Only Anchiebe has proven of any value below 6 (Maybe Stuani as well).

        The ‘Second Wildcard’ is not something I am thinking about as the transfers in January will most likely provide the platform for that.

        • George

          A selection of Zaha now is interesting I think. Thinking a few moves ahead, Palace have some tough fixtures coming up with United, Chelsea and Arsenal in their next 4 games. Then there is the huge possibility of Zaha being selected to represent Ivory Coast in the AFCON for most of January and potentially early February hence making him somewhat irrelevant for fpl in the short to medium term. So essentially I feel like jumping on Zaha now is potentially a bad move? Thoughts?

          • Liam Post Author

            Check out our latest article (just published) with MCWizards who discusses Zaha alongside my own thoughts.

            Also wondering if you would be interested in providing content to the site George or answering a few questions about your side weekly / fortnightly?

          • George

            Thanks Liam. I won’t always have much spare time to contribute significantly to benefit the readers, however from time to time I may be able to answer questions you have or provide some content if needed.

  4. Chris Jones

    Nice one Swanny, very very insightful. You and I have very similar outlooks, I play so many scenarios over and over, and this year, seemingly pick the wrong one

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: