Picking a Fantasy Premier League prior to the season can be a headache. Here are some strategies to starting your season off strong in 2019.
Last season, our fantasy Premier League squad finished in the top 1% of all teams, coming in at #45577. If you follow our blog, you’ll know our FPL season was filled with many twists and turns throughout the season. However, our squad shot ourselves in the foot in the beginning of the season by not planning out multiple weeks ahead.
Is there a fool proof plan guaranteed to start the season hot? Absolutely not, or we’d all be pro FPL players. Instead, we’ll look at strategies to minimize risk for the start of the season.
Fantasy Premier League Do’s
First off, let’s get out of the way the obvious (or what should be obvious) strategies to start the season:
- DO plan to keep your starting XI the same for a minimum of the first two game weeks, barring injury. No need to start off the season taking unnecessary hits.
- DO plan on splashing FPL cash for at least two premium forward or midfielder options for captaincy purposes. We prefer premium midfielders, as you’ll see below.
- DO plan on bringing in defenders with the highest likelihood of keeping clean sheets at the beginning of the season. This seems obvious, but there’s multiple strategies around this for your back line.
- DO consider early season fixture difficulty when picking non-premium players in your initial starting XI.
- DO consider players that are playing out of position, but make sure their position is more attacking than how they’re classified on FPL. One example is a defender in a system designed to get him forward on the attack.
Fantasy Premier League Do Not’s
- DO NOT be wasteful in spending FPL cash on bench options to start the season. Worry about your bench after the first couple months of the season when teams start playing multiple games each week.
- DO NOT assume players that played well the prior season in a different league will transition smoothly the Premier League. It’s always best to wait and see the first month or so to see how they mesh with their new squad.
- DO NOT load your team with players from newly promoted Premier League teams. For every 2018/2019 Wolves squad, there’s plenty more squads (Cardiff and Fulham last season) that just aren’t ready to play with the big boys.
- DO NOT use your chips outside of your wildcard at the beginning of the season. Schedule shifting later in the season can make using the chips more advantageous.
- DO NOT place defensive minded midfielders in your starting XI.
Lineup Strategies For Game Week 1
For purposes of starting your FPL season out strong in 2019, it’s looking more and more safe to start out with a minimum of three premium defenders. Then you should make the decision whether to go with a fourth 5.5M+ or two 4.5M defenders that rotate well based on their fixtures.
Again, the key to early season success is minimizing risk with your starting XI.
Check out the top 25 leading scorers from the first three game weeks in the 2018/2019 FPL season, courtesy of All Fantasy Tips:
|Benjamin Mendy||Manchester City||27|
|Sergio Aguero||Manchester City||24|
|Virgil Van Dijk||Liverpool||20|
|Paul Pogba||Manchester Utd||20|
You’ll notice that Aguero is one of three FPL forwards on here, as well as the only premium forward. This supports the theory to stick with budget forwards and goalies, and spend heavy on midfield and defense early.
Need more evidence that you’re increasing your risk by spending funds on a premium goalie? Check out this excellent Twitter thread from @FPLEditor:
With that, we are testing out a theory to start the season. We believe that defenses, in general, get more clean sheets at the beginning and end of the season, while allowing more goals in during the busy part of the season.
Thus, here is our proposed lineup for GW1, with no money left in the bank:
Follow us all season for FPL updates. We have an exciting new FPL series in the works that will benefit your lineup decisions!