FISO are starting a new series of weekly articles on Fanteam, Europe’s biggest daily fantasy football provider (and entering the team that we write about!). This series will focus on Fanteam’s Weekly Monster, a weekly fantasy league based on the weekend Premier League games. Our article will focus on a Early Entry for this weekly tournament which will help you identify game rules, tactics and the most promising players per gameweek so you can win some of that large prize money.
This weekend’s round, due to the winter break, is split up into two weekends. As a result, the classic Fanteam Weekly Monster format with a 50,000 euro prize pool based on nine Premier League games has been replaced this weekend by the Weekend Big Four 15k for this gameweek. The concept is identical, but it involves only the four games of GW26 that are being played this weekend and the prize pool sits at 15,000 euros.
Before moving onto our team selection, we want to highlight a couple of Fanteam rules that they apply to their Weekly Monster competition and that represent some of the major differences when comparing the game to the FPL.
Number one is that FanTeam have a rule called the ‘safety net’. The safety net comes into play when a selected player does not start in the Weekly Monster, because the game will then automatically replace this player with the next lowest-priced player from the same position (GK, DEF, MID, FOR) in the same team. By ‘next’ lowest we mean if our player (who doesn’t start) is priced at 7m and two players priced less than him at 6.8m and 6.5m start then our replacement will be the 6.8m player. The automatic replacement is regardless of whether or not your selected player does take to the field later in the game. This rule means people who have entered a team into the Weekly Monster need not worry too much about whether their selected players will start or not, particularly if they know there are cheaper players for that same club in that same position who should start instead.
Number two is that FanTeam also have a ‘stacking penalty’ for the Weekly Monster, which penalises teams that have selected more than one defenders/goalkeeper from the same club. The stacking penalty comes into play when you pick more than one defensive player (defenders or goalkeepers) from a particular club and this club records a clean sheet. The points awarded for this clean sheet will decrease by 1 point for each additional defensive player from the same club that you have selected. The stacking penalty has a maximum of minus 3 points. This rule helps stop multi-entrants from gaining an advantage by submitting block defence teams.
The deadline for the Weekend Big Four 15K tournament is set at 12h30 (UK time) on Saturday, February 8th, 2020.
Gameweek 26 Weekend Big Four matches
|09/02/20||Manchester City||West Ham|
How did our Weekly Monster team fare in gameweek 25?
Formation: 3-4-3 | GW24 finish: 432nd/2566 | Prize: €31
|NAME (club) (opponent)||RETURNS||POINTS|
|Fabianski (WHU) (Brighton H)||4 saves||3|
|Clark (NEW) (Norwich H)||Clean sheet||6|
|Lascelles (NEW) (Norwich H)||Clean sheet||6|
|Alexander-Arnold (LIV) Southampton H)||Clean sheet||7|
|C Salah (LIV) (Southampton H)||2 goals, clean sheet||15|
|Almiron (NEW) (Norwich H)||Clean sheet||4|
|Noble (WHU) (Brighton H)||///||3|
|Grealish (AST) (Bournemouth a)||///||2|
|VC Firmino (LIV) (Southampton H)||3 assists||13|
|Haller (WHU) (Brighton H)||///||3|
|Jimenez (WOL) (Man United a)||///||2|
Our team suggestion for the Big Four 15k in gameweek 26 – part 1
Formation: 3-2-1 | Budget used: €60m (complete)
Instead of recommending a goalkeeper here, as we would usually do, we’re using this space instead to elaborate a bit on this week’s Big Four game, starting with why we haven’t selected a goalkeeper this week. In gameweek 26 of Fanteam’s Weekly Monster, the number of available matches to pick players from was reduced to four and instead of selecting 11 players, we had to select just 6. We could do so in any formation we wanted (a 0-3-3, for example), there was no limit on the number of picks from a specific team, and there was no possibility to select a goalkeeper this week.
Loading up on the home teams is hard though, as selecting three Man City players (who play West Ham at home, which is probably the best fixture this weekend) will easily take up 60% or more of your budget. You would then have too little budget left to fill your team, unless you pick a few West Ham defenders. We have gone with Man City and Sheffield United (vs Bournemouth at home) this weekend, hoping for a City goalscoring bonanza and a very comfortable clean sheet for the Blades. As you will see below, our formation in gameweek 26 is 3-2-1.
In defence, we have opted for a Sheffield United double up, which means the stacking penalty will come into play in case the Blades record a clean sheet against Bournemouth at home. Our picks are right-back George Baldock and one of the three central defenders, Chris Basham. Manager Chris Wilder does not tend to rotate his team a lot, especially not in defence, and these two players are fit, so we are confident that these two players will start this weekend.
In the unlikely event that Baldock doesn’t start, the safety net will swap him out for one of the two central defenders, O’ Connell or Egan. Should Baldock not be part of the starting lineup, then the safety net can still switch him out for John Egan. Baldock, O’ Connell and Egan have all played the full 90 minutes in each of the last five Premier League games, while Basham completed the 90 minutes on three occasions over that same run. He was subbed off late on the other two occasions, in the 77th and the 78th minute, respectively. In other words, with this defensive set-up, we have good coverage in a favourable fixture for Sheffield United, at a decent price and with some protection provided by the safety net.
Due to budget constraints after selecting our three attacking players (see below), we only had very little room left for a sixth pick to complete our team. This is why we ended up picking a three-man defence even when it was theoretically possible to not pick any defender this week as well. From the cheapest players in this week’s game who are assured a starting spot, we figured Crystal Palace’s James Tomkins is probably the best shout.
The English central defender is part of the Premier League’s fourth-best defence, with just Liverpool, Leicester and Sheffield United having conceded less than Palace’s 29 goals so far. They are rolling up to Goodison Park, where the local FC have scored just 15 goals in 12 games, so if Palace boss Roy Hodgson decides to play defensively in the hope of securing at least a point, picking Tomkins could pay off. Finally, to the most optimistic managers among us, we will also say that the defender also has a goal and an assist to his name, which indicates he does pose some attacking threat as well.
Our midfield for gameweek 26 consists of two players, but two of the most expensive assets available this round. The main reasons for their heavy price tags are the fact that they both play for Manchester City and that they are facing off with West Ham at the Etihad this weekend. Kevin de Bruyne and David Silva are not only two of the best midfielders to have graced the Premier League in the past decade, but also two of the very best midfielders active in the current season.
With “just” 3 assists and a total of 22 FPL points over the past five gameweeks, the Belgian midfielder cooled down a bit in comparison to earlier in the season. He already has 7 goals and an unbelievable 17 assists to his name, making him the second-best player in the official fantasy game with only Salah in front of him (161 vs 165 FPL points). The Hammers did not look very solid in the back when they played Brighton at home in gameweek 25 and De Bruyne will be looking to pounce on the smallest mistake. It’s no surprise that he is the most expensive player in the Weekend Big Four.
As if that wasn’t enough for West Ham, De Bruyne will likely be partnered with David Silva in the middle. The Spanish midfield maestro has not seen as many Premier League minutes as his Belgian teammate, but in the 1168 minutes he did get, he made them count: 3 goals, 9 assists and 87 FPL points. Next up for Dilva is West Ham, who have conceded 18 goals in the 12 games they have played away from home so far this season. One of the disadvantages of picking the Spaniard is that he will most likely not complete the 90 minutes, which will cost you a point in the Weekend Big Four, but his price tag does bring us the comfort of the safety net. Within the Man City midfield roster, Bernardo Silva, Rodrigo, Gundogan and Fernandinho are all less expensive than he is.
Our only forward for gameweek 26 is Manchester City’s Sergio Aguero, for the obvious reasons. The Argentinian blanked on his last outing against Tottenham, but anyone who has seen the game or even the highlights will at one point or another have asked himself or herself how on Earth it was possible that Aguero had not recorded a return yet, especially when Gundogan squandered the penalty he had won in the 40th minute. In the three games prior to the Spurs fiasco though, Kun scored 6 goals and provided 1 assist for an impressive total of 37 points in FPL.
Aguero is also our captain, although as there are no vice-captains in this 6 man team game if he doesn’t start then we get no double points so it is a risk.
This team has been entered into the 20 euro FanTeam Big Four 15k and we hope to report back next week that we’ve shared part of the 15,000 euros prize pool. You can also follow discussions about FanTeam games on FISO’s FanTeam Forum. FISO members could win free ‘Weekly Monster’ entries (worth 20 euros) via the FISO FanTeam forum. There are freerolls for new entrants if registered within the last 8 weeks. Read all about a fiso member who won 30,000 euros on FanTeam from just a 2 euro entry fee. FanTeam have also just launched a 500,000 euro Fantasy Premier League game.