Team taking shape

An incredibly close vote for the premium midfielder, only Two votes separated  DeBruyne and Alli

With the vote being so close I will just add them both to the community team, as a further vote for the second premium spot looks unnecessary.

The team now looks like this

We have Thirteen Million to spend on our Two remaining midfield slots. So one vote will be for the best 7M option and the last spot will be filled by a player valued at Six Million or below, it is in that category where many of the bandwagon’s seem to emerge.

We will now have a day off from voting. Instead we will have an article on Five at the back, written by our resident expert on the matter, David Slade. That should be up within the hour.



Lukaku joins community team – Top Mid vote

The voting is over for the second striker and it was a resounding victory for Lukaku

With over Seventy percent of the vote it was a landslide. Lukaku looked very sluggish in yesterdays friendly match, however we have learnt not to pay  too much attention to pre season and he will remain a popular option until kickoff

Team so far and Midfield vote

We now move onto the midfield vote. Technically we have 32.5 million to spend on our remaining Four midfielders, however I am keeping half a Million back to increase flexibility when we start tinkering in the final week.

For example doubts already seem to be emerging about Cedric and we may need to replace him, or we could use the extra   half Million in attack.

Thirty Two Million should be enough for a top quality midfield.  For the first midfielder you can spend as much as you choose.

Sanchez has been left out of the vote. He appears in virtually no RMTs on Fantasy scout and his inclusion would wreck our budget. It is also very likely he will be sold despite the protestations of Wenger.

Podcast – draft game

In this special bonus episode of Always Cheating, Josh and Brandon are testing out the new #FPL draft game. In frenzied fashion, battling countdown clocks and each other’s indulgent banter, the hosts draft their own 15-player squads live on the podcast and describe everything you need to know to conduct your own FPL draft session.

Always Cheating will be back later this week with more 2017/18 season preview episodes focused on the regular FPL game—which, of course, will continue to be the primary focus of the podcast. Hail Cheaters!

Kane makes community team – New vote

The vote for the First striker is complete and Harry Kane has been selected for the community team.

Kane is traditionally a slow starter  however it may be the round Three tie at home to Burnley that makes people reluctant to start without him. There looks to be no better captaincy options that week.

Having him from the start is also good for team structure, starting without him would have made it tough to bring him in without major surgery to the rest of the team.

Personally I have yet to decide for my own team. Tottenham are often slow starters, Kane is priced very highly and many are influenced by those Two hat-tricks  at the end of last season.

However let’s not forget that Leicester who they beat 5-1 and Hull 7-1 were both a disgrace. They both had nothing to play for and made no effort to keep it competitive, the Hull game in particular was a farce.

Here is our team so far

It is now time to move to the vote for the second striker, I have again put together a chart that shows the money remaining depending on the player chosen

Now it is time for the vote. Voting will be open for 24 hours




Community team, striker vote

We now have a price for Morata, he has come in at Ten Million, the same price as Costa. The good news is we can now continue with our voting for the community team.

So far we have laid the foundations of the team, The keepers, defence and the Fifth midfielder, now it is time for the interesting part.    We have 30.5 Million to spend on our strikers. I have drawn up a little chart which gives a few permutations of how the money could be distributed.

This chart shows the maximum that can be spent on a third striker with the above combinations.

Now onto the voting. For the first striker vote I have included all players priced Ten Million and above, none have been left out.


First thoughts of drafting, in the draft game

The new draft game has now been released, and I have already taken part in Two drafts. It is very easy to create and join leagues and the administrator can specify the number of team, from Two to Fifteen.

I was the administrator and set up the league for Seven people, you then send them the code and wait for them to join.

When you enter the draft room their is a chat window below the draft for a good bit of pre draft banter as you watch the clock tick down to the start.

Once the draft starts the software makes a random draft order and away you go. I had the  third pick and waited till my turn. Unlike ESPN there were no aural cues, and the lack of sounds kind of means there is no real atmosphere. ESPN has loud jingles that go off when it is your turn and add to the tension as your timer goes down.

Without the audio it is easy to let the mind wander off and end up missing your turn. One  way to help minimise the damage from a missed turn or loss of internet is to use the watch buttons which act as a list of players you want, so if you miss your turn it will automatically select the top one from your watch list. Otherwise you may end up with Costa

The first league went very smoothly, all Seven players stayed until the end and there were no hiccups. Seven players actually made it fairly easy. I made this team which probably would cost much more than 100M in the normal game

Team and bench strong and there were still players like Stones available at the end.  In some ways this made it almost too easy, although on a weekly basis it probably keeps people happy as their teams are scoring highly.

I think Eight or Nine would provide more challenge while still leaving a few options in the pool.

The second draft (Disaster)

The second draft was for a Ten team game. The administrator made it Two to Ten players yet somehow we ended up with Eleven. Then I began receiving facebook messages from someone who could not pick because his draft app failed to open.

We arrive at the third pick and suddenly the timer is down to zero and the game freezes. This happened to all managers in the game. Then I receive a message from the admin, who received a message saying the league had been deleted.

The rest of us all received an email saying the administrator had deleted the league. What happened seemed more like a crash.  So all in all it ended in a bit of a disaster

Overall impression

When it is working properly it is good fun but could do with some audio, dramatic countdown type of stuff. The actual game seems good and fairly straight forward, and with a dedicated group of guys it will provide good entertainment.

One question after the first draft was ” Who has first chance to buy Morata”

The answer is in the rules, and presumably the first set of waivers will be the Thursday before kickoff


The waivers process ensures that eveyone gets a fair chance to add unselected players to their squad. When making a waiver request your are proposing to replace a player in your squad with an unselected player from the same position. Waivers requests are processed 24 hours before the gameweek deadline. Any number of waiver requests can be made, if you make more than one they will need to be prioritised.

The lowest ranked team will get first waiver choice. Before the season starts the waiver order will be the reverse of the draft order. Once a waiver request is successful, the team in question will move to the end of the waiver queue for that gameweek.

So right now having last pick is a massive advantage,  it virtually hands Morata too you on a plate. So if drafting last keep your third striker spot undrafted till the very last pick, as you will be swapping that player out for Morata anyway.

Better still, wait until Morata is included before conducting any serious drafts, otherwise luck will play a huge part and hand someone a massive advantage.




Result of 4.5M vote

The voting is over for the Fifth midfielder spot, and our team is starting to take shape. The result was a clear win for Tom Carroll, who received twice as many votes as Loftus-Cheek who has seen his popularity decline somewhat.

Puncheon was surprisingly made club captain and many see this as an indication that Cheek will have problems taking the number Ten role. The manager has also said that Cheek will have to force his way into the side, so starts appear far from guaranteed at this stage.

The Role of the Fifth mid in our 3-4-3 is strictly as a bench player, he will only be called upon in the event of an injury or non starter. It is still important to find One that does ok, and at least plays as we do not want a situation where he might lose value.

Current team

Eight more players to bring in.  We can spend up to 30.5 M on our strikers thanks to shaving half a Million from our keeper budget which will leave 32.5 Million for our Four remaining Midfield players.

The decision now to make is should we choose our midfielders or our strikers first.

Advantage of choosing  strikers first

Selecting the strikers first means we may have a better idea which teams we want to cover in our midfield. For example if Kane is selected then the voters may feel less need to bring in Alli or Eriksen.

The problem is that Fpl are very slow at adding new players. For example, they still have not added Hart to the West Ham squad. This means it could be some days before Morata is given a price which will hold up the entire voting process for some time.

Advantage of selecting midfielders first

We can crack on with the voting if we start on the mids. There are no major big signings that are likely to have a major influence. Another advantage of selecting midfielders first is that if we have a Million or Two left we could shift a small amount up to the striker budget.


As I am now addicted to polls, we can vote on which group to select first. Because just between us, I find this whole voting idea quite entertaining, and pausing for up to a week while we wait for Fpl to sort their shit out does not seem much fun.

Besides we can always revisit a few picks in the final week and indulge in even more voting madness, so while trying not to influence your decision, I vote we crack on with it. 😀


The 4.5M midfielder – voting time

While we await the pricing of Hernandez and Morata we can still have a vote for the Fifth midfielder, it is not a position that generally is reliant on which other players are chosen, so we can safely go ahead with this One.

Fifth midfielder vote

There are only a couple of points I would like to make before voting that hopefully will not be seen as manipulation

1) Be careful about selecting a Fifth midfielder from One of the big clubs as you may want Three top players from that club, and having the Fifth mid would restrict you to only Two useful slots.

2) As we went for the riskier of the Two defensive strategies (Non playing 4M defender) It may be sensible to select a player will start games regularly.

Here is a reminder of our current squad


All 4.5M midfielders with an ownership of over 1% are included in the following vote.


Community team and lessons learnt

Community team

The vote for the Fourth defender is now over, Dunk was a very clear winner. We have now completed the defender voting for now as the final 4M pick will need to be made much nearer kickoff, as we have no idea if there will be any likely starters.

Lessons learnt

This is a new venture and very much a learning experience. So far I have learnt that any player I leave off the vote somebody will pipe up, “where is so and so”.  I was keeping the numbers down to avoid having to put a long list into the poll. I also learnt I can accidentally miss some  decent options doing that, such as Naughton.

From now on I will include every eligible player that has over 1% ownership. None of those players will be left off the list.

Hands off approach

I will also avoid making any leading comments that might be seen as influencing the vote.  The only comments I will make are after a vote has finished.

Break before next round of voting

We will not have any more voting until the price of Morata is known. I will be doing the voting for the strikers before the midfielders. There is a logical reason for this.

The Strikers are the big guns and whichever ones are chosen will have a big influence on which midfielders you may want. Much will change between now and the start of the season and in the last week there will be a vote to see if there are any players you want changing, so don’t worry that we may be selecting too early.


The art of completing a rotation

Very informative post coming up so it may pay to keep reading !!  Firstly I will give out the result of the 5M defender battle. We were looking for Two of them and we ended up with Cedric who was well clear, and Daniels who finished ahead of my own pick Ake.

Daniels and Cedric join Trippier in the community team.

Putting together a rotation

It might look as if our defenders have been randomly picked, with no thought given to how they fit in with the others in the team. So far that is true.

We picked Trippier because he plays for a top Four side and was under priced. Cedric has great fixtures, and a defensively minded new manager. While Daniels has good attacking threat in an improving Bournemouth backline.

What we need to do now is take a step back and see where that has left us. Are our players all going to have a bad match in the same week? Let us have a look

We can see straight away that Gameweek Three and Four we really do not want to be playing Daniels, and the same can be said for Gameweek Six.  Trippier we will play against anyone.

So when we are considering our next vote, for the 4.5M player there are only Two things that are important 1) That he is nailed on. 2) That he has a good fixture in Gw Three, Four and Six.

Here are the popular options and they illustrate how important it is to concentrate on rotation

These are all popular options for 4.5 million.  However bring in Simpson because you happen to like him would be a disaster for our team.  I don’t want to influence the vote, but it is important that people realise how vital these Three weeks are when you are making your decision.

Tompkins is another popular choice but again he looks unpickable due to Gw Six.   For me the standout is Dunk. Brighton led the championship in clean sheets last season, and Dunk will be nailed on, and their fixtures fall perfectly for our rotation.

The other option is a Newcastle player, but tbh I know little about them and not even sure if Yedlin is nailed on.

If we add Dunk we have the following defensive fixtures for the first Seven weeks

I think you will agree that is a pretty outstanding looking rotation especially considering it is only from Four defenders. All at the cost of 24M This shows we should be able to cope with a non playing Fifth defender should none emerge.


I know I might have influenced the vote, but it was important to show the rotation aspect of the pick.  It is up to you guys if you agree. Maybe some will still prefer Mee despite the poor fixture in Gw 3

Triggerlips – The independent voice of Fantasy Football – Telling it like it is