Learning from ‘The Great and The Good’ FPL managers ahead of Gameweek 32

Fantasy Football Scout community writer Grayhead continues with his series of articles analysing the Fantasy Premier League (FPL) transfers and strategies of some noted Fantasy managers, from serial top 10k finishers to well-known faces.

The Great and The Good this year are the Scouts Joe Lepper, Neale Rigg, Geoff Dance, and Tom Freeman, FPL Wire’s Zophar, from the Hall of Fame Fabio Borges, FPLMatthew, Yavuz Kabuk and Tom Stephenson, Blackbox’s Az and Mark Sutherns, FPL “celebrities” LTFPL Andy, Magnus Carlsen and FPL General plus last year’s mini-league winner Les Caldwell.


“I see doubles coming, I see doubles coming”

Whether you are of royal blood or not, there was no doubting the main talking point this week was the navigation of the upcoming Double Gameweeks. As a result, Gameweek 31 seemed more of a distraction than anything else, with Everton and Burnley players nothing to get excited about. There are only so many Wout Weghorst (£6.4m) puns to go round and surely no one owns Richarlison (£7.5m), apart from maybe Lateriser.

Meanwhile, there were some surprising results to put some of those planning to recruit Arsenal and Chelsea players for the Double Gameweek off the scent, with both clubs toiling after the international break.

Matt Doherty‘s (£4.9m) double-digit returns gave his owners something to brag about, we all still seem to be forgetting about Kevin De Bruyne (£11.7m) and we discovered that even Chess Grandmasters deal in mind games.

OVERALL PERFORMANCE

learning-from-the-great-and-the-good-20-21-gameweek-31 5

Magnus Carlsen caught the attention this week with another captaincy gamble, as he put the armband on Dominic Calvert-Lewin (£7.7m). Unsurprisingly, this is the first time this season that any of The Great and The Good have settled on the Everton striker to lead their troops.

It was noted that his mentor and Grandmaster mini-league rival, Peter Heine Nielsen, also captained the Everton striker – is this psychological warfare at play? Clearly the chess champs take FPL very seriously, with no place for rook-ies. Is this a rivalry similar to Mark and Az? Surely, talks must be underway to arrange an FPL BlackBox “ChessBox” special?

King of The Great and The Good board this week was indeed Magnus with 64. He, along with Neale, have bravely decided to go without Mohamed Salah (£13.3m) and it paid off this week as his triple Spurs helped him to a green arrow of 9,000 places.

Will others follow suit in abandoning Salah? With the City game up next, a “no Mo” strategy does allow more funds to look at the likes of Son Heung-min (£10.9m), Man United doublers and even bolster our defences, but can we really be considering cutting loose the leading points scorer in the game?

TRANSVERS

This is a summary of the transfers for this week:

  • Az-Roberts (Alt-Nouri)
  • LTFPL Andy – James, Weghorst (Saiss, Jimenez)
  • Fabio Borges-Pickford (Dubravka)
  • Joe Lepper – White (Kilman)
  • Geoff Dance – Weghorst (Jimenez)
  • FPL General – Greenwood, James, Cancelo (Jimenez, Saiss, Digne)
  • Les Caldwell-Robertson (Alexander-Arnold)
  • Magnus Carlsen – Gordon (Podence)
  • Mark Sutherns – Pope, Weghorst (Ramsdale, Jimenez)
  • FPL Matthew-Tarkowski (Alexander-Arnold)
  • Neale Rigg – Weghorst (Jimenez)
  • Tom Freeman – Sancho (Coutinho)
  • Tom Stephenson – James, Weghorst (Saiss, Jimenez)
  • Yavuz Kabuk – Gordon, James (Kilman, Coutinho)
  • Zophar – Weghorst (Jimenez)

Tom Stephenson and Mark Sutherns took a hit to bring in Weghorst this week – Wout were they thinking?

FPL General has given up on his forwards with Sam Greenwood (£4.5m) joining Joe Gelhardt (£4.6m) in his squad to free up budget for Joao Cancelo (£7.0m) Rece James (£6.2m).

Elsewhere, there was a firesale on Wolves players with a total of 12 of them leaving the combined squads of The Great and The Good, and Tom Freeman will hope for more from his differential Jadon Sancho (£8.9m) over the coming weeks.

TEMPLATE

The template for The Great and The Good is as follows, with the numbers in brackets showing how many teams in which they appear:

  • Ramsdale (7), Sa (3)
  • Doherty (11), Alexander-Arnold (8), Robertson (6), Rudiger (6), James (5)
  • Salah (13), Saka (13), Raphinha (13), Kulusevski (8), Son (5)
  • Kane (12), Weghorst (9), Lacazette (6)

The forward line continues to be a conundrum for The Great and The Good, with more changes up front as Weghorst and Alexandre Lacazette (£8.4m) replaced Armando Broja (£5.5m) Raul Jimenez (£7.5m).

There was also a swing towards west London with James joining Antonio Rudiger (£6.1m) at the back. I suspect the next destination on the template map will be the East Midlands, as Leicester players become popular for those focused on fixtures. Will anyone gamble on Jamie Vardy (£10.3m) if he can get himself fit for the run-in?

TARGETING YOUR TRANSFERS

A look back this week at the transfers of The Great and The Good and where they have focused their attention over the season:

learning-from-the-great-and-the-good-20-21-gameweek-31 4

Overall, midfield has been the trading pit for most of the managers with 40% of all transfers occurring in this position. Yavuz Kabuk leads the way here with 22 moves so far, equating to 49% of all his dealings.

Yavuz has been the most active manager overall with 45 transfers over the course of the season and this proactive approach has seen his rank rise in the second half of the season, moving up to 80,000 after being at 366,000 in Gameweek 16.

What is noticeable is the moves at the back. While Mark Sutherns has assigned 30% of his trades to his defence, Fabio Borges has only made three transfers, equaling 8%.

This stability at the rear – remember he doubled up on a Man City backline on his first Wildcard and then a twin Wolves defense in his second overhaul – has given him a chance to use his moves for more explosive returns elsewhere.

This may change as we enter the final few weeks, with the Chelsea and City defense looking worthy of investment, but this is a tactic to consider for next season.

CONCLUSION

Double Gameweeks: you either love them or hate them, but they are no doubt going to have a big part to play in our final standings with the last few weeks a heady mix of fixture congestion and chip play.

There is plenty of advice out there but as always play your own way, scrutinize your own numbers as it will only be you that knows the best route and only you that will hold your final rank at the end of the season.

Anyway, that’s all from me for now. And remember, don’t have nightmares.

For those affected by any of the topics raised in the above article then you can find me on Twitter at https://twitter.com/Greyhead19


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