Fantasy Champ Man GW10: Time to Wildcard?

So season three of Fantasy Champ Man is here. As a result, our expert David (@FPL_Gills) kindly provides regular advice to the FPL community.


Using a Fantasy Champ Man Wildcard in Gameweek 10

Those in the Fantasy Champ Man community who still hold their first Wildcard are generally in agreement that this week is the best time to use it. But is it that simple? I’m going to take a look at arguments each side of the fence.

FOR

Fixture swings for the big teams

Man Utd, Chelsea and Leeds are three of the best teams in the game, and they now have a fantastic run of games over the next six weeks.

The Red Devils in particular have a brilliant run of four home games in the next six, with two away matches against Watford and Everton – two of the league’s weaker teams.

Chelsea have five home matches over the next seven and their defenders are amongst the best around. If you don’t hold Chelsea or Man Utd defenders – and you want at least two or three – now’s the time to bring them in.

Furthermore, Leeds also have some brilliant attacking assets – Mark Viduka, Pablo Aimar and Lee Bowyer are probably their best three players. Robbie Keane and Harry Kewell are also options but expect some rotation. I should also mention Henrik Larsson – a brilliant striker but currently flagged.

Injuries to big Fantasy Champ Man players

The likes of Larsson, Julio Arca, Celestine Babayaro, Eoin Jess, Robbie Fowler and Nobby Solano were all injured this week. In addition, Alen Boksic, Juan Pablo Angel and Betteron are also on low condition. If you have a couple of these players, now may be the time to pull the trigger.

Emergence of budget picks

Tottenham now have injuries to their key strikers in Sergei Rebrov and Steffen Iversen. Also, Stefan Selakovic departed for Middlesbrough last week, leaving Spurs short in attack. This means that they’re likely to be fielding Martin Wood, a £4.5m striker with an ‘Off the Ball’ rating of 20 – a key stat in the game.

He’s predicted to be in a 4-4-2 alongside Rushbury (also £4.5m, though not as potent) or in a 4-4-1-1 with Shaun Wright-Phillips playing just behind – an out-of-position £5m midfielder. Spurs’ run is decent too. Signing Wood can enable you to get Viduka and Ruud van Nistelrooy.

My “£4.5m Heroes” Fantasy Champ Man Team

We now know who are currently the best £5m and £4.5m midfielders in the game. Kevin Nolan of Coventry and Gunnarsson of Bradford are the most nailed at £4.5m, where both are chipping in with bonus points and the odd goal.

Geoff Pitcher (£4.5m) seems to be on set pieces for Watford when he plays, but Paolo Vernazza (£5m) is now back and playing alongside Petkov in a midfield three, so expect some rotation for Pitcher. Vernazza may be the better pick going forward.

From the other £5m mids, Hoekstra, Whalley and Davis are the top budget point scorers and have good home games coming up – just bench them during away games.

In defence, Olivier Bernard has firmly established himself as the best £4.5m midfielder, playing out of position on the left wing and racking up points. His run tails off now but he’s still worth a chance. Other than him, Emerson Thome and Pierre Issa are great for Sunderland, whilst Perry is great for bonus points at Spurs. Mauricio Taricco has a poor game this week but you can bench and play him at home versus Watford next week.

For goalkeepers, it looks like Chris Kirkland has got the shirt at Liverpool. Their defence hasn’t been great so far but it’s sure to improve, so he’s great value at £5m. Magnus Hedman has been smashing it so far with save points and bonus. Expect the save points to continue but the clean sheets to stop. Still brilliant for £4.5m, though.

I have Atmatzidis and Matteo Sereni at present, both £4.5m and doing fairly well but I also like Pegguy Arphexad. It’s worth looking at rotation pairs amongst these budget goalkeepers.

AGAINST

Possible postponements – and doubles?

Fixtures guru Talha Nadeem is pretty certain that we could get up to three blanks in Gameweek 13 due to the Euro 2004 play-offs. Games that are possibly off include Blackburn v Coventry, Ipswich v Liverpool and Man United v Bolton. This will also mean a number of doubles from Gameweek 16. Could you hang onto that wildcard for a few weeks, when many will have used theirs?

Possible ‘rep’

So Man United, Leeds and Chelsea all have great games – time to get in all their top forwards, right? Well not quite. The likes of Lyndon, Conn3XTSon, Moukoko, Marmalade Forest, Benno & Man On Martyn have been running sims and it appears that these prime home games are liable to a bit of squad rotation, or ‘rep’.

This is when the AI decide to play some fringe players for easier home games instead of the big players. Rep is completely unpredictable, fairly unlikely in general and depends on each simulator’s individual game file. I’d say there’s a 10-15% chance of each of these games being full rep games. We know that Paul Scholes, a fringe player, starts from the leak, so this does indicate there will be some rotation.

What it does mean, however, is there’ll be some uncertainty. You could bring in triple Man United coverage, only for none of them to start. It’s unlikely but be warned!

CONCLUSION

To summarise, it’s a good week to use the Wildcard but not a great one. If your team is a mess – go for it. However, if you don’t have injuries, your 15 players are often all starting and a couple of hits could fix your team, perhaps try and hold it until at least the blanks and doubles are announced. Good luck!

Make sure to engage with the Fantasy Champ Man community on the Discord and YouTube channels, with links on my previous articles, or tweet me.

Fantasy Football Community