With all that is going on around us (COVID19 pandemic, continuing police brutality in the US), it feels almost unimportant to think that the 2020-2021 Premier League season will start in a little over 2 weeks on September 12. With the start of the Premier League, that means that Fantasy Premier League and the #TavernForGood charity FPL league are back for a second season! If you are a seasoned vet of FPL and want to skip down a bit for the League code and prize info, that’s all good (Skip down to Prize/How to join our league)! However, lemme give the new players a bit of a FPL crash course.
How to Play FPL
FPL is very much like fantasy baseball and fantasy football. You pick a team of 15 players with some restrictions on your selections! Here are the rules to assemble your squad:
- You must pick 2 GKs, 5 DFs, 5 MFs, and 3 FWs. (Be creative here, as a player’s FPL position classification can be far different from what he actually plays on the pitch.)
- You have 100 pounds to complete your squad. Each player is assigned a pound value before the season begins. However, these values fluctuate depending on their play. So you can buy a player at 6 pounds but his stellar play means you could sell later in the season for 7 pounds. It’s like stock trading. Obviously, the reverse applies if a hyped player shows poor form; you could be stuck with a depreciating asset.
- You can choose a maximum of 3 players from one Premier League team. My favorite team is Arsenal but I can only pick 3 Gunners! Same for you Spurs fans!
Here is my squad, Just Call Me Mikel, for reference:
Now for the rules of how to play. It’s pretty simple and works like normal fantasy sports. You pick 11 players for your starting lineup and leave the other 4 on the bench. Players who play 1 minute of the match receive 1 point (this can be really annoying, trust me). 60 minutes or more is 2 points. For full scoring rules, check the FPL website here.
Overall, when considering the rules on points, there are a few tips that I would give to new players. First of all, when picking defenders, a wingback/FB is more valuable than a CB. If you have FBs that ping in a lot of crosses, chances are higher that you’ll get that 3 points for an assist. However, if there’s a CB that is an aerial threat to score goals, that’s 6 points per goal! The final consideration for your DFs and MFs is that defenders get 4 points for keeping a clean sheet and MFs get 1 point for keeping that clean sheet. If there are stingy defenders, that’s always valuable. Finally, if you can find a goalscoring MF (say a No. 10 or dedicated winger, since FPL considers those midfielders now), that’s 5 points per goal compared to 4 points for a forward goal. Basically what I am saying is, it is wiser to spend your 100 pounds on MFs and DFs than to waste your money on forwards, but that’s just me.
Every week, you pick a captain and that player gets double points! Choose wisely as you never want to pick a captain who just gets you a measly 4 points (safe to say it happens to everyone at least once). You also choose a vice captain just in case your captain doesn’t play that week. If any of your players don’t make the pitch during the matchweek, the first sub from your bench will be substituted in. This can go well or poorly, eg. a player plays 10 minutes as a starter but a high scorer is left on the bench. On the flip side, you can have 10 points come off the bench if you’re lucky.
You have 3 chips to play during the season: Triple Captain (self-explanatory), Bench Boost (your bench points all count) and then Free Hit. Free Hit is complicated but it basically means that for one week, you get unlimited transfers on players for free and then when the week is over, you get your team back to what it was. I would recommend saving this towards the end of the season when matches get rescheduled because of the FA Cup. Sometimes you’ll find that a good portion of your team is scheduled to not play and the Free Hit is helpful for that.
Also, twice a season, in matchweeks 1-19 and 20-38, you have a wildcard. For the second half of the season, I advise using your wildcard after the Winter transfer window closes. In a week you use a wildcard, you can do unlimited free transfers and you will keep that squad after the week is over (in contrast to Free Hit where the transfers are temporary). Alright, that is the gist of Fantasy Premier League. If there are more questions, hit me up in the comments since I’m a FPL nerd.
How to join our League
It’s pretty easy to sign up for Fantasy Premier League and join the official Tavern of the Taegeuk Warriors League. After signing up and picking your squad, click on “Create and Join Leagues”:
From there, click “Join a league” and then “Join private league”:
From there, you’ll need to enter our league code:
Namu has provided the league code and we’ll share this around on Twitter and on our closed Facebook group as well:
For the Tavern crew, the final podcast of the Premier League Season will involve the winner among the crew getting a minute to plug their favorite causes/brag, a la ESPN’s Around the Horn. Also, for the laughs, the last-placed Tavern writer may have some hilarious consequences.
For our amazing readers, we wanted to take this opportunity to do something great for the world and show what an amazing community the Tavern is. So, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to enter for this prize. Please let us know what charity you would like us to donate to if you are the winner. At the end of the season, we will make a $50 donation to your charity and promote the charity on our social media. Remember to keep in mind the values of the Tavern when recommending your charity. If the charity doesn’t fit our values, we still encourage you to play FPL with us but we will let you know that we choose not to donate to that charity. As an example, my charity for the year is the National Police Accountability Project. I will share more about why I have chosen this charity if I win. The reader who wins will get the opportunity to share why the charity means so much to them either on our podcast or with a written note that we’ll share on social media. We’re hoping to spur on lots of charitable donations to a worthy cause!
Here are the charities from last season. If you see your name and would like to change your charity, please contact us via email or Twitter DM.
Finally, shouts to the 2019-2020 #TavernForGood champ Deepak. He chose to support March for Our Lives and the Tavern made a $50 donation in his honor.
If you have any other questions about FPL and this #TavernforGood FPL league, please get active in the comments!