If your guitar is out of tune, then sing out of tune with it.Kurt Cobain
I lay in bed this morning (about 4.25 am) and wrote this weeks blog in my head, it was a masterpiece that then evaporated.
Now as I sit here, keyboard ready, I am textually constipated. When opportunity shows itself, be ready to grasp it, however and whenever.
My FPL life changed for the better when I joined Discord, I don’t have anyone to talk FPL with in ‘real life’, eventually I found the courage to enter the chat room and so began my vocal odyssey, from polite vanilla to outlier extraordinaire.
It’s a fantastic position to be in, to be surrounded by positive people, you trust, who want to push boundaries and be conventionally challenged.
Where am I going with this ? KdB, John Stones and Ilkay Gundogan, and how they ended up in my team.
Monday 4th January, get back from work, read the boards ‘KdB new role’ ‘Pep uses KdB as a forward’ .
My thought process, oh yeah Aguero & Torres injured, no faith in Jesus, Pep’s trying something new – guess I better watch last night’s game back. Now I have been vehemently opposed to having any City players in my team up to this point, but I put 3 in after this game week 17 match between Chelsea and Man City.
If KdB hits any sort of form he’s a given, add to the mix the upturn in City fixtures and Salah’s drop off, well the stars aligned.
When I saw John Stones the 2021 version, I have to say it was part awe part carnal. And we all know, someone had to take the Laporte role attacking the set pieces in the opposition’s box.
Gundogan, it was obvious even to me, was being used in a more attacking way by Pep – but I still did due diligence as no one else seemed to be talking him up.
In the chat room Tuesday morning, I tested the waters. After some gentle ribbing ‘you’ve changed your tune’ (over City) , some shock and joy over the Stones phwoar moment, the conversation turned to ‘that weird differential’ that positively impacts your team. Was this the time to bring up Gundogan ? I just couldn’t.
Wednesday chat, I finally raised the subject of Gundogan. Everyone chipped in. We worked through the pros and cons. I was convinced, the consensus was ‘worth a punt’.
My lack of confidence was a major factor in adopting the characteristics of a psycho to enhance my success this season, in particular the grandiose, superiority, and invulnerability traits.
I know I think differently, expressing this and going against the herd takes courage.
Reading the above, it’s obvious how seminal GW18 was to the season.
In my little FPL bubble, it seemed the world had decided to negotiate blank game week 18 with the Free Hit chip. I saw this as a very defensive play, I couldn’t see much to gain, few fixtures meant a small player pool, and very similar teams, I decided to ignore GW18, this idea formed in GW13 and was pretty much decided by Boxing Day, GW15.
As the GW18 deadline loomed, I was on the edge of 100k, feeling the burn, being talked about in my Elite FPL community, due to my consistent rise in the mini leagues. So, to keep my head straight, a drop down the ranks, going back into hiding, well it seemed like too good an opportunity to miss – and banking the FH chip to play it more aggressively in the action end of the season appealed.
I also took a -4, which I thought acceptable to both increase my players in GW18 and improve my team going forward.
The deadline was 16.30, I waited to hear the most recent team/weather/Covid news. I did the Salah to KdB earlier to avoid a price rise.
So, ignoring GW18 meant I fell from 130k to 202k,and came out smiling,tactical advantage obtained
Two days after GW18 finished, GW19 began. I had no playing interest in the last game of GW18, bar scouting Arsenal players. When I looked at my team, that Thursday morning, to set up before Saturday’s 11am deadline, my head said Bench Boost – which was strange because traditionally weeks of planning go into a BB, even combining it with a wildcard.
- freedom – don’t let the chips dictate your season, there is an element of caveat with the bench boost chip, it can lead to fixation and distraction, to the detriment of strategy
- power – I can use my Wild Card more powerfully if I don’t have to use it in conjunction with a bench boost. I can concentrate the value on the pitch, not spread it to create a playing bench.
- aggression – what do I want from my BB ? Points.Hopefully extra points. Which I can use going forward to take hits to attack attack attack. Because of the fixture swing from GW21 I already see a need for restructuring.
- strategy – playing the BB now suits my ‘always keep options open’ ideals. Maybe the Triple Captain chip might get more points this week, but the TC chip is more magical, in that it can be played any time with no pre-planning.
- pocket rockets – I have Aces in hand with FH, WC and TC, a rewarding morale boost. Tactically I am well placed to capitalise on potential points opportunities such as hastily rearranged schedules.
- play the cards you are dealt – I didn’t plan on BB this week, and my team certainly wouldn’t pass most people’s optimal test, but for me, I saw more positives than negatives in playing the chip. Certainly this is no season for planning too far ahead and for me, the BB chip is all about planning, optimising variables, the current climate is not conducive to that = stress.
How far should I go to reshape my team for a GW18 BB?
I had 2 Leeds assets, who should have a double, but were now facing a single game week. A Wolves defender at home to a lacklustre WBA (who’d have thought that would turn into a 2-3 thriller) and a bargain basement Lascelles who may or may not be back from injury with two games to play this week.
I had only one free transfer, I could get another playing GK, prudent going forward, with all these postponements. And DCL was crook and blanked this week, maybe a hit for a DGW player would pay off. Of course I could take some further hits to boost the squad.
After evaluating the team, and the fixtures going forward in the aftermath of GW19, I decided to be frugal, and avoid the extra hits. Resolve.
As I write, there are still 2 games to be played, including Liverpool at home to Burnley, which may be a sofa job – I have no Liverpool players.
To be continued…
I’ve just been called to chat, seems a good place to halt the blog.
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