Part 2: Can You Manage a Fantasy Football Team Like a PPC Account?
Now I’ve explained my theory, it’s time to see if it actually worked in practice.
So without further ado let’s get straight to the selection…
Selecting my Head Terms
I knew I wanted one of the big hitter forwards as one of my more expensive Head Terms.
This was a straight shootout between Man United’s Romelu Lukaku and Tottenham’s Harry Kane.
I decided to take seasonality into account on this one.
So, bearing in mind that Lukaku always seems to score against West Ham, coupled with the fact that Kane has never scored in August, it seemed like a no-brainer.
I opted for Lukaku, costing £11.5m vs the £12.5m for Kane.
Looking at last year as a guide, like we would when forecasting for an account, I could see that midfield was where a lot of the points were scored.
Therefore, I knew I wanted three midfield Head Terms.
I reckoned that the Spurs duo of Christian Eriksen and Dele Alli would carry on their good form from last year, costing £9.5m each.
Being a Liverpool fan, and therefore optimistic about my team’s chances every year, I thought Mo Salah was a steal at £9m.
I also wanted a strong goalkeeper.
Again, looking at last year’s points, I thought about Burnley’s Tom Heaton – who at £5m represented the ROI approach.
But I could also sign Tottenham’s Hugo Lloris for only an extra £0.5m.
This came down to knowing as many of the outside variables as possible.
Take our cycling client, for example.
We can clearly see that their performance improves when we have a sustained period of good weather.
In this case, the outside variable was that Burnley sold their best defender to Everton in the Summer, so I was nowhere near confident that Heaton would produce as heroic a season as he did last year.
So I plonked for Lloris.
The last Head Term seemed the obvious choice in defence – Gary Cahill at £6.5m.
He was instrumental as Chelsea only conceded 33 goals last season.
At the other end, he scored six times and was only booked on five occasions which is pretty good going for a defender.
So, having selected all of my head terms, half of my budget was gone.
But I still had another nine players to select...
Balancing the team with the ROI approach
It was ROI time.
Roberto Firmino was in straight away - a steal really at £8.5m.
In his two previous seasons in the Premier League, Firmino has scored 10 goals and 11 goals respectively, along with 7 assists in each.
To finish the front three, I knew I had to find a gem.
This reminded me of trawling through Search Query reports.
I wanted to find somebody who was cheap and had the potential to score a lot of points.
But crucially, I need a player who could give me an advantage by being selected by a low number of other teams across the entire Fantasy League.
I went for Kelechi Iheanacho at £7m.
Granted, it was highly unlikely Iheanacho was going to start Leicester’s tough opener at Arsenal, but hopefully our midfield would buy us some time by picking up the points in the period of time it takes for him to settle down and hit the ground running.
The good news for me is that only 3% of teams currently have him.
Cedric from Southampton was next – purely because I reckon Southampton will keep a fair few clean sheets this year.
Then the Leicester pairing of Cristian Fuchs and Danny Simpson.
I don’t think Leicester will be winning the league again any time soon, but I do fancy them to get more points than last year.
Completing the team was Julian Speroni as sub keeper from Crystal Palace, Ben Mee from Burnley in centre defence, and Stoke’s Joe Allen in midfield along with Southampton’s Oriel Romeu.
So how did we get on?
Well I have to say it started pretty badly.
Cahill was sent off after 14 minutes before Chelsea went on to concede three goals at home to Burnley.
My Leicester boys also let me down as they shipped four at Arsenal.
But Sunday came to the rescue.
My selection of Lukaku as a Head Term was justified as he scored a brace against West Ham.
Then the likes of Firmino, Eriksen and Salah all scored double figures.
Resisting the ROI goalkeeper selection also proved to be a good move, as Lloris kept a clean sheet.
The whole weekend yielded 80 points in total – not too shabby a return I must say.
But still not enough to top the League.
My team currently sit third in the Latitude league behind Micheal Hall’s ‘Roboklopp’ and Tony Haslam’s ‘Show me the Mane’.
So, after a solid start it’s time to make some optimisations.
Transfers like Search Query reports will be done in order to try and unearth a gem which can propel the team to the top of the league.
Like PPC accounts, this will require care and attention at all times.
We can’t rest on our laurels and think just because we scored 80 points this week that we'll continue to do well!