FPL launch 2015/16 – New Rules and Player Pricelist
Finally, after weeks of waiting excitedly like a child on Christmas Eve, FPL has been launched for the 2015/16 season. With GW1 still the best part of a month away, there will be countless hours of tinkering ahead as managers try and ensure they get off to the best possible start in their pursuit of global domination. The price list will be carefully scrutinised to find this season’s Harry Kane, while many a club’s pre-season tours and friendlies will be monitored to see who is showing impressive form and which of the new transfers appears to be settling in the best. All of this is of course normal July and August behaviour for us frustrated FPL managers, especially those who didn’t get involved in Fantasy MLS and the U21’s Euro Championships and certainly for those that despise the cricket!
FPL have however given us some other innovative changes to get our heads around as we contemplate the season ahead – and it’s these changes which we will concentrate on first before we then take a quick glance at the first reaction to the price list.
Rumours were rife days before launch date that FPL were tinkering with the game and they haven’t disappointed. There are four new elements to the game, all of which we need to understand fully to maximise our FPL performance this season.
Managers will have two Wildcards to use during the season – however, Wildcard 1 can only be used in the first half of the season (before 28 December 14.00hrs). The second Wildcard can only be used in the second half of the season. If you fail to use your Wildcard in the first half of the season, you will lose it. The January Wildcard has been scrapped and does not exist anymore.
A new feature of the game is the “Chips” that FPL has introduced. There are three different kind of chips:
All Out Attack
All Out Attack
Allows you to play a 2-5-3 formation in the next gameweek.
Points scored by your bench players in the nominated gameweek are included in your total score.
Your nominated captain’s points are trebled. In the event of your captain not playing, your vice captain’s points will be trebled. If neither your captain or vice-captain feature then you will not benefit from playing your “Triple Captain” chip that week and it will not be reallocated to your team.
The All Out Attack, Bench Boost and Triple Captain chips can each be used once a season and are played when saving your team on the “My Team” page. They can be cancelled at any time before the gameweek deadline.
However, please note that only one chip (including your wildcard) can be played in a single gameweek. For example – it would NOT be possible to play your wildcard in a big DGW and also utilise the Triple Captain chip.
What effect will these “chips” have on our selection?
Initially not a lot, unless you are planning to play one of the chips early on. However, we would advise caution and patience – as we know, early season can be very unpredicatable where it is not uncommon for promoted teams to gain surprise results, new transfers are still settling in and players who have represented their countries in summer tournaments will often be eased back into action slowly.
The Triple Captain feature seems the simplest chip to plan for – and the likelihood is that one will use it when one of your star names (Aguero, Hazard, Costa, Alexis etc) are either playing at home to a supposed weakened side or there is a DGW, which will likely only happen in the second half of the season.
Bench Boost will obviously require us to have a fully playing squad – the initial thoughts of this are that managers may avoid choosing two keepers from the same team (Foster, Myhill – West Brom etc) and will want to make sure that their fifth midfielder is likely to have a chance of contributing something more than a 2pt return (Gareth Barry fans be warned!).
The Gareth Barry example from above also applies to All Out Attack – managers will want five attacking midfielders and therefore it is recommended not to rush to use this feature to ensure that your fifth midfielder for that week (who is likely to be a cheapie), is not only a guaranteed starter, but that his attacking stats are good, as indeed are his fixture that week.
So those are the new features and at first glance they seem exciting innovations to keep us on our toes and will require us to concentrate our planning further.
Gone are the days of a simple RMT. It will now be, “Please RMT and I’ve activated my All Out Attack”!!
Players Price List – initial reaction
Unsurprisingly, last season’s budget FPL gold, Harry Kane has shed his “cheap as chips” price tag and opens the season with a price of 9.5mln. So who is this season’s bargain basement striker? If you fancy a punt on newly promoted Watford or Bournemouth, then Troy Deeney and Callum Wilson start the bidding at 5.5mln. Among those priced at 6mln are Leicester’s Loenardo Ulloa & Jamie Vardy as is Liverpool’s new striker Divock Origi. If they don’t excite you then among the crowd at 6.5mln are Saido Berahino (WBA) and Daifra Sakho under the tutorship of Bilic at West Ham, who started the Europa League campaign with a brace. Bafetimbi Gomis of Swansea is priced at 7mln as is the fit again Jay Rodriguez at Southampton. If you’re still not enthused and if you can stretch to 7.5mln you have such names as Danny Ings at Liverpool and Falcao at Chelsea (what a bargain if Jose gets him firing).
New player prices – some of the new players to the Premiership or those who have changed teams that may interest you:
Petr Cech (Arsenal) – 5.5mln
Micah Richards (Villa) – 4.5mln
Gerard Deulofeu (Everton) – 6.5mln
Nathaniel Clyne (Liverpool) – 5.5mln
Firmino (Liverpool) – 8.5mln
James Milner (Liverpool) – 7.0mln
Memphis Depay (Man Utd) – 8.5mln
Maarten Stekelenburg (Southampton) – 5.0mln
Andre Ayew (Swansea) – 7.0mln
Dimitri Payet (West Ham) – 7.5mln
And some selected old favourites:
Sergio Aguero – 13mln
Diego Costa – 11mln
Olivier Giroud – 9mln
Eden Hazard – 11.5mln
Cesc Fabregas – 9mln
Alexis Sanchez – 11mln
Theo Walcott – 9mln
David Silva – 10mln
Yaya Toure – 8.5mln
Angel Di Maria – 8.5mln
Wayne Rooney – 10.5mln
You will all have your own views and may spot the glaring bargain that I have missed. So please share your thoughts below on both the new changes to the game (the chips) and also your thoughts on the prices and maybe you’ve even begun to draft your initial squad.