Monday, 21 May 2012

5 ways to improve Fantasy Premier League (FPL)

Since being launched the official FPL has pretty much stuck to its original format.  This in part has contributed to its success.  However, I believe that there is room for improvement.  My 5 recommendations are as follows:

1.  Bonus Points - Updates Release

In previous seasons it was common for bonus points updates to be released a couple of hours or so after a match.  Some people complained that the quick release led to inaccurate bonus points allocations.  However, the new PPI-system has brought up some strange bonus points outcomes this season.  Moreover, the delayed bonus points can be frustrating, so much so that people can become disincentivised from playing FPL.  Thus, the administrators of FPL should work to speed up their release of bonus points, even if it means reverting back to the old system.

2.  Assister's Assist

Of course FPL gives attacking points in the form of goals and assists.  But I think it is missing out on a trick by not awarding any points to the players who often create the plays that sets up the goals, i.e. "assister's assist".  This means that players such as Modric, Cabaye, Ramsey, etc. who don't score or assist as much but are integral to pre-assist plays fail to receive the credit they deserve.  Consequently, it would be beneficial if FPL awarded 1 point to the player that assisted the assist so as to recognise the importance of such talent.

3.  Defensive Midfield

In relation to the assister's assist, there is also another type of player that warrants points recognition - defensive midfielders, i.e. Carrick, Tiote, Song etc.  In particular it is the tackles that they commit.  At least with defenders they are awarded with 4 points for a clean sheet.  Not so for defensive midfielders, only 1 point which is across the board for midfielders.  Perhaps FPL can come up with a system to award 4 points to midfielders for every 6 successful tackles they commit in a match?  Alternatively, increase midfielders' clean sheet point from 1 to 2.

4.  Player Prices - Valuations

For the past few seasons the "usual suspects" tend to be priced the highest, £11M+  i.e. Lampard, Gerrard, Tevez, etc.  What is all the more frustrating is that their prices remain almost static with no significant price drop when they are heavily de-selected or ignored by FPL gamers.  Of course tinkering with their prices could be problematic.  Moreover FPL operates a semi-price freeze in certain conditions so as to avoid wholesale manipulation by FPL gamers via inappropriate pricing.  My suggestion would be for them to practically base their prices solely on the previous season, rather than taking all of the past few seasons or (projected performance) into account.  If this is not possible, FPL should offer to revise player price prices of high-priced lowly selected players (i.e. £10m+ and only owned 5% or less) after 3 or 6 month intervals so as to add a level of realism to the game).

5.  Vice Captain Points v "Cameo Captains"

Unlike previous seasons where a vice-captain could only be selected upon the criteria of form or value, 2011/2012 allowed you to directly pick the vice-captain.  This was beneficial as it didn't tie you down to 1 or 2 options.  However, the vice-captains points only kick in if your captain hasn't played a single minute of the match.  This can be problematic if your vice-captain has had a fantastic Gameweek, where as your captain has only made a 1 minute cameo as you would lose out on a galactic scale.  As a result, I would suggest that vice-captains points should come into play more often, i.e. so long as the captain has played only up to 10 minutes.  This way you could be spared the unfortunate 2 points for a cameo captain.
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