Saturday, 2 August 2014

Premier League of Pundits; Top Ten FPL List 2014/15

This article is as simple as they come. It has one goal and one goal only; to provide new and novice Fantasy Premier League managers with the best resources available to either start off on the right foot or to beat the you-know-what out of the "friends" you're competing against in your minileagues. It also aims to simply enhance your enjoyment of the FPL experience.

What you will find below is a simple guide to the 10 best FPL sites and blogs available, described in detail by experienced FPL managers who have gone out of their way to help you understand why the sites are worth your time and attention. The managers quoted are also people that you would do very well to follow on Twitter and hit up for additional guidance and advice.

In short, the information below is information that virtually every single FPL manager wishes was provided to them when they first started. It's our way of giving back, of thanking those who came before us, and of expressing in no uncertain terms that the FPL community on Twitter is one of shared love and appreciation for a game based on a football league that we all adore and that we want you to enjoy the way we do.

Here's how it'll go. I'm going to start by providing a short paragraph or two describing each site. That will be followed with a group of quotes by FPL managers who have volunteered personal quotes of their own describing why they like the site. Following that will be a short statement from each site owner (where provided) describing their site and providing an exclusive message to you, the readers of this article.

The sites are not ranked and the sequence of the sites is not indicative of where they would sit on any ranked list; they are simply the best sites out there for you to get the information you need to become a better FPL manager, presented in random order. Although they are not ranked within the group, their inclusion in the group is a decision I made; both based on my own personal experience and on the feedback provided by members of the FPL Twitter community.

Visit these sites, register if available, and bookmark them in your browser for frequent use. Also make sure you follow each of the Twitter users mentioned (clicking on their name will take you directly to their Twitter page) and get involved. Don't be afraid to jump in and ask questions; half of the enjoyment of FPL is the fun you'll have "talking shop" with the gang and batting some serious banter back and forth.

Let's get started..... oh, FYI - you can access each site by clicking on the link embedded in the underlined name of their site ;)



The InsideFPL blog took the FPL world by storm last year and dazzled us with their standout graphics, comprehensive information, engaging approach both on Twitter and in their articles, and their ability to dial things down and get to the heart of the matters at hand. Their analysis provided FPL managers with the stats and comparisons that helped many of us make decisions based on pertinent info that mattered to us.

Their Fixture Analyzer was the first place I went before making any transfers, and I know that anytime I see their profile on the Twitter boards that I'm about to read something that is not only relevant but also something that I'm going to want to RT to my followers. Their Pre-Season Guide, due to come out early next week, is something that you simply must check out. Have fun with this site while you enjoy an aesthetic presentation that is second to none. With over 20,000 followers, you know they're onto something big; and deservedly so. Here's what others had to say:

I like @insidefantasypl because their articles are good. Also they alert you on price changes. -@venantradz

My favorite site is www.insidefpl.com, for several key reasons. 


1)They send out a weekly email that really aggregates the week's data/info/injuries, and gives you an easy to digest read that isn't overly saturated with text and strategy.

  
2)Their website is very professional looking, with nice background colors overlayed with fonts that don't strain your eyes.  Well coded site, and solid user experience. Again they employ the same concepts as the email, easy reading, not overly thought out, not overly strategic, just the right balance of all things that make it a good read, understandable, with logic and sound reasoning.

3)They were the first site I found/used when I joined Twitter and my first #FPL league.  I was in search of a faster source of info and ideas, Twitter and subsequently insidefpl.com provided me with that.  Since then I've found loads of pundits/blogs/sites and a real friendly #FPL community who are willing to share ideas and help each other just for the sake of loving the game. @pmxmsg


Something else I also enjoyed was the weekly newsletter sent out by @insidefantasypl now how great is that why go look for something if it can come to you.  I give them 2 thumbs up for that. - @vicksrama05

Steven from @insidefantasypl was kind enough to provide the following statement regarding the site that he has obviously spent a great deal of time putting together for our enjoyment:

"We won’t mince words. At InsideFPL we’ve the ambition to be the very best fantasy football website and to do this we know we need to work hard to gain your trust. To do this we’ve built a blog team with over 20 years combined experience playing the game and 3 top 2000 finishes last year.

We also know that selecting a big list of ‘good’ players to choose from is pretty common on fantasy sites, and any FPL manager worth his or her salt could quickly reel off a list of the best players. That’s why we are also dedicated to providing data-driven advice in the form of projections, player stats and rankings, and fixture analysis. We’re also dead keen on strategy and gameplay tips – FPL is not just about the players, it’s about how you play the players.


Our mission this season is to build you tools. We know you don’t want to be spoon-fed a generic FPL squad and that half the fun is doing your homework to come up with your own team. However, this can take a lot of time! We aim to use the today’s technology to place all the information you need at your fingertips. Imagine a web app that plugs in directly with your own FPL team, and brings you the best analysis, stats and news on your players and those on your custom-watchlist. This is where we are headed at InsideFPL in 2014."





If you're looking to add a little bit of fun to your FPL experience,  you won't have to stray too far from the guys at FF247. They lure you in with their knowledge and their informative articles, such as a standout series a few weeks ago featuring a first look at players who have been transferred in to the Premier League over the summer. The series told me everything I needed to know and answered every question I had running through my mind before reading it. It easily saved me 2-3 hours of Google and YouTube research and I still refer to it.

Their bread and butter, though, is their active community of FPL banter specialists. I got to know a number of these fellas much better this summer during the World Cup, and I can not remember a time I've had that much fun talking football and getting solid information in the process. Knowing that there are guys out there who are this knowledgeable AND this funny is actually kinda scary, and the fun to be had on this site is like a giant magnet that you can't help but succumb to. Once you check it out you'll be back for more...often. But don't take it only from me, listen to these guys too...

ff247 was one of the first communities I really used and I love the advice, banter and characters that are on that site. I have written a couple of articles which they were kind enough to publish. They have great articles and there is always a friendly person to RMT or give advice on who to select/transfer in or out/formation selection etc  My personal 'go to' site is ff 247 because of the friends and nature of the site @alexwaterbaby

Ff247: fpl advice that absolutely takes the 'urine' coupled with good advice as well plus love the poetic potty  @mozzy86

What can I say about www.fantasyfootball247.co.uk  that has not already been said? The only Fantasy Football website I visit for advice. The world’s greatest Fantasy Football advice forum. Great banter and more importantly great advice, visit www.fantasyfootball247.co.uk  @PatheticoMorbid 

Love the interviews with what I call the "proper" FPL players. They offer great advice, do's & dont's plus strategy from people who know how to do it the right way! After reading the brilliant article 4 Key FPL Questions Answered, I was able to learn where I made mistakes last season and how to potentially fix them for this one. I also picked up
some other tips like using the watch list on the FPL website, as loads of times I have wanted to put a player in then completely forgot!! Also I learned the importance of selecting the right captain and also to look ahead to future GW's before selecting your team. I will be following these guys for sure this season. @McIntoshRosco

My fav site has to be ff247. A spin-off show from the popular series fantasyfootballcheat, it has all the regular characters and goons. It is like a family. (Arguing all the time, but REAL love behind it.) They help not only with fpl dilemmas but also life problems. For eg. I had some strange downy type hair appearing on my chest-I was told I am developing into an ape! Ha. My advice-Get on ff247! @LionelRichTee

One has to love the banter that comes with @fantasyfooty247 probably second only to "POTTY" what I do love here are the articles they put out with stats to match helpful in more ways than one they are definitely one of the top FPL accounts. @vicksrama05

@SteveCook9, proud co-owner of FF247, shares his thoughts below:

"FF247 was created just six months ago as it enters its first full season. We publish daily articles such as Tips, Player Profiles, Fixture Analysis, Captain's Picks and Team Talk weekend preview. But the joy of the site is the community of FPL managers who enjoy chatting on the message boards in a friendly environment. 

We pride ourselves on the fun element, remembering that FPL is just a game, therefore the banter and fun is as prevalent as the advice, help and analysis on offer. On top of all that, there are weekly prediction competitions and if that is not all we host what are probably the most keenly contested and well run H2H leagues care of the Banterbury Leagues."



Read this, highlight it, underline it, then print it out and post it on your wall: 

DO NOT ATTEMPT TO PLAY FPL WITHOUT BEN DINNERY'S INJURY INFORMATION.

Ben is the man who last season brought you the Physioroom English Premier League Injury Table; the table that conservatively gained managers who utilized it as many as 75-100 points or more towards their season score. If you've played FPL for any period of time, you know how important it is to have solid injury information, and there is no better source of reliable injury info than everyone's friend Mr. Dinnery.

The color-coded injury notifications on the official FPL website are embarrassingly inferior to the information provided by Ben. Not only is his information more detailed than what you'll find on the FPL site, but he does not tell you what you want to hear; he gives it to you straight. If I polled 100 well-respected FPL managers and asked them to name the 5 Twitter accounts they considered absolute must-haves, Big Ben would be included on well over 90 of the smart people's lists. Get him high on your list today and watch as his fame grows before your very eyes. He is already featured on such platforms as ESPN and TalkSport and he is preparing to roll out his new brand shortly. It will be called Premier Injuries and ambitious plans include a state-of-the-art website and mobile app that you simply must take advantage of.

As a matter of fact, as an exclusive offer to those who read this article and follow me (@FPLWalt) on Twitter, Ben is offering a free iPhone/iPad app to those who follow his new @PremierInjuries twitter account and send him a tweet with the hashtag #FreeApp. He will keep a record of those who take advantage and contact you when the app is ready to go. He's like a gift that keeps on giving, as is evidenced by what these folks have had to say....

when is your article due? im away from the internet for the weekend but if anything its got to be physioroom... injury news is critical! @fpl_junkie

Ben gives us the latest updates on injury news 24/7. Undecided on bringing in a player as he's an injury doubt? Ben Dinnery is your man! Provides the best injury updates with detailed reports. A must follow for every FPL manager! @DieHardCFCFan

Aside from all of the obvious choices of FPL "go to" sites that make your decision making process easier during the season, there is one site that I refer to more than the rest. Injuries are potentially the one thing that can make or break your Gameweek, and for that reason the latest and most up to date information is essential.

Ben Dinnery is that one stop shop, with his up to the minute injury listings that can prevent a catastrophic transfer or captain mistake being made. His Twitter account is professionally run and is an absolute must follow for the serious FPL manager.

His inside knowledge of the latest injuries leads me to believe that he has reliable sources inside each and every Premier League club, and if this isn't the case then he's got one hell of a crystal ball!

In all seriousness, if you're not already following @PremierInjuries and @BenDinnery then you need to get with the programme. After all, if you don't, you'll be putting players like Seamus Coleman into your GW1 team without realising he's listed as having a hamstring injury. It's this kind of info that is potential gold dust. @Meet_the_Gadfly

Ben has this message to share with you....

“My hectic lifestyle probably reflects countless others; I have a passion for all things fantasy football but sometimes schedule constraints mean I can’t always dedicate the required time to consider team formation, captaining decisions and squad selection dilemmas. Fundamentally my priority is availability, if a player is likely to miss out or have limited game-time because of an ongoing injury problem - point scoring probability - is greatly reduced; keeping up to date with the latest fitness news can mean the difference between winning and losing! PremierInjuries.com will help you pick the perfect starting eleven.”

Cheers
Ben




The geek is a total dork, but the kind that every FPL fanatic loves. He is one of the unsung heroes of the FPL community. You won't see him doing a bunch of marketing or making a lot of unnecessary noise. You will, however, see some of the best, most well-respected fantasy information and guidance to grace your computer screen. It's quite simple; those who really know their stuff soak up as many articles as this guy can pump out and use the info for their betterment.

Browse through his site for any time whatsoever and within a minute or two you will see titles to articles that make the hair on the back of your neck stand up as you think, "Holy crap; this is awesome!" The Geek is as consistent as they come; constantly in research/analysis mode and sharing his thoughts and spot-on commentary through articles and tweets that so far has resulted in 8,278 very smart and very fortunate followers.  Here's what some of them had to say:

Favourite site- fantasy football geek. Excellent articles which makes your FPL decision making so easy.  @CallumFplonly

ff geek is a very knowledgeable guy who spends a lot of time coming up with great statistical info and some great articles @alexwaterbaby

FantasyFootballGeek is one of my favourites - brilliant accurate insight, been around for years and straight and to the point!  @FPLHelp

FantasyFootballGeek: This site kept me going through the World Cup. Simple advice & recommendations. Easy to follow information for that all important team selection. Great for the new players to FPL. I like the fact they post their team as well, good to compare to my own. Love the fact they give a breakdown of games, teams and value players around plus the potential starting XI info as well. Great read with their pre season round up. Like this a lot. Great follow for anyone new to FPL as they keep everything simple. @McIntoshRosco

For now my favourite site is for @fantasyfoot20 and I like it because it gives me info earlier in a new GW Two, 75% of their facts are right. @venantradz

My fav website! Yes its okay, His articles are spot on & really helpful in players stats throughout the season. An underrated FPL blog IMO @AseelSalem

Alright, well there you have the first installment of the Top 10 FPL Sites/Blogs for you to visit, favorite, and get immersed in as the pre-season shrinks day by day and August 16 gets closer and tantalizingly closer.

Next up we'll dig into 3 more sites/blogs waiting for you with open arms and anxious to get you involved.  Click HERE to enjoy Part 2,

Cheers,

Walt