BC’s Fantasy Football Nightmares


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GW28 Snakes & Salah-adders

An advice column for the bottom seven million Fantasy Premier League managers

My Fantasy Premier League team, BC FC, continues the downward slip that may lead it right back to what has been, for most FPL seasons, it’s natural place at the bottom of its mini-leagues. I’m unlikely to actually sink to cellar position because the bottom team has almost 400 points fewer (396).

Someone who passed O’Level maths in the usual one attempt, and not the four spread over three years it took me, could probably declare it a certainty but, with nine clear weeks left in the competition — I just counted on my fingers to be sure — I could not state with any certainty (nor even great doubt) that it was a mathematical impossibility; but at least my chances of ending up at No 10 are better than Sir Keir Starmer’s.

I’d like to think BC FC’s disappointing performance this week was arcane but it was more Harry Kane. BC FC returned a scant 55 points, when the global average was 60, and the highest score in our family & friends mini-league was 88. My team’s relative collapse coincided with what might properly be called a relative eruption, in the form of my brother-in-law’s team, Toss the Salah, which scored the 88 points, and whose captain, Kane, provided 38 points by himself. Toss the Salah took second spot.

Still, things could be worse. (And probably will get this week.)

BC FC is still just ahead of my wife’s Most Handsome XI, which might make me feel better about my FPL manager skills, if my wife’s team was selected on a basis other than the one clearly implied in the team name; her transfer in this week of Gareth Bale is likely to work, because his burst of form coincides with her forgiving him his man bun.

The prospects for BC FC are not cheering. After much agonising last week, I opted to continue with my plan to use my free hit chip for the next blank GW29 and transferred in Mason Mount, rather than Raphinha; but it now looks like a future blank game-week 32 (I think) will offer fixtures far more likely to produce points in the use of a free hit.

So, with only three players on my squad with a game in GW29, I’m now thinking of trying to save my free hit.

If I could do arithmetic as well as I do chocolate or ale or salt ’n’ vinegar crisps, or anxiety, I’d be able to figure out precisely when I should use the free hit.

But all of mathematics is one big Venn diagram to me, and I can’t ever figure out what’s in the intersection of the three circles.

Venn diagrams probably aren’t even a mathematical thing any more.

And BC FC is fast becoming “not a top three” thing.

Luckily, I’m spared my feeble attempts at calculating possible benefits and/or burdens of future free hit deployments, at least for this week, because my plan was to bring in the very much in form (and, obviously, Most Handsome) Gareth Bale this week anyway; he has a game in GW29.

Deciding who to transfer out, though, was like deciding whether to vote Liberal Democrat (Mo Salah) or Labour (Raheem Sterling) in Richmond; whoever I picked wasn’t going to do as well as the Tory (Bruno Fernandes) I sold.

My thinking, heavily influenced by my adult son, who’s actually played football competitively, is that Bruno has had so many games and has shown signs of tiredness, while Salah should at least have one vengeance penalty left in him v Wolves (before I transfer him out, too).

Only after I’d made and confirmed the transfers did I discover that every tipster in Fantasyland advised holding Bruno and letting Mo go.

In a moment of partial daring and full compression of Pep Roulette, I captained Dominic C-L ahead of five strong midfielders, any of whom might be more likely to score more points.

If only I could work out those chances, I wouldn’t have to take my own.

My next advice column/eulogy/apology for BC FC will appear around the GW29 deadline