Right after we completed our draft, I wanted to make a trade. A few reasons for this:
So what was the deal on offer?
I was offering Tadic (in the very unlikely chance that you haven't heard of him, he is Southampton's creative replacement for Adam Lallana) and Bony (Swansea's main man up front). In return, I was willing to take any striker that the trading party didn't want as long as I got a high-end midfielder in return.
As anyone who plays draft style premiership fantasy knows, strikers are a prized commodity. They get snapped up quickly, and with so many teams adopting a one-striker policy, there aren't that many options around. By the time that everyone is picking their third striker, pickings are few and often, you are happy to simply get a striker that gets regular minutes with some sort of chance of scoring.
What was I thinking?!
Well, the midfielder shortlis I had put up on offer would have allowed me (in theory) to upgrade my midfield (you'll notice that Sanchez and Hazard are not on the list because I had them drafted in already). But would the drop off in striker quality be worth that difference. On the surface, I think no (and the points earned so far since the deal was put on offer have reflected that). But that's where my secret weapon comes in.
Somehow, every player had overlooked one striker that I thought (and think) will do quite well over the season. He is unlikely to beat Bony's points total by the end, however, the difference would more than be made up for by the midfield upgrade:
Mame Biram Diouf - Looking threatening as the main man at Stoke (albeit slightly injury prone). He had just scored the winner against Manchester City not long before the draft so I was surprised that he had been overlooked!
My aim was to take the midfield upgrade and not take the striker offered to me (but I couldn't simply say that because then my clever rivals would have figured out what I was upto).
When all was said and done, however, nobody took the deal. A combination of being attached to their drafted players and thinking something was up meant it didn't happen. To try and sweeten the deal - I even made an offer: I would dock myself the equivalent points difference if my pair on offer scored less over the season than the pair I was getting! Still no go!
But it's worked out so far. Other than Fabregas, Tadic has more or less kept pace with all the other midfielders I was after and shows no signs of slowing down.
So, would you have taken the deal on offer? And which side of the equation will win out in terms of total points by the end of the season?
It's a complicated analysis, primarily because the 5 players that you mention have such differing performances. According the the www.draftsoccer.com stats at this point in the season, Fabregas is the #1 EPL Midfielder, but he is only 9 points ahead of Tadic. So, those two are currently a push - though you can imagine (the way Chelsea are playing) that Fabregas will get more games in the 2nd half of the season. So, if the trade was Tadic for Fabregas, you could see the logic in it from both sides. However, to trade Tadic for Ozil would be great for the person getting Tadic. Ozil, for as good as he can be, has not yet converted this into stats this year, only getting 46 points.
The other part of the trade - "Bony for any crap striker" obviously leans more towards whoever gets Bony right now. Bony only has 53 points, but that's still going to be better than a "crap striker". The difference is that there are a lot of strikers in that point range so all you'd do is drop the crap striker and pick up another with comparable stats to Bony (by the way, Diouf also has 53 points right now).
If it was me, I wouldn't give up Fabregas for another Mid unless I was being offered something stronger at another position that I didn't have strength in.
Just my 2 cents. Good luck with the trade / season!
Bony's points are skewed by a poor start I think. They might be further skewed depending on how the AFCON goes but he will have a quite high points per game.
I think you have overestimated the number of strikers 'in that bracket' - More than 8 players in a draft league and you are very unlikely to find players of that kind that are available.
Regarding Ozil - Like I mentioned in the article, it was early in the season (end of August). He was still available.
Anyway, like I said, I'm glad nobody took me up on the offer, because Tadic plus Bony has handily outscored the other side (thus far!). I would still be tempted to take a similar trade if offered.
Nick you never answered mine or others' question about draftsoccer.. How are you affiliated with them?
You can check our stats (I run Draftsoccer, sorry, thought I'd already responded to one person on that. I must have responded privately to them) and see how many FWD's there are in that points bracket. You can find that here - http://www.draftsoccer.com/index.php/home/static_pages/stats
Ozil and Fabregas have been drafted in every single league we've had so far, though Bony has only been drafted in some.
There are currently 45 players in the EPL that are between 30 and 60 points (to allow for slow/fast starts). If you broaden that to the EPL/La Liga/Serie A then there are 115 forwards. A typical league has about 8-10 teams in it and each averages 5 forwards. Many of those are in the >60 points bracket, so there are a lot of available players at the mid-points level. This is what makes it tough with all 3 leagues as you have to really know your football to find those real gems (e.g., Mauri Icardi, Graziano Pelle, Harry Kane, Nolito).
As for your trade, just like stocks, it makes sense to sell high, so getting rid of Tadic now seems like a great idea if you can get someone who has done it year-in-year-out. You have to wonder about Bony based on the trade gossip in the past transfer window and the new gossip about Michu potentially coming back
Not too long to go before we are ready to launch. That means we should all start thinking about our drafting strategy. This will vary from league to league and a lot of it will come down to the makeup of your competitors although a few of the key concepts will apply in every scenario. Over the next few articles we shall go over the obvious and less obvious drafting tactics. As we have mentioned before, the draft will make or break your season so you had best go in with a plan!
We will kick this off with going over the strategy that will come as a first instinct to pretty much everyone. Basic stuff but important:
The Fantasy Stalwarts
We all know these players. You can rely on them every season to bring home the bacon. They are consistent, fixture-proof, good captain material - the all-stars of the fantasy football world. In salary-cap leagues, they are without a doubt the players present in every squad. If you have them, you are able to keep up with those around you, if you are silly enough not to have them (the differential heroes amongst us), then 9 times out of 10 it leads to you losing serious ground on your rivals.
That entire concept changes dramatically in draft style leagues. The first round or two of the draft pick will be littered with these fantasy stalwarts and for good reason. Load up your priority lists with these guys quick and try and snag as many of them as you can. They are season keepers.
Its been two years now since the start of my fantasy football league. When I first started, I knew nothing about football. My first draft was a mess - I used a cheat sheet I found in the July issue of ESPN magazine. I drafted a defense with my 10th round pick (everybody knows you only draft defenses and kickers with the last two picks). Worst of all, I was in a league full of sports junkies, guys who watch every game every Sunday.
This season I’m 2nd place, with the best season record. I’ve made around 7 trades. I know the names of most teams starting players, and a few of their backups.
I guess it takes something as trivial as fantasy football to show me that improvement is a long and slow process, but improvement happens. Too often I look at things and get disappointed because of the results. I’m so focused on improvement that frustration quickly swells up. Why am I not getting better? I expect so much from myself that I can’t see small progress for what it is: a tiny bit improvement.
But everything takes time.
Even if it takes years, I know that I’ll reach my goals eventually. And if i can get good at fantasy football, something I don’t care and didn’t even try to get good at, then of course I’ll be good at something I poured sweat and tears into.