FPL Double Game Weeks (and the dreaded blanks)
FPL Double Game Weeks in 2016
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With Manchester City and Liverpool both progressing to the League Cup final which takes place on Sunday 28th February (I know – crazy that a cup final is played in February!) it means that both teams will not feature in game week 27. Their respective opponents for that game week were Newcastle and Everton meaning that Fantasy Premier League managers look set to miss out on many of their key players for that round of fixtures. The up side of this is that all of those teams will feature in double game week at some point this season, although it is still up for debate as to when that will happen.
So, lets just make that clear once again:
Manchester City, Liverpool, Newcastle and Everton will not play in game week 27. That is just 3 game weeks away. So it certainly makes sense to start planning for that now, as well as keeping an eye out for when the double game weeks will occur. You can be sure that almost every FPL player worth their salt will be preparing for the DGW, but a few might be less prepared for blank GW27 – perhaps a chance to steal a march on some of your opponents.
At the moment there is no indication from the Premier League or from the individual clubs as to when these double game week fixtures might be played but the weeks that we have identified as being possibilities are GW25 (but that is probably too soon), GW34 and GW37. Games cannot take place when UEFA games are being played so the Premier League have a certain amount of limitation on where they can put their fixtures. This will be bad news for those of you who are holding on to your wildcard for a double game week as it means you are only going to get a maximum of 5 weeks worth of benefit from it.
Preparing for Gameweek 27
So the one thing we know for certain at the moment is that Liverpool, Everton, Man City and Newcastle will not be playing in GW27. With 4 potential free transfers between now and then there is ample opportunity to have your team prepared without needing a kneejerk reaction the week before.
One strategy would be to offload your Newcastle and Everton players sooner as they are less likely to give you big points returns. I would certainly be looking to drop any Newcastle players first and with them playing Chelsea away in GW26 you certainly can do without them for that week. Your Man City players are the ones that you will want to keep and I’m afraid it will be a case of putting Aguero on the bench for GW27 – other players could perhaps be transferred out. The injury to KDB is almost a blessing in disguise as you can drop him this week (if you have him) without having to worry about losing money as he is going to be out for most of the season now – probably for 10 weeks. Liverpool have a good run of fixtures right up so perhaps limit yourself to one Liverpool player to keep in to GW27.
The strategy will of course depend on your own individual team – so if you are a member it will be a perfect opportunity to let us help you plan your team – simply email your team to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Should I use my wildcard for a double game week?
We have just touched on this but it is a good question. Many of you will want to keep the wildcard for the double game week to allow you to maximize the amount of points you can get from your players. The biggest issue with this tactic is that you cannot use your wildcard and another chip at the same time. Now, I would suggest that the triple captain chip simply has to be used in a double gameweek (bad luck if you didn’t think of that earlier and you’ve blown it already) so using the wildcard becomes a redundant question. Some players will of course think that the wildcard is worth using and it certainly has it’s merits – having 6 players playing DGW’s could be better than having 3 plus a triple captain on two games.
It is hard to predict if there will be any other double game weeks or blank game weeks this season but it is quite likely that the FA Cup will also have an impact.
Any teams getting in to the FA Cup quarter or semi finals are likely to have blank game weeks for GW30 and 35 respectively so that is potentially another 8 teams involved in blanks.