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How to play FPL: A beginner's guide

The Scout 10 Jul 2019
FPL Beginner's guide

Want to start playing the game but not sure how? The Scout explains all the basics for first-time Fantasy Premier League managers

Keen to become a Fantasy Premier League manager but not sure how? We've got you covered.

A record-breaking 6.3million managers played the game last season and if you want to join them in 2019/20, The Scout is here to help.

Here is everything you need to know about getting started ahead of the season opener on Friday 9 August, when Liverpool host Norwich City.

Building a squad

Once you have signed up, FPL managers have a budget of £100.0m to spend on an initial squad of 15 players.

A squad consists of two goalkeepers, five defenders, five midfielders and three forwards.

A maximum of three players can be chosen from any one Premier League club.

Selecting your team

Managers must choose a starting XI from their 15-man squad before each Gameweek deadline.

Any formation can be chosen as long as the line-up includes one goalkeeper, at least three defenders, at least two midfielders and at least one forward.

The deadline is always one hour before the kick-off time of the first match of the Gameweek.

Scoring points

Points are awarded to players for goals, assists, saves and clean sheets.

Players can also earn additional bonus points if they are among the top performers in the Bonus Points System (BPS) in a match.

An FPL team's points for the Gameweek will be scored by their 11 starting players.

But if a starting player does not feature for their club, the points scored by the first player on your bench will automatically be counted instead.

The same process occurs if two or three starting players fail to appear for their teams.

Managers should therefore rank their substitutes in order of preference, to ensure that their first-choice reserve player is first in line.

Managers must choose a captain and a vice-captain for the Gameweek in their XI.

A captain's score is doubled, but if the selected skipper does not play in the Gameweek then the vice-captain's score is doubled instead.

Leagues

After entering their squad into the game, managers can join and create leagues to compete with friends and others across the world.

Private leagues are where you compete against your friends. Just create a league and then send out the unique code to allow your friends to join.

You can compete in up to 20 private leagues. There is no limit on the number of teams in a single league.

Managers can also join a public league of 20 randomly-assigned teams.

You can compete in up to three public leagues.

Making transfers

After the first deadline of the season has passed, managers are given one free transfer for each Gameweek.

This enables them to sign a player in exchange for a member of their 15-man squad, as long as the switch is within their budget.

If managers want to make additional transfers in a Gameweek, they will lose four points for each one.

If managers do not use their free transfer, they can carry it over and have two free transfers for the following Gameweek.

However, they are unable to build up more than two free transfers.

Player prices

Player prices change during the season depending on their popularity among all the managers in the game.

For example, a player who starts at £6.0m and is transferred into a significant number of teams could gradually rise to £6.5m, or even higher.

Managers who own the player while his price is increasing will make a profit if they sell him at the higher price.

However, they must pay a sell-on fee of 50 per cent, rounded down to the nearest £0.1m.

So in the example of the player above who has risen from £6.0m to £6.5m, managers would receive £6.2m when transferring him out.

Chips

There are five chips to play over the season which can boost a team's points total in a Gameweek. 

Wildcard - Completely overhaul your team without forfeiting points (twice a season)
Triple captain - Get three times your points total for your captain
Bench boost - Earn points from your non-playing substitutes
Free Hit - Reset your team for one week only before it reverts

The Wildcard is the most powerful chip, allowing managers to make any number of transfers in a Gameweek free of charge.

Essentially, this provides the opportunity to make wholesale changes to an entire 15-man squad.

One Wildcard is available for each half of the season.

It is worth noting that only one chip can be played in a Gameweek. 

Any questions? 

Head to fantasy.premierleague.com/help for any more questions you may need answering.

See also

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