Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Where's the value?

I really don't know what to make of this season. The increased parity (by EPL standards) we are witnessing is great for competition but is wreaking havoc with the fantasy game. My top 7 ranked teams this week were about as good a clean sheet bunch as you're going to get on paper yet only Blackburn (2nd) and Everton (7th) managed to live up to their ranking with United (1st) and Newcastle (3rd) each conceding two goals at home.

At the start of the season I wrote a piece about the correlation between points and cost which was strongest among forwards and hence we should focus our attention on the big name strikers. Meanwhile bargains at the defensive positions, and to an extent the midfield, meant that value can be found more easily here and hence it was less important to spend big on premium players. 8 weeks into the new season and the correlation between cost and points per 90 minutes is as below:
  • Goalkeeper 18%
  • Defender 42%
  • Midfield 41%
  • Forward 36%
What does this mean? It's a freaking crap shoot! We are basically saying that all that glitters is not gold (goal?) and that you cannot simply plug in a player like Gerrard, Torres, Rooney or one of the countless other flops on the basis that things will even out and he'll 'come good'. With that in mind, what else might be a good indicator of success? Strength of schedule played to date?
  • Goalkeeper 24%
  • Defender 28%
  • Midfielder 19%
  • Forward 15%
As expected, this is a better measure of success for keepers as no matter how good a player you are and who you play for, you're better trying to stop Marlon Harewood scoring than Didier Drogba (groundbreaking stuff I know). For outfield players though the correlation is even weaker which is again what we'd expect as good fixtures can only help you do a degree, but this doesn't help us select our team. A good schedule merely enhances a player's prospects rather than makes them.

Well if nothing else, last's year success is at least a good starting point, right . . .
  • Goalkeepers 3%
  • Defenders 33%
  • Midfield 58%
  • Forwards 54%
Keepers are basically a coin flip and this is why I never pay for them. The midfield and forwards show at least some signs of logic but still nothing we can overly rely on.

This is where I bring it all together and tell you the magic factor to predict future value, right? Unfortunately not. There is no magic bullet. Clearly something is going right as the worldwide standings will attest but I can't tie it all together and come up with a strategy to exploit this crazy season right now. So it's back to the drawing board to try and figure out a way to explain the scores seen to date so far. Stay tuned for an attempt at an answer by the weekend.


David said...

Where is the value indeed! I've had an horrendous start backing Messrs Rooney, Lampard, Van Persie, Arteta at the start and then hopelessly fluffing my wildcard after a drunk night out. haha.

My track record aside, I think the value right now is in the mighty Cesc for several reasons. He's helped me get back in front in European Fantasy and he provides premium fpl differential value at this point at just 7.2% held. His 11.8 price-tag, prices him out the market in the ST for those who don't have him and his value will surely skyrocket on the back of transfers from those who can afford him. Cesc is surely a must-buy target right now, regardless of SoS but even that shows mcy,WHM,NEW,wol over the next four, yet another green tick in the "buy" column for the World Cup Winner.

Steven said...

Ah come on Chris, you're doing just fine :) I had 7, count 'em, SEVEN, guys out last week. That's a wonderful split between rest and injuries. I can only go up from here :)

Ryan said...

Don't be discouraged Chris. We're all right behind you! I had three expensive casualties which made me drop many places in the mini leagues. There is always this unexplainable/unpredictable/luck element which defies all logical and intuitive reasoning. This is what makes football so interesting. Don't stop crunching those numbers - they still guide us in the right direction at the very least.

Ryan said...

Chris or anyone,

Having this tough dilemma - which trio looks better in the coming weeks:

Hart + Fabregas + Carroll


Gilks + Van der Vaart + Tevez

David said...

I think all 6 of those players are good options over the next 6, but as above I would opt for the combo that includes Fab as he's good captain material for gameweeks 10,11&12.

Added to that are rumours that Tevez may be rested, so trio #1 imo

Ryan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ryan said...

Yeah they're all studs but unfortunately I can't afford Fab, VdV and Tevez all at once. I may end up keeping Fab while choosing between VdV and Tevez. Here are some alternative transfer plans to be carried out in the next couple of weeks...

[Option 1: Sacrifice Hart & O'Shea]
Harewood/Ameobi (deadbencher)

[Option 2: Sacrifice Hart & O'Shea]

[Option 3: Sacrifice Fabregas & Carroll]

All opinions/views welcome!

Yeti said...

I think you're doing a great job. While this season has been tumultuous, I rely on your blog for information and tips every week. It's a little bit tougher to get good info here in the States so your efforts are much appreciated. I won my league last year with your assistance and I'm solidly in second place early this season. Thanks for all your hard work and keep posting!