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Thread: The Times New Fantasy Footie League - who is up for this?

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    The Times New Fantasy Footie League - who is up for this?

    The Times seem to have reacted to the fact that their Fantasy Football has always been crap compared to all the others available, and they've come up with quite an interesting concept (and it's free, for this year at least).

    PlayTheGame - Fantasy Football. With Brains | Times Online

    It's mini-league only, no overall league. You can have between 5-20 teams in your league. Each month the top three teams from all the mini-leagues are entered into a prize draw to win some prizes (that's prizes from The Times!).

    Each premier league footballer can only be in one team in the mini-league! At the start you each rank the 440 odd players in terms of how much you want them, and the players are distributed amongst the teams based on your preferences (and an element of randomness). You each get a squad of 20, of which you need to have a starting 11 and 3 subs at any one time.

    The points system is more complex, with player points being awarded for things like successfull passes and tackles as well as usual things like goals, assists, clean sheets. So that means the good players who don't actually score goals are actually worth getting. Your team points are then based on how many player points you got compared to the other teams in your league. (So with 10 teams the best team of the week gets 10 points and the worst gets 1 point).

    You can swap (transfer) any of your players out with the 'out of contract' players at any point, and you can also arrange swap deals with other managers.

    I've set up a mini-league if anyone's interested in signing up. The league name is Russian Expats Division 1and the password is expat. Only 20 teams max are allowed in each League. You need to have registered and ranked the players in terms of how much you want them by Friday, August 10th. I know that doesnít give people much time to look at it and register for the League but I only came across it this evening and the League starts on Saturday 11th anyway.

    Iíve not read all of the rules yet but having had a quick look at it, you select how much you want the various players, and next Monday - n13th Augustour teams are generated based on how highly you wanted someone. So if we all put Ronaldo at the top of our lists only one of us is going to get him. But if you put Darren Bent at the top of your list, you're quite likely to get him as other people would have him a bit further down on their lists.

    So move all the players you want towards the top of your list, and the players you don't want towards the bottom.

    I think the initial rankings are generally based on performances last season so if players were injured like Cech was they might have scored fewer points than other players.

    Also, remember that since points are awarded for passes, saves, tackles, catches etc and Cech generally doesn't have a lot to do all game he might not be the prize he is in traditional fantasy football. So defensive players for the lower clubs who are very busy during a game might not be the disasters you expect. (Although clean sheets and team performance do count for points as well).

    My team, by the way is called - Motherwell Father Dead

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    Good idea,i'll sign up later .

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    Good lad Judge. I doubt if we'll get anywhere near 20 on here (that's the maximum number of teams, the Times allows in each League) to take part. It seems these days that the only people regularly posting about footie is you, kste22 and me. It sounds like the 'Clean-man' is more into his rugby, but he might be up for a bit of fun - plus he can get his post count up as he seems to want to win that PC (just kidding!!!!)

    The more teams that are in this the more competitive it becomes as the teams are selected not by the entrant but by the Times, super-duper computer system and as I said in my earlier note, if we all put down Ronaldo at the top of our lists, only one of the Managers (chosen randomly by the Times) will get him. (Len Ganley Stance makes note to self : Stick Stevie Gerrard at the top of list to spite Judge and kste - just joking, or am I?)

    If there is a lack of interest, maybe what we should do then is put a couple of teams in each, but let's see how it goes and make a decision on Friday morning or something. We might be surprised and be innudated with people who want to sign up and then have lots of bother by teams who don't get in before the maximum 20 team per League limit is reached.

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    Keep you hands off Gerrard!!!!!
    You're right, if we only get a few guys playing then we could have a few teams each., this will give YOU more of a chance.

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    Nice one Len, signed up!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Judge View Post
    Keep you hands off Gerrard!!!!!
    You're right, if we only get a few guys playing then we could have a few teams each., this will give YOU more of a chance.
    Judge,

    You know my feelings towards Liverpool FC, so it would be completely against any scruples I have in picking a single Liverpool player let alone packing my list of preferences with a bunch of underachievers

    On the otherhand, I can visualise you biting the bullet and putting a few United players on your list. The one I would go for if I was you is Darren Fletcher who - you may not have noticed - was wearing white boots in the Community Shield on Sunday. White boots are usually only worn by players with a few tricks up their sleeves. Fletcher must have been working over the Summer in adding at least one trick to his armory.

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    Under achiver's, just think Josemi that much vaunted and admired ex liverpool full back and the ever relaible Djmi Traore has the same amount of European cup medals as Neville Neville's older son!

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    I picked the following up from the Times website this morning. It gives detailed info on how the game works -

    WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?



    Football at the top level is a game of squads rather than teams - and now, so is fantasy football, thanks to PlayTheGame. This season, you can rotate your forwards, change your line-up to suit the opposition or to allow for injuries and suspensions, pick up out-of-contract players and even negotiate transfers with other managers.

    In other fantasy leagues, any team could have any player depending on a transfer budget - so everybody owned Thierry Henry, which was not very realistic. In your PlayTheGame league, as in the real world, there will be only one Wayne Rooney, or Frank Lampard, and only one team can own him. Like the Premier League, your fantasy league will have a maximum of 20 teams, and the top-flight players will be distributed among them. What is more, the higher you rate a player, the more likely he is to end up in your team.

    Each team will be allocated 20 players, of which 14 will be active at any one time. The players must fit into a 4-4-2 system of goalkeeper, right back, two centre backs, left back, right midfield, two centre midfielders, left midfield, and two forwards. The three extra active players - the substitutes - are a defender, a midfield player, and a forward.

    Players can only be used in a position for which they are eligible. For example, at the moment you can only use Joleon Lescott of Everton as a centre back. But if he plays a Premier League match at left-back, he can play there for you too for the rest of the season.

    It is not difficult to PlayTheGame but it is unlike any other fantasy football game. First, you will need to either create or join a league and then the fun starts.

    PLAYER ALLOCATION RANKINGS:
    On this page you will see a list of all the available Premier League players. When your league was created, a date was set for players to be allocated to teams by the game computer. There is a random element in the computer's choice of the order of teams, but after that, each fantasy manager has a considerable influence over which players come his or her way. This is your chance to alter the pre-set rankings, which are based on last season's performances in the case of established players, or on predicted fantasy performance in the case of players new to the Premier League.

    Because the other managers in your league will also be ranking their players, these moves do not guarantee that you will be allocated the players you want, but they improve your chances considerably. It is worth bearing in mind that the computer will make sure it fills your 14 team slots before it allocates your reserves. So depending on how your competitors' lists are ranked you may not have a particularly well-balanced bench.

    TEAM MANAGEMENT
    Once the players have been allocated, you can pick your team for the opening weekend of the season. You can make team changes between Saturday's matches and Sunday's games, and again before the midweek matches. BUT BEWARE - each slot in your team can only be used 38 times. So if you have Lucas Neill in your team's right back position for West Ham's home game with Manchester City on Saturday August 11, then replace him with Gary Neville to take advantage of Manchester United's home game with Reading the following day, you have only 36 more starts for that position - yet every Premiership club has 37 matches still to play. Careful scrutiny of the fixture lists will be required to see where your resources can best be deployed.

    The size of your squad may allow you to negotiate injuries, suspensions and loss of form - but you have two other recourses. First, there is the unallocated player pool. You can drop an under-performing player and sign a replacement. Or you can negotiate a player exchange deal with another manager in your league.

    SCORING CATEGORIES
    PlayTheGame strives to capture the true value of players by tracking a number of statistical categories as well as qualifying those performances with the ultimate judge of any performance: the result. In order to capture the truest measure of all the players on the pitch, we have split the starting XI into two groups - one consisting of a goalkeeper and four defenders whose primary task is to stop the opposition from scoring and one covering the midfield players and forwards whose primary task tends to be the scoring of goals - and tailored their statistics accordingly.

    Goalkeepers and defenders score points in five categories: clean sheets; goals/assists (goalkeepers can score goals - remember Paul Robinson's against Watford last season); defence; average goals against; and team points. The first two are self-explanatory. Defence combines interceptions, catches, blocks, saves and successful passes.

    Average Goals Against reflects the number of goals per 90 minute game the player's team concedes while he is on the pitch. So that if David James plays the full 90 minutes of a 2-0 defeat, his average goals per game score is 2. If he keeps a clean sheet in his next game, his average drops to 1. If he concedes a goal in the first half of his next game, and is substituted at half time, the arithmetic gets more complicated - luckily the website does the calculations for you. (1.2, in case you haven't worked it out).

    Points represents the number of points gained by the team in any match in which the player appears. So if he is brought on as a 94th-minute substitute to waste time with the team leading 1-0 and does not even touch the ball, he still collects three points.

    Midfielders and forwards also score in five categories: goals, assists, successful passes, average goals for and points. The Average Goals For stat reflects goals scored while the player is on the field, again pro-rated over 90 minutes. The Points stat works in the same way as for defenders and goalkeepers.

    SCORING SYSTEM
    PlayTheGame uses a Rotisserie Scoring system, a name that has less to do with the roasting of chickens than the name of the restaurant where a group of supporters invented it.

    Under this approach, teams are ranked from first to last in each statistical category with the highest point total available in a single category equal to the number of teams participating in the league. The lowest point total available for that category is equal to one. Thus, in a ten-team league, if a manager is leading in Clean Sheets, she is granted 10 points. If she is ranked second in Clean Sheets, she is granted 9 points, etc. down to 1 point for the manager who has the fewest Clean Sheets. This is done for all ten categories. The manager's overall score is determined by summing up the manager's points in each category. The manager with the highest overall score is in first place.

    Therefore, the maximum number of points that a team in a ten-team league can earn is 100 (equal to the number of scoring categories (10), multiplied by the number of teams in the league (10)).

    In the case of a tie, each team receives an average of the total points due i.e. in the above example, if two teams were tied for first in Clean Sheets, each would receive 9.5 points [(10 + 9) / 2 = 9.5].

    Thus, to find a team's total score on a particular date, one must review their ranking in each of the league's chosen categories. The accumulation of points and the constantly changing table in leagues using rotisserie scoring is something that takes a little getting used to but will also keep many a manager mesmerised by the many possible routes to future success.

    As you can see, PlayTheGame is the most sophisticated online football game yet devised, and requires Jose Mourinho's gift for squad management, Arsene Wenger's eye for a player, and Harry Redknapp's ability to wheel, deal and pick up a bargain. We are confident that this will be your most complete fantasy football experience ever. All you have to do now is think of a team name - and PlayTheGame.

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    Jesus wept, Len, but this looks complicated. I'll have a butchers, and get back to you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by exprumos View Post
    Jesus wept, Len, but this looks complicated. I'll have a butchers, and get back to you.
    The only bit I think is complicated is the bit I've highlighted below from the Team Management section -

    Once the players have been allocated, you can pick your team for the opening weekend of the season. You can make team changes between Saturday's matches and Sunday's games, and again before the midweek matches. BUT BEWARE - each slot in your team can only be used 38 times. So if you have Lucas Neill in your team's right back position for West Ham's home game with Manchester City on Saturday August 11, then replace him with Gary Neville to take advantage of Manchester United's home game with Reading the following day, you have only 36 more starts for that position - yet every Premiership club has 37 matches still to play. Careful scrutiny of the fixture lists will be required to see where your resources can best be deployed.

    It's a bit like the 'Timed Changes' you used to do when you did the Telegraph's online game. Remembering that rule is going to be a pain but could be make-or-break to winning it or not. It's only a bit of fun though.

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    Done, the Moscow Blizzards are registered.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Len Ganley Stance View Post
    It's a bit like the 'Timed Changes' you used to do when you did the Telegraph's online game. Remembering that rule is going to be a pain but could be make-or-break to winning it or not. It's only a bit of fun though.
    Yeah, I miss that game, to be honest.

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    We have three teams registered so far. Judge will be in as well, so 16 more places up for grabs.

    Come on people, it's a bit of fun.

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    The computer does my team for me?i ranked a few players,is that all i do,when can i put them in place.

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    it says Allocation Date Fri. August 10, 2007,so on friday i get to choose some players.

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