Possible Strategies for the Double Game Weeks and Blanks

Arsenal and Manchester United have some excellent fixtures upcoming. - Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Hi there! I'm not sure if this warrants a fan post as I think I'm least qualified, but here are my thoughts for those who are looking for some materials to read in their planning for the Official game, as it helps in my own planning too. Enjoy!

A recap:

DGW34 (Teams with 2 home games are ranked first)

  • Arsenal (CPL,WBA)
  • Manchester United (AVL, CPL)
  • Everton (SOU, liv)
  • Liverpool (bou, EVE)
  • West Ham (lei, WAT)
  • West Brom (WAT, ars)
  • Newcastle (SWA, mci)
  • Manchester City (che, new)
  • Watford (wba, whu)
  • Crystal Palace (ars, mun)

DGW37 (Teams with 2 home games are ranked first)

  • West Ham (SWA, MUN)
  • Liverpool (WAT, CHE)
  • Norwich (MUN, WAT)
  • Sunderland (CHE, EVE)
  • Chelsea (sun, liv)
  • Manchester United (nor, whu)
  • Watford (liv, nor)
  • Everton (lei, sun)

Grouping of teams just for this post, to go easier on the eyes: (It'll be like a time progression where Group A will involve those with the earliest DGW34 until Group D which will involve those in DGW37, for easier reading.)

GrpA - 4* Teams with a double in GW34 and playing in GW35: Arsenal, City, West Brom and Newcastle (ARS/MCI/WBA/NEW) *Palace might join this group

GrpB - 4 Teams with 2 doubles in Gameweek 34 and 37 but blank in GW35: ManUnited, Everton, West Ham and Watford (MUN/EVE/WHA/WAT)

GrpC - 2 Teams playing in GW35 and double in GW37: Chelsea and Sunderland (CHE/SUN)

GrpD - 8* Teams having a DGW37: West Ham, Liverpool, Norwich, Sunderland, Chelsea, ManUnited, Watford and Everton (WHA/LIV/NOR/SUN/CHE/MUN/WAT/EVE) *overlaps with all the groups except Group A

GrpE - 1* Team with 2 DGWs and playing in GW35: Liverpool (LIV) *Everton might join this group if their match with Palace is scheduled in GW35, cancelling out the blank.

Some acronym/abbreviations:

TC - Triple Captain chip

BB - Bench Boost chip

WC - Wildcard

FT - Free Transfer

DGW - Double Gameweek

SGWer - Single Gameweek players

There are 3 camps for consideration: Those that have a wildcard and so will either do it before the 1st or the later DGW, and those that do not have a wildcard or has already used it.

1. WC(GW31-33) / BB(DGW34) / TC(DGW37)

This needs much more planning in order to navigate 2 DGWs and a blank in between. To start, I'm using Blank GW35 as a pivot, and work backwards towards DGW34 and forward towards DGW37.

You can also wildcard before GW33 so as to retain certain in-form players such as Kane or Mahrez before transferring them out.

WC GW33:

  • (6 + 2 from GrpA - DGW34, SGW35) *the later 2 will be replaced later in GW35 from GrpC as shown below +
  • (3 from GrpE - DGW34, SGW35, DGW37) *would highly suggest retaining Kane/Mahrez instead of having 3 from Liverpool though +
  • (4 from GrpB - DGW34, Blank35, DGW37) *one needs to be a goalkeeper = 15 DGWers

To ensure 11 playing in GW35:

  • (6 from GrpA - DGW34, SGW35) +
  • (2 from GrpC - SGW35, DGW37) *done with 2 FTs rolled from GW34 and GW35 +
  • (3 from GrpE - DGW34, SGW35, DGW37) = 11 playing
  • 4 from GrpB - DGW34, Blank35, DGW37, will be benched here.

To ensure 11 DGWers in GW37:

  • (2 from GrpC already in the team from GW35) +
  • (2 additionals from GrpD - DGW37) *done with 2 FTs rolled from GW36 and GW37 +
  • (3 from GrpE - DGW34, SGW35, DGW37) +
  • (4 from GrpB - DGW34, Blank35, DGW37) = 11 DGWers

Of course all this is assuming no injuries/bans occurs and no hits taken, and if unfortunately it does, then a hit or more needs to be taken.

Having one or more SGWers will mean that the combined total from the DGW groups is lesser.

2. TC(DGW34) / WC(GW36) / BB(DGW37)

This path allows one to retain in-form Leicester and Spurs players, whom are both gunning for the title, to be used right before wildcarding, which is still great.

In order to have 11 DGWers for DGW34:

  • (7 or 6 from GrpA - DGW34, SGW35 and GrpE - DGW34, SGW35, DGW37 combined) +
  • (4 or 5 from GrpB - DGW34, Blank35, DGW37) *saved from blank GW30 and ideally one needs to be a goalkeeper = 11 DGWers
  • 4 SGWers benched *the numbers coincide to form 15 players. More than 4 players here means the number shrink from other DGW groups combined.

So, should you wish to use one or more of the in-form players from Leicester or Spurs to play in DGW34 then the combine total from the double gameweek groups of A, E and B will be lesser.

In order to have 11 playing in GW35:

  • (7 or 6 GrpA and GrpE combined) +
  • 4 or 5 SGWers = 11 playing
  • You'll also have 1FT to use to bring in someone from GrpC, rolled from GW35 when DGW34 starts, should you be short of 1 player playing.
  • You should ideally be benching 4 from GrpB to be used later in the DGW37, again assuming 1 of them is a goalkeeper.

WC GW36: a note on who to WC in for DGW37 is to have the final GW38 in view, where you would want to bring in those players who are either in form or have a favourable fixture in GW38, as well as a double gameweek in GW37.

3. Those that have used their WC...

No need to panic if you have most of the popular double holy trinities from Leicester(Vardy/Mahrez/Fuchs) and Spurs(Kane/Alli or Eriksen/Alderweireld), or in-form Arnautovic and Siggy, which will bode well for the rest of the season even in the DGWs.

The planning is similar from the above mentioned strategy in (2.) where you can also have the flexibility to pick which of the BB or TC chips to use in the 2 DGWs, depending on the number of DGWers, and the form+fixture factor to consider, as well as which SGWers from Leicester and Spurs to retain.

Once again, use blank GW35 as a pivot and bring in the best player choices from now until DGW34. For blank GW35, you can bring in players from GrpC - SGW35, DGW37 should you be short on playing players and then afterwhich, just focus on the bringing in the best player choices for DGW37 will do.

The impact of the allocation of the match between Palace and Everton:

Palace vs Everton (from GW35) is the only match left to be rescheduled because the pair is going head-to-head in the FA Cup semis. This match can happen anywhere from GW32 (doubt it'll be GW31 as there's too little time left) to GW37. So, what does it mean for wildcard holders and the rest of us?

Well, if it happens at GW32 or GW33, then using the wildcard early is highly tempting.

If it occurs in DGW34 making it a triple GW, it is undesirable as rarely would a player plays 3 times in a week (Sat-Mon-Wed), maybe Lukaku... which will make him the default triple captain choice.

If it happens at GW35 then both Palace and Everton won't have a blank and we don't have to rely on 3 Liverpool players and can mix in more Evertonians from GrpE.

If it happens at GW36, then Everton will have 2 consecutive DGWs.

So that's all. Thanks for reading! Feel free to comment and point out mistakes. Cheers!