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Congratulations to NMA’s Fantasy EPL League Winners!

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The points have been tallied and the results are in. Join us as we crown the best fantasy managers in NMA’s leagues!

Sergio Aguero with trophy - Manchester City - Premier League Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

The 2018-19 English Premier League season drew to a close in thrilling fashion on Sunday. Manchester City overcame an early deficit at Brighton to win 4-1, thus pipping Liverpool to the league title by a single point. City have now won the crown two years in a row, and four of the last eight.

The title was also Pep Guardiola’s eighth league championship in three countries over the last ten years. With dozens of other major domestic and international trophies to boot, he must surely be considered one of history’s greatest football managers.

But we’ve got some fine (fantasy) managers right here at NMA, and now that the curtain has fallen on this season’s campaign it’s time to recognize them.

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Fantasy Premier League (Official Game)

This was my first year playing this format, and although I often felt like I was groping around in the dark, I did enjoy it! The “chips” and limits on transfers forced me to approach player selection more strategically than I’d been accustomed to in Fantrax and Yahoo, and the captaincy added a new element of excitement (and danger). Below is the final table, with King Sav’s It’s Lit reigning supreme.

Here’s how things panned out for the NMA staff members who competed in this format. Amazingly, we all finished within 55 points of each other — that’s a difference of only 2.4% between our highest and lowest finishers!

Staff Rankings: FPL

Staff Member Team Name Total Points NMA Rank Global Rank
Staff Member Team Name Total Points NMA Rank Global Rank
Omar Pelau FC 2249 186 136,116
Chris Team Chris Manfredi 2223 252 198,502
David Team David Brian 2218 271 211,591
Simon Stall Express 2203 324 260,443
Darryl Manuvelona 2194 357 294,262

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Fantrax NMA League

Recognized by the NMA staff and many of the old hands among our blog community as the ultimate Fantrax black-belt Jedi wizard, Stall once again proved himself to be our Pep Guardiola in this format. He finished the season as champion, and was never far from the top of the leaderboard (neither were many of the rest of the top 10, for that matter). Here’s the final ladder:

And here are the results for the NMA staff members who played this format. Stall blew us all away, of course. But again, the rest of us were separated by a mere 99 points and 2.8%. That’s an average difference of less than three points per week!

Staff Rankings: 11-Man Fantrax

Staff Member Team Name Total Points NMA Rank
Staff Member Team Name Total Points NMA Rank
Simon Team stallexpress 3899 1
Chris Team Chris Manfredi 3593 17
David Team DavidBrian 3537 24
Jeff Alehouse WAGS 3494 29

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Fantrax NMA + Bench

This was a really fun format for me. Having a bench enabled me to hang on to discounts on big producers even when they went out with injuries — a feature that kept Fantrax points-machine Lucas Digne in my squad at $4.87 all the way through to the end. The extra slots also presented me with fun weekly conundrums like whether to put a big chunk of change into a single marquee name, or spread that same money out on two or three promising mid-priced players. The 17-man league also had relatively gentle pricing (Fantrax’s algorithm accounts for the 100-unit budget needing to buy 17 players), which made it possible to find room for even the biggest fantasy studs pretty much whenever I wanted to. A sincere tip of the hat to Jeff for creating and managing this league for us (including working with Fantrax to overcome a couple bugs in its experimental best-of scoring), where INDIA finished the season at the top of the heap:

Only three staff members competed in this format. In fairness to Stall, he stopped playing mid-season and left his team to drift.

Staff Rankings: 17-Man Fantrax

Staff Member Team Name Total Points NMA Rank
Staff Member Team Name Total Points NMA Rank
David Vote For Pedro 4562 12
Jeff Alehouse WAGS 4444 17
Simon Team stallexpress 3551 50

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Congratulations once again to It’s Lit, Team stallexpress, and INDIA, our NMA League champions. And a tip of the hat to all of the NMA fantasy managers out there who faithfully cultivated and nurtured their squads throughout the very long EPL season. How many times did you sit bolt upright in bed on Friday night because you suddenly remembered that you hadn’t set your teams yet? How many times did you wake up at weird hours for a last-minute deadline scramble? And how many times did you sneak onto nevermanagealone.com while at work so you could live chat with us? We appreciate your dedication and commitment, and we strive to match it in the work we do for you here.

To that end, I’d like to extend my thanks to Chris Manfredi, our manager, and to Jeffry Fisher, our editor. Jeff’s deft touches consistently improved my written work and raised our search engine page rank. Chris’s leadership kept us organized around a cohesive vision and plan. Kudos to you both!

But remember that although the season has now drawn to a close, our work here continues. Tomorrow Chris will revisit our 2018-19 EPL preseason predictions and compare them to post-season reality — that should be a fun read! The summer transfer window opens in just about 48 hours, and you can count on us for all the major EPL team news throughout the off-season! We’ll also continue to cover fantasy MLS and fantasy Champions League, and we’ll post Live Chats for the FA Cup Final, the Europa League Final, and the Champions League Final.

And then there’s a Women’s World Cup starting on June 7th, and many of us here will be pulling for our home nations (no fantasy format in sight — yet). Anyone interested is welcome to write a fan post and invite the rest of us to chat about the tournament. And if anyone discovers a fantasy game, Jeff is itching to set up a league.

In summary, we’ll be here all summer and hope you will be too.

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Now that we’ve crowned our blog champs and put our staff members’ scores out there for the world to see, it’s your turn to tell us how you did. Please post your scores and rankings in the comments below, and feel free to tell us about lessons learned!

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