FAB 2.0 - Advanced Strategies

So you have decided to give FAB a try in your Fantasy EPL Draft League. You are all caught up on the basics and are looking for some advanced strategies to help you dominate the Waiver Wire? You have come to the right place. Read below for all of the best FAB strategies in Draft Premier League!

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Advanced FAB Strategies

There are countless tactics and strategies that one can use to come out on top when it comes to using FAB on waiver claims, I will explain a few in detail to demonstrate the endless opportunities this system offers. obviously, you can choose to burn your FAB week in week out in small increments on your waivers, but there are so many other exciting options!

No Money, No Cry

Better known as the Genie method, this strategy is pretty straight forward and it focuses on the difficulty of predicting the movements of the Free Agent market. Basically it involves trading away all or most of your FAB straight after the draft to sign players who have more established value.

For this strategy to work well, you need a lot of circumstances to be just right:

  • You need to be a manager who studies sleepers religiously (or reads @ThFFChaps Sleepers XI). You will most likely live through the season without winning many waiver claims. this means, you need to learn to fish in the murky waters, claiming players for 0$ or after waivers have run. It is a difficult task.

  • To be able to successfully negotiate away all your FAB there needs to be motivation for other managers to try to get FAB. Winning your run-of-the-mill weekly claims is not enough. For this strategy to succeed, you need the enticing prospect of some big-name players potentially joining the EPL after Draft Day (pro tip: a well-timed sharing of a respected source's rumour on social media or in your group chat can grease those trade wheels).

  • You need to be in a league that is happy to trade. If done successfully, you will have a roster full of superstars after a few well-executed trades. These early-round picks will have to be bought and sold heavily for your roster to achieve the balance needed to succeed in a long season. if you are stuck with a few duds from your big-name players, your team will become stale in no time.

Shiny New Toy

The biggest amounts of FAB will be spent in the weeks between Draft Day and the end of the transfer window as real-life teams scramble to strengthen after a short summer occupied by Euros, Copa America and the Olympics. Rumours will be flying and players will be signing on the dotted line and appearing on Waiver Wires all throughout the month of August. One sure-fire way to spend all your FAB is to spend it on the big-name signing, however, an even better strategy is to capitalise on others waiting for that marquee name to snap up the lesser-known new signings for much less FAB (see Bale vs Raphinha).

Scrooge McDuck

"Money is best kept, not spent" was old Scrooge's philosophy and he carved out a decent living through this philosophy (pilot on retainer, huge safe full of gold ring a bell?). Unfortunately holding on to FAB is far less glamourous, but it could be a success nonetheless. This strategy requires a lot of discipline, as the day-to-day management is very similar to "No Money, No Cry" without the obvious upside of a top-level player on your team. But good things come to those who wait. Being the only manager with FAB for your playoff push might just get you that little extra you need at the end of the season to cross the finish line as a league winner.

Mo Money, Mo Problems

As an astute reader might have guessed, this strategy is the opposite of the first one and is considerably more difficult and more unconventional. It can only be successful if everything falls into place. I used this tactic in the @FPLKickaround league this season and here is how it went down:

  • I realised that the frenzy for new signings was eating into the overall league FAB budget (100$*12 teams=1200$) As there were no mid-season competitions with FAB prizes, I knew that there would be no more influx of FAB.

  • Unfortunately, I only decided on going for this strategy after I myself had spent some of my FAB. had I kept more, I would have been in a much better position to start this experiment.

  • By mid-October, 1051 of the 1200 FAB had already been spent, I only had 12, though, so getting more proved very difficult.

  • I knew I had to trade out a few of my premium assets, so i got to work on getting those trades done.

  • I managed to strike 4 separate deals (executed simultaneously for showmanship and not to show my hand) to acquire 135$ in one swoop. Only 2$ remained that was not in my virtual pocket.

  • From mid-October on I was the king of the Waiver Wire. I got literally every player I desired. I could drop a premium asset who was benched on a Saturday, knowing full well I could pick him up again using my FAB on a Tuesday.

Why I Ultimately Failed?

  • I started late: Had I decided right from the off, that I would be using this strategy, I would not have spent this much on players and I would have started working on deals well before mid-October, to have a shot at late signings.

  • I traded out Pulisic, Cash, Firmino and Under to get that money in, and ultimately looking back from the end of the season, I could not have gotten a better deal. But this is a one in a million shot. More likely is that you would have to sacrifice what turns out to be real value to achieve success with this tactic.

  • Churning problems: This tactic only works if you have a LOT of free spots on your team to pick up players. You can achieve this by strategically dropping players who then become waiver locked, as you know full well that you will be the only one able to pick them up again. For this, you need to pay attention. I did miss a few waivers and forgot who was locked and who was not locked on my team (therefore droppable or not droppable) so I lost a fair amount of players this way.

  • Studying the free-agent pool: This is pretty obvious, but a fair few players slipped under my radar on waiver day just because I wasn't on the ball 100 percent.

Would I recommend it?

I would wholeheartedly recommend this strategy because although it requires a lot of attention it is extremely fun to execute, both the secret planning and simultaneous deal-making part and smug messages one can send on Waiver Day!

Some tips:

  • Decide early and stick to it

  • Draft with this tactic in mind. You need early-season value from your players: do not draft injured players, look for players who have easy schedules, do not gamble on new signings, look for players whose value is likely to rise quickly after the season starts. This way you can maximize their trade-out value and you might not have to part with all of your premium assets

  • Start working on smaller deals to chip away at peoples' FAB reserves. A manager is much more likely to trade you 10, 15, 20 FAB in 3 separate deals (with each deal being easier to pull off than the one before) than 45$ all at once.

  • Hype up new transfers and watch the FAB arms race from the comfortable position you are in. You could even try offering dummy trades to entice participation.

  • Study the free agency and waiver wire religiously.

I hope you have found one or more of these strategies helpful in understanding FAB even more and please feel free to tweet the @Draft_Society with your FAB success stories.

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