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FPL Matthew is arguably the best FPL manager in the world, with three top 500 finishes and a further six top 10k finishes. He has recently taken his FPL skills to try his hand at Footstock on a budget. Read on to find out Matthew's planned teams for the first gameweek of the new season.


A veteran of FPL, I have recently started to play Footstock as well, which combines football card trading with fantasy football.

Most of the content for Footstock seems to revolve around people with large expensive collections - I want to show how its perfectly possible to have fun and make money playing Footstock on a budget that is relatively small and without taking big risks.

Thinking of joining Footstock?

I think this is a great time to join, with players prices currently very reasonable, the Talksport marketing campaign (featuring Chris "Kammy" Kamara!) about to kick-off and the launch of the £100k Freeroll Tournament. If anyone has any questions about Footstock, my Twitter DMs are open (@FPL Matthew).


Contest Strategy

Once you've built up a collection of player cards (including your bonus cards if you've just joined), its time to start entering some tournaments, or contests as Footstock's new app is now calling them. As I'm playing Footstock on a budget, I am focusing only on the Freeroll (because, why not?) and the Beginners' contests, which cost just 50p or £1 to enter. It's important to understand Footstock's scoring matrix.

Like most fantasy games, goals are very important: with 20 points for every goal, as well as assists to a lesser degree (10 points). Clean sheets are also important to goalkeepers (10 points), who also get points for saves, meaning that decent keepers in worse defences can also do well. Clean sheets have less of an impact for defenders, who only get five points, so attacking returns are more key overall. Various underlying stats also attract points, as you can see from the matrix above, although two key ones seem to be 'contests won' (successful dribbles) and crosses. Players also get a bonus six points if their team wins the match, meaning that it's important to try and identify winnable fixtures. Also, because there are (currently) no subs in Footstock, you'll want to pick players who you think have a good chance of starting the game.

One thing I did when my collection was small to start with, was focus my purchases on selected teams, and then I targeted contests where my teams had decent fixtures. As you start to build your collection, it gives you more flexibility to spread your selections around more teams.

Gameweek 1

In this article, I will be focusing on my line ups for the Beginners contests. I will be putting in teams for the Saturday Beginners contest as well as the Tail Beginners, which covers the fixtures taking place on Sunday and Monday. There is also a "Mini Monster" contest covering the whole gameweek, but I won't be entering that one.

Footstock on a budget

Gameweek 1 Beginner Contests

With the beginners contests, you can only select players rated at 1 and 2 star, meaning that you won't be competing with the likes of Bruno Fernandes or Kevin De Bruyne. Hence, they're a brilliant leveller for those on a budget. You also have to include at least one Basic 1-Star rated player.

Saturday Beginner

Let's look at the fixtures:

Footstock on a Budget

Saturday Fixtures

Looking at this, the teams you'd fancy to win are Arsenal, Liverpool and probably Southampton. The fourth fixture looks more difficult to call. Therefore I will focus my team mainly on these three teams, but I won't rule out high potential players from the other teams.

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About Matthew Penycae

Matthew Penycae is, arguably, the most consistently good FPL player in the world. In 10 seasons, Matthew has finished top 500 three times, top 10k eight times and never finished lower than 15,535 (in his first season). He’s also a dab hand at Sky having finished 2nd overall in 16/17, his first season, proving his strategies are effective across fantasy formats. 

His full FPL history can be seen below:

In this new members series, Matthew will be revealing his team and strategy ahead of each Gameweek


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