FPL Matthew is arguably the best FPL manager in the world with three top 500 finishes, a further six top 10k finishes and he has never finished outside the top 20k in ten seasons. He has recently taken his FPL skills to try his hand at Footstock, with a limited budget, read on to find out how he has been getting on and for his entry into the inaugural Footstock World Championship!


Footstock on a Budget – an introduction

As a veteran player of FPL, I have dabbled with other games; Telegraph Fantasy Football (for many many years), Sky Fantasy Football (did I mention I came 2nd a few years ago??) and probably one or two others. I have often seen people talking about the trading game, Football Index, but it never really appealed to me as it lacked the genuine fantasy football element. Then, a couple of months ago, the Hub’s Holly Shand introduced me to Footstock which seamlessly blended fantasy football with trading and a few side elements. I loved it and its now competing with FPL for headspace, although my existing FPL skills and knowledge are definitely transferable to this platform.

However as I started to seek out content to help me improve (articles, podcasts, Twitter posts, etc) I was a little overawed as most of the content providers seem to have huge expensive collections that were simply out of my budget – “I need to get another Bruno, I only have five of them” and so on. I thought it would be useful to show how its possible to play Footstock on a limited budget, and make money whilst having fun!

In just over two months I have more than doubled my £200 investment whilst playing a low risk game. My first article was going to be explaining my strategy but then I won a tournament and a free ticket to the Footstock World Championship on the final day of the Premier League season so the strategy article will have to wait but in the meantime if anyone new to Footstock or tempted to give it a go has any questions, feel free to Direct Message me on Twitter @FPLMatthew. But, first the World Championship is here!


The Footstock World Championship

So, the format of the Championship is:

  • Team of 11 Players
  • At least one goalkeeper, two defenders, two midfielders and one attacker
  • No star category requirements

This last bullet point puts me at a bit of a disadvantage as I have none of the really expensive players – I’m on a budget! So, I need to try and be a bit creative, although as my collection is relatively small, I am also limited to a large extent by what players I actually own.

However…having won the Beginners Tournament that got me here, I decided to invest the £80 prize in a few players that I didn’t own and I can use specifically for this tournament – I may well look to sell them afterwards. The four that I chose were:

  • Sterling
  • Mahrez
  • Jesus
  • Aubameyang

I felt that I needed to get at least some City attackers against Norwich (on top of David Silva who I already owned) so I have gone for what I see as the most explosive – I couldn’t afford De Bruyne so that wasn’t an option. I also added Aubameyang who looked a bit of a bargain. So, those will be my first four players and I will likely play the Man City players even if they are on the bench – we’ve seen recently what they can do in a relatively short time.

Here are the final day fixtures:

Gameweek 38 Fixtures

Now, lets look at my options – these are all the players in my collection that I might reasonably pick, the others being either young prospects or random cheap punts:

I have bolded the ones that I am mainly considering. Apart from the four new additions listed above, the next names on my teamsheet were:


Lloris gets the nod over Ederson, no real reason, just a gut feel


I fancy the look of Soucek who is playing ‘out of position’ for in-form West Ham against a Villa side desperate for a win – perhaps some space maybe left in behind? The other defender I will choose if he starts is Chelsea’s Alonso, another player often good for an attacking return. If he doesn’t start I will likely slot in either Digne or Tarkowski depending how I feel at the time.

Midfielders and Attackers

The other two obvious picks of the players I already owned – Salah – no explanation required – and David Silva – in many ways the first name on my teamsheet as this is likely his last Premier League game, he’s been in sparkling form, and he’ll want to go out on a high.

The Final Two

So, that’s nine players, and all of the positional requirements satisfied, so I now need to pick any two of my remaining players. To do this, I have come up with a shortlist and then ranked each one according to four key criteria. But first, here are the player and the stats, using the new Footstock section of the Hub’s Opta Stats Tool, which aligns to Footstock’s Scoring Matrix:

Hub’s Footstock Data Tool

These are stats over the last four gameweeks, per game and ranked by Footstock points.

The criteria I have used to rank these options are:

  • Form – based on the Footstock scores above
  • Quality – my assessment of how good they are – class is permanent
  • Fixture – how good does their final game look?
  • Motivation – what have they got to play for?

Footstock Ranking

Obviously, a lot of this is subjective on my part, but that’s fantasy football – all about opinions. So, the numbers are telling to complete my team with Pulisic and Son. However, I don’t want to blindly follow the numbers, I also want to check this and think ‘does this seem right?” and, instinctively, I think it does. So, that’s my line-up complete, subject to those teamsheets:

Matthew’s Footstock World Championship Entry

Good luck all and, above all, stay safe!


Use the Hub’s Footstock OPTA stats yourself!

OPTA Stats for Fantasy Football

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