Fantasy Premier League is a global phenomenon that has captivated the hearts of football enthusiasts around the world. Fans can step into the shoes of a football manager, making strategic decisions that can lead to glory or despair. The popularity of FPL has grown exponentially over the years, with more than 10 million players from different corners of the globe participating in the last season.
If this is the first time you participate in the amazing game called Fantasy Premier League and wondering how to play FPL, you will find this ultimate guide for beginners helpful. It aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of what Fantasy Premier League is and how it works.
Let’s jump to it.
What is Fantasy Premier League and how does it work?
Fantasy Premier League is an online game that allows you to take on the role of a football manager and involves selecting real-life Premier League players to form a fantasy team.
At the start of the season, you select a squad of 15 players from the Premier League. The tricky part is, that you are given a budget of £100 million to build the team. The players you choose score points for your team based on their performances in real-life matches. For instance, if a player in your team scores a goal in a real match, they earn points for your fantasy team. Similarly, goalkeepers and defenders can earn points for keeping clean sheets, while points are deducted for yellow cards, red cards, and missed penalties.
How to play Fantasy Premier League?
Here’s a detailed guide on how to navigate the world of FPL.
1. Building your FPL squad and naming it
Well, once you register and log in to Official FPL, it is time to start picking your team.
But first, you need to name your team.
Check our article: Best FPL team names.
When you start picking your team, you will see that you have a limited budget of just 100 million to pick exactly 15 players (you cannot pick less than 15). It is not the only restriction when selecting a squad, but do not worry – other squad constraints are pretty simple and easy to remember:
- You must have 2 goalkeepers, 5 defenders, 5 midfielders, and 3 forwards
- You cannot have more than 3 players from one team in your Fantasy Premier League squad
Source: Official FPL
Read more about our players picks for 2023/24 season:
- Most reliable players to pick in FPL
- Best Goalkeepers to pick in FPL
- Best Defenders to pick in FPL
- Best Midfielders to pick in FPL
- Best Forwards to pick in FPL
2. Pick your FPL team
The main goal of the game is to score the most points. Your players earn points based on their performances in real-life Premier League matches.
So, before you start picking your 15-man squad, check how points in FPL are awarded.
Points for appearances:
- Playing up to 60 minutes: 1 point
- Playing 60 minutes or more: 2 points
Points for attacking returns:
- Goal scored by a goalkeeper or defender: 6 points
- Goal scored by a midfielder: 5 points
- Goal scored by a forward: 4 points
- Assist: 3 points
Points for clean sheets:
- Clean sheet by a goalkeeper or defender: 4 points
- Clean sheet by a midfielder: 1 point
Points for saves:
- Every 3 shot saves by a goalkeeper: 1 point
- Penalty save by a goalkeeper: 5 points
- Bonus points: 1 – 3 points
- Penalty miss: -2 points
- Every 2 goals conceded by a goalkeeper or defender: -1 point
- Yellow card: -1 point
- Red card: -3 points
- Own goal: -2 points
Source: Rules of Official FPL
Now you should realize that there are three main sources of FPL points:
- Clean sheets
That is the most important advice we can give you in this area. In your decision-making process, you can use all the available data, for example, FPL points, goals, assists, or clean sheets from previous seasons.
Read more: How do bonus points work in FPL?
3. Selecting a starting XI and a captain every gameweek
Before the deadline of every gameweek, you have to pick starting 11 from your 15 points squad. And only these 11 starting players will score you points in that gameweek. Your 11 selected players have to be in eligible formation. We recommend 442 or 433, as they are very balanced. You can change your formation by subbing in your bench players.
Source: Official FPL
Just remember, the deadline for every gameweek is 1,5 hours before the first kickoff.
Also, you should pick one player as your captain for every gameweek – your captain will score double points.
Source: Official FPL
Tip: Pick some reliable player as your captain, as he is the most likely source of fantasy points. For example, players like Salah, Haaland, Kane are great captaincy choices almost every gameweek.
4. Autosubs and vice captains
Another important feature of the Fantasy Premier League are autosubs. If some player from your starting XI does not play in the gameweek (plays 0 minutes), he will be automatically subbed off and replaced by the first player from your bench.
Tip: Substitutions do not happen very often, so you should keep expensive players on your bench.
- How does the bench work in FPL?
- How to order your bench in FPL?
- How do automatic substitutions work in FPL?
A very similar feature to autosubs is vice-captain. The vice-captain does not score any doubled points for your Fantasy Premier League team. However, if your main captain does not play (plays 0 minutes), the points of your vice-captain will get doubled. Basically, it is a backup captain.
Source: Official FPL
Read more: What does vice captain do in FPL?
5. Making Transfers (almost) every gameweek
Once you pick your squad before the GW1 deadline, do not worry, it is not over. You still will be able to make transfers to your FPL squad before every gameweek.
After the deadline of every gameweek, you will be rewarded one free transfer – so you can swap some player from your team for a new one. Of course, the change has to respect the constraints of the game.
Source: Official FPL
If you want to make an additional transfer, you still can – but you will lose 4 points.
If you do not use your free transfer in a certain gameweek, you can carry it over to the following gameweek, so you will have 2 free transfers available. However, you cannot have more than two free transfers. So, if you do not make any transfers for two weeks, you cannot carry over both free transfers and for the third week, you will be able to make only two free transfers and not three.
- How Do Transfers Work in FPL?
- How to make transfers in Fantasy Premier League?
- How many free transfers you get in Fantasy Premier League?
- Can you undo transfers on Fantasy Premier League?
6. Player prices and price changes
Player prices do not remain the same every gameweek. They can change anytime during the gameweek based on the market forces (supply and demand, based on how many FPL managers are transferring in or out certain players).
Player prices can decrease or increase by 0,1 million in a day.
For example, if Mbeumo starts the season very well, a lot of FPL managers will transfer him into their teams. His price could climb up from 6.5 million to 7 million in just 3-4 gameweeks.
You could make a profit if you owned a player while his price increased. However, there is a tricky part, when you want to sell this player.
The selling price and buying price are not the same.
Let’s assume you have bought Mbeumo for 6.7 and now you would like to sell him after his price increased to 7.0. You owned him while his price increased by 0.3. But if you would want to sell him, you would have to pay a sell-on fee of 50 % of the increased price (increased price while you owned him) rounded down to the nearest 0.1 m.
In this example, your sell-on fee is 50% of the increased price while you owned him, so 50 % from 0.3 million = 0.15 million. So, you could sell Mbeumo for 6.85 million. However, the number must be rounded down to the nearest 0.1, so in reality, the final selling price is 6.8 million.
If you would like to sell him for 6.9 million, you would have to wait until his price increased from 6.7 to 7.1.
Hope that makes sense.
Read more: FPL price changes explained
7. Plan when you use chips
We have five chips available in the Fantasy Premier League:
- First wildcard
- Second wildcard
- Bench boost
- Triple captain
- Free hit
Source: Official FPL
Wildcard allows you to change your Fantasy Premier League team completely – you will get unlimited transfers in the gameweek you activate it. So you do not have to pay 4 million for additional transfers in that gameweek. That’s why the wildcard is the most powerful chip. It allows you to “start over” if something went wrong. We have two wildcards available, each for every half of the season.
- What is Wildcard in FPL and how does it work?
- When to use Wildcard in FPL?
- What is the difference between Wildcard and Free Hit in FPL?
- Are wildcard transfers permanent or temporary in FPL?
- How many wildcards do you get in FPL?
- How to activate Wildcard in FPL?
- Can you cancel Wildcard in FPL?
Bench boost – when you use this chip, you will get points that were scored by your bench players. Basically, for one gameweek you will get 15 starters instead of 11.
- What is bench boost in FPL and how it works?
- What is a good score from bench boost in FPL?
- When to use bench boost in FPL?
- How many bench boost chips do we get in FPL?
- How to activate bench boost in FPL?
Triple captain – your captain points will be tripled for one gameweek.
- What is Triple Captain in FPL and how it works?
- How many triple captain chips do we get in FPL?
- When to use Triple captain in FPL?
- How to activate Triple Captain in FPL?
Free Hit – You can change the whole squad for just one gameweek. After the gameweek is finished, your team revert to the team you had before activating the free hit chip.
- What is Free Hit in FPL and How Does It Work?
- How many Free Hit chips do you get in FPL?
- How to activate Free Hit in FPL?
- When to use Free Hit in FPL?
- What happens in FPL if a game is postponed?
- What is a double gameweek in FPL?
- What is a blank gameweek in FPL?
8. Join Leagues
In Fantasy Premier League, you can compete with all 8+ million FPL managers in the global league, but also just with your friends in mini-leagues. You can easily set up a league and invite your friends. It is more fun when you compete against someone who you know!
- Mini-leagues and H2H leagues in FPL explained
- League names ideas for Fantasy Football
- How to create a league in FPL?
- How to invite people to your FPL mini-league?
- How to join a league in FPL?
- How to restart (renew) a league in FPL?
- How to leave a league in FPL?
- How to delete a league in FPL?
- How to find and share your FPL league code?
- How to remove someone from a league in FPL?
- How many leagues can you join in FPL?
Hopefully, now you have a better idea of how to play Fantasy Premier League. If you are looking for detailed information, check the official rules of FPL.
Can you have less than 15 players in FPL?
No, you cannot have less than 15 players in your FPL squad. You must always have a full squad of 15 players, and it’s up to you to spread your funds effectively into 15 players to maximize your points each week.