This article is a part of series: How to play World Cup 2022 Fantasy
What is a wildcard in FIFA World Cup Fantasy?
Wildcard is one of the three chips (boosters) in World Cup 2022 Fantasy.
When activated it allows you to make unlimited transfers to your team. Therefore it cannot be used before Matchday 1 and before R16 as we all have unlimited transfers in these two rounds either way.
When is the best time to use wildcard?
Wildcard is most valuable in matchdays where you do not have many free transfers.
So, naturally, using it in a group stage could have a big impact on your team’s performance. In the knockout rounds, we have 4, 5, 5 & 6 free transfers, so you can make many changes to your squad with free transfers (but many of your players get eliminated too).
However, a wildcard is also very valuable when many of your players get injured or eliminated and you cannot cover it with free transfers. Or when you expect heavy rotation from teams and you have many non-starters in your squad.
It absolutely does not make sense to use a wildcard before the final as we all get 5 free transfers after the semifinals, despite that no teams get eliminated (semifinal losers will play a 3rd place match).
You also need to consider that you cannot activate two boosters at the same time.
So, we narrowed our list down to 3 viable wildcard strategies for World Cup Fantasy.
Using wildcard in Semifinals or in the Final? (MD6 vs MD7)
The answer is clear. If you still have your wildcard, use it now in Matchday 6 and not in Matchday 7.
Here is why.
In Matchday 6, no team gets eliminated, so before Matchday 7, you do not have to deal with eliminated players (because of 3rd place game). And you will get awarded 6 free transfers to play around with your team selection.
So “the power” of the wildcard will be very low if you decide to wildcard on Matchday 7.
But in Matchday 5 (Quarterfinals), half of the teams got eliminated, so we need to deal with that with our transfers.
So if you have your wildcard left, activate it in Matchday 6 to easily rebuilt your squad for the final two matchdays.
Wildcarding in Quarterfinals – Wildcard Hack
In the knockout stage, we will be awarded a lot of free transfers at the start of each round, which makes wildcard less effective:
- 4 free transfers at the start of R16
- 5 free transfers at the start of QF
- 5 free transfers at the start of SF
- 6 free transfers at the start of 3rd place/final
So basically, we will have 9 free transfers to deal with eliminated players in R16, which really decreases the appeal of wildcarding there.
The advantage of wildcarding in the knockout stage would be that you could do a “wildcard hack” in Quarterfinals.
- you activate the wildcard before QF
- set up your team for Quarterfinals,
- during QF you have unlimited transfers
- and before the end of QF you will change your whole squad again (transfer out locked players)
- That way you set up your team for SF as well with unlimited transfers
Similar to what many fantasy managers did in Matchday 2.
So you can create almost 4 free hit teams (or 3 and a half to be more precise) with wildcard in Quarterfinals:
- 1st one: For Round of 16 with unlimited transfers now
- 2nd: For Quarterfinals with wildcard activated in QF
- 3rd: For Semifinals with “wildcard hack” and setting up your team with wildcard at the of QF
- 4th: and than you will get 5 free transfers at the start of SF and 6 at the start of the Final, so you can make 11 changes there as well without any team being eliminated (SF losers will play 3rd place match)
So, if you have not used your wildcard in the group stage, definitely use it in the Quarterfinals as we think that is the best time to use it during knockout stage.
Alternatively, you could use the wildcard in the semifinals and create two different teams for the semifinals and then for the final. However, we are awarded 6 + 6 free transfers then and no teams get eliminated (because of 3rd place game), so the advantage of wildcarding there is smaller than in Quarterfinals.
World Cup Fantasy Chip Strategy – Wildcard
- Use Wildcard before MD2 (use unlimited transfers before the tournament to set up your team solely for MD1 and then use your Wildcard to set up your team for MD2 & MD3)
- Use Wildcard before MD3 (use unlimited transfers before the tournament to set up your team solely for MD1 and MD2, then activate a wildcard to make “free hit” squad for MD3 to deal with heavy rotation from teams who already secured their spots in R16)
- Use Wildcard before quarterfinals (we have 4 free transfers awarded at the start of R16, and another 5 free transfers at the start of QF, so you can use your wildcard there to get rid of eliminated players and do the “wildcard hack”)
Should you use your wildcard in Matchday 3?
If you did not use your wildcard in Matchday 2 of World Cup Fantasy (what was the best time to use this chip), you can definitely use it in Matchday 3, as you can gain a big advantage with it.
If you use it in Matchday 3, you can exploit the rotation we expect from many teams and have 15 players that will definitely start in your team.
- You will have unlimited transfers during the whole matchday
- So for example you can start with Mbappe, and if he is benched for Thouram, you can replace him with another unlocked player after you see the lineups (only while Mbappe is unlocked so before the kickoff of the France match)
- Similarly, you can start with Jesus, and if he is benched for Brazil, you will swap him for Richarlison or Raphinha just before the Brazil match
Matchday 2 = the best time to use the wildcard
You can find our most recent wildcard team inspiration in article: Fantasy World Cup Wildcard Team
Actually, using wildcard in MD2 might the best strategy. Big thanks to @LetsTalk_FPL for the work he did in his pursuit for clarification about the rules:
Here’s some #WorldCupFantasy clarifications.
Starting with unlocked and locked players as that’s important for the rest of the rules. pic.twitter.com/OdHz0xmrHy
— Andy (@LetsTalk_FPL) November 18, 2022
Even with all the clarifications to rules I’m still being asked about Wildcard 😂
— Andy (@LetsTalk_FPL) November 18, 2022