We’re currently three weeks into the new Premiership season, with Chelsea making the early running, but with Manchester United and Charlton – as well as the suprising Manchester City – making the early running, it’s early days yet. No such closeness can be expected in our mates’ fantasy football league however, as I’m currently almost 100 points behind 1st in 5th place.
Every year is the same though, each year we pick our team in earnest, and after the romance has died, we never go back to them. The league is over before it hardly began. There’s no such thing as a truely brilliant fantasy football game (Yahoo comes close). There are some underlying problems with fantasy football games, and these are they.
- It changes the way you watch football: For some people (like myself, who appreciate more international game than club level), I have no problem saying “fucking hell, Claudio Reyna just scored a goal for Manchester City, that’s points for me!, however people who are passionate will let their team lose if the player who scores is in their team. Mentioning no names, but one person I know who is doing very well in the Times league was ecstatic when Lampard scored twice against his beloved West Brom last week because he scored big. I just thought it was very shallow, as – the old sky advert said – “Be careful when you pick your team, as you are with them for life” (though, with that being said, West Brom did put out a purposefully weaker side against Chelsea). That’s through thick, thin and fantasy football.
- Transfer Systems Fuck You Over: This is sour grapes for me, as a lot of my players didn’t play this week. Last week, a lot of opponents in my league put in players that played twice (and I obviously didn’t), therefore they got two games instead of one – and even zero in some cases. In part, this is my fault, but a better defined transfer system could be implemented somehow. In theory, you can have a team that doesn’t play against stronger sides, and plays a lot against weaker sides. This isn’t possible in real football, so why in fantasy football?
- It’s All Over By Christmas: The fact is that the different in points between the top half and bottom half means that it’s nigh on impossible for lower league teams to improve on their position. They just give up. The league continues with 2-3 teams, and the community spirit is lost.
In summary: although fantasy football begins in August in earnest, with people wanting to do well, it fizzles out quicker than the top of a 3 day old coke.
Secondary point: can’t you tell I did shit this week in our league?