Euro 2020 Fantasy Football has arrived - and just like Fantasy Premier League, it's going to be addictive and throw up some creative team names.
But Fantasy Football isn't just a case of picking all your favourites. This is methodical; it takes time, patience, skill and if you're anything like us at FourFourTwo, hours pouring over the statistics that will make or break your team.
FANTASY FOOTBALL 100 excellent (and awful) names for your team
So let's break down this infuriating and brilliant sport. No, not football - the Fantasy part...
EURO 2020 PLAY EURO FANTASY
1. Sign Oleksandr Zinchenko
Manchester City use Oleksandr Zinchenko as a left-back. This, however, is not the Ukranian's natural position.
The left-footer is a midfielder by trade. While natural positions don't mean much to Pep Guardiola a lot of the time, though, Ukraine boss Andriy Shevchenko (remember him?) puts Zinchenko into midfield, where he can dictate.
No one told the Euro 2020 Fantasy Football bods this. The schemer is listed as a defender - so it makes sense to take a chance on Oleksandr given that any goal or assist he gets is going to count as a defender's - even if he is playing slightly further up the pitch...
2. Get in Belgian defenders
With Thibaut Courtois between the sticks, too, it's possible that Belgium won't even concede a goal in the first stage of the Euros. But while Courtois is fairly expensive as a goalkeeper, some of the other Belgian defenders are cheaper.
Jason Denayer is probably likely to start over Jan Vertonghen. He's €4.5m while Thomas Meunier is €5.5m and will probably start at right-back - meaning he could get some assists while you're at it.
3. Take note of Turkey
Yusuf Yazici is just €5.5m in midfield. Merih Demiral and Caglar Soyuncu are just €5m each. These are extremely undervalued players who could get an easier route in the competition than others...
Compare Turkey with other sides. Mason Mount is €7m, Kingsley Coman a whopping €9.5m and Antonio Rudiger is €0.5m more expensive than both aforementioned Turkish defenders, despite being in the group of death. It makes sense to take a punt on a couple of Turkish stars, right?
4. Goalscoring midfielders are invaluable
Arguably more valuable than strikers with the way points are scored in Fantasy Football, midfielders are awarded more points per goal than strikers. They also benefit from the added bonus of a clean sheet point too - strikers do not.
Midfielders earn five points for scoring, while strikers only add four points to their points tally for every goal they bag. Assists, meanwhile, are worth three points for the selfless playmakers of the Euros.
Sure, players such as Harry Kane, Cristiano Ronaldo, Kylian Mbappe and Robert Lewandowksi are all expected to score plenty this summer. But when considering that these players cost more than €11.5 million from a €100 million budget, it seems midfielders might provide a more economical option.
Midfielders - including Bruno Fernandes, Kevin De Bruyne, Gareth Bale and Serge Gnabry - can all profit from points at both ends of the pitch. They'll score goals, provide assists, and benefit from clean sheets, all while costing a competitive rate compared to the game's most expensive strikers.
5. There are unlimited transfers between the group stages and round of 16
Euro 2020 will eliminate six teams as the tournament progresses from the group stages to the round of 16. In doing so, it provides a fresh opportunity for Fantasy Football players to drastically alter their team selection with unlimited changes during the few days break.
You can change that golden boot contender who is yet to score in the tournament with another who is bang in form. You can also remove any footballers who won't feature again in the tournament, whether through injury or through their team's elimination.
Similarly, tactical decisions for later in the tournament can be taken. Though a player might be playing their best football, their team's last 16 draw could be a step too far. Playing the long game could prove just as crucial for ultimate glory.
6. Pick Lewandowski
Robert Lewandowski has been absolutely unstoppable this season. Firing Bayern Munich to yet another Bundesliga title, the 32-year-old managed to break Gerd Muller's record 40 goals in a single season in the German league.
Lewandowski netted his 41st on the final day of the season to break the 49-year-old record, meaning he heads into the Euros in inspired form. After controversially missing out on the 2020 Ballon d'Or, the Pole will hope the European Championships is the perfect place to once again stake his claim for the honour.
Despite costing €11.5 million, Lewandowski leads a quietly confident Poland side against Sweden, Spain, and Slovakia, where he is sure to net goals. Discount him from the golden boot race at your mercy.
7. Choose a captain playing early in a matchday
Spanning across a number of days within the group stages, a matchday simply refers to how many games each team has played. With this in mind, it is better to choose a captain playing early in a matchday.
Captains that don't score as many points as you'd have hoped can be changed mid-matchday at the end of each day.
For example, you can select Frederico Chiesa as captain for the first matchday on Friday 11 June. However, if he doesn't score the desired points, players can switch to Harry Kane as captain for that same matchday because he plays on Sunday.
Changing captain also removes the double points Chiesa might have earned, though double points will then be added to Harry Kane's total instead. Slightly complicated, granted. But if you want maximum points, you'll need to take a few risks.
8. Favour penalty takers - VAR is used
Goals are worth five or four points for a player, depending on their position, with penalties offering a seemingly easy way to amass a greater tally.
With VAR in use at Euro 2020 too, the likelihood that contentious decisions will be given remains high. Picking a team's regular penalty taker could prove crucial, therefore, in accumulating an even greater points total. Though be careful. While Bruno Fernandes may dispatch all of Manchester United's penalties, it'll invariably be Cristiano Ronaldo stepping up to the spot kick for Portugal this summer.
Beware, though. A missed penalty can cost you to lose three points, so only choose someone you're 100 per cent confident in in dispatching from 12 yards.
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