Who would be the top players in a 2017/18 Championship fantasy league?
This is an end-of-season follow-up to something that proved surprisingly popular when I ran it as an experiment earlier in the season. I really enjoy playing fantasy football, even though I’m pretty terrible at it (this is also the case with actual football, but I digress). What I really want is the opportunity to fail at an EFL version – I remember a few seasons ago there was an official Championship one, but I’m not aware of anything that currently exists.
Out of curiosity, I’ve applied the official Premier League scoring system (which can be found here under Rules > Scoring) to each of the three EFL divisions to see what the best possible squad would be. Just like the official game, I’ve picked the best-scoring combination of two goalkeepers, five defenders, five midfielders and three forwards (hopefully without putting anyone into the wrong category), although if this were a real game you probably wouldn’t be able to afford to put all of them in the same team.
The only element of the scoring which I haven’t been able to apply is the bonus points, as these include stuff like tackles and passes for which there isn’t data available (at least to me). Also I think the FPL rules are a bit more generous around assists, but overall I think it gives a reasonably accurate impression of what would happen if they rolled it out across the EFL.
For each division I’ve laid out the top players on a pitch, in a style reminiscent of the official Premier League version.
Since the original version I’ve moved Fulham‘s Ryan Sessegnon from a defender to a midfielder and Bobby Reid of Bristol City from midfielder to forward, following feedback from fans of those clubs. This means they get slightly fewer points but both still comfortably make the team of the season. All four players with over 200 points to their name play for champions Wolves, with Aston Villa and second-placed Cardiff each having three representatives.
East Anglia’s clubs each have a single player in the squad: Norwich‘s James Maddison and Martyn Waghorn of Ipswich have each shone despite their respective clubs’ frustrating seasons. Championship specialist Matej Vydra of Derby completes the team after a strong season at Derby.
Get the data
If you want to see how your club’s players stack up in more detail (or just want to check my calculations), I’ve provided the full data for all three EFL divisions here.