Growing up I first got into fantasy sports doing fantasy baseball using pencil and paper with my friends. By now the world of fantasy sports has ballooned and even become a billion dollar industry. What has always been fun about doing fantasy sports has been the draft, especially when it involves people that you know. When I first got into fantasy soccer it took me quite a while to learn the intricacies and restrictions of the salary cap game. Even now, it’s a very different game from what I grew up with and when the guys at Togga contacted me about joining up with them a few years ago, I jumped at the chance.
Togga was the first fantasy soccer draft game that I got involved with and it has grown exponentially since I first joined up with them. For those new to this concept I hope to shed some light on just what it is.
What is draft fantasy soccer?
The name really does tell you everything you need to know, at least initially. The way it works requires you to first set up or join a league of anywhere from 6-12 other fantasy managers.
This is followed by taking part in a draft that can last up to an hour or two. In this time you get to pick the players you want, provided they haven’t been drafted by someone else. This is a more unique take in that no one team in your league will have the same players. In the salary cap game there are far too many template teams out there and it’s very easy for your fantasy team to become stagnant due to have the same players as several hundred thousand other fantasy managers. This will never be a problem in a draft league.
Teams face off in a head to head format on a weekly basis. The table itself is set up just the Premier League table. Winners pick up their 3 points, a draw gets you 1, and losers get nothing. At the end of the season, the team at the top of the table wins the league.
In the traditional salary cap game picking up players is a matter of balancing your budget. In draft style fantasy soccer it’s all about finding free agents, waivers, or making deals with other managers.
In this format it’s possible to make a trade with another manager if they have a player you want and you’re able to convince them it’s worth making a deal. Earlier in the season I did such a deal with another manager in which we both felt we got good value (When Both Sides Win A Trade).
Free agents are the easiest players to add to your team. Simply pick up the player you want and drop one you don’t. The player that gets dropped is then added to the waiver wire and becomes available for another manager.
The waiver wire isn’t always the easiest thing to understand, but is an excellent way to try to find some additional value. Waivers are a way to protect a player that was recently dropped from another team. Teams that are lower in the table have a higher waiver priority than those above them meaning that if they put in a waiver claim for a player they get precedence over a manager that is farther up the table.
Why you should play
Playing in a draft soccer league has been a lot of fun over the years. It does require a good deal of knowledge about players and strategy on how to get the most out of your team from week to week, but fortunately Togga has excellent article on their site and a fantastic app to go along with everything. Whether you play with friends or find a random group of people, it is worth your time to get involved and experience a draft fantasy soccer league.