The Fantasy Football Scoutcast
Let Mark and Granville sniff out your clean sheets and assist your fantasy football season with a regular serving of stuff and nonsense from the English Premiership. News and analysis is mixed with lively banter between the two bitter mini-league rivals as the pair laugh off a life of mid-table mediocrity.

Jonty may just have stumbled on the perfect strategy with his newfound flexibility. Reserving millions in the bank, his squad is set up to react to the seismic shifts taking place, as Fantasy managers consider new players and formations.

Andy and an angry old-filled Az join me in forming the ScoutCast quartet, as we bounce off another round of community questions inspired by the changing landscape.

An appraisal of the 3-4-3, a full review of the deadline day arrivals and discussion on defensive surgery provide the spine of the show, before we embark on a Gameweek preview featuring an all-star cast of new Fantasy Island risks.

Direct download: FFScoutCast_EP248_Yogic.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 1:44am UTC

 

Granville created the monster that is the template squad – only for it to turn on him.

That delicious analogy sums up the latest Gameweek for the ScoutCast team, as our mediocre scores were left dwarfed by those who dared to break from the norm and turn to the unlikely differential that was Sergio Aguero.

This latest episode conducts a full post-mortem, as the aforementioned Granville is joined by Jonty, Andy, and Az to contemplate another #Kanexit scenario with the clamour for Man City “nostalgia pick” intensifying.

I miss out with flu – the kind that creates bleary-eyed selfies in Swansea City centre Marriot hotels. But unlike Kane’s notorious Gameweek 22, I fail to make a 17-minute appearance, and instead listen in while the ScoutCast quartet tackle more community questions, creating their own motley crew of characters along the way.

In the midfield chat, Az spits bile in the direction of “JLings”, while Jonty fancies Shaqiri “Ironside” as a poor man’s Hazard. Lukasz “Lidl” Fabianksi turns up in the debate on goalkeepers, while the team are unanimous on the fate of Andreas “The Curse” Christensen.

NB: this ScoutCast was recorded prior to confirmation that Manchester City’s fixture with Arsenal is likely to remain in Gameweek 28. Oh, and Az was off the mark when he said that City play Basel after West Brom, that first leg tie follows the Gameweek 27. Don’t panic Aguero owners. Leave that to the rest of us.

Direct download: FFScoutCast_EP247__Frankenstein.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 6:49pm UTC

The ScoutCast quintet take on established Fantasy thinking in this latest episode, as we debate the quest to smash the current template squad.

What is the template? How can we break it? Should we even bother?

The discussion that unfolds is predictably sprawling and often heated, as once again the conflicting philosophies on Fantasy management in the ScoutCast crew are laid bare.

Elsewhere we let the rest of your community questions steer the conversation, as we contemplate Sanchez at United, battle Firmino vs Aguero and even find time to check in on Stoke.

Try as we might, even we struggle to argue about Stoke.

By the way, off the air we carried on the debate and, in the end, everyone agreed that I was right and also had the best beard.

Direct download: FFScoutCast_EP246_smashing.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:17pm UTC

The first ScoutCast of 2018 is sprinkled with a festive catch-up, an assessment of the latest transfer bandwagons and even some logic-defying magic.

YouTube viewers will need to pay close attention to Granville and Jonty about 90 seconds in to catch their conjuring trick; others will just have to use your imagination and be content with the rest of this 90-minute marathon episode.

We explore the lure of Aguero, the clamour for Lingard and the Fantasy freak of nature that is Marcos Alonso. Third striker options are assessed, we conduct a post-mortem on Liverpool following Coutinho’s exit and we start hatching plans for February’s forthcoming blank before the usual Gameweek preview ends proceedings.

Next week Granville saws Jonty in half and Az pulls a rabbit out of his hipster beard.

Direct download: ScoutCast_EP245_Conjury.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:38pm UTC

Is now the time to give up on the premium strikers – we’re looking at you Harry – and throw our cash at a “power five” midfield?

It’s a big question that requires a crack team to answer.

Unfortunately, we only have the ScoutCast crew available, but we did manage to pull off a big loan signing to help us out.

Jay Eggersdorf – the current “live” Hall of Fame number one joins Jonty, Andy and Az as we take on the big topic of the day.

In the middle of another stunning season – Jay reveals his strategy behind his recent move to shed Kane on the back of another impressive points tally.

Then on 44 minutes, Jay’s phone is almost drained of life. Tickled by the on-camera events that follow, Jonty and Az struggle to hold it together to discuss the recruitment of Paul Pogba and the merits of West Ham investment before we look ahead to Gameweek 19.

It’s an intense 90-minutes, with the frivolity of this “festive” ScoutCast limited to silly jumpers and hats. Though we do get the opportunity to reveal our Christmas wishes.

Just one wafer-thin hat-trick please Harry.

 
Direct download: FFScoutCast_EP244_Powered.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:47pm UTC

The ScoutCast takes on the role of support group ahead of Gameweek 18, as the four-strong collective attempt to give advice on how to find motivation when the season begins to slide into the abyss.

I go AWOL, though Peter Kouwenberg comes in for a timely debut. The former Hall of Fame number one is one of those suffering an abject season, after an extraordinary run of three successive top 300 finishes. No, really.

For once, Jonty, Andy and Az are in the presence of Fantasy Premier League greatness, then, as the quartet give counsel on those struggling to soldier on after a season of “unnecessary roughness”.

Elsewhere they talk Harry Kane for once, as exit plans are abandoned, while questioning whether Eden Hazard can justify his selection in light of David Silva’s sudden goal spree.

Direct download: FFScoutCast_EP243_Counsel.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:53am UTC

The Scoutcast team are reduced to a three-man line-up as Andy’s Azpilicueta-like run of appearances comes to end. Shifting to a new rural setting, he goes AWOL having been hamstrung by his “new” medieval internet connection.

That leaves Mark, Jonty and Az to hold the fort, as they struggle to find our own bandwidth to meet the demands of an unexpected double Gameweek now landing during the frantic festive spell.

That topic – and the strategy involving ScoutCast favourite Harry Kane – dominates your community questions and this 90-minute episode.

Elsewhere, the team try to justify shunning Arsenal assets, choose the optimum routes into Watford’s fixtures and the Allardyce’s Everton revolution, before deciding if it’s time to bail on Manchester City’s attack.

 
Direct download: FFScoutCast_EP242_Bandwidth.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 4:12pm UTC

In our continued quest to mirror the Fantasy Football season, this latest ScoutCast episode is missing a key player, but shuffles the pack and brings on stars from the bench.

Quivering from the midweek rotation, Jonty and Az begin proceedings before Granville is introduced to add his experience to the line-up. Then, late on, Andy arrives to shore things up and see the team through the final testing period. Me? I’m ruled out and left to watch from the stands.

The ever-changing line-up does a fine job contending with another round of community questions, as they assess the midfield template and consider goalkeeper recruits in the light of Rafa’s tinkerings. Then Granville rolls back to a classic ScoutCast question, lambasting United fan Andy for celebrating a City goal to ask which comes first, your football team or your Fantasy team?

 
Direct download: FFScoutCast_EP241_Benched.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:22pm UTC

The crucial captaincy comes under focus in this latest ScoutCast episode. We’re five strong as Jonty, Andy, Granville and Az join me to put our skippering habits under scrutiny.

And when it comes to depriving us of captaincy returns, there’s no bigger “Armbandit” than Harry Kane. We’re all forced to give our updated opinions on the Spurs striker, as another “home banker” at Wembley looms for Fantasy Football’s most expensive and frustrating asset.

Elsewhere in this 90-minute marathon, your community questions steer us to assess the midfield heavy-hitters wrestling for our attention, explore the methods of dealing with festive rotation and the theory that we’re all playing down the impact of bonus points when weighing up transfer targets.

 
Direct download: FFScoutCast_EP240_Armbandits.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:07pm UTC

Declared fit and available for selection, I make a return to the ScoutCast after a recent hiatus. I’m also chuffed to be welcomed back into the bosom of my own home, as the winter draws in, driving me from the Scout Hut at the end of the garden.

Warming my cockles alongside Jonty and Az, the three of us are treated to another ScoutCast Wildcard, as Andy joins us and throws his selection to the cynical lions.

We use that as inspiration to answer your community questions, as we ponder Andy’s all-powerful front three and wonder if overlooking a budget third striker is the optimum set-up.

Staying with strikers, Romelu Lukaku’s worrisome form comes under analysis ahead of his anticipated revival and, once again, we give Harry Kane oxygen to vent further frustration following his very latest Wembley Stadium stutter.

Manchester City’s weapon(s) of choice get revised before we embark on the weekend preview to banish the international break and lay the groundwork for a Christmas schedule of epic proportions.

 
Direct download: FFScoutCast_EP239_Homecoming.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 5:52pm UTC