Planning for the upcoming blank and double gameweeks - GW18 and GW19

By Drafthound Team 20th December 2020
5 min read

With a blank Gameweek 18 and a double Gameweek 19 just around the corner, we're diving into the best strategies based on your remaining chips.


It’s time to plan ahead for the blank GW18 and the double GW19 now that the fixtures have been confirmed. Five games that were originally scheduled for GW18 have now been moved into GW19 meaning the fixtures currently looks like this:

Gameweek 18

Sheffield vs. Newcastle
Wolves vs. Everton
Man City vs. Brighton
Aston Villa vs. Spurs
Arsenal vs. Crystal Palace

Blanks: Burnley, Chelsea, Fulham, Leeds, Leicester, Liverpool, Man United, Southampton, West Brom, West Ham.

Gameweek 19

Burnley: West Ham (A), Liverpool (A)
Chelsea: Fulham (A), Leicester (A)
Fulham: Chelsea (H), Man United (H)
Leeds: Brighton (H), Southampton (H)
Leicester: Southampton (H), Chelsea (H)
Liverpool: Man United (H), Burnley (H)
Man United: Liverpool (A), Fulham (A)
Southampton: Leicester (A), Leeds (A)
West Brom: Wolves (A), West Ham (A)
West Ham: Burnley (H), West Brom (H)

Wolves: West Brom (H)
Aston Villa: Everton (H)
Sheffield: Spurs (H)
Man City: Crystal Palace (H)
Arsenal: Newcastle (H)

Teams to target

At first glance, the obvious teams to target are Liverpool, United, West Ham, Leeds - and perhaps even Chelsea and Southampton.

Why should I care?

What if we told you that by playing your cards right it would (ideally) allow you to field 11 players in GW18 and 11 (or 15) players who play twice in GW19, thus getting "3 matches" worth of points out of the 2 GWs?

Obviously, not all managers will be able to do this as it depends on their current team and available chips - but we have covered a range of different scenarios to ensure you get the most out of your team regardless of its current state.

Remember: There is no one-size-fits-all strategy. The following are suggestions based on what the community is discussing - so make sure you find a solution that works for you! AND don’t get so caught up on your BGW and DGW strategy that you forget to play the fixtures that come before and after them. The points you get the next couple of GW’s are just as important!

Let's go!

Scenario 1: I have all my chips available

The consensus among many of the top FPL managers is to get 15 doublers playing in DGW19 by bench boosting. This means they will have to Wildcard in GW16, Free Hit in BGW18, and then BB in DGW19:


GW16: Use your 1st Wildcard.

BGW18: Use your Free Hit.

DGW19: Use your Bench Boost with a bench full of Southampton, West Ham, and Leeds players (optional).

Triple Captain: Save it for another DGW.

2nd Wildcard: Use it to re-structure your team after BGW29 (FA Cup Quarter Finals).

Combining your Wildcard with a Bench Boost strategy isn’t always possible (or even helpful) but it seems ideal this year as it saves you from having to plan around it later thereby enabling you to invest more in your starting players throughout the rest of the season.

If you’re not planning to BB in DGW19 then you might want to reconsider your Free Hit in BGW18 as it’s specifically used for that purpose.

Scenario 2: I have used my first Wildcard but have all other chips available

You can still follow the plan explained above as your 2nd Wildcard becomes available for GW17, however, it means you won’t have any major chips to navigate fixtures later on in the season.

Therefore, using your 2nd wildcard in GW17 is only advised if none of the following alternative strategies work for your team:

Alternative strategies

  1. BGW18: Free Hit + DGW19: Bench Boost
  2. BGW18: Free Hit + DGW19: Triple Captain
  3. BGW18: No Chip + DGW19: Free Hit
  4. BGW18: No Chip + DGW19: Triple Captain
  5. BGW18: No Chip + DWG19: Wildcard

Scenario 2.1: I don’t want to use my 2nd Wildcard

Navigating the DGW19 is doable without wildcarding if you plan effectively around transferring in players from the teams mentioned earlier but do so with caution as they have mixed fixtures leading up to DGW19.

Scenario 2.2: I don’t want to use my Free Hit

If your team currently has five or more players from City, Tottenham, Villa, or Everton then you can probably plan your way out of having to use your ‘Free Hit’ and perhaps save it for the potential BGW29.

Scenario 2.3: I want to Free Hit in DGW19

Could also be viable if you don’t already have the likes of Salah, Bruno Fernandes, Bamford, and Soucek, etc. in your team (which most have). You have to decide whether there’s enough to be gained in comparison with potentially saving the chip for BGW29.

Scenario 2.4: I don’t want to use any chips

Good for you mate - make sure you plan accordingly then!

Scenario 3: I have my first Wildcard but none of my chips

That’s new! Well then remember to use it strategically before the deadline (GW16) and follow the strategy from scenario 2.2

Scenario 3.1 I don’t want to use my Wildcard

Maybe FPL isn’t for you?

Scenario 4: I have used all chips (or at least the main ones)

If you actually have no chips left then you need to decide whether your current team meets the criteria described in scenario 2.2 and if not you might have to pull the trigger on your 2nd Wildcard.

If you have used most of your chips and especially your main ones then you need to look at the state of your current team - does it meet the Scenario 2.2 criteria? or can you cover yourself with one strategy described above in the ‘Alternative Strategies’? If not then you might also have to activate your 2nd Wildcard.

There’s still some time left before we have to decide on our BGW18 and DGW19 strategies so stay tuned as we learn more!


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