How to play, scoring + rules

The official, free-to-play Fantasy game for the 2022 FIFA World Cup went live on Friday – and we’ll be telling you all you need to know about how to play the game in this introductory guide.

Following on from this article, we’ll have team previews of all 32 countries that are taking part, line-up predictions, team reveals and much more ahead of the tournament kick-off on November 20.

THE BASICS

Much like Fantasy Premier League (FPL), the starting point is to pick a squad of 15 players who will score points based on their on-field performances (goals, assists, clean sheets etc) during the World Cup.

  • To add a player to your team, press the + icon next to their name in the Player Pool section
  • To remove a player from your team, click the player’s shirt and hit ‘X’

The budget is £100m for your 15-man squad, while the available formations (from 5-2-3 to 3-4-3 to 4-4-2 and everything in between) are exactly the same as FPL.

So far, so familiar!

HOW MANY PLAYERS PER COUNTRY CAN I PICK?

Like FPL, there are restrictions on how many players you can select per nation.

These are dependent on the stage of the tournament:

Tournament Stage Restriction
Group stage Max 3 players per nation
Round of 16 Max 4 players per nation
Quarter-final Max 5 players per nation
Semi-final Max 6 players per nation
Final Max 8 players per nation

Scoring System

The scoring is roughly similar to FPL but differs in a handful of ways:

  • More points are awarded for goals (five for midfielders and forwards, seven for defenders)
  • Midfielders can top up their totals with tackles; forwards with shots on target
  • Winning a penalty is rewarded with points, while conceding a spot-kick is penalised
All Players
Action Points
Appearance (60 minutes or more) +1
Assist +3
Yellow card -1
Red card -2
Own-goal -2
Winning a penalty +2
Conceding a penalty -1

Goalkeepers
Action Points
Clean sheet (must have played 70 minutes or more) +5
First goal conceded 0
Each additional goal conceded -1
Goal scored +9
Penalty save (not including penalty shootouts) +3
Every three saves +1

Defenders
Action Points
Clean sheet (must have played 60 minutes or more) +5
First goal conceded 0
Each additional goal conceded -1
Goal scored +7

Midfielders
Action Points
Clean sheet (must have played 60 minutes or more) +1
Goal scored +5
Every three tackles +1

Forwards
Action Points
Goal scored +5
Every two shots on target +1

HOW DOES THE CAPTAINCY WORK?

Like FPL, you must select a captain who will score double points for your team.

  • Change your captain by clicking on a player in your team and selecting the ‘C’ button

Once your captain has played in a ‘matchday’ (the equivalent of a Gameweek), you are able to change your captain once more for another player who is yet to play.

Anyone who plays UCL Fantasy will know this rule but for the uninitiated, it basically gives you a second chance at nominating a captain if you are unhappy with the points from your original skipper.

HOW DO I MAKE SUBSTITUTIONS?

Like UCL Fantasy, there are two types of substitutions.

The first kind is what FPL managers will be used to, ie an ‘automated’ sub when one of your starting XI doesn’t play.

The second type is a ‘manual’ substitution.

Here, you are able to sub out a player in your starting XI for an asset on your bench who has not yet played in the current matchday.

As an example: if one of your original starters scored a mere one or two points on the Tuesday of Matchday 1, you could replace him with a substitute on your bench who has a game on Wednesday or Thursday.

WHAT ARE THE ‘BOOSTERS’?

…or chips, to you and me.

Once the tournament begins, you will have the opportunity to use one of three available boosters:

  1. Wildcard: This will allow you to make unlimited transfers within a specific round (cannot be used for the first match of the group stage or for the round of 16).
  2. 12th Man: This will allow you to select one additional player to score points for your team in a matchday. When selected, the 12th man cannot be substituted, captained or transferred.
  3. Power Captain: This will allow you to get double points from whichever player scores the most in your 15-man squad. This player will automatically be assigned the captaincy.

How many free transfers do I get?

The limits on how many transfers you can make for each stage and matchday are outlined below:

Tournament Stage Transfer Allocation
Pre-tournament Unlimited
Before the start of Matchday 2 2 transfers
Before the start of Matchday 3 2 transfers
Before the start of the round of 16 Unlimited
Before the start of the quarter-finals 4 transfers
Before the start of the semi-finals 5 transfers
Before the final 6 transfers

You can take hits, like in FPL, with these costing you a ‘-3’ for every additional transfer you make.

During the group stage, one transfer can be carried over into the next group stage matchday.

Providing the players you are transferring in and out haven’t played, you can even make a transfer once a matchday has begun.

Matchday Schedule

Matchday Matchday Stage Matchday Dates
Matchday 1 Group stage 20th November – 24th November
Matchday 2 Group stage 25th November – 28th November
Match day 3 Group stage 29th November – 2nd December
Match day 4 Knockout stage – round of 16 3rd December – 6th December
Matchday 5 Knockout Stage – quarter-finals 9th December – 10th December
Match day 6 Knockout Stage – semi-finals 13th December – 14th December
Match day 7 Knockout Stage – play-off/final 17th December – 18th December

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