Choosing a formation for your Fantasy Premier League team is perhaps one of the most difficult parts of the team selection and for most managers you will tend to stick with your formation week in week out.

The most selected formation is without a doubt 3-4-3 but with the option of playing 4 or even 5 at the back and limiting your front line to just one if you want to we are asking the question is there a better way to manage your team’s formation.

Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of each formation:

3-4-3 – The FPL Standard

Having three defenders at the back means you get the maximum attacking potential from your FPL players but it also means you have more of the most expensive players in your starting 11. Whilst this may be good on the face of it, it can also lead to unbalanced teams that have very weak defences.

By choosing an extra defender, you might save a couple of million and be able to downgrade your third striker to one of the cheapest options in the game – if he is going to be sat on your bench every week then you could have a £4.5m striker (such as Quaner at Huddersfield) and reinvest that saved money in attack minded defensive players like Ben Davies or Kyle Walker.

With all this being said, if you stay away from the super expensive players you can achieve balance across the squad with a 3-4-3 formation and you are more likely to have subs that play.

If you are convinced that 3-4-3 is the way forward check out our video walkthrough of three possible template teams here.

4-5-1 – The Cherry On Top Of The Well Balanced Cake

Choosing just one striker may seem ludicrous to some managers – but saving £10m by putting two cheap strikers on the bench will really make a difference to the rest of your team when it comes to budget.

Last season the top 3 defenders (Azpiliceuta, Alonso and Otamendi) all returned more points than all strikers not in the top 5. This proves the point that you can still score big points from quality defensive players and then reinvest those striker savings in to having 4 top quality midfielders alongside 5 good quality defenders.

When you consider players like Salah, Mane, Sane etc play like forwards anyway, by opting for these players you are not really sacrificing much in terms of goal threat.

5-3-2 – Building On Solid Foundations

Choosing 5 defenders in your starting line up will allow you have three out and out super stars in midfield and two top class strikers. If you are choosing this formation then you can have a £4.5m striker on the bench along with a couple of £4.5m midfielders.

We have already outlined the points potential of defenders – the only trouble is that you will have weeks where you score low and you don’t have as much potential for an explosive week.

Having 5 quality forwards is the most any team can hope for really though, so there is not too much of a difference choosing a 5-3-2 formation as there is in choosing a 3-4-3 – it really allows for solid investment up top.

4-4-2 – The Old School

4-4-2 is the perfect sitting on the fence formation for someone who wants to try something a little different. It is perhaps the formation that will give you the most balance overall but you will still be left with at least one sub standard midfielder in your starting lineup unless you opt for a really cheap striker.

Choosing someone like Jimenez (Wolves) at £5.5m will allow you to have a top class striker alongside (such as Aguero or Harry Kane) and still have plenty of funds for 3 strong midfielders with a couple of solid attacking defenders.

The Verdict

The truth is that there are many ways to skin a cat and the same philosophy can be said of FPL. If you like to have some differential over other managers then changing to a different formation could be for you – but one thing that you will find is that once you choose a formation it is difficult to move away from it with a single weekly transfer.

It is best to have a long term plan and stick to it – until you use that first wildcard at least!