All my fantasy football attempts have the problem that I know nothing about football. So for example Berbatov is unlikely to do as well this season as last season so picking him would seem unwise. But how does someone who knows nothing about football find out who will play well next season?
The wisdom of the crowds is the James Surowiecki about "the aggregation of information in groups, resulting in decisions that, he argues, are often better than could have been made by any single member of the group." This sort of thing does not work if the crowd has a bias in a particular direction.
I decided to look at the people is the "team selected by %" that fantasy premier league shows you. If I rerun the optimisation described in this post but instead of trying to great a team that has the maximum number of points last season I try and get the team whose players have been selected by the most other fantasy football managers.
The idea is that a team with the right number of defenders, goalkeepers, midfielders and forwards, that has at most three players from one team, that costs less than 100 and whose members have been picked most often should be really good.
The most popular team is
Player Club Pos Price Pts people
7 Al-Habsi WIG GK 45 125 199410
30 Bale TOT MID 80 118 189087
37 Barton NEW MID 60 131 123865
69 Cahill BOL DEF 55 105 180751
184 Given AVL GK 50 0 215091
205 Hangeland FUL DEF 65 154 192333
231 Huth STO DEF 60 138 165684
266 Kompany MCI DEF 60 95 197352
323 N'Gog LIV STR 55 48 279932
334 Odemwingie WBA STR 75 171 218485
421 Suarez LIV STR 95 68 343361
424 Taarabt QPR MID 65 0 141086
452 Vidic MUN DEF 80 148 172773
472 Wilshere ARS MID 65 93 220381
477 Yaya Toure MCI MID 80 146 167706
Some of these players were probably picked for the first few games and will be transfered out when they are about to play tougher games.
The average player is picked 26794 times. These players have been picked 200486 people on average.
This team would have scored 1415 points last season. The best team I could have picked for last season would have scored 2332 points. I have updated the dataset to include this people picked statistic.