How Fantacalcio works—a practical guide
Become a fantasy football manager and create your own team made up of your favorite players.
6 min read
If football is your passion, you’ve probably already participated in a few fantacalcio tournaments. But if you’re playing for the first time, you’re probably wondering how to become a fantacalcio coach and train your team. If that’s the case, you’re in luck—we’ve prepared an introduction to the fundamentals of the game and how a fantacalcio tournament works. Let’s play ball!
What is fantacalcio?
Fantacalcio—or fantasy football—is a fantasy sports game created toward the end of the 1980s by the journalist Riccardo Albini. It’s based on a game similar to American football (or, according to other sources, baseball) that Albini discovered during a trip to the US. There, participants create imaginary teams in a leaderboard—or classification table—whose scores are then calculated based on the performance ratings of individual athletes. This is also the format of fantacalcio. Although there's no official document detailing the rules, the game is based on these principles:
The aim is to create and coach a fantasy team of players, selected from the Italian football league, Serie A, or even from other leagues or competitions like the UEFA Champions League, Premier League, etc. and win the tournament.
The participants—or, rather, the fantasy coaches—join leagues that normally consist of about 4–12 players. However, in some cases, they’re even bigger. Everyone competes to win the league title or other prizes, depending on the tournament.
The score is generally calculated based on the sum of votes assigned by newspapers and sports portals after each game. For direct match tournaments, bonuses are added to calculate score ranges, which then determine the final ranking. From this ranking, the winner is declared, who then receives the fantasy championship.
The rules—how to set up a fantacalcio tournament
When setting up your fantasy football tournament, the first thing to do is create a league or join a team. You can do this with your friends and play privately, or participate in an online tournament on the fantacalcio website.
If you decide to create your own league, you and the other participants will need to clarify the following:
The game formula. In fantacalcio, there are two popular types of games. The first are head-to-head matches, which are based on score bands—or goal bands. Here, the match results are determined based on the final scores of each game. In one-against-all matches, the fantasy team with the highest overall score at the end of the championship is the winner. There are also other, less popular game formulas, including direct elimination and group games.
The source of player stats and game data. Gazzetta dello Sport, Sky, Fantacalcio—all these offer the information you’ll need. If you decide to play online, it’s a good idea to follow the data provided by the platform.
The budget. How much fantasy money does each coach have available to build their team? Usually, the figure is between 250 million and 500 million.
The team allocations. Can several participants have the same player on their team?
Formations. Which formations are allowed—i.e., 3-4-3, 4-4-2, etc.? There are no limitations in this regard—the only condition is that there is at least one forward and a minimum of 3 defenders.
Your benching and substitution rules.
Timing. It’s important to determine in advance how long coaches have to set up their teams.
Participation fees and prizes.
How to create a fantacalcio team and recruit players at the auction
To create a fantasy team, you’ll need between 15 and 25 players, depending on the rules. For a team of 25, these will be divided into the following:
Teams are chosen in an auction that takes place over the summer. This is the most important moment of the season, when the players on each fantasy coach’s shortlist are assigned to the teams. After the second or third match day of each league, the administrator can decide to open the “free market.” This offers coaches the chance to buy contract-free players, so that each team can strengthen their shortlist.
Depending on the platform, the fantasy football auction rules differ. We recommend visiting Superscudetto to get a better understanding of the process.
How scoring system works in fantacalcio
Points are calculated in the following ways:
Votes. Depending on your chosen source of game data, the score cards published at the end of the game will give you each player’s score. This will allow you to obtain your team’s total score for each game. In one-against-all fantacalcio, each team plays against all the opponents in the league or competition simultaneously. In this case, each day’s leaderboard determines the winners.
Bonuses and penalties. In head-to-head matches, at the end of each game, the players’ votes are added together with their bonuses and penalties. Here are some examples of the most common bonuses and penalties:
+3 points for each goal scored
+3 points for each penalty saved
+3 points for each penalty
+1 point for each assist made
-0.5 points for each yellow card
-1 point for each goal conceded by the goalkeeper
-1 point for each expulsion
-2 points for each own goal
-3 points for a missed penalty
Goal bands. This is a conversion grid, defined at the beginning of the championship, to calculate the match results based on the scores of the two challengers in head-to-head matches. After adding the votes to the match’s bonuses/penalties, the result will be compared with this grid. In other words, you’ll need to check whether the score obtained during a championship round falls within a band. Then, based on how these have been set, you can determine the number of goals scored. Goal bands usually follow base 6 and start at a score of 66.
Here’s a practical example: let’s imagine that in one match, team A scored a total of 65 points, while team B scored 67. Having scored more than 66 points, team B falls into the first goal band. As a result, a “goal” will be scored. Team A, on the other hand, with less than 66 points, doesn’t fall into any band—nor have they scored any goals. The result is 1-0 in favor of team B. This score, together with the others, starts the leaderboard, which will decide the winner at the end of the championship.
Create your fantacalcio team with N26
Inspired to create your own fantacalcio team? The best way to get started is to enter your team on the Fantacalcio website. And, great news—now, you can customize your team shirt with the N26 logo! Plus, you can choose N26—the 100% mobile bank—as your 2021–2022 season sponsor. And that’s not all—you’ll get flexible, smart banking designed with you in mind. Don’t waste another minute—discover all our accounts today and find the one that’s right for you.
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