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Here at Oulala.com, we love football, perhaps as much as you do, perhaps even more. But we are filled with sadness that we will never be either professional footballers or club managers. That is life: harsh. Instead, we decided that we would not let that hold us back from proving our expertise and taking part, which is why we have created the most comprehensive fantasy football system there is.
This lets us take part, compete against our friends, or the rest of the world, and prove that we have what it takes to stand apart from the footballing crowd and average supporter. Oulala enables us to buy and sell players, pick a starting eleven and make substitutions just as a real club manager would. It is as close to the real thing as football fanatics like you and I will come.
Fantasy football is most well developed in the United Kingdom, where a number of daily newspapers (like the Telegraph, Daily Mirror and Daily Mail) run their own fantasy leagues, based on player performances in the Premier League. The almost non-stop coverage of the Barclays Premier League enables our advanced system to collect the masses of data that are needed to run our platform. Most systems use around five to seven data points to help score players by their performance – in comparison, Oulala.com uses seventy data points, making it much more comprehensive and a better judge of the performance of an individual soccer player.
Our platform operates minute by minute, meaning that your points standing changes as matches and the season develops and unfolds, allowing you to see the position of your team against the world. Typically there is a five second or so lag between the action on the pitch and your fantasy team, meaning that you can and should make decisions in real time Obviously, as more football matches are played, your squad will perform, improve and worsen, giving you the chance to show your managerial talents.
The platform uses a mathematical algorithm that combines seventy different actions on a football pitch to aggregate the actions that actually win and lose matches. All this data is updated to your account live, there is a time delay of just a few seconds between the action on the pitch and the current score of your players and team on your pc, laptop or smart phone. Modern technology is coming to sport in a big way. If you like statistics and sport, you'll love fantasy football at Oulala.com.
This all means that we track the same statistics as other platforms, things like goals scored, clean sheets, assists, red and yellow cards, but we also track another sixty five factors. Amongst those factors are important tackles, saves, through balls, clearances, winning a header and many more.
This makes it much more realistic to play our fantasy football game than the others you can choose from. Additionally, there are lots of people that follow the Barclays Premier League very closely, but there are far fewer people with their own fantasy team that are actively following all of the major European leagues.
Plus, by creating the game as we have, you get to select your fantasy squad from virtually all of the best footballers in the world today, since almost all of them play in one of the top five main European leagues. This removes the constraints that most newspaper fantasy football games have that only focus on the Barclays Premier League.
While there is a lot of skill involved, as with any type of maths game, there is also a good amount of luck too. People with more skill will win from time to time, but people with less skill still have a good chance. Even better, we have a European approach, so we have already launched the game in French and will launch in other languages soon. This means that you can challenge yourself to be the best European fantasy football player!
If you fancy yourself as being more special than Jose Mourinho, more successful than Sir Alex Ferguson, more serious than Avram Grant, more of a wheeler-dealer than Harry Redknapp, more of a fighter than Sam Allardyce, or more studious than Sven-Goran Eriksson, you now have a way to prove yourself.
Since there is so much passion and support for English Premier League clubs, Oulala launched first in the UK. With global supporters for the biggest football clubs, such as Manchester United, Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal and such a wide array of superstars playing in the Barclays Premier League, such as Wayne Rooney, Robin van Persie, Frank Lampard, Luis Suarez and Emmanuel Adebayor, who wouldn't want to select some Premiership stars in their starting fantasy eleven? As players fight for UEFA Champions League places or to avoid relegation, these are some of the best footballers in the world playing at the top of their game.
Oulala.com lets you transfer players in and out of your squad, with budget limits to stop you from only selecting the very best footballers. Of course, this is where the real world and fantasy football begin to differ. In the real world, when football clubs are bought and sold by billionaires, money often is not an actual limiting factor!
Despite this, your job is to create a team of top scorers that adds points every week, no matter who the fixture list puts against them. How do you choose between a player in form and a player of class? As team manager, that is your job to decide!
We haven't stopped there though. What if your favourite player is not signed to a club in the Barclays Premier League? We have that covered too. Oulala enables fantasy teams to be selected from any club in the five biggest European leagues: the Premier League in England, La Liga in Spain, Serie A in Italy, the Bundesliga in Germany and Ligue 1 in France. Each of these leagues is within the rules of UEFA and a high percentage of players compete for their national team in FIFA competitions.
So if your favourite player is with Barcelona, Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain, Juventus or another top flight club, you can still select him. With Oulala.com you really can create a fantasy football team that contains Lionel Messi, Christiano Ronaldo, Juan Mata and Andrea Pirlo despite the different leagues that they play in, without being constrained by the Barclays Premier League. If a player is transferred to another club mid-season and that other club plays in one of the five European leagues that we cover, then his points will still accrue to your fantasy team. In other words, Tottenham Hotspur supporters can still select Gareth Bale...
It will come as no surprise to learn that Oulala has been created by a statistician who has a background in financial markets. Oulala is one of the most complex maths games in the history of sports, but has been made simple, usable and fun by our hardworking team.
Another vital element of playing our game is that footballers can lose you points when they have a poor performance on the pitch. This means that your fantasy squad needs to find the most talented players from the major European leagues and avoid the worst players. This would be easy if there were no budget restrictions, but of course there are! For this reason, we are convinced that you will play European fantasy football at it's most sophisticated with us.
We also enable “circles”. These are mini fantasy leagues that can be formed between friends, family and colleagues separate to the main game. You can see the performance of your own fantasy team in a league right next to your best friends. Let the competition begin and the bragging rights be earned! If you and your friends wish to only select players from the Barclays Premier League, you can, of course, do that, but we believe that our game is more challenging because the best footballers in Europe are all available for selection in a fantasy team.
The huge amounts of data that a football season generates – if you choose to measure it – mean that a revolution is coming to the beautiful game, just as happened in baseball in the USA, as detailed by the book and movie Moneyball, about the math behind sabermetrics. While we do not hope to change the way soccer is played, or the way that clubs are run, we expect that in time our players will be competing with actual club managers as they will find all sorts of insights in the data of their squad.
When players first sign up, their experience is similar to piecing together a fun puzzle. Selecting favourite footballers for positions within a team budget can be a complicated problem to solve, but also fun, as the manager dreams of his ultimate squad and has to think through options and make concessions to make it real. There is no best way or formula to do this – at least not that we have found - but if you can select a better squad by using some mathematical formula or statistical insight, there is an opportunity for you. From this point on, most of the numbers are handled by us, leaving you to watch and worry about player performance on the pitch, not budget.
Where we differ from most other maths games is in addiction. Once you have a team in play, it is almost harder to focus on the real games as your commitment to your own squad grows. There aren't many other puzzles that can keep players enjoying the experience for months at a time.
Just like other competitions, we give out prizes at Oulala to the most successful players. If you can top our leaderboard you'll be winning something! The range of prizes available changes, mainly because we try and secure one of a kind football related items, like signed shirts or football club experiences.
If it all sounds complicated so far, don't worry, it isn't. We have created a set of video tutorials to help you understand how to play fantasy football at Oulala. If you have further questions, our dedicated and slightly footy mad team, based in Malta, will be happy to help you. We look forward to playing against you and chatting about the sport, players and the fantasy Premier League in our forum. Of course, as the internet brings communications and fans closer together, it becomes easier to support multiple teams, not just those that play in the UK5. These days the BBC6 reports on all the major games in Europe, making it even easier to follow Oulala.