MLS Fantasy Soccer's new roster rules aim to make this season even more competitive

Every season the MLS Fantasy Manager game undergoes changes and this year is no different. There have been several great scoring adjustments this year, but I bet there is one change you noticed before all the others, the roster size.

First a quick review. Our 2016 roster has been reduced in size from 18 players to 16 players. Many may have expected our budget to decrease along with our roster size, but our total budget has remained at $120 million. The two removed players came from the defenders and midfielders sections reducing your total options to five players each. Everything else has remained the same.

MORE WIGGLE ROOM

So how will this affect your team selections? The obvious answer is that by dropping two players we no longer have to fill these bench spots with $4.0 million benchwarmers, and let’s be honest, honest I know we all did it. This means that we essentially have $8.0 million more to improve our overall bench, or use it to buff up the starting XI. So if you’ve been trying to figure out how to work multiple $11.5 million players into your team, you’ll have plenty of wiggle room.

LESS FLEXIBILITY

Many managers will be tempted to just throw all of that money into their starting XI, but it may not be wise to completely ignore your bench. In exchange for all this extra cash, you’re roster is also losing some flexibility and this will make some formations more risky.  If you ever decide that you want to field five defenders or midfielders, say a 5-4-1 or a 3-5-2, you will not be able to sub in a like player but will be forced to change your overall formation. For those managers who enjoy a little more micro management, this also means that you will need to pay extra attention to how you setup for a switcheroo.

So what do you need to do to prepare for this? Simple, don’t ignore your bench, especially your forwards.  The new scoring rules offer several new ways that players can generate points, and a bench forward with a tendency to take a lot of shots could turn into quite the valuable fantasy super sub.

What do you think of the new roster size? Do you plan to stick with building a budget bench or are you going for a more balanced roster? Post your thoughts in the comments below and let me know what you think. Also, don’t forget to stop by MLS Fantasy Boss to find more articles and information on recommended leagues!