By Tomo Taka
The anatomy of a fantasy football team name
Between emails about invoices and reading lists, we got one really important note from Marc over the summer: an invitation to the SCA fantasy football league.
I’ve never won a league. Sure, I’ve had a couple of top four finishes but never reached the pinnacle. Some call me the Spurs of fantasy football.
So when Marc’s invite came it was straight down to business. Not the moneyball business of picking a winning squad, but coming up with a championship-calibre team name.
For the last two seasons, I’ve been stuck with the name Tiki Taka to little success. My 16/17 team needed a rebrand. Something to announce my curated squad as harder, fitter, faster, stronger than previous editions. I needed a name that would put the rest of the league on notice.
So, introducing Tomo’s 16/17 fantasy football team: Dont be such a Kanté.
(Excuse the missing apostrophe. There’s an arbitrary character limit on team names.)
Even in my own heart, I know it’s mediocre.
My shortcomings were only compounded when I saw the names of rival teams in the SCA league. How I felt in that moment was what Arsenal fans must feel when they’re linked with Jonny Evans as United sign Paul Pogba.
Enough about me, though. Just for fun, here’s an unofficial rundown (I’m no authority on fantasy football btw) of the best team names in this year’s ‘SCA is a fantasy’ league…
- IvegotaPhelan (Tom Bender)
Quite an obscure pun on Hull’s caretaker manager. And is the team name a reference to The Beatles’ ‘I’ve Got a Feeling’, Black Eyed Peas’ ‘I Gotta Feeling’ or simply the saying, ‘I’ve got a feeling’? Maybe it’s all three? Or maybe it’s deliberately enigmatic? Hmmm mysterious….
- Ladzio (Sebastien Thomas)
Most team names in the world of fantasy football tend to be puns on players rather than actual clubs. So this one makes the list on that basis. Top lad, Sebastien, top lad.
- Picklethinaikos (Matt Pickles)
Another pun on an actual football club. You know you’re onto a winner if you manage to play on the cumbersome ‘Panathinaikos’. It also has the bonus of combining the fantasy manager’s surname.
- Jurgen a Regret This (Owen Hunter Jenkins)
I’m guessing this is a reference to Jurgen Klopp and not Klinsmann. Still, it’s a clever play on the German phonetics of the name. And it sends out a real message of intent: ‘Do not mess with this team or else, Jurgen a Regret This.’
- Petr Cech Yourself (Ben Parnham)
This has a few things going for it. Firstly, as a Chelsea fan, I’ll forever love Petr Cech. Secondly, it reminds me of this corny football pickup line, ‘My name is Petr. May I Cech you out?’
- Take me 2 De Gea Bar (Ashley Davies)
Mixing a Mid-Noughties indie wasteland tune with the name of the Premier League’s best keeper? For that effort, I will take you 2 De Gea Bar.
- 50 shades of O’Shea (Angus Crombie)
This is what you get when you combine two cultural phenomena. That’s right, John O’Shea’s football career is a cultural phenomenon.
- Hotline Blind (Sam Beaumont)
It’s genius. I don’t even need to explain it. So simple and so relevant. Wish I came up with it myself.