The OFFICIAL draft order is here!!! 32 nations will be selected, and ultimately 16 will qualify for the World Cup.

The system to determine the draft order remains the same as last cycle's, and here is the breakdown:

**OFFICIAL F18 WORLD CUP DRAFT ORDER**
"Why am I not #1??!" you may be asking. Well, the doc below lays out everything that went into the determining the draft order:

(If spreadsheet doesn't appear,

try going here)

[gdsheet]13rBbD4Y3tD8e0P-7WiqgeWfXg5QiseZAFyhGZYDng6A[/gdsheet]

What is all this? I'll explain... (basically same as last year tho)

__OVERALL/GENERAL STUFF__
- In general, what we have here is a weighted system of (1) results from S26-S28, (2) total TSL seasons played, and (3) match completion. So in short, the better results you had over that period, the worse your draft position would be. But if you had long service time and a high completion rate, that would help your position.

- We assigned weights of 65% to results, 10% to seasons played, and 25% to match completion (the numbers highlighted in yellow at the bottom of doc).

- In order to mesh all 3 components together, we have to somehow have all 3 with a common unit set. So to do that, there's rankings (1-34, everyone who completed the most recent season) for each of the 3 categories, and then the 65-10-25 weights are applied to those rankings. In other words, you can't just add the raw values of points per game to number of seasons completed. So this allows us to create one final number, the WEIGHTED RANKS column.

- For the 3 RANK columns, you can think of it as being 1=helps draft position and 34=hurts draft position. That's why Zikry is ranked #31 for PPG, but #2.5 for SERVICE TIME.

- For any ties in the RANK columns, the RANK was adjusted to the average of the ranks. For example, 4 people have 28 completed seasons, but rather than all 4 ranked #1, or randomly choosing to rank them #1 through #4, we took the average of those ranks, thus giving them all a rank of #2.5 (this explains why some ranks end in .5).

- Looking at the DRAFT POSITION compared to the TOTAL wPPG RANK (more on this calculation later), you can see how service time/completion affects the overall positioning a bit.

__TOTAL SEASONS PLAYED__
- Titled SERVICE TIME in the doc, and taken from the TSL archives doc. Just shows how many seasons have been completed.

- People who have at some point dropped out mid-season have had their numbers rounded up to show the total number of seasons they participated in. The reason for doing this as opposed to noting a half-season played (such as 14.5) is due to the match completion criteria (explained next). Had we kept service time at a half season, the half-season'er would have incorrectly been double-penalized from the two categories. Another way of looking at this is that match completion in the next section represents the person's completion rate over the number of full seasons they have participated in.

__MATCH COMPLETION__
- The match completion "points" system can be best explained as such: each season, each person receives 1 "point" for completing all of their matches. Miss 1 game, and you get docked a point, thus finishing with 0 points for that season. Miss 2 games, and you get docked 2 points, so you actually finish with -1 point for the season (the full per-season table breakdown is in the bottom-right of the google doc).

- Seasons played and games missed were both taken from the TSL archives.

__S26-S28 RESULTS__
- The most complex part of the whole thing is quantifying the results of each user from FIFA 18. So I'll try to go somewhat step-by-step in how these were made...

- The results component is nearly the same as the one we used for the World Cup on FIFA 17. Back then, we evaluated people from S18-S21 (the 4 seasons prior to the draft). This time we only used a 3-season evaluation instead of the usual 4, as we only wanted to include FIFA 18 seasons.

- For all seasons, the doc shows each user's League level, games played, and total points. We then made a PPG column so you can easily see those totals too.

- After entering in these totals, we made a wPTS column (weighted points). As you can see by looking at the League Level weights at the bottom, all League A points were weighted by 3, all B pts by 2, and all C pts by 1. (Also, anything in the doc with the "w"-something stands for weighted and that just means adjusted for League level weights)

- We have to still make these totals on a per game basis due to incomplete games, people who dropped out early, and differing number of teams per league, so the wPPG column is wPTS/game. So this would be the weighted (by league level) points per game.

- To get a total number for S26-S28 totals with most recent results taking slightly more precedence, we used the following format: S28 = 44.4%, S27 = 33.3%, and S26 = 22.2% (Previously this was 40-30-20-10 for 4 seasons, so we used the same distribution across the 3 most recent seasons. If you look down at the weights box at the bottom, you'll see these weights). But for people with less than 3 seasons of data...

- I'll start with an example. For people with 2 seasons played (say S27-S28), we still need to weigh everything they've played out of 100%. Therefore, we took the same percentage of distribution used season-to-season above (44-33-22) to create the "Distribution" line in the weights table (100%-75%-50%-25% that is used for 4-season evaluations). That means looking at the most recent season's (S28) weight as 100%, the previous season before that (S27) would be 75% of that weight total, then the season before that (which would've been S26 had this person played 3 seasons) would've been 50% of the most recent season's weight total, and so on. With this distribution in mind, you can see in the weights box how each season would be weighted if a user played less than 3 seasons... So for people with 2 seasons played, it comes out to roughly a 60-40 weight distribution, but just adding math to create numbers more in line with the 40-30-20-10 original 4-season distribution and not just arbitrary numbers. And for those with just 1 season played, obviously their one season is 100% of their results total (so they aren't penalized for having played less seasons).

- Alright, so after weighing the FIFA 18 seasons with more recent results carrying more weight, we get the TOTAL wPPG number. So for example, for someone like myself with 3 FIFA 18 seasons played, my TOTAL wPPG would be 44.4% of my Season 28's wPPG, 33.3% of my Season 27's wPPG, and so on. So in the end, this step creates an overall weighted average of my wPPG each season.

- And with that all completed, I can create a ranking like the SERVICE TIME and COMPLETION PTS columns that go into making the overall "magic" number (the WEIGHTED RANKS number)

And in the end, we can put in order from lowest to highest the WEIGHTED RANKS column to get our overall draft position.

If you have any questions, ask in GroupMe or send me a message there and I'll be able to explain it further. The draft will be starting soon, so be ready!