Here’s our fantasy premier league GW18 captain choice article where we look at a number of ways of assessing the best captain pick for the gameweek. We look at the fixtures, the bookies odds, the FPL advice site polls and the FFGeek choice.
FANTASY PREMIER LEAGUE GW18 CAPTAIN CHOICE
If the article’s a bit long there’s a summary at the end.
Here’s the fixtures for GW18.
The bookies see 5 teams as favourites with the following win odds for £1 invested. It’s likely the fantasy premier league GW15 captain choice will come from one of those teams.
Chelsea £1.36– Hazard, Morata
Liverpool £1.53 – Salah, Mane, Coutinho and Firmino
Arsenal £1.25 – Sanchez, Lacazette, Ozil
Man Utd – £1.57 Lukaku
Man City – £1.57 Aguero, Jesus, De Bruyne, Silva D, Sterling
THE BOOKIES ODDS
Here we look at one of the bookies anytime goal scoring odds. I’ve tried to only put players in who have some gametime security although that doesn’t apply for Man City. It’s the return for £1 invested. Odds are as of Saturday morning and remember they assume the player starts and don’t count assist potential.
£1.61 – Lacazette
£1.75 – Salah, Morata, Jesus, Aguero
£1.80 – Sanchez
£1.85 – Hazard
£1.91 – Firmino
£2.05 – Vardy
£2.10 – Lukaku, Mane
£2.25 – Coutinho
THE FPL ADVICE SITE POLLS.
Thanks to everybody who voted in the FFGeek poll.
It’s also worth noting here that the FFGeek poll asks who you are going to appoint as captain to reflect the reality of the spread of captain choices. Others ask who is the best captain. Others just say captain poll and leave the question up to you.
Firstly here’s the FFGeek poll.
Here’s the summary of the other main advice polls. It’s worth noting that site 1 is the site with the most traffic and it asks who is the best captain
For some reason 2 of the Polls didn’t include Lacazette as a captain option
WHO ARE THE FFGEEK CONTRIBUTORS PICKING?
Blanks are where I haven’t had a team this week.
Thoughts on Hazard and Salah
Hazard played 70 minutes on Tuesday vs Huddersfield having been rested in GW14. Conte has talked alot about rotation but hasn’t mentioned Hazard specifically recently.
Hazard played as a false 9 in the Huddersfield game but with Morata back could go to a forward as a pair with Morata or in a front 3 on the left.
Hazard has returned a goal or assist in 5 of his 10 starts (total 5 goals and 3 assists) and got double figure FPL points in 3 of those 10 starts. However he’s blanked in his last 2. His ability to get bonus when returning is fairly impressive.
He is a multi functional midfielder who can produce assists and goals and over the season they are reasonable good but hampered by a slow start. After a slow start in his last 7 games he’s produced goal or assist threat at an acceptable level in 5 of those games. The games he didn’t were against West Ham and Liverpool. Interestingly against Liverpool he got 3 bonus for an assist
There are 2 comparable games:
Newcastle at home where he scored twice. His underlying stats were excellent.
Watford at home where he got an assist. His underlying stats were poor but this was before he turned the corner.
He has the big advantage of penalties.
Chelsea’s form is good winning 3 of their last 5 games scoring 8 goals in the process.
Southampton away defence
The Southampton away defence ranks 6th equal in goals conceded with 9 against. However they have only played 7 games whereas some have played 9. In xG conceded they are 10th and should have conceded more goals than they have.
2 comparable away games this season have been Liverpool away 0-3 and Man City away 1-2. Both times saw high xGA scores against.
Southampton have no injuries defensively. It is worth noting that they were truly awful in the 4 -1 loss to Leicester who are also a counter attacking. I am sure they will park the bus as they did at City it just depends on whether Chelsea score early
Salah played the full 90 minutes on Wednesday. Klopp has been fairly unpredictable on selection. Salah was taken off in GW16 as a hamstring precaution. It’s impossible to predict Klopps selection other than to say rotation is on the menu
He’s started 15 games plus 2 as sub and scored 13 goals and 4 assists. He’s returned a goal or assist in 12 of those 17 games. His underlying stats are incredible and he’s been a goal threat in every game except for 3. He’s no slouch on the bonus either having got 15
I would say there are 3 comparable home games that’ he played:
Watford 1 goal 1 assist 11 pts
Leicester 1 goal 7 points
West Ham 2 goals 15 points
Stoke 2 goals 13 points
Brighton 1 assist 5 points
Liverpool are in stuttering form with 3 draws and 2 wins in their last 5 although with a respectable 10 goals. those 5 games included 8 away goals in 2 games though
Bournemouth home defence
The Bournemouth home defence is 8th in goals conceded and 14th in xG conceded alhough the ranking is very bunched
Comparable results at home are:
Man City 1-2
The xG conceded was around 1.8 in both games
They have no significant defensive injuries
The bookies favour Lacazette with Salah not far behind. Hazard is a step back.
The Polls favour Hazard but not significantly so
The contributors have pretty much all gone Hazard
Hazard should start, has recent form and good opposition. Chelsea are also in good form. His underlying stats are now good and he has generally outperformed them. He also has pens.
Salah has been the player of the season and his form, consistency and underlying stats are fantastic. He will play a team that has performed well at home against the big teams but will be more attacking than Southampton. His main question is minutes as he’s been an injury speculation with Klopp who is rotating significantly. He also played 1 day later and 20 minutes longer than Hazard. That is evened out as Salah plays on Sunday.
I think returns can be shared around more with Liverpool and Hazard with pens is a big factor
THE FFGEEK CHOICE
If there was a guarantee of equal minutes I would go with Salah. As I think he is the better more consistent performer against a team who will probably park the bus less. However I think minutes risk go against Salah significantly.
However I feel that I have enough exposure to Chelsea and therefore I’m staying with Salah. That could be a fatal mistake in the FFGeek contributors league and the FPL twitter community which seems to back Hazard. I think it’s a 50/50 call so go with your own feeling.
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