Picking a Captain in the Fantasy Premier League is among the most important 38 decisions any person will make throughout the course of the season. There's a lot of self-help out there for FPL enthusiasts, with our own Antarct!cans FC providing his three major considerations for the armband Gameweek. We'll be detailing the Essential choice for captain, a popular alternative that's pushing the consensus, and a Wildcard pick to add to the chaos. Strap in tightly, it's time to lose your marbles. All aboard.
Fantasy Premier League: Gameweek 2 Deadline
For the 2016/17 Premier League season, the FPL deadline will be one hour before the commencement of the week's first game. The Premier League website lists each FPL deadline, you can always ask on social media, and you can also view a real time countdown on our Weekly Hype page.
In a change from last season, Friday nights games are going to more common in the 2016/17 season. The first listed game is between Man United and Southampton at 8pm.
The transfer deadline for GW2 is Friday August 19th at 19:00pm.
CORE CAPTAINS: SEASON PERFORMANCE
To help track our progress throughout the 2016/17 season, below you can check how our Core Captaincy selections have done by week to week in the Fantasy Premier League.
Essential: Sergio Aguero (Man City vs. Sunderland) - 9pts
Alternative: Jamie Vardy (Hull vs. Leicester) - 2pts
Wildcard: Nathan Redmond (Southampton vs. Watford) - 10pts
Essential Total: 9 (1) = 9pts Alternative Total: 2 (1) = 2pts
Wildcard Total: 10 (1) = 10pts
CORE CAPTAINCY: THE ESSENTIAL PICK
Player: Harry Kane (Spurs)
Player Price: £11.0m
Player Selection %: 18.5%
Harry Kane, perhaps, is one of the riskiest ‘essential’ picks for FPL captain for an early Gameweek fixture. Traditionally in the two seasons The Hurrikane has exploded onto the scene, from loaned out forward to fully fledged England international, has struggled for goals in the opening weeks. In 2014/15, Kane managed an assist on the opening day in a 1-0 away win at West Ham (with Dier scoring), whilst it took Kane until GW7 in the 2015/16 season to score past Joe Hart in a 4-1 rout of Manchester City at White Hart Lane.
But the ingredients are there for an early FPL return. Crystal Palace have sold their driving force, Bolasie, and once again struggled at home to West Brom. Christian Benteke appears to be on his way, but his impact for GW2 if signed by then, could be minimal at very best. Yes, we remember that the big Belgian scored the only goal in a 1-0 win at the Lane in 2014/15, before Bentekkers departed for Liverpool, but it’s already shaping up to be a dominant opening day performance for Spurs.
The No Dembele Theory exists (see below for more details) but surely Kane will see the rub of the green against a Palace side that looks like they’re for the taking this early on in the season. With the Champions League a fixture for Spurs, this early stage of the season might be the ideal time to bank on Kane before eventual rotation curses the lethal striker.
Notes on Kane
- Had a very poor first game of the season with 0 goal attempts, although he has a very good Goals/shots record at White Hart Lane.
- Very few FPL players will captain him due to lack of form so he can prove to be a decent Differential captain pick, if he scores against Crystal Palace.
- Goals are expected between the two sides with a total of 9 goals shared in last 4 matches between Palace & Spurs.
CORE CAPTAINCY: THE ALTERNATIVE PICK
Player: Roberto Firmino (Liverpool)
Player Price: £8.5m
Player Selection %: 10.4%
Liverpool, against the grain of common consensus that they’d struggle with 3 straight away games to open the 2016/17 season, have become a side where a midfield inclusion is becoming an essential element of any FPL side. Coutinho stole the show at Arsenal, and is on set-pieces, whilst Mane was deadly against the Gunners, as he was against Barcelona at Wembley. Our alternative captaincy pick for the week didn’t score or assist, unlike everybody else in Liverpool’s midfield, but Roberto Firmino’s time is coming. It could be a high scoring season for Liverpool, with Firmino likely to retain his place as the most forward player of an attacking three with Coutinho and Mane. Just deeper you have support from Wijnaldum and the hard-working Lallana (who has a spot on our Weekly Wildcards for GW2).
Burnley opened on a dampener against Swansea. The popular trend in the FPL was to bank on Andre Gray, but a technically gifted Swansea side held their nerve, and with Fabianski as gatekeeper (an option Liverpool would love to have right now), held out. Burnley will be desperate for a win, knowing that the future is filled with away days, but they’re up against an irresistible Liverpool side that are goal hungry.
With Mane injured in training, Liverpool could rotate Firmino to a wing position on the right, putting Origi up top, or place faith in a central midfield player and push forward Lallana, thouh the latter is less likely because Klopp likes Lallana where he is, cushioned in on the right of midfield and feeding off Mane’s growing influence at the club.
Firmino is simply top dog, and it happens every season. Firmino remains in the shadow one week, and then bursts into life with a massive performance. FPL players could be in for a big week with Firmino leading their Fantasy forward line.
Notes on Firmino
- With Mane and Coutinho possible doubts for the weekend clash, Firmino has high probability of being amongst the scorers.
- Liverpool face Burnley who conceded 11 goal attempts and 2 big chances inside the box in GW1.
- Unfortunate for not being amongst the points in GW1 despite the 4 goal attempts.
- Be wary of the three upcoming fixtures against Spurs, Leicester and Chelsea.
CORE CAPTAINCY: THE WILDCARD PICK
Player: Fernando Llorente
Player Price: £6.5m
Player Selection %: 3.5%
It was all supposed to be about Andre Gray, right? The Burnley forward, who is the Claret’s number one penalty taker, is sure to have him time in the Premier League, but the arrival of Fernando Llorente was key for Swansea in exposing a solid Burnley defence. Having sold key men Ashley Williams and Andre Ayew, it was supposed to be the end of the world for the Swans, and certain relegation amongst some pundits, but it was never to be the case. There is a certain steel and togetherness that will push Swansea to the lower mid table season. The squad is hard to beat and will score more goals when Gylfi Sigurdsson is fully integrated back into the squad after a memorable summer at Euro 2016 with Iceland.
What makes Llorente GW2’s wildcard is obvious. Hull stunned Leicester but remain a weakened side, one that Swansea could exploit. It’s also a home debut for Llorente, and potentially new signing from Athletico Madrid, Borja. Surely the prospect of goals is swaying the fancy of the 3% of players that have Llorente, and for good reason.
We’ll repeat what we said about Jamie Vardy, who blanked in our GW1 Core Captaincy article, and say that this fixture might just be the easiest for Swansea and their Spanish World Cup winner. Look how that turned out for Vardy, terribly.
Swansea will find it tougher in the coming weeks, with the big boys coming to town, but 6 points right off the bat of the new season could propel their spirits and provide the Premier League with added uncertainty in future fixtures.
Notes on Llorente
- Highest number of shots (5) registered (3 on target) from inside the box in GW1.
- Faces Hull City who had 9 shots 4 big chances conceded inside the box in the last match.
- Involved in 5 attacking aerial duels in GW1.
- Although be wary of the comparatively tougher upcoming fixtures for Swansea.
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