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 Hype Team providing 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 24 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.
The transfer deadline for GW24 is Saturday 4th February 2017 at 11:30am.
CAPTAINCY HYPE: 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: Harry Kane (Spurs vs. Crystal Palace) - 5pts
Alternative: Roberto Firmino (Burnley vs. Liverpool) - 2pts
Wildcard: Fernando Llorente (Swansea vs. Hull) - 2pts
Essential: Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Hull vs. Man United) - 2pts
Alternative: Eden Hazard (Chelsea vs. Burnley) - 11pts
Wildcard: Romelu Lukaku (Everton vs. Stoke) - 2pts
Essential: Eden Hazard (Swansea vs. Chelsea) - 1pt
Alternative: Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal vs. Southampton) - 1pt
Wildcard: Tom Heaton (Burnley vs. Hull) - 2pts
Essential: Harry Kane (Spurs vs. Sunderland) - 9pts
Alternative: Romelu Lukaku (Everton vs. Middlesbrough) - 12pts
Wildcard: Christian Benteke (Crystal Palace vs. Stoke) - 2pts
Essential: Sergio Aguero (Swansea vs. Man City) - 13pts
Alternative: Sadio Mane (Liverpool vs. Hull) - 7pts
Wildcard: Troy Deeney (Burnley vs. Watford) - 2pts
Essential: Alexis Sanchez (Burnley vs. Arsenal) - 3pts
Alternative: Philippe Coutinho (Swansea vs. Liverpool) - 2pts
Wildcard: Marcus Rashford (Man United vs. Stoke) - 2pts
Essential: Sergio Aguero (Man City vs. Everton) - -1pt
Alternative: Diego Costa (Chelsea vs. Leicester) - 9pts
Wildcard: Christian Benteke (Crystal Palace vs. West Ham) - -1pt
Essential: Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal vs. Middlesbrough) - 3pts
Alternative: Theo Walcott (Arsenal vs. Middlesbrough) - 3pts
Wildcard: Gylfi Sigurdsson (Swansea vs. Watford) - 2pts
Essential: Alexis Sanchez (Sunderland vs. Arsenal) - 13pts
Alternative: Romelu Lukaku (Everton vs. West Ham) - 12pts
Wildcard: Troy Deeney (Watford vs. Hull) - 2pts
Essential: Sergio Aguero (Man City vs. Middlesbrough) - 6pts
Alternative: Charlie Austin (Hull City vs. Southampton) - 7pts
Wildcard: Wilfried Bony (West Ham vs. Stoke City) - 2pts
Essential: Sergio Aguero (Crystal Palace vs. Man City) - 2pts
Alternative: Jermain Defoe (Sunderland vs. Hull City) - 11pts
Wildcard: Harry Kane (Spurs vs. West Ham) - 13pts
Essential: Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool vs. Sunderland) - 1pt
Alternative: Diego Costa (Chelsea vs. Spurs) - 5pts
Wildcard: Gylfi Sigurdsson (Swansea vs. Crystal Palace) - 10pts
Essential: Harry Kane (Spurs vs. Swansea) - 13pts
Alternative: Alexis Sanchez (West Ham vs. Arsenal) - 23pts
Wildcard: Victor Anichebe (Sunderland vs. Leicester) - 2pts
Essential: Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal vs. Stoke) - 5pts
Alternative: Diego Costa (Chelsea vs. West Brom) - 8pts
Wildcard: Divock Origi (Liverpool vs. West Ham) - 9pts
Essential: Harry Kane (Spurs vs. Hull) - 2pts
Alternative: Diego Costa (Sunderland vs. Chelsea) - 2pts
Wildcard: Marcos Alonso (Sunderland vs. Chelsea) - 7pts
Essential: Harry Kane (Spurs vs. Burnley) - 2pts
Alternative: Diego Costa (Crystal Palace vs. Chelsea) - 6pts
Wildcard: Marcos Alonso (Crystal Palace vs. Chelsea) - 6pts
Essential: Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Man United vs. Sunderland) - 15pts
Alternative: Sadio Mane (Liverpool vs. Stoke) - 2pts
Wildcard: Marcos Alonso (Chelsea vs. Bournemouth) - 6pts
Essential: Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Man United vs. Middlesbrough) - 5pts
Alternative: Romelu Lukaku (Hull vs. Everton) - 2pts
Wildcard: Marcos Alonso (Chelsea vs. Stoke) - 3pts
Essential: Sergio Aguero (Man City vs. Burnley) - 7pts
Alternative: Christian Benteke (Crystal Palace vs. Swansea) - 1pt
Wildcard: Olivier Giroud (Bournemouth vs. Arsenal) - 15pts
Essential: Alexis Sanchez (Swansea vs. Arsenal) - 11pts
Alternative: Harry Kane (Spurs vs. West Brom) - 17pts
Wildcard: Andre Gray (Burnley vs. Southampton) - 2pts
Essential: Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal vs. Burnley) - 8pts
Alternative: Romelu Lukaku (Crystal Palace vs. Everton) - 2pts
Wildcard: Junior Stanislas (Bournemouth vs. Watford) - 2pts
Essential: Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Man United vs. Hull) - 2pts
Alternative: Romelu Lukaku (Sunderland vs. Spurs) - 3pts
Wildcard: Mesut Ozil (Arsenal vs. Watford) - 2pts
Essential Total: 9 (1), 5 (2), 2 (3), 1 (4), 9 (5), 13 (6), 3 (7), -1 (8), 3 (9), 13 (10), 6 (11), 2 (12), 1 (13), 13 (14), 5 (15), 2 (16), 2 (17), 15 (18), 5 (19), 7 (20), 11 (21), 8 (22), 2 (23) = 136pts
Alternative Total: 2 (1), 2 (2), 11 (3), 1 (4), 12 (5), 7 (6), 2 (7), 9 (8), 3 (9), 12 (10), 7 (11), 11 (12), 5 (13), 23 (14), 8 (15), 2 (16), 6 (17), 2 (18), 2 (19), 1 (20), 17 (21), 2 (22), 3 (23) = 146pts
Wildcard Total: 10 (1), 2 (2), 2 (3), 2 (4), 2 (5), 2 (6), 2 (7), -1 (8), 2 (9), 2 (10), 2 (11), 13 (12), 10 (13), 2 (14), 9 (15), 7 (16), 6 (17), 6 (18), 3 (19), 15 (20), 2 (21), 2 (22), 2 (23) = 104pts
CAPTAINCY HYPE: THE ESSENTIAL AND ALTERNATIVE PICKS
The Essential Pick
Player: Harry Kane (Spurs)
Player Price: £11.2 milion
Player Selection %: 20.8%
The Alternative Pick
Player: Romelu Lukaku (Everton)
Player Price: £9.6 million
Player Selection %: 26.1%
The midweek round of Premier League games that have just past, the now distant Gameweek 23, for most players everywhere, was an absolute failure. A joint misery shared by the masses that back the trends of the game, mixed in with those fortunate enough to possess a differential option that made a difference. For most, a Gylfi Sigurdsson simply didn't appear in their matchday squads, instead we were left with Zlatan, Kane, Lukaku, Aguero, Phillips, Alli, and more, who didn't do a single thing to improve or generate any movement in the overall FPL tables. Putting 4 of those who didn't perform into our latest Captaincy poll, we had a heavyweight battle on our hands, and the winners weren't the conventionally popular picks.
Kane and Lukaku battled out for top billing for Gameweek 24, with both facing favourable home fixtures, which gihlights that FPL players have finally wised up that Aguero and Zlatan don't run the show. Could you imagine the FPL community picking anyone other than Aguero after the first Gameweek of the season, you'd be laughed at back then for picking Lukaku ahead of the Argentine. Here's how the FPL community voted for this weekend's games, when over 4 million players will hope a grain of normality returns.
Harry Kane took the top billing for Gameweek 24 as Spurs look irresistible playing at White Hart Lane, whilst a youthful and energetic Everton side face a Bournemouth side who are on another one of their mini declines. The stars have alligned, and due to the closeness of the result, we've picked Kane as the Essential, and Lukaku as the alternative, and for the purpose of the article, there is no better place to compare the duo in the FPL.
Kane vs. Lukaku - An FPL Comparison
If you're one of the players deciding between the duo, let's have a look at how they compare in the Fantasy Premier League after 23 Gameweek's.
Premier League Appearances
Kane: 112 points
Lukaku: 119 points
Kane: 17 points
Lukaku: 19 points
How many times have they been subbed (aka how many times have they completed 90 minutes)?
Lukaku: 3 (all yellow)
Kane: 1 (GW18, Southampton away)
*Kane is first choice penalty taker at Spurs, whilst Lukaku is second choice behind Leighton Baines at Everton*
Times in Dream Team
Points Per Match (Average)
Kane: 6.2 points (best in the FPL as a Forward)
Lukaku: 5.4 points (5th best in the FPL as a Forward)
Transfers In (Overall)
Transfers Out (Overall)
Spurs's Next 5 Fixtures
GW24: Middlesbrough (h)
GW25: Liverpool (a)
GW26: Stoke (h) - POTENTIALLY REARRANGED DUE TO FA CUP 6TH ROUND
GW27: Everton (h)
GW28: Crystal Palace (a)
Everton's Next 5 Fixtures
GW24: Bournemouth (h)
GW25: Middlesbrough (a)
GW26: Sunderland (h)
GW27: Spurs (a)
GW28: West Brom (h)
Can Kane or Lukaku reward players for Gameweek 24?
Both forwards come into this Gameweek without a goal in their previous two fixtures, share a similar level of ownership, and are close in relation to other stats. Form would dictate that Harry Kane is the man to back, but he's not the only outlet at Spurs. Dele Alli, Christian Eriksen, and a host of defensive options, can steal the show on any given day. Middlesbrough are a rugged and defensively organised side, so chances might come at a premium against the northern side. However, on occasion, Boro can get overrun and that's what the FPL will be hoping form. Form in general for Kane has been nothing short of glorious since return from injury. But unlike Lukaku, we believe Spurs face the tougher test to unlock the points potential, whereas Everton face a side who they should dispatch, but they might not simple because Everton are the Premier League equivalent of being Bi Polar.
One week Everton can turn on the heat and beat Man City 4-0, but then the next they'll labour to a draw away at Hull or lose to Burnley. The fixture between Everton and Bournemouth are usually high scoring, and Lukaku is a threat in every game. His physical dominance is something that Kane doesn't have, and at times has quite literally done it by all by himself.
If you've just the one we'd take the plunge, but out of the two we'd always back the bigger horse in the race.
CAPTAINCY HYPE: THE WILDCARD PICK
Player: Patrick van Aanholt (Crystal Palace)
Player Price: £5.0 million
Player Selection %: 4.5%
The January transfer window has slammed shut, and we’re already faced with immediate returns. Saido Berahino is set to take on old club Stoke (if he gets a chance to lace up the boots), whilst Crystal Palace play Sunderland in what will be the first encounter for Big Sam against his old club. Sunderland let the former England manager go to pursue an international football career, but after just 24 Gameweek’s of the 2016/17, the northern side travel down south to a new team controlled by their former manager. Not just that, Sunderland had Patrick van Aanholt ripped from their clutches by Palace’s endeavour in the transfer market.
The left back is known for bombing forward and getting into the box at any given moment, which has led to 3 Premier League goals for Sunderland. All three of PVA’s goals have come at home, and in the Premier League there is a vast history of players turning up to prove a point against their old sides, so why not for PVA? He’s already got one clean sheet for Palace during their 2-0 away victory at Bournemouth, and another against Sunderland will match the 2 he managed from the first 22 Gameweek’s with David Moyes.
Moyes has struggled to attract anything other than the Everton class of 2009 with the additions of Gibson and Oviedo, PVA’s direct replacement at left back. Palace on the other hand have added Liverpool’s forgotten beast Mamadou Sakho to the mix. Built on solid foundations, PVA is an attractive prospect for the Gameweek’s ahead, and in terms of a Captaincy option, his inclusion outshines that of our other nine additions to our GW24 differentials, posing both a defensive and attacking element.
Sunderland could be haunted by their second highest scorer, a left-back, who they let go to a relegation rival.
Notes on Patrick van Aanholt
PVA has a total of 65 points, with 3 clean sheets, 3 goals, and 1 assist so far this season.
PVA left Sunderland for Crystal Palace after the Black Cats lost 2-0 to West Brom for Gameweek 22.
PVA managed a clean sheet in his first appearance for Palace, playing the full 90 minutes and managing 6 FPL points on his Palace debut.
PVA is the 26th highest ranked defender in the FPL so far with 65 points. He’s the same number of points as Stoke’s Erik Pieters and Bruno Martins Indi.
On 2 occasions this season PVA has managed a goal or assist, as well as a clean sheet. PVA assisted and kept a clean sheet against Hull during GW13 and he also scored in a 1-0 victory over Watford during GW17.
In the reverse fixture against Palace, whilst playing for Sunderland, Crystal Palace beat Sunderland 3-2 at the Stadium of Light. PVA managed 1 point that game, completing the full 90 minutes.
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