Picking a Captain to double down on in the Fantasy Premier League is the most important question asked ahead of each of the 38 Gameweek's in the Premier League season. There's a lot of self-help out there for FPL enthusiasts, with our Hype Team providing three major considerations for the armband for each and every 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. Captaincy can make of break a Gameweek so strap in tightly, it's time to lose your marbles. All aboard.
Fantasy Premier League: Gameweek 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
CAPTAINCY HYPE: 2017/18 SEASON PERFORMANCE
In each Captaincy Hype article we track our progress throughout the 2017/18 FPL season. Below you can check how our Captaincy selections have performed by week to week in the Fantasy Premier League.
Essential: Romelu Lukaku (Man United vs. West Ham) - 13pts
Alternative: Roberto Firmino (Watford vs. Liverpool) - 12pts
Wildcard: Josh King (West Brom vs. Bournemouth) - 2pts
Essential: Romelu Lukaku (Swansea vs. Man Utnited) - 6pts
Alternative: Mohamed Salah (Liverpool vs. Crystal Palace) - 1pt
Wildcard: Steve Mounie (Huddersfield vs. Newcastle) - 1pt
Essential: Harry Kane (Spurs vs. Burnley) - 2pts
Alternative: Henrikh Mkhitaryan (Man United vs. Leicester) - 5pts
Wildcard: Alvaro Morata (Chelsea vs. Everton) - 12pts
Essential: Romelu Lukaku (Stoke vs. Man United) - 6pts
Alternative: Alvaro Morata (Leicester vs. Chelsea) - 6pts
Wildcard: Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal vs. Bournemouth) - 1pt
Essential: Harry Kane (Spurs vs. Swansea) - 2pts
Alternative: Gabriel Jesus (Watford vs. Man City) - 6pts
Wildcard: Eden Hazard (Chelsea vs. Arsenal) - 1pt
Essential: Sergio Aguero (Man City vs. Crystal Palace) - 11pts
Alternative: Alexandre Lacazette (Arsenal vs. West Brom) - 13pts
Wildcard: Benjamin Mendy (Man City vs. Crystal Palace) - 0pts
Essential: Romelu Lukaku (Man United vs. Crystal Palace) - 6pts
Alternative: Dele Alli (Huddersfield vs. Spurs) - 2pts
Wildcard: Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal vs. Brighton) - 6pts
Essential Total: 13 (1), 6 (2), 2 (3), 6 (4), 2 (5), 11 (6), 6 (7) = 46 points
Alternative Total: 12 (1), 1 (2), 5 (3), 6 (4), 6 (5), 13 (6), 2 (7) = 45 points
Wildcard Total: 2 (1), 1 (2), 12 (3), 1 (4), 1 (5), 0 (6), 6 (7) = 23 points
CAPTAINCY HYPE: THE ESSENTIAL PICK
Our Essential picks for captain are selected each and every week on our main Twitter account, @RealHypeTrain, with four highly selected FPL options battling it out for alpha status amongst fellow FPL players.
Gameweek 8: Essential
Player: Harry Kane (TOT)
Player Price: £12.8 million +
Player Selection %: 40.7%
With the return of Premier League football ahead of Gameweek 8, the only forward has that has been in major consideration for the captains armband was clear for all to see. Our essential captaincy poll featured Gabriel Jesus, Romelu Lukaku, Alexandre Lacazette, and runaway winner Harry Kane. A 73% margin of victory is the highest of any poll this season, with The Hurrikane triumphing in clinical, which is much like his real life form in the Premier League right now.
The Hurrikane has stormed our Power Rankings charts in recent weeks and now is sitting pretty in second of five after scoring six goals away from home in three matches. Kane’s braces against Everton, West Ham, and Huddersfield, have yielded thirteen points from each match, with nine bonus points and 45 points in total. Next up, struggling Bournemouth visit Wembley, with FPL players expecting Kane to break his Premier League goal drought at the national stadium.
With Aguero and Morata struggling to fitness, the FPL right now is all about its most expensive player, with Kane's price £12.8 million and growing. With Kane also breaching 40.0% ownership for the first time time season, the Englishman and Romelu Lukaku are the two most owned players in the game, though Kane has a long way to go to catch Lukaku's level of love from FPL players.
A home game against Bournemouth speaks for itself. Though Kane has only netted at Wembley in the Champions League, and for England, surely Kane's impressive underlying stats will yield a big Fantasy return for players, and strike fury into those who have not banked on Kane's recent good form.
Stats and Information: Harry Kane
Harry Kane has started the season with 6 goals from 7 appearances, 9 bonus points, and 45 points in the FPL.
Kane's 9 bonus points is the most of any played in the FPL so far this season.
Kane's 6 goals have all come in away matches, with braces against Everton, West Ham, and Huddersfield.
Kane's 6 Premier League goals is one behind Lukaku (7), and level with Aguero and Morata.
Kane's 40.7% ownership is the second highest in the FPL, behind Romelu Lukaku's 59.0% percent.
Spurs have yet to be awarded a penalty kick this season, with Kane's 6 goals all coming from open play.
The only 2 players in the FPL who have featured in the Dream Team 3 times this season play for Spurs: Ben Davies and Harry Kane.
CAPTAINCY HYPE: THE ALTERNATIVE PICK
Our Alternative selection for captain typically commands a smaller FPL ownership percentage, but can be reserved for The Hype Train's own gut instincts on who could be captaincy inspiration.
Gameweek 8: Alternative
Player: Jamie Vardy (LEI)
Player Price: £8.6 million +
Player Selection %: 14.6%
Jamie Vardy is one stubborn player, having overcome potential injury troubles ahead of three Gameweek’s this season. Vardy, who was unable to score in a 0-0 draw away at Bournemouth, has scored five goals in the Premier League this season, and was among the risers in our Power Rankings article ahead of Gameweek 8, mostly due to the lack of in-form forward players in the FPL. Vardy has a good run of fixtures and is the best third choice for a forward, especially with Aguero and Morata recently injured, though not for long as it would appear with Chelsea and Man City hopeful of quick returns for both.
Leicester have failed to score in just two of their matches so far this season, both away from home against Man United and Bournemouth, with Vardy the go-to option for FPL points lower down the table right now. If you're playing your wildcard, Vardy is the best third choice striking option right now, and possesses a good run of fixtures that might just tempt players to take a gamble on the Englishman.
Leicester's Next 5 Fixtures
GW8: West Brom (H)
GW9: Swansea (A)
GW10: Everton (H)
GW11: Stoke (A)
GW12: Man City (H)
In recent fixtures at the King Power, Leicester haven't fared so well against West Brom. Last season, the Baggies were the first side to win at Leicester's home ground in the Premier League, and the season before during Leicester's title charge, the Baggies drew 2-2, with Craig Gardner scoring a wonderful free kick. So there is the potential for West Brom to get something against Craig Shakespeare's men.
With a difficult tie for Lukaku at Anfield against Liverpool, captaincy options are being looked at in Chelsea, Spurs, and Man City, ahead of Gameweek 8. If you're looking at a 'Plan B', then Vardy is your man. He is in the last fixture of the round on Monday, and has already hit the ground running, so has momentum on his side.
Stats and Information: Jamie Vardy
Jamie Vardy has started the season with 5 goals, 7 bonus points, and 38 FPL points, from 7 appearances.
With 38 points so far this season, Vardy is Leicester's top FPL points scorer.
Vardy's scored 2 of his 5 goals at home, and both have been penalty kicks.
In regards to penalty kicks, after FPL GW7 last season (16/17), a total of 20 penalties had been awarded in 70 matches, compared to only 11 this season (17/18).
Vardy has won 3 of the 11 penalties awarded this season, scoring twice from the spot against Chelsea and Huddersfield, with Liverpool's Simon Mignolet saving the third.
Jamie Vardy's 7 bonus points is the most by a Leicester player, and is joint 8th overall, level with Eriksen (TOT) and Ward (BUR).
CAPTAINCY HYPE: THE WILDCARD PICK
Our Wildcard selection is one of the ten differential picks that is featured in our Weekly Wildcards article. This captaincy selection has a very small percentage of owners in the FPL, and is our left field option.
Gameweek 8: Wildcard
Player: Alexis Sanchez (ARS)
Player Price: £11.9 million
Player Selection %: 2.6%
The return of the international break once again brings question marks over the status of many South American players. With World Cup qualifying matches ending late on Thursday morning in the UK, most players don't get back until Thursday evening or sometimes even Friday mornings, with very little preparation time to matches. In the past, these international fixtures have come to be public enemy number one amongst FPL players, and our Wildcard captain for the week, is well in that bracket of consideration this week.
Arsenal's Alexis Sanchez has had a few weeks to forget. From scoring a match winning goal against Ecuador in a 2-1 victory, Sanchez's side just had to avoid defeat against a Brazil side that had already qualified. Chile were bossed, bullied, and ultimately, beaten decisively 3-0, with Man City's Gabriel Jesus scoring twice against Claudio Bravo. Now Sanchez must return to London ahead of a weekend trip to Watford, which has raised new question marks.
In his press conference ahead of Saturday's late kick-off, Wenger said that there is the potential for both Sanchez and Ozil to be sold this January, with the Gunners considering cashing in before it is too late and both are gone on free transfers. More so, Wenger has said that Sanchez will be assessed upon his return, but it is highly unlike that he doesn't play.
Watofrd under Marco Silva are tricky customers, and to beat them Wenger will need Sanchez's flair and creativity, which has helped create two assists from the previous two fixtures against West Brom and Brighton, both at home.
Alexis is yet to score in the Premier League this season from five appearances, and there may be more drama as line-ups come in. Regardless, with Alexis's low ownership percentage, we're making the most of our time with Sanchez being a lowly selected figure, just in case his price and number of FPL owners grows substantially.
If we're wrong though, Raheem Sterling of Man City, is our wildcard back-up option in case Alexis doesn't make the field of play away at Watford.
Stats and Information: Alexis Sanchez
Alexis Sanchez has started the season with 15 points from 5 appearances, with two assists to his name.
Alexis's first FPL return of the season, an assist against West Brom during Gameweek 6, came on his first home start in the Premier League this season.
Both of Alexis's assists against West Brom and Brighton have come in the last two matches, with both at home.
No Arsenal player has more than two assists in the Premier League this season, with Ramsey, Sanchez, Xhaka, and Kolasinac, all with two assists.
A net average of 2,915 put Sanchez into their FPL squads for Gameweek 7, which yielded 6 points against Brighton.
With 15 points from 5 matches, Sanchez is ranked joint 10th in Arsenal's squad.
Alexis has only scored once this season, in the Europa League against German side FC Cologne.
Alexis Sachez will not be going to the World Cup next summer. Chile did not qualify.
Want to know more about The Hype Train?
The Hype Train is an entertainment website founded in 2015, specialising in the Fantasy Premier League (#FPL), providing beautiful graphics and weekly insight for hopeful players attempting to climb ranking tables. We are also occasional media reviewers, with a keen interest to review movies, live sport, and professional wrestling.
As well as providing FPL articles on our website, we are a founding Contributor to the new Fantasy Football Hub, where you can find more unique articles, including weekly Power Rankings, from The Hype Team. You can support us and read exclusive members only content for just £2 per-month by clicking here.
The Hype Train were nominated and shortlisted for the 'Best Football Blog 2016' by the Football Bloggers Association at their annual Football Blogging Awards (The FBA's), with the final presentation held at Old Trafford in Manchester.
You can follow us on Twitter, Like us on Facebook, or visit our website here at www.thehypetrain.co.uk