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 4-0 West Ham) - 13pts
Alternative: Roberto Firmino (Watford 3-3 Liverpool) - 12pts
Wildcard: Josh King (West Brom 1-0 Bournemouth) - 2pts
Essential: Romelu Lukaku (Swansea 0-4 Man Utnited) - 6pts
Alternative: Mohamed Salah (Liverpool 1-0 Crystal Palace) - 1pt
Wildcard: Steve Mounie (Huddersfield 1-0 Newcastle) - 1pt
Essential: Harry Kane (Spurs 1-1 Burnley) - 2pts
Alternative: Henrikh Mkhitaryan (Man United 2-0 Leicester) - 5pts
Wildcard: Alvaro Morata (Chelsea 2-0 Everton) - 12pts
Essential: Romelu Lukaku (Stoke 2-2 Man United) - 6pts
Alternative: Alvaro Morata (Leicester 1-2 Chelsea) - 6pts
Wildcard: Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal 3-0 Bournemouth) - 1pt
Essential: Harry Kane (Spurs 0-0 Swansea) - 2pts
Alternative: Gabriel Jesus (Watford 0-6 Man City) - 6pts
Wildcard: Eden Hazard (Chelsea 0-0 Arsenal) - 1pt
Essential: Sergio Aguero (Man City 5-0 Crystal Palace) - 11pts
Alternative: Alexandre Lacazette (Arsenal 2-0 West Brom) - 13pts
Wildcard: Benjamin Mendy (Man City 5-0 Crystal Palace) - 0pts
Essential: Romelu Lukaku (Man United 4-0 Crystal Palace) - 6pts
Alternative: Dele Alli (Huddersfield 0-4 Spurs) - 2pts
Wildcard: Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal 2-0 Brighton) - 6pts
Essential: Harry Kane (Spurs 1-0 Bournemouth) - 2pts
Alternative: Jamie Vardy (Leicester 1-1 West Brom) - 2pts
Wildcard: Raheem Sterling (Man City 7-2 Stoke) - 15pts
Essential: Gabriel Jesus (Man City 3-0 Burnley) - 1pt
Alternative: Eden Hazard (Chelsea 4-2 Watford) - 5pts
Wildcard: Tammy Abraham (Swansea 1-2 Leicester) - 2pts
Essential: Sergio Aguero (West Brom 2-3 Man City) - 0pts
Alternative: Mohamed Salah (Liverpool 3-0 Huddersfield) - 4pts
Wildcard: Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal 2-1 Swansea) - 2pts
Essential: Sergio Aguero (Spurs 1-0 Crystal Palace) - 2pts
Alternative: Mohamed Salah (West Ham 1-4 Liverpool) - 15pts
Wildcard: Riyad Mahrez (Stoke 2-2 Leicester) - 7pts
Essential: Romelu Lukaku (Man United 4-1 Newcastle) - 6pts
Alternative: Mohamed Salah (Liverpool 3-0 Southampton) - 16pts
Wildcard: Glenn Murray (Brighton 2-2 Stoke) - 1pt
Essential: Harry Kane (Spurs 1-1 West Brom) - 8pts
Alternative: Gabriel Jesus (Huddersfield 1-2 Man City) - 4pts
Wildcard: Callum Wilson (Swansea 0-0 Bournemouth) - 2pts
Essential: Alvaro Morata (Chelsea 1-0 Swansea) - 1pt
Alternative: Mohamed Salah (Stoke 0-3 Liverpool) - 13pts
Wildcard: Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal 5-0 Huddersfield) - 8pts
Essential: Mohamed Salah (Brighton 1-5 Liverpool) - 5pts
Alternative: Alvaro Morata (Chelsea 3-1 Newcastle) - 8pts
Wildcard: Riyad Mahrez (Leicester 1-0 Burnley) - 6pts
Essential: Harry Kane (Spurs 5-1 Stoke) - 12pts
Alternative: Eden Hazard (West Ham 1-0 Chelsea) - 2pts
Wildcard: Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool 1-1 Everton) - 1pt
Essential: Harry Kane (Spurs 2-0 Brighton) - 2pts
Alternative: Mohamed Salah (Liverpool 0-0 West Brom) - 3pts
Wildcard: Alexis Sanchez (West Ham 0-0 Arsenal) - 3pts
Essential: Eden Hazard (Chelsea 1-0 Southampton) - 6pts
Alternative: Jamie Vardy (Leicester 0-3 Crystal Palace) - 2pts
Wildcard: Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal 1-0 Newcastle) - 3pts
Essential: Raheem Sterling (Man City 4-0 Bournemouth) - 13pts
Alternative: Jamie Vardy (Arsenal 3-3 Liverpool) - 10pts
Wildcard: Charlie Austin (Southampton 1-1 Huddersfield) - 6pts
Essential: Mohamed Salah (Liverpool 5-0 Swansea) - 9pts
Alternative: Sergio Aguero (Newcastle 0-1 Man City) - 2pts
Wildcard: Charlie Austin (Crystal Palace 2-3 Arsenal) - 2pts
Essential: Mohamed Salah (Liverpool 2-1 Swansea) - 14pts
Alternative: Alvaro Morata (Chelsea 5-0 Stoke) - 2pts
Wildcard: Alexis Sanchez (West Brom 1-1 Arsenal) - 5pts
Essential: Harry Kane (Swansea 0-2 Spurs & Spurs 1-1 West Ham) - 3pts
Alternative: Alvaro Morata (Man City 3-1 Watford) - 6pts
Wildcard: Sadio Mane (Burnley 1-2 Liverpool) - 8pts
Essential: Harry Kane (Spurs 4-0 Everton) - 13pts
Alternative: Romelu Lukaku (Man United 3-0 Stoke) - 5pts
Wildcard: Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace 1-0 Burnley) - 3pts
Essential: Mohamed Salah (Swansea 1-0 Liverpool) - 2pts
Alternative: Raheem Sterling (Man City 3-1 Newcastle) - 5pts
Wildcard: Cenk Tosun (Everton 1-1 West Brom) - 2pts
Essential: Sergio Aguero (Man City 3-0 West Brom) - 6pts
Alternative: Roberto Firmino (Huddersfield 0-3 Liverpool) - 8pts
Wildcard: Eden Hazard (Chelsea 0-3 Bournemouth) - 2pts
Essential: Sergio Aguero (Burnley 1-1 Man City) - 2pts
Alternative: Anthony Martial (Man United 2-0 Huddersfield) - 1pt
Wildcard: Christian Benteke (Crystal Palace 1-1 Newcastle) - 5pts
Essential: Mohamed Salah (Southampton 0-2 Liverpool) - 13pts
Alternative: Harry Kane (Spurs 1-0 Arsenal) - 6pts
Wildcard: Alexis Sanchez (Newcastle 1-0 Man United) - 2pts
Essential Total: 13 (1), 6 (2), 2 (3), 6 (4), 2 (5), 11 (6), 6 (7), 2 (8), 1 (9), 0 (10), 2 (11), 6 (12), 8 (13), 1 (14), 5 (15), 12 (16), 2 (17), 6 (18), 13 (19), 9 (20), 14 (21), 1, 2 (22), 13 (23), 2 (24), 6 (25), 2 (26), 13 (27) = 166 points
Alternative Total: 12 (1), 1 (2), 5 (3), 6 (4), 6 (5), 13 (6), 2 (7), 2 (8), 5 (9), 4 (10), 15 (11), 16 (12), 4 (13), 13 (14), 8 (15), 2 (16), 3 (17), 2 (18), 10 (19), 2 (20), 2 (21), 6 (22), 5 (23), 5 (24), 8 (25), 1 (26), 6 (27) = 164 points
Wildcard Total: 2 (1), 1 (2), 12 (3), 1 (4), 1 (5), 0 (6), 6 (7), 15 (8), 2 (9), 2 (10), 6 (11), 1 (12), 2 (13), 8 (14), 6 (15), 1 (16), 3 (17), 3 (18), 8 (19), 2 (20), 5 (21), 8 (22), 3 (23), 2 (24), 2 (25), 5 (26), 2 (27) = 110 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 28: Essential
Player: Mohamed Salah (LIV)
Player Price: £10.5 million +
Player Selection %: 59%
After FPL players endured a glutenous festive period of fixtures throughout December, at times it feels like the millions who play the game go cold turkey throughout January, with the FA Cup having its time in the spotlight.
The Premier League's return this weekend should get our rhythm back on track, hopefully with all of our teams bagging points for fun. For that to happen your captaincy selection has to be spot on, and fortunately ahead of Gameweek 28, there are some obvious and standout picks to consider, so much so we decided to shorten our essential captain poll (which usually features 4 names) to just the two realistic options.
Fighting out of the blue corner, Harry Kane and an away trip to Crystal Palace had to look across the ring and Mohamed Salah fighting out of the red corner with a home encounter against West Ham on the horizon.
This figurative fight was a one-sided contest from the first minute, with Mo Salah's victory at the the equivalent of a first round Knockout.
The obviousness of picking Mohamed Salah this week comes off the back of being our essential captain during Gameweek 27's victory at Southampton, which was another profitable afternoon for The King of Egypt, both scoring and assisting against Liverpool's unofficial 'feeder' club.
Salah to this day remains the only player to reach 200 points in the FPL this season, with Man City midfield duo Kevin De Bruyne (174) and Raheem Sterling (173) the closest competitors.
Salah and Liverpool alike have an amazing opportunity this week to really tighten their grasp on a Top 4 spot, as well as further embedding Salah's claim as the best FPL player this season (or any...?), and with West Ham standing in Liverpool's way, there is a good chance of Salah's reign of dominance continuing.
Liverpool won in convincing fashion when they visited the London Stadium, picking off Slaven Bilic's side 4-1, with the Croatian Manager leaving the club after the match. On that day during Gameweek 11 Salah scored a brace of goals, one in either half, to secure a 15 point return.
After just Gameweek 27 we're already counting down to Salah toppling Alexis Sanchez's 264 points from last season, and with just 48 points to go to beat Sanchez's haul, we've every bit confident the Egyptian will close the gap further this week.
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 28: Alternative
Player: Jamie Vardy (LEI)
Player Price: £8.6 million +
Player Selection %:
There's nothing better than having your job made easy, right? Well, this Gameweek has pulled up some peaches, with Liverpool and Leicester coming at the forefront of attention for FPL players, especially in regards to captaincy.
Leicester have made our lives easy this week, with Jamie Vardy fitting bill for an alternative captaincy slot this week against a Stoke side who are languishing in the relegation zone.
Claude Puel has been talking positively about Stoke in his pre-match press conference this week, suggesting that the squad is a lot better than they look. Fantasy players will be particularly conflicted this week, with Xherdan Shaqiri's good form of 18 points from his last 2 games, coming into direct contact with a Leicester side who face two enticing home fixtures against Stoke and Bournemouth.
Puel was also talking up the credentials of Jamie Vardy this week, with the England international in red hot form.
Despite much of the hype being in Leicester's favour, Puel's side suffered a 5-1 defeat during their last outing, with The Foxes having to witness Sergio Aguero scoring four past Kasper Schmeichel.
Before the tie with Man City, Leicester drew 1-1 at home to Swansea (GW27), and lost at Everton 2-1 the week prior (GW26). Leicester's last victory came in a 2-0 home win over Watford (GW24), a fixture which started a run of four successive games with a goal for Vardy.
In the Premier League, Leicester have lost 1 of their last 5 home fixtures, with the 3-0 defeat to Crystal Palace (GW18) being the last defeat on home soil.
A welcome return to the side for Riyad Mahrez will also be endearing to FPL players, with the Algerian missing Gameweek's 25 and 26 due to a self-imposed sabbatical, before returning during Gameweek 27's defeat at Manchester City, the club which bid for Riyad Mahrez at the latter stages of the January transfer window.
This captaincy selection of Jamie Vardy solidifies the good form that Vardy's been on, but also acknowledges that Leicester haven't been in the best form as of late, and a visit from a Stoke side, who themselves hasn't won a match in three attempts, is the perfect opportunity to cement Leicester in the top half of the table come the end of the season.
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 28: Wildcard
Player: Sadio Mane (LIV)
Player Price: £9.3 million
Player Selection %: 7.6%
The second Liverpool captaincy option this week, three if you include Roberto Firmino, is the differential of the group Sadio Mane. If you read the captaincy article this week then you know Mohamad Salah is the primary captain, and that is due to the fact Liverpool have the most favourable fixture of any top six club in the Premier League this Gameweek. We don’t have to sell you the value of Liverpool midfielders, especially any of Liverpool’s ‘Threatful Three’, or whatever the media are now reporting the trio as currently. Review the stats to see if Mane is the man for you this Gameweek.
Sadio Mane Key Stats:
Sadio Mane’s last game saw the Senegalese forward score a hat-trick against Porto in the Champions League. Mane is deployed on the left of Liverpool’s three-pronged attack.
Mane has started the last seven consecutive Premier League games.
Liverpool are three games undefeated in the Premier League, having scored a minimum of two goals in all three games.
The Reds have lost only one game since Gameweek 10, and was against Swansea during Gameweek 24 (W12, D5, L1).
Liverpool are undefeated at home this season, collecting seven clean sheets whilst playing at Anfield. West Ham are walking into a fortress.
Liverpool beat West Ham 4-1 away from home in the reverse fixture this season. Mane collected ten fantasy points as he made two assists in the game.
Liverpool also have scored a minimum of four goals versus West Ham in their last two league fixtures.
West Ham have only kept one clean sheet since their last in Gameweek 18 away to Stoke, and that happened last week when West Ham beat Watford 2-0 at the London Stadium.
In short, Sadio Mane is worth considering as your captain alongside his teammate Mo Salah. Liverpool are in fine form and looking to take advantage of their top four rivals all facing each other in Gameweek 28. Favourable results for the Reds could see Liverpool jump to second in the league table, so the emphasis will be once again on the goals flowing at Anfield. West Ham love to play the ball and open space in their defence, it is how the Reds have bested the Hammers in the past two league games with a combined aggregate score of 8-1.
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.
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