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: Mohamed Salah (Liverpool 4-1 West Ham) - 10pts
Alternative: Jamie Vardy (Leicester 1-1 Stoke) - 2pts
Wildcard: Sadio Mane (Liverpool 4-1 West Ham) - 7pts
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), 10 (28) = 176 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), 2 (28) = 166 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), 7 (28) = 117 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.
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 29: Essential
Player: Mohamed Salah (LIV)
Player Price: £10.5 million +
Player Selection %: 60.1%
Gameweek 29: Alternative
Player: Harry Kane (TOT)
Player Price: £12.9 million
Player Selection %: 46.5%
Over here in the UK the snow has been falling quicker than over Overall Ranks in the Fantasy Premier League, and ahead of a freezing cold weekend of football, with the slightest chance of a few match cancellations, it's time to put on our warmest pair of socks and do it all again.
Our Gameweek 29 essential capataincy poll featured four players this week, but we were probably best off doing another duet with just Harry Kane and Mohamed Salah on the list, as they're the only targets many people are considering this week... and why not? It's the business end of the season and the time to play it safe and keep pace is right now.
Salah enters his third consecutive week as our 'essential' pick, winning the favour in our polling station on all 3 occasions, and because we don't want to spit our own faces, Harry Kane gets the spot as our alternative captaincy pick.
We're doing our Captaincy article slightly differently this week. We were invited onto our good friends and founding Partners over at the Fantasy Football Hub, to give out insight into our Gameweek 29 predictions, so instead of treading water twice, it is probably best that I just put my contributions below, which cover our main captaincy targets.
Who are your top 3 captaincy picks and why?
Hello one and all, and thank you to Will and the team for inviting me on the Comparison Challenge to weigh in on all things Captaincy ahead of Gameweek 29. If you’re unaware of who I am, and why I’m qualified to potentially answer this question, I’m the primary owner of The Hype Train, as well as being a founding Partner right here at Fantasy Football Hub.
Captaincy is the bread and butter of my writing activities at Hype Train HQ, and for three years I’ve been trying to find the perfect formula for the armband, and there are some correlations that are evident throughout my own Captaincy series. We pick an ‘essential’, which is based off a poll we run, an alternative pick which is my personal pick (if it is different to the essential), and a ‘wildcard’ pick who possesses a low Fantasy ownership, usually below 7%. All three options have a varying level of ownership to cover a lot of the bases that Fantasy players have on a weekly basis.
The conclusions we’ve come to is that the essential pick isn’t half as successful as the alternative pick. The captaincy essential is by definition, the popular pick, and it can always be misleading if short-term form is nothing more than a blip, which is more often than not why a popular pick fails – the hype doesn’t match the continuity.
As FPL players this season we have had to deal with an inconsistent Harry Kane at home, with many players captaining the Englishman during early season home matches against ‘lesser’ opposition, only to blank. We’ve endured Romelu Lukaku’s early season form completely disappear, and Sergio Aguero largely provides erratic returns to rely upon. Arsenal haven’t been on the Fantasy radar much this season, and Chelsea options fall off any radar as soon as they’re on it, so the main captaincy picks have fallen to Spurs, Man City, and Liverpool.
We start with Liverpool, and the one exception to the rule this season, and the one person who has been a torch-bearer of excellence since joining from Roma in the summer. Of course, the first pick is Mohamed Salah (£10.5m).
The King of Egypt has been a revelation, and having been involved in the analytical and journalistic side of FPL for years, there’s been no player that has brought as much excitement to the Premier League in years. Salah’s 227pts so far has come from 27 appearances, scoring 23 times, and assisted 10 goals. Salah is a pleasure to have in our league, and I am very happy that he departed Chelsea, and proved every single person wrong about his capabilities. As a Newcastle fan, I smell blood in the water this weekend, even if The Magpies drew 1-1 at St James’s Park earlier in the season, a game which was one of 5 blanks this season.
Gameweek 29 has been kind to FPL players, which makes my second pick much easier. Spurs and Harry Kane (£12.9m), no doubt. We’re in the points business, and Kane is at the top of attention every week, especially considering that he scored a first-half brace against opponents Huddersfield during Gameweek 7’s 4-0 route.
The selection of Kane is typical, and has been listed by The Bookies and The Poll, but having run a Fantasy Forecast this season, and being burnt on my own selections, this right now is about keeping ground, just in case Kane builds on the 24 goals he has scored so far this season.
Last up, I’m taking a detour and will stick true to our ‘wildcard’ policy, so Watford talisman Troy Deeney (£6.3m), gets my seal of approval ahead of the weekend. Being the first guest on this article, I’d love to set the benchmark of having a lowly-selected ‘wildcard’ make the cut every week, and Deeney is first up to bat.
There’s nothing more I love to see than a general up top, a unit that oozes confidence in his own ability, with a commanding leadership. Troy Deeney’s lethal strike at home to Everton, the only goal of the game and a furious effort that nearly broke the net, tells you everything you need to know about Watford’s forward. If you’re looking to freshen up your attack, Deeney is the latest flavour of the week, and one deserving of your attention against the Premier League’s bottom side, West Brom, at home.
You can read the full article by clicking here, or interacting with the tweet below.
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 29: Wildcard
Player: Alexis Sanchez (MUN)
Player Price: £11.7 million
Player Selection %: 4.1%
Main event time, and once again The Hype Train introduces you to the man known simply as Alexis. The Manchester United midfielder goes to Selhurst Park again after the Chilean ventured there with Arsenal, nabbing an impressive fifteen points in the process. Here are the key points leading into the match.
Alexis Sanchez's key stats:
The last time Alexis Sanchez played at Selhurst Park he picked up fifteen points from two goals, and the maximum three bonus points.
Crystal Palace are without Wilfried Zaha, and since the Ivorian has been injured they haven’t won a game and are on a two-match losing street having only scored one goal.
Crystal Palace haven’t won a game in their last five (W0, D2, L3).
Meanwhile, Manchester United have kept two clean sheets out of their last five games, but they have also lost their last two away fixtures to Spurs and Newcastle, respectively.
Manchester United’s most recent fixture was a 2-1 victory over the Champions, Chelsea.
The previous score in the Premier League finished: Manchester United 4-0 Crystal Palace. Goals from Mata, two from Fellaini, and one from Lukaku dispatched the Eagles.
Alexis is a safe bet because the Chilean loves scoring against teams who are more than happy to sit and defend, he is a bottom ten goal threat. Our faith in the Chilean this week is because this could be a rollover fixture for the Red Devil’s, and unfortunately the Eagles struggle to play without Wilfried Zaha. Every game that the Ivorian misses, the closer they get to relegation.
Here is a recap of all ten choices ahead of the Premier League weekend, will you take a leap of faith in any of the names below?
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