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: Mohamed Salah (Liverpool 2-0 Newcastle) - 8pts
Alternative: Harry Kane (Spurs 2-0 Huddersfield) - 5pts
Wildcard: Alexis Sanchez (Crystal Palace 2-3 Man United) - 5pts
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), 8 (29) = 184 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), 5 (29) = 171 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), 5 (29) = 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.
Gameweek 30: Essential
Player: Harry Kane (TOT)
Player Price: £12.9 million +
Player Selection %: 46.9%
Gameweek 30 for us at The Hype Train always signals the final stretch of the season. Hitting the ripe old '30' means many Fantasy players are resigned to their standings in their respective mini-leagues and those who are fortunate enough to be near the top of their tables can mount their end of season plan to win their leagues.
Part of the execution of a well-designed plan is the captaincy options, and we had four juicy contenders this weekend, and ultimately a decisive winner stood forward.
After 3 consecutive weeks as our essential captaincy pick, Mohamed Salah stands aside for Harry Kane, who last took the top billing during Gameweek 23's 4-0 home victory over Everton, which saw Kane reward the majority of players that week with 13 points under the Wembley arch.
Gameweek 30's poll was a rudimentary practice in stating the obvious, and what is glaring many players in the faces right now is that every player and their mother will most likely be putting the armband on Harry Kane this weekend.
Spurs are out of the Champions League, regardless of how well they pushed Juventus in their 4-3 aggregate defeat, and now harbour a dual focus of qualifying for the Champions League again next season, and mounting a bid to win the FA Cup.
With a narrowed focus on the Premier League, there's no reason why Spurs won't put the pressure on Bournemouth during GW30's clash, but just remember that Harry Kane lasted 86 minutes last time out against The Cherries and only managed 2pts, with Christian Eriksen scoring the only goal of the game during GW8's narrow home victory.
In each of the last 4 FPL outings, Kane's not gotten above the 6 point mark, so players will be wishing and hoping in mass that Kane delivers more than what's he's been doing in recent weeks, if they're to have a chance at a good Gameweek. The pressure will also be on Kane by FPL players as Mohamed Salah is up first against a Man United side who love to stifle Jurgen Klopp's attacking football, but a good start by Salah will have Kane owners sweating buckets.
Any plan of action between now and the end of the season for Fantasy players needs to keep pace with captaincy trends, so if you think you'll springboard your friends by picking a differential captaincy pick this week might find themselves falling off the pace if Harry Kane does anything away at Bournemouth.
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 30: Alternative
Player: Riyad Mahrez (LEI)
Player Price: £8.7 million
Player Selection %: 9.2%
The landscape of the FPL heading into Gameweek 30 means that we've had to seriously consider our alternative captaincy pick more than we would like. Top FPL players from Spurs, Liverpool, and Man City, are on the road this weekend. Chelsea and Arsenal are out of form, and the usual essential pick, Mohamed Salah, goes up to Old Trafford for a potentially frustration afternoon.
We eventually landed on our gut instinct of backing against West Brom right now, and it so happens that the Baggies welcomes Leicester, with Riyad Mahrez redisovering his magic during Gameweek 29's tense home fixture against Bournemouth.
Mahrez was the inspiration behind Leicester salvaging a 1-1 draw, scoring superbly from a free-kick in the dying seconds of the match, and if Leicester are to break down West Brom on the road, Mahrez is the top contenders to be amongst the points.
With Jamie Vardy scoring in 4 consecutive matches between 24-27, FPL players boarded the Vardy hype train in vast numbers, expecting the goals to flow in against lowly Stoke and Bournemouth. Vardy only managed 2pts in either game and was restricted to little service, with deep-lying defences stifling Vardy's pace and power.
Vardy's frustrations meant that it was Riyad Mahrez who had to supply the magic for Leicester, and it's becoming so regular this season that there is little doubt that Riyad Mahrez is an actual top talent who could grace any 'Top 6' side with ease.
Mahrez's 9 goals and 10 assists this season put him as Leicester's top FPL player, the 4th best Midfielder, and the 7th best player overall.
With the landscape offering very little in way of true alternative captaincy selections, Mahrez is the best bet outside of the 'top' clubs to deliver points, and is playing ideal opposition in West Brom.
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 30: Wildcard
Player: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (ARS)
Player Price: £10.4 million
Player Selection %: 4.5%
The main pick of the weekend sees Gabon international Aubameyang get the nod for the first time as the differential captain. Normally from Arsenal we selected Alexis Sanchez prior to his move to Manchester United, so the big hitter for the Gunners is now the African striker who has somewhat of a mixed start to life at the Emirates. Granted, most of the critics of Arsenal’s recent troubles will point out that the whole team isn’t performing, and that is a very true fact when it is spoken. The problem of Aubameyang’s goal scoring is more down to the team not working hard enough for him, especially Mesut Özil who has been ghosting in recent games.
Arsenal make the ultimate differentials this week because you don’t know if this is going to be the week that they finally have a reaction and pick up a vital win to ease the tensions surrounding the club now. The shambolic loss to Brighton had one glimmer of hope, and that was this week’s differential captain Aubameyang. The striker showed that if given the right space he can make something out of nothing and be that outlet in which Arsenal need to revitalise their season. You know what you are getting from the likes of Man City and Liverpool, so it is easier to predict, but this week we are putting faith in an ultimate differential.
Aubameyang is a player of immense potential who plays for a team who you can’t predict. Things might be rough now, but they can’t sink any lower, can they?
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang Key Stats:
Aubameyang has scored two goals since joining Arsenal. Number one happened at home to Everton in GW26, and most recently versus Brighton in G30.
Arsenal have won only two games this season, but they have occurred at home, where they scored a scored a combined nine goals to thwart Crystal Palace and Everton. Aubameyang scored in their last Premier League win.
Watford have only picked up one point in the league on their travels since beating Newcastle in GW13 with Hughes, Gray, and a Yedlin own goal taking the points home for Watford. The overall record for Watford away from home isn’t encouraging (W4, D2, L8).
However, the reverse fixture from last season saw Watford beat Arsenal 2-1 with Troy Deeney and Younès Kaboul sinking the Gunners.
Watford’s last two Premier League games have been consecutive 1-0 wins against Everton and West Brom.
Arsenal are on a three-match losing streak having lost to Spurs, Man City, and Brighton.
There is our take on Aubameyang. Even if it is a one-week trial the prospect of a striker who has found the net recently going up against a team poor on the road is a good gamble if you ask us.
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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