MLS Fantasy 2018: Gameweek 18 - Captaincy Picks
Picking a Captain to double down on in MLS Fantasy is the most important choice ahead of each of the 34 regular season Gameweek's in MLS's season. There's a lot of self-help out there for MLS enthusiasts, with our Hype Team providing three major considerations for the armband for each and every Gameweek. We'll be detailing the top choice for captain in home and away matches, and a Wildcard pick of our choosing to add to the chaos. All aboard.
MLS Fantasy: Gameweek Deadline
For the 2018 MLS Fantasy season there is a 'Rolling Lockout', which means you can make substitutions and transfers until the second a player's game kicks off, which means you can chop and change your lineup as any Gameweek progresses.
You can view the schedule and a real time Gameweek deadline countdown clock (in the London GMT timezone) on our dedicated MLS Fantasy page.
Captaincy in MLS Fantasy
There are a few differences with picking a captain in MLS compared to playing other games such as FPL. The major element to note with our Captaincy article is that we'll be picking a captain who is playing home and away, as well as a Wildcard player of our own choosing.
We've listed the differences below that make captaincy in MLS Fantasy unique:
- With the Rolling Lockout, you can change your captain until the selected captaincy pick plays
- Once the team your captaincy pick takes to the field, you can no longer change your captain
- If your captaincy pick doesn't play, then you'll end up with nothing
- There is no option to select a vice captain
CAPTAINCY HYPE: 2018 SEASON PERFORMANCE
In each Captaincy article we track our progress throughout the 2018 MLS Fantasy season. Below you can check how our captaincy selections have performed by week to week in Major League Soccer.
Home: Sebastian Giovinco (Toronto 0-2 Columbus Crew) - 3pts
Away: Josef Martinez (Houston Dynamo 4-0 Atlanta United) - 5pts
Wildcard: Nicolas Lodeiro (Seattle Sounders 0-1 LAFC) - 9pts
Home: David Villa (NYCFC 2-1 LA Galaxy) - 10pts
Away: Yamil Asad (Atlanta United 3-1 D.C. United) - 2pts
Wildcard: Alberth Elis (Houston Dynamo 1-2 Vancouver Whitecaps) - 9pts
Home: David Villa (NYCFC 2-0 Orlando City) - 0pts
Away: Nemanja Nikolic (Minnesota United 2-1 Chicago Fire) - 2pts
Wildcard: Miguel Almiron (Atlanta United 4-1 Vancouver Whitecaps) - 10pts
Home: Gyasi Zardes (Columbus Crew 3-1 D.C. United) - 2pts
Away: Maxi Moralez (New England Revolution 2-2 NYCFC) - 4pts
Wildcard: Bradley Wright-Phillips (New York Red Bulls 3-0 Minnesota United) - 13pts
Home: Felipe Gutierrez (Sporting Kansas City 1-0 D.C. United) - 6pts
Away: Carlos Vela (LA Galaxy 4-3 LAFC) - 15pts
Wildcard: Alberth Elis (Houston Dynamo 0-2 New England Revolution) - 3pts
Home: Miguel Almiron (Atlanta United 5-0 LAFC) - 20pts
Away: Carlos Vela (Atlanta United 5-0 LAFC) - 3pts
Wildcard: Zlatan Ibrahimovic (LA Galaxy 0-2 Sporting Kansas City) - 2pts
Home: Miguel Almiron (Atlanta United 2-2 NYCFC) - 10pts
Away: Sacha Kljestan (Philadelphia Union 0-2 Orlando City) - 8pts
Wildcard: Maxi Moralez (NYCFC 4-0 RSL // Atlanta 2-2 NYCFC) - 23pts
Home: Bradley Wright-Phillips (New York Red Bulls 1-2 Chicago Fire) - 10pts
Away: Miguel Almiron (LA Galaxy 0-2 Atlanta United) - 14pts
Wildcard: Alberth Elis (Houston Dynamo 5-1 Toronto) - 8pts
Home: Miguel Almiron (Atlanta United 4-1 Montreal Impact) - 15pts
Away: Dom Dwyer (Colorado Rapids 1-2 Orlando City) - 2pts
Wildcard: Carlos Vela (LAFC 1-0 Seattle Sounders) - 5pts
Home: Sebastian Giovinco (Toronto 3-0 Philadelphia Union) - 12pts
Away: Miguel Almiron (Chicago Fire 1-2 Atlanta United) - 10pts
Wildcard: Darwin Quintero (Minnesota United 1-0 Vancouver Whitecaps) - 3pts
Home: Carlos Vela (LAFC 2-0 Minnesota United & LAFC 2-2 NYCFC) - 18pts
Away: Miguel Almiron (Atlanta 0-2 Sporting KC & Orlando City 1-2 Atlanta) - 12pts
Wildcard: Darwin Quintero (Toronto 1-2 Seattle & New England 3-2 Toronto) - 16pts
Home: David Villa (NYCFC 4-0 Colorado Rapids) - 17pts
Away: Magnus Eriksson (Vancouver 2-2 San Jose & San Jose 1-3 D.C. United) - 7pts
Wildcard: Kei Kamara (Vancouver 2-2 San Jose & Dallas 2-2 Vancouver) - 9pts
Home: Carlos Vela (LAFC 1-1 D.C. United) - 5pts
Away: Diego Valeri (Colorado Rapids 2-3 Portland Timbers) - 7pts
Wildcard: Ola Kamara (LA Galaxy 1-0 San Jose Earthquakes) - 2pts
Home: Miguel Almiron (New England 1-1 Atlanta & Atlanta 3-1 Philadelphia) - 18pts
Away: Alberth Elis (RSL 2-1 Houston & Montreal 1-0 Houston Dynamo) - 8pts
Wildcard: Maxi Urruti (LA Galaxy 2-3 FC Dallas & FC Dallas 2-1 LAFC) - 3pts
Home: Alberth Elis (Houston Dynamo 2-0 Colorado Rapids) - 2pts
Away: Sebastian Giovinco (Philadelphia Union 0-2 Toronto) - 6pts
Wildcard: Mauro Diaz (FC Dallas 2-0 Montreal Impact) - 13pts
Home: Sebastian Giovinco (Toronto 4-4 D.C. United) - 9pts
Away: Josef Martinez (Columbus Crew 0-2 Atlanta United) - 6pts
Wildcard: Teal Bunbury (San Jose Earthquakes 2-2 New England Revolution) - 2pts
Home: Josef Martinez (Atlanta United 1-1 Portland Timbers) - 3pts
Away: Sebastian Giovinco (NYCFC 2-1 Toronto) - 3pts
Wildcard: Dom Dwyer (Orlando City 0-2 Montreal Impact) - 3pts
Home Total: 3 (1), 10 (2), 0 (3), 2 (4), 6 (5), 20 (6), 10 (7), 10 (8), 15 (9), 12 (10), 18 (11), 17 (12), 5 (13), 18 (14), 2 (15), 9 (16), 3 (17) = 160 points
Away Total: 5 (1), 2 (2), 2 (3), 4 (4), 15 (5), 3 (6), 8 (7), 14 (8), 2 (9), 10 (10), 12 (11), 7 (12), 7 (13), 8 (14), 6 (15), 6 (16), 3 (17) = 114 points
Wildcard Total: 9 (1), 9 (2), 10 (3), 13 (4), 3 (5), 2 (6), 23 (7), 8 (8), 5 (9), 3 (10), 16 (11), 9 (12), 2 (13), 3 (14), 13 (15), 2 (16), 3 (17) = 133 points
Gameweek 18: Home Captain
Fixture: Atlanta United vs. Orlando City
Player: Miguel Almiron (ATL)
Position: Midfielder (CAM)
Player Price: $13.1 million
Another week, another chance to continue our weekly captaincy article with a look at Atlanta United's finest. The Five Stripes have been a mainstay in our consideration for the armband throughout MLS Fantasy this season, and into the second-half of the season, there is no sign of slowing down with many player's decisions to bank on key assets from the state of Georgia.
Week 18 sees Atlanta welcome rivals Orlando City to the Mercedes Benz Stadium, with the travelling side without a permanent Head Coach, and no win in their last 7 matches. Orlando won 6 MLS matches in a row between weeks 4-9, their best run in MLS, and have followed it up with 7 consecutive losses, a run of defeats which started against Atlanta at home during Week 10.
Most Fantasy players will be licking their lips at Martinez's goal threat, as well as Miguel Almiron's overall influence, but due to the calibre of sides we have defaulted to Almiron as the top pick for the week, despite form and points returns going in Martinez's favour.
Almiron, who operates in a free role in midfield, only has attributed 2 assists from his last 8 matches, though he still remains the overall top Fantasy player having just reached 150 points.
With attacking bonus to consider, even if Martinez scores a brace this week, due to the one-side nature of the upcoming fixture that many expect to see, Almiron's potential for successful passes, shots, key passes, big chances created, and crosses, is just enough to sway the Paraguay international in to our good books for another week, though patience is wearing thin after a poor run of form.
Gameweek 18: Away Captain
Fixture: San Jose Earthquakes vs. LA Galaxy
Player: Zlatan Ibrahimovic
Position: Forward (CF)
Player Price: $8.7 million
World Cup season has seen LA Galaxy not feature since Week 15, which has given Swedish superstar Zlatan Ibrahimovic all the time in the world to produce television adverts and appear on Fox, whilst the Swede soaks in a Last 16 tie for his international side.
This weekend Zlatan returns to work without a game in a few weeks, but on paper is in red hot form for the visit to a San Jose Earthquakes side who are rock bottom of the Western Conference with 11 points from 16 matches played.
Ibrahimovic has scored 4 goals in his last 3 MLS appearances, a stat that is bettered when knowing he was only named as a substitute against Portland Timbers during Week 14's Double Gameweek, which saw Ibra net twice at home against Dallas.
A second brace in alternate games has put Zlatan firmly on the radar, especially when considering a captaincy alternative to the powerhouse options of Atlanta. San Jose have leaked 32 goals this season, a record only worsened by Orlando (33) who play Atlanta, and Vancouver (34), who host Colorado Rapids in the last match of the week.
With Giovinco and Martinez at home, many Fantasy players will opt for both, with the 3rd Forward slot up for grabs, and we think that competition within LA's two sides will fight it out, with Zlatan going up against another in-form Forward, and wildcard captaincy contender, Adama Diomande.
Gameweek 18: Wildcard Captain
Fixture: LAFC vs. Philadelphia Union
Player: Adama Diomandé (LAFC)
Position: Forward (CF)
Player Price: $8.3 million
Last up for captaincy consideration, as we noted above we stay in LA and swap blue for black with the addition of red-hot Adama Diomande.
The former Hull City attacker has scored 4 goals in his only 4 MLS appearances for LAFC this season, and has a mouth-watering home tie against Philadelphia Union to contend with this weekend. That said, The Union have been impressive at home, though their form on the road is a complete parallel, with the squad unable to defend under pressure for long periods without conceding a hatful of chances.
Against Columbus last weekend Diomande could have a hat-trick to his name, but was wasteful with 3 chances in the second-half. Nonetheless, Dio, who is a beast by nature when on the football field, will be fired up to retain his place in the coming weeks as the festivities in Europe begin to settle. LAFC are still unbeaten at home and have Laurent Ciman back in the squad. We only see one outcome this weekend, and it will please supporters of the Black and Gold.
Was was our only consideration this week as he's admirably filled the hole left behind by Carlos Vela, who is currently preparing to take on Brazil in the Last 16 of the World Cup in Russia.
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