MLS Fantasy 2018: Gameweek 19 - 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: Miguel Almiron (Atlanta United 4-0 Portland Timbers) - 14pts
Away: Zlatan Ibrahimovic (San Jose Earthquakes 3-3 LA Galaxy) - 13pts
Wildcard: Adama Diomande (LAFC 4-1 Philadelphia Union) - 17pts
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), 14 (18) = 174 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), 13 (18) = 127 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), 17 (18) = 150 points
Gameweek 19: Home Captain
Fixtures: LA Galaxy vs. D.C. United & LA Galaxy vs. Columbus Crew
Player: Zlatan Ibrahimovic (LA)
Position: Forward (CF)
Player Price: $9.2 million
Ahead of a massive Double Gameweek with 17 fixtures we are questioning whether or not to captain an Atlanta player due to form elsewhere in MLS, and LA Galaxy might just be a goldmine of points this week.
LA entertain Eastern Conference sides D.C. United and Columbus Crew, with talisman Zlatan Ibrahimovic in red-hot form, making him our default home captain this week.
Zlatan has scored 9 goals in 12 MLS appearances, a tally which includes 4 braces, and a lone strike in Week 7's 1-0 away win at Chicago Fire. 2 of Ibra's 4 braces have come in consecutive Gameweek's, with the proud Swede netting twice against Real Salt Lake during Week 15, and then against San Jose Earthquakes in THe Galaxy's next encounter which just happened to be a thrilling Cali Clasico.
LA are currently 8th in the West on 21 points but are within touching distance of the play-offs, with Real Salt Lake (5th) and Vancouver Whitecaps (6th) both locked on 23 points.
The only potential drawback against a Zlatan captaincy is the potential of rotation. We lived that reality during Week 14's Double Gameweek against Dallas and Portland, with Ibrahimovic scoring twice against the former before failing to make the team-sheet against the latter.
Zlatan's been approving the arrival of NBA superstar LeBron James, and this week, we're approving the armband on Zlatan.
Gameweek 19: Away Captain
Fixtures: FC Dallas vs. Atlanta United & Philadelphia Union vs. Atlanta United
Player: Miguel Almiron (ATL)
Position: Midfield (CAM)
Player Price: $12.6 million
Week 18 was kind to Atlanta's chances of winning the Supporters' Shield, with the side from Georgia 5 points clear at the summit of MLS. Having 6 MLS All-Stars in their squad is no coincidence, and a team with Miguel Almiron, Josef Martinez, and defensive leaders in Gonzalez Pirez, Guzan and Parkhurst, are turning The Five Strips into a serious force in MLS.
If Atlanta are to take that leap to a first-ever trophy, they'll need to overcome two obstacles on the road, which includes a midweek visit to an FC Dallas side who have only lost twice this season, less than any other club in MLS.
After a run of 9 matches without a goal, Miguel Almiron netted twice in the 4-0 demolition of Orlando City, but yet still saw his MLS Fantasy plummet from $13.1 million to $12.6 million.
Almiron's return to form is perfect for Fantasy players this week, with the Paraguayan international a lock for any knowledgeable players. The only drawback is the two away fixtures to sides who are different forces at home.
You might be feeling more comfortable putting the armband on home soil, but could ultimately be burned by Almiron's bonus points credentials. Despite NYCFC's Maxi Moralez closing down Almiron's 164 points, there is a reason the attacking midfielder is the man to back every week.
In the FPL some social commentators on Twitter like to use hashtags such as #AlwaysCaptainKane to emphasis the importance of one player. There's only one undisputed choice in MLS this season, a regular in our captaincy articles, and an all-round lock for all players. #AlwaysCaptainAlmiron.
Gameweek 19: Wildcard Captain
Fixtures: Houston Dynamo vs. LAFC & Houston Dynamo vs. Minnesota United
Player: Alberth Elis (HOU)
Position: Forward (RW)
Player Price: $9.9 million
There are plenty of armband contenders this week that are floating around with the tag of 'differential' ahead of Week 19's mammoth number of fixtures.
Daniel Salloi (SKC) has been in good form on the pitch and looks great value. Next, despite having 9.9% overall ownership, Nicolas Lodeiro's (SEA) Fantasy stock has risen dramatically since returning to the Seattle Sounders side as of late. Romain Allesandrini (LA) won't see many captaincy picks go his way due to Zlatan's appeal, but netted in the previous game.
Lower down the rung, Darwin Quintero's (MIN) got the ability to unlock defences for Minnesota, whilst Albert Rusnak (RSL) and Mauri Diaz (DAL) both feature twice, but minutes on the pitch have taken their toll on their Fantasy potential in recent months. Enough to make you question the thought of them as realistic captaincy options.
Additionally, last week's wildcard captain Adama Diomande is in great form with 7 goals in 5 MLS games, but we've been stuck into this trap before this season of banking on form for it to disappear.
We're left with the far reaches of our consideration, and we've landed in Houston. Alberth Elis is our go-to guy in a Double Gameweek as a Forward who can sneak in to contention with a brace of ome fixtures against sides that Houston can beat on their day.
Houston sit in 7th in the Western Conference, and like LA Galaxy are just 2 points away from play-off contention.
Elis hasn't scored or assisted in his last 3 matches, which makes him the perfect left-field pick to regain some form ahead of a massive few games for The Dynamo. Houston sat out Week 18's festivities and should be raring to kick a ball once again.
If Houston win matches, it is usually due to Elis's pace, power and finishing ability, and we believe there's no better time than when he's in the shadows to take get him back in your Fantasy squads.
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