MLS Fantasy 2018: Gameweek 20 - Captaincy Picks
Picking a Captain to double down on in MLS Fantasy is the most important choice ahead of each of the 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: Zlatan Ibrahimovic (LA Galaxy 2-2 D.C. & LA Galaxy 4-0 Columbus) - 18pts
Away: Miguel Almiron (FC Dallas 3-2 Atlanta & Philadelphia 0-2 Atlanta) - 21pts
Wildcard: Alberth Elis (Houston 2-2 LAFC & Houston 3-0 Minnesota) - 19pts
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), 18 (19) = 192 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), 21 (19) = 148 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), 19 (19) = 169 points
Gameweek 20: Home Captain
Fixtures: NYCFC vs. Montreal Impact & NYCFC vs. Columbus Crew
Player: Maxi Moralez (NYC)
Position: Midfielder (CAM)
Player Price: $13.5 million
After a quite sensational Week 19, with massive performances across MLS in its Fantasy game, we move on to a consecutive Double Gameweek for Week 20, with New York City, Montreal Chicago all involved twice.
There's no better place to start our captaincy selections than with the man who was the closing note of Week 19. Maxi Moralez's lone strike was enough to win a tense and nervy New York Derby against the Red Bulls at Yankee Stadium, with the victory much needed after suffering a brace of 4-0 defeats in MLS and the Open Cup already.
Maxi Moralez might be without David Villa this week, but the Spaniard's omission through injury is likely to halt the steady stream of points that Moralez is delivering on a weekly basis.
Moralez has managed double-digit Fantasy returns from 5 of his last 7 appearances for NYC, amassing 79 points in that time (which is just under half of Maxi's overall score). In that time Moralez has scored twice and assisted 6 times, so no wonder MLS Fantasy players will by picking him in their droves comes Week 20's initial lockout.
NYC play twice at home, entertaining Montreal Impact in midweek, before hosting Columbus Crew at the weekend - a match which will be overshadowed by the World Cup final, involving France and either England or Croatia.
Moralez is the smart and obvious pick this week, and he's the name we expect most of the upper echelon of Fantasy players to pick as their captains this week. Easy peasy.
Gameweek 20: Away Captain
Fixtures: NYCFC vs. Montreal Impact & Montreal Impact vs. San Jose Earthquakes
Player: Ignacio Piatti (MTL)
Position: Midfielder (LW / CF)
Player Price: $12.1 million
Want to spice up a routine week in which you're almost forced to select as many Double Gameweek assets as possible? Ignacio Piatti might be the man for your captaincy concerns this week.
After a long stint of nothingness, Montreal have picked up the gears and have won back-to-back home games by beating Sporting KC during Week 18, and then Colorado Rapids in Week 19. Form is on Montreal's side as they travel to a NYC side that will be without David Villa.
Saphir Taider has rose to prominence over the past few weeks but it is winger-turned-forward Piatti who will earn Fantasy contention as the spearhead of the side. Piatti's managed 16 attacking returns this season, 9 goals and 7 assists, which is 1 more than Moralez has formed.
If you're thinking that Piatti won't be an inspirational figure against NYC, which is a massive possibility, the prospect of a home tie against struggling San Jose Earthquakes might be enough to turn your stomachs if your bet on Maxi Moralez doesn't work out against Montreal and Columbus.
Piatti's going to be an automatic pick this week for most, and he should be in contention for the armband if you're looking for a Plan B, and after neglecting his appeal for captaincy all this season, the cards are finally laid out for Piatti to be a must-have for Week 20 as Montreal attempt to cling hold of their play-off spot.
Gameweek 20: Wildcard Captain
Fixtures: Chicago Fire vs. Philadelphia Union & FC Dallas vs. Chicago Fire
Player: Nemanja Nikolic (CHI)
Position: Forward (CF)
Player Price: $5.6 million
Blink and you'll miss it. By 'it' we mean the plummeting value of Nemanja Nikolic that has made him a low budget, low risk MLS Fantasy option heading into Week 20's festivities.
Since returning from injury Nikolic has been letting Alexsander Katai fill in the attack, though it is Nikolic who is coming into his own once again, scoring against NYCFC during Week 18, and most recently against Vancouver Whitecaps in Week 19.
Chicago face a tough prospect on the road to high-flying FC Dallas at the weekend, so we expect Nikolic's potential will come to light in the home fixture against Philadelphia Union in the week.
At the very least the fox in the box should earn a place on the bench to see if his promise is fulfilled, before settling on a final team going into the weekend. Going one step further, we think that Nikolic might offer a left-field choice for the captaincy armband this week, though he faces some major contention in attack with in-form Diomand and Ibrahimovic in action, as well as Wayne Rooney's upcoming home debut for D.C. United against Vancouver.
Nikolic is the one to keep an eye on this week, even with Katai amongst your ranks, and there'll be no shame in doubling down on Chicago's attack this week.
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