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 9 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: 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 9: Essential Captain
Player: Sergio Aguero (MCI)
GW9 Fixture: Burnley (H)
Player Price: £11.3 million
Player Selection %: 50.6%
The second international break of the season is crossed off and cravings of club football enthusiasts are set to be fulfilled, with the Premier League returning for Gameweek 9, which for us FPL players means shuffling the deck after another nail-biting fortnight of 'will he or won't he' get injured on international duty.
On the most part there is a clean bill of health to pick from with our captaincy selects this week, with Mo Salah the only potential doubt with a knock suffered whilst playing for Egypt. Even with Salah declared fit and (hopefully) firing at the weekend, nothing was really going to halt Sergio Aguero's path to victory this week in our essential captaincy poll.
The Argentine was a majority winner with 54% of the vote, beating out Salah, Hazard, and the un-fancied Kane away at West Ham, securing his 4th victory as our essential captaincy.
Whilst there is no point in arguing against The Kun's inclusion this week, he is after all the only player with 50% or more ownership, at home for the free-scoring Champions, taking on a Burnley side who have started the season on the wrong foot after juggling Europe League qualification (and ultimately failing).
The point must be made about Aguero's minutes though. With Gabriel Jesus waiting in the wings, Pep Guardiola is managing Aguero's minutes closely whilst the Forward apparently works out minor injury concerns.
Aguero has played 90 minutes of football just twice this season and has been substituted between the 53rd and 65th minute in each of the last 4 games - these early withdrawals are playing a big factor in Aguero's once-formidable standings amongst the BPS charts. Given more time on the pitch to operate, we'd be talking of healthier returns, but instead FPL players are made to count the minutes as Aguero labours to the 60 mark.
If Man City get the job done early against Burnley, the same fate will befall Aguero yet again, though he may have already done the damage in rewarding his most faithful of owners - especially those that gambled with him as captain against Liverpool, despite never scoring at Anfield.
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 9: Alternative Captain
Player: Alexandre Lacazette (ARS)
GW9 Fixture: Leicester (H)
Player Price: £9.7million
Player Selection %: 11.9%
New week, a fresh impetus following the international break, but the same outcome has occurred in our alternative captaincy pick, with Arsenal's red-hot Frenchman the cut above the rest heading into a Gameweek 9 clash with Leicester at The Emirates.
Lacazette is just one goal shy of matching Sergio's records to start the season, leading many players such as ourselves wondering if there is a need for Aguero's inflated price and reduced minutes, when a cheaper and equally effective option has surfaced.
Not being in favour with the France squad is really working for Lacazette at club level. 4 goals and 4 assists so far this season, and 6 consecutive attacking returns in the FPL, is really making Lacazette the man at Arsenal and for Fantasy players alike.
The 3rd best Forward so far this season is also on penalty kicks in case the duty arises and is the central figure, with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang having to settle for a place out side to accommodate a figure who is thriving in a central role at the London club.
Regarding his captaincy potential this week, Leicester do not inspire hope at the back (sorry Maguire) as a unit, with Lacazette's only rivals for the armband this week coming from Aguero, Salah, and left-field Hazard selections, which puts Lacazette in prime real estate to build on his recent fortunes, all the FPL players to capitalise on.
Our first glance into Alexandre Lacezette was his ice-cold stare and celebrations whilst playing for Lyon on route to the Europa League semi-finals two years ago. We're all finally witnessing his ruthless finishing and killer instinct in front of goal, and having not blanked in a home fixture since February against Chelsea, the odds are heavily stacked in Lacazette's favour this coming Monday night.
*Lacazette's price rose to £9.7 million in the time of this article being published.
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 9: Wildcard Captain
Player: Josh King (BOU)
GW9 Fixture: Southampton (H)
Player Price: £6.4 million
Player Selection %: 5.4%
Bournemouth have been playing attacking, open and attractive football this season, outscoring Liverpool (16 goals to 15) from their opening 8 fixtures of the season, and sit pretty in 6th placed ahead of a Southampton side who have struggled on the whole with Mark Hughes at the helm.
Josh King, who rose to prominence at the end of the 2016/17 season, scoring 16 goals for Bournemouth that season, has found form alongside Callum Wilson and Ryan Fraser, igniting remembrances and comparison of the Norwegians breakthrough season in England top flight.
King has scored 4 goals this season, 3 from the penalty spot, with his most coming from open play against a disorganised Watford side that look a shell of the side that started the season with 4 successive victories.
Wilson (49pts) and Fraser (48pts) have been immense from open play situations, though King's advanced positioning and set-piece potential means he is attracting more BPS on a weekly basis whenever he does provide an attacking return.
King's 8 bonus so far is only outmatched by Harry Kane's 9 bonus, whilst Wilson, who has 10 attacking returns so far this season (3 goals, 7 assists) is off the pace with just 3 bonus.
Given that Fulham's Alexsander Mitrovic has become an early season favourite, the overlooked Cherry has just as many points with a pairing of delightful fixtures against Southampton at home before squaring off against Mitrovic's Fulham side - both of which are games with immense potential for Bournemouth to solidify their entertaining start to the season. King could be the differential of the three to make the real difference in both.
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.