CAPTAINCY PICKS 2019/20: FPL Gameweek 2
Picking the right captain in FPL can make or break your season and has a massive impact on your final overall rank come the end of the season. We attempt to ease the burden of any potential captaincy stress by offering a host of worthy selections ahead of each Gameweek - an Essential that is voted by the FPL Community, an alternative of our choosing, a Dark Horse who might spring a surprise, and a lowly selected Differential - to cover the bases. All aboard.
Fantasy Premier League: Gameweek 2 Deadline
For the 2019/20 Premier League season, the FPL deadline will be one hour before the commencement of the week's first game. Our website provides a real-world countdown timer for the the upcoming Gameweek, whilst you can read our latest Fantasy articles from the season on our 2019/20 FPL weekly hype sub-section.
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 2: Essential Captain
Player: Mohamed Salah (LIV)
Player Price: £12.5 million
Player Selection %: 45.3%
Captaincy poll results:
Reason for victory:
We're a week in to the season and it's the same old story from an FPL perspective. Three season wonder, Mohamed Salah, is already amongst the goals. Liverpool's ruthless finishing in the first-half against Norwich eased any captaincy doubt, hence the majority win in our captaincy poll, even though Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has a favourable home fixture against Burnley.
Liverpool went through extra-time and penalties in their UEFA Super Cup win over Chelsea in Istanbul. Salah played the full 120 minutes and scored Liverpool's winning penalty. A long night in Turkey, combined with a flight back across Europe might turn a few heads away from Salah being your captain, but let's be honest, it won't diminish his minutes or points potential against Southampton too much, if at all.
If anything, the return of Sadio Mane to the line-up, combined with Mo's set-piece potential, means that we're looking at the stand-out captaincy picks this week. If you're one of the 45% that have backed The Egyptian, there's a goo chance he'll be a lock for the armband, regardless of who else you have in your team.
CAPTAINCY HYPE: THE ALTERNATIVE PICK
Our Alternative selection for captain typically commands a smaller FPL ownership percentage than our Essential poll winner, though this pick is usually reserved for The Hype Train's own gut instincts on who could be captaincy inspiration for the upcoming Gameweek.
Gameweek 2: Alternative Captain
Player: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (ARS)
Fixture: Burnley (H)
Player Price: £11.0 million
Player Selection %: 28.4%
Reason for selection:
As a Newcastle fan, I knew what was coming last weekend. We were in a tight affair against Arsenal, with not much happening at all. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang had a relatively quiet game, then bang. Out of the blue, a mistake from Jetro Willems allows the Gabon international in for an easy finish past Martin Dubravka.
This weekend, Burnley visit Arsenal after a convincing win against Southampton. The Clarets look defensively solid and we might be going down the route of Aubameyang picking his moment, though in light of the fixtures at the weekend, it's a worthy gamble to bank on, especially if you're in the camp that Salah doesn't do it for you and you're not touching the captaincy in the Man City vs. Spurs fixture.
The only downside to Aubameyang is a few tricky fixtures after Burnley, but for a one-week punt, Auba's the first name on many teams this weekend.
CAPTAINCY HYPE: THE DARK HORSE PICK
A new captaincy selection this season sees us introduce a Dark Horse pick, which will be a player who typically has a good scoring record against an opposing team, or a player in good form that is being overlooked due to other popular captaincy picks.
Gameweek 2: Dark Horse Captain
Player: Raul Jimenez (WOL)
Fixture: Man United (H)
Player Price: £7.5 million
Player Selection %: 20.7%
Reason for selection:
Picking a dark horse captain this week came down to looking at the hard to judge fixtures. Everton hosting Watford, Chelsea welcoming Leicester, and Wolves playing Man United all came to mind.
Gameweek 1 provided Man United a great platform to showcase their new defensive signings, Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Harry Maguire, as well as establishing a firm FPL interest in Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford, but given that Chelsea are in transition, a team like Wolves will give United a massive test this coming Monday.
Wolves just beat Armenian side, Pyunik, 8-0 on aggregate in Europa League qualifying, with Raul Jimenez rest for the occasion so the Mexican can get back to business against Man United. Jimenez might not have gotten off to the perfect Fantasy start in last week's 0-0 draw at Leicester, though a first home game of the season offers us FPL players an opportunity to rue our decision to leave one of the best players from last year out - at the detriment of United's defensive assets.
Wolves have a strong squad this year, which will at some stage this season reinforce Raul's FPL potential, though for now he's well-placed to come from out the shadows and back into greater contention.
CAPTAINCY HYPE: THE DIFFERENTIAL PICK
Our Wildcard selection is one of the ten differential picks that is featured in our Weekly Wildcard Differentials article. This captaincy selection has a very small percentage of owners in the FPL, and is our left-field option.
Gameweek 2: Differential Captain
Player: Teemu Pukki (NOR)
Fixture: Newcastle (H)
Player Price: £6.5 million
Player Selection %: 5.7%
Reason for selection:
All three promoted teams performed admirably on the opening gameweek. Sheffield United held Bournemouth away from home, Villa startled Spurs who needed a late comeback to overcome the Midlands team, and Norwich went to Anfield with the intent of attacking the Red’s defence. When FPL managers look at options from promoted teams, they look for goal scorers first and foremost, and because most people interested in the FPL don’t watch Championship football you tend to lean on statistics to give you the tale of the tape.
You can never assume what a promoted team will look like against Premier League teams, but the eye test for Norwich was overwhelmingly positive. Their own fans will look at their performance with optimism, mostly because the Championships’ top scorer from last season made an instant impact by defying the logic by silencing fantasy managers who owned Virgil, Robertson, and Alexander-Arnold.
Pukki has one of the most incredible stats we at The Hype Train have ever witnessed. The Fin has scored in every opening day in the last eight seasons with his first shot. Why did nobody share this with the rest of us? That is an omen to be very wary of. Norwich supporters would have a glimmer of hope that Pukki could provide a huge difference in fixtures against other bottom ten teams. That leads us to discussing the Canaries opponents this weekend…Newcastle United.
Last season the Toon struggled to pick up points at the beginning of the season, and once against face a promoted team away from home in GW2. Last season it was the 0-0 draw with Cardiff. Whoever does the fixtures for Newcastle must have a vendetta against them, because they always face at least five of the top six in the first ten games. Last year it took until GW11 for Newcastle to pick up their first win of the season, and it gives Norwich a chance to pick up points at home when Newcastle are feeling the early season pressure. If you had to bank on anyone to rub salt in the wounds of Newcastle, your money would be on Teemu Pukki to continue his fast start to the new Premier League season.
Want to know more about The Hype Train?
The Hype Train is an entertainment website founded in 2015, specialising in Fantasy sports reporting, starting with Fantasy Premier League (FPL), before expanding to MLS Fantasy coverage in 2018.
We pride ourselves in providing beautiful graphics, statistics, in-depth analytical reporting and free weekly insight for hopeful players attempting to climb rankings tables. We are also occasional media reviewers, with a keen interest to review games, live sport, and professional wrestling.
In 2019, Hype Train Football Club was formed, becoming the first Fantasy Football website to take to the field. HTFC is a socially active team across social and web channels, providing regular match highlights, match reports, comprehensive player statistics and unique player profiles.
The Hype Train were nominated and shortlisted for the 'Best Football Blog' in 2016 by the Football Bloggers Association at their annual Football Blogging Awards (The FBA's), and were again shortlisted as a finalist in 2019 in the 'Best Fantasy Football Blog' category.