Captaincy Picks 2019/20: FPL Gameweek 19
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 19 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 19: Essential Captain
Player: Tammy Abraham (CHE)
Fixture: Southampton (H)
Player Price: £7.9 million
Player Selection %: 36.2%
Captaincy poll results:
Reason for victory:
After a sustained period of FPL captaincy dominance, the nature of Leicester's fixtures against Man City (GW18) and Liverpool (GW19) have seen Jamie Vardy slip down the pecking order, with Raul Jimenez performing well in the role in a 2-1 win at Norwich this weekend just gone.
Of the options we had in our captaincy poll, we were a little surprised to see that Tammy Abraham had been ushered in as the fan favourite ahead of a home tie against Southampton. Gameweek 19 is a repeat of Gameweek 8, a round of games which saw Chelsea sweep aside Southampton 4-1 away from home. Abraham scored and managed 2 bonus points (totalling 8 points) in the club's biggest away win of the season to date.
We're a little surprised mainly due to the fact that Abraham hasn't been in the form of his live, has endured negative net transfers out in 3 of the last 5 Gameweek's and only has 1 Fantasy return in his last 5 fixtures - scoring 12 points in a 2-1 home win over Aston Villa during Gameweek 15. There's also the added caution of potential rotation given it is the festive period, with Michy Batshuayi a readied and primed starter should Frank Lampard look to freshen his side up following their impressive 2-0 win at Spurs. Lastly, with Chelsea having lost 1-0 at home to Bournemouth as recent as Gameweek 17, there's also the question mark over Chelsea's aptitude in home matches, with some of the hype of Abraham settling recently.
Given how good Chelsea were, however, at Spurs, it feels like members of the FPL Community are feeling generous in this festive period and will potentially give the England international their seal of approval in a fixture which sees Southampton's attacking outlet, Danny Ings, who has scored 10 league goals in the last 12 matches, as the main in form that could see this being a high-scoring affair if form for both teams carries through. The win at Spurs also put Abraham at 101 points in FPL, making him the 7th player to reach the feat this season - 2 points ahead of Ings on 99.
Additionally, with Leicester, Liverpool and Man City all contesting very interesting league fixtures, we're going to see a wide variety of captaincy options on show on Boxing Day - with Abraham vying with Rashford, Kane and those in the captaincy poll this week. There's no safe pick this week, so go with what you know, and what is evident is that of the options available, Abraham has the 'safest' route to points.
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 19: Alternative Captain
Player: Harry Kane (TOT)
Fixture: Brighton (H)
Player Price: £11.0 million
Player Selection %: 20.1%
Reason for selection:
On this festive day for many people, you're probably asking what has Harry Kane gifted us so far this season? The England captain has only scored twice in a 5-0 home rout of Burnley during Gameweek 16, his only Premier League goals in 5 matches. Added to this, Christmas cheer might be missing for Spurs as Heung-Min Son starts his suspension after poking at Antonio Rudiger's ribs with his boots during Spurs's 2-0 home loss to Chelsea last weekend.
We actually chose Harry Kane as our alternative captain during the 5-0 win against Burnley, which saw Kane collect his biggest points haul in FPL this season, managing 2 goals, 1 assist, all 3 bonus points and 16 points overall.
Our logic on that occasion was that Harry Kane tends to hit 20+ goals a season, having done so in 4 of the last 5 seasons' - Kane managed 17 goals last season before having his ankle caved in by Fabian Delph in Spurs's 1-0 Champions League home win over Man City last season in mid February, which halted his Golden Boot chances in the league.
Kane feeds off of opposition like Burnley and Brighton to boost his numbers, and even without Son in the team, we expect Jose Mourinho's side to come away with the points. A goal of two against a Brighton side that didn't have any answers for Sheffield Unitd's defensive organisation last weekend, might just be lacking confidence as they travel to London and if there's one person to feed on the scraps of uncertainty, it's Kane and his pin-point finishing... Currently on 9 goals, isn't this just the fixture that the Forward needs to get him in the leading pack of contenders, behind the long shadow cast by Jamie Vardy's 17 goals this season?
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 19: Dark Horse Captain
Player: Mohamed Salah (LIV)
Fixture: Leicester (A)
Player Price: £12.2 million
Player Selection %: 23.0%
Reason for selection:
Gameweek 19's most contentious fixtures for the Boxing Day round of games involve the Premier League's top three sides right now, with leaders Liverpool visiting second-placed Leicester City, and Man City visiting a strong Wolves side who currently sit in 6th place in the table.
Our major consideration was Gabriel Jesus, with the Forward doing well in the absence of Sergio Aguero, but with the Argentine back in the matchday squad for City's 3-1 home win over Leicester last weekend, we opted against Jesus given how Pep Guardiola is a proven rotater with much of his squad - Ederson is the only one that isn't threatened by the axe as there's no suitable backup to challenge the Brazilian.
Instead, we favoured Liverpool and have chosen Mo Salah. It's not the most inspired pick given that Salah boasts back-to-back Golden Boots in the league, but it's a fixture and circumstance that warrants his inclusion.
The Egyptian King is in fine form in the FPL, scoring 29 points over the last 2 Gameweek's and has come on to the Fantasy radar again after teammate, Sadio Mane, overtook Salah in terms of price in the game and being the must-have Liverpool option.
Not many will want to captain a player against Leicester given their form, but if one side gets the benefit of the doubt, it's a Liverpool side who have proven quality across the pitch, and a team that are fresh off of completing an international treble of trophies in 2019. Liverpool are 10 points clear for a reason and we're not in the mood for second guessing captaincy options, especially given that the word 'rotation' has been thrown around a lot prior to Gameweek 19's deadline. Salah is an alternative to Mane with the 80 odd percent that don't own the midfielder probably sweating that Salah's form continues in the weeks to come.
Leicester have conceded 14 goals in the league this season, the same number as Liverpool, though the Club World Cup champions have played a game less. A win for the Reds in this fixture will leave Man City and the rest of the footballing world wondering if Jurgen Klopp's side will drop many (if any) points in the league this season. Having players like Mo Salah returning to form over the festive period could be the key for Liverpool at wrapping up the league title sooner rather than later to stop any doubts of slips or lapses in form that have haunted the team in years gone by.
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 19: Differential Captain
Player: Patrick van Aanholt (CRY)
Fixture: West Ham (H)
Player Price: £5.5 million
Player Selection %: 6.0%
Reason for selection:
This wasn’t the name you were expecting, was it? There are nine other games and we have opted to go big with a familiar name to the FPL community. PVA has being doings bits in the FPL for quite some time, and only recently the Flying Dutchman has returned to the Crystal Palace team after a disappointing hamstring injury. Crystal Palace have been an impressive defensive unit this season, and it is in home games against struggling teams in which the Eagles really know how to soar.
West Ham visit Selhurst Park this Boxing Day, and they are rusty too after are they were made to wait to face Crystal Palace after Liverpool went on to win the Club World Cup. PVA has a few things going his way in this fixture, starting with the upcoming opponents. West Ham are the current definition of inconsistency this season. One game they are good, the next they are immensely poor. The Hammers have only won two back-to-back games this season which took place in GW3 and GW4 against Watford and Norwich.
The last ten games have been cruel to the London side, having lost seven games, drawing one, and winning two. Their goal difference is horrendous, and there has been real pressure on Manuel Pellegrini after a dreadful run of form. Palace have six clean sheets this year, four of which have happened at Selhurst Park, and two on the road. PVA is also an offensive full-back and has attacking returns in his locker. He ticks every single box this week, and in this season of giving, we offer to you a differential that can do it all who is up against a team who can barely do anything.
This week we wanted to simplify things and take a gamble at the same time. There are lots of differentials this week who we could have trusted in, but none more tempting than PVA. For the second time this season we bank on a defender as our differential captain, second to Leicester’s Roberto Pereira. Palace have Vincente Guaita in red hot form, and it could be what puts PVA into your good books this Boxing Day.
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.