This article takes a deep dive look at the all important FPL Gameweek 17 captain decision. It's written by our resident FPL captaincy expert Chris Tan who takes a close look at the fixtures, poll and stats breakdown before concluding on his best pick for the armband.
FPL Gameweek 16 Captain Recap
Before we delve into the FPL Gameweek 17 Captain Decision, it’s important to cast our eye back to last week.
The weekend started with a shock, as Big Dunc’s intimidation tactics scared Everton enough to actually put in a proper shift. They swept Chelsea away with Richarlison and Calvert-Lewin picking up the plaudits; it was another blank for Pulisic and Abraham owners though. As predicted, Mane got his rest and Liverpool comfortably dispatched whipping boys Bournemouth. For those that heeded my advice regarding Salah, congratulations. Spurs absolutely destroyed Burnley (also whipping boys) with Kane, Son and Alli coming away with a reasonable return. Watford and Palace earned the right to feature last on MOTD and the day ended on another shock, as City played into United’s hands getting destroyed on the counter and were actually lucky to have only conceded two. Rashford continues to impress whilst confidence in City assets is really starting to wane.
As predicted last week, Vardy was the safe option this week and he came away with another double digit return. Watching the game without him was very scary and he could easily have come away with more. There’s a big argument for stopping the article at this point and just advising you to captain Vardy but I like to base my decisions on a bit more of an analysis. Danny Ings played his third game in a week, he didn’t break and he scored again. He’s not really a captaincy candidate, but he’s arguably the best budget striker available right now. Shelvey with his third nine pointer in a row has also slipped under the radar. Sheffield Utd scraped an away victory at Carrow Road, but the days of considering Lundstram as a captain option look to be over. Finally, Brighton and Wolves ended in a stalemate with Maupay looking to challenge Ings for budget striker of the year, Jota reminded us of what he’s capable of whilst Jimenez showed his consistency with another (slightly underwhelming) return.
Aubameyang and the forgotten man Pepe impressed in a 4-2-3-1 line-up that didn’t include Lacazette. Despite being lambasted by all, Aubameyang actually has the same points total as Rashford who everyone is celebrating for having his best ever season, which suggests there’s still some life in the premium asset.
Who did I tip?
I suggested that the obvious and safest captain was Vardy, I was pretty much right, but I didn’t take my own advice! It was generally a good week all round though:
Vardy (13) – two goals, max bonus and that is pretty much a common occurrence for this guy now. What’s even more impressive is that he could easily have got another assist and potentially other returns so this was quite a conservative score compared to what he could have achieved. I’m not sure whether it was because they lost Mings, the fact that Leicester are so good or if they’re not that good defensively, but Villa looked wide open.
Son (12) – a wonder goal and an assist was only enough for a single bonus point, but it illustrated the additional value of the clean sheet and extra goal point for midfielders.
Alli (9) – it would have been a hat trick of assists and possibly some bonus points if he had squared the ball to Son. I took the punt on him, as my only Spurs attacker in what I felt to be the fixture most likely to be full of goals, but sadly the punt didn’t pay off. I wasn’t massively penalised though and I’m not disappointed with a nine point return.
Salah (13) – he looked back to his best with an exquisite assist, a comfortable goal, but only came away with two bonus points.
What did we learn?
Whipping Boys – Bournemouth look devoid of anything at the moment, Burnley seem to have lost their defensive resolve and Villa give away a lot of chances. These are the teams that I’d be looking to target in the short term to take advantage of their dip in form.
Reliability – similar to last time Liverpool and Leicester are still the most reliable teams in the league and it would be prudent to invest in their assets. Spurs have hit a new manager purple patch and I would want to ride that wave too. However, looking at teams that we are (or used to be) heavily invested in, now might be the time to consider trading your City and Chelsea assets, as they no longer appear as reliable as they were previously. If you check out the upcoming fixtures though, you might want to give them one more week.
FPL Gameweek 17 Captain - The Fixtures
Liverpool v Watford – Pearson will be in place, but he won’t have had much time to work with the team and this looks like a prime captaincy fixture with Liverpool expected to blow them away.
Burnley v Newcastle – Burnley are on a terrible run whereas Newcastle have hit a purple patch but they don’t have much attacking threat and this could be an opportunity for Burnley to tighten up again.
Chelsea v Bournemouth – another great captaincy fixture, Bournemouth look abject at the moment and their defence has been decimated by injury. I can see a rout here, although Chelsea has been known to disappoint in situations like this, such as the West Ham and Brighton games.
Leicester v Norwich – Norwich have improved a lot recently, but this is still a great fixture for the most in form player in the game and I can’t see him not scoring here, as he aims to break his old record.
Sheffield Utd v Aston Villa – this should be a cagey affair, both sides will be familiar with the other, but I think Sheffield Utd might edge this, as Villa look shaky without Mings. Many will be hoping that Grealish doesn’t pick up his fifth yellow here.
Southampton v West Ham – Ings has single-handedly kept Hassenhuttl in a job, sadly Pellegrini hasn’t managed to get Haller to do the same and this match could be make or break for him. Neither side look capable of keeping a clean sheet (CS) at the moment so this should be fairly open.
Man Utd v Everton – United are on fire at the moment and this new look Everton will be instructed to put in a shift, which suggests they won’t sit back and that’s welcome news for Rashford owners.
Wolves v Spurs – Wolves play a Europa League game on Thursday, but they’ve secured promotion and they’ve learnt to handle the volume. This will be a real test for the buoyant Mourinho-Spurs, they failed the audition against United and I expect this to be a tough game.
Arsenal v Man City – Arsenal have looked a little better since Emery left and City look out of sorts, however neither side appears able to defend lately and this should be an open game. Several have decided to ditch City assets, but I think there will be goals here.
Crystal Palace v Brighton – Brighton will have a go at Palace who will sit back and try to counter them but their priority will be not to concede. Will Zaha start returning again? This should be a cagey derby.
Twitter FPL Gameweek 17 Captain Poll
Who do our twitter followers think is the best FPL Gameweek 17 captain?
Old Hunting Ground – do any of the likely lads have a good history vs their opposition?
Abraham and Pulisic haven’t got any real history against Bournemouth but they’re both credible options this week. I’ve included a few that aren’t really captain options out of curiosity.
Salah – wow what an insane record, it’s helped mainly by the four goals and assist in his first Home match against Watford, as he blanked at home last season, but still, if you’ve held on for this long you could get a return similar to last Gameweek, if not better.
Mane – although not quite as impressive as Salah, he appears more consistent with four goals and two assists from three home games with a minimum of two returns achieved for each game.
Jimenez – got a goal and assist last time he faced Spurs at Home. He’s suspended for the Europa League game, which will offer him a rare rest, will he punish the sellers?
Vardy – has only scored away to Norwich, but this was a long time ago for a different Leicester side against a very different Norwich team.
Kane / Son – both bagged an away goal in this fixture last season and their confidence is certainly high at the moment.
Rashford – has a terrible record against Everton, will it continue?
Alli – with only one game played previously, you can’t really interpret much from this.
Aubameyang – has had a few cracks against City and is yet to record anything against them in the Premier League.
Members Stats breakdown - FPL Gameweek 17 Captain
These stats are pulled from the Fantasy Football Hub OPTA tool that is available to all members to help you analyse the players and teams. I have pulled the specific data from the respective home and away games dependant on the fixtures.
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