This article takes a deep dive look at the all important Fantasy Premier League Gameweek 28 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 27 Captain Recap
Before we delve into the FPL Gameweek 28 Captain Decision it’s important to cast our eye back over the last Gameweek to get a feel for team and player form.
Saturday 22 February 2020
The day was a bit of a blur due to hanging out at the Planet FPL Live event, it was great to meet some of the Hub members in attendance. James and Suj were amazing hosts and I would definitely recommend attending the next one.
Chelsea looked great in a 3-4-2-1 with Giroud finally being utilised to link the play and this formation makes the wing backs very attractive, as demonstrated by Alonso with another goal for his collection. Mourinho went defensive for this game playing five at the back, leaving Berwijn up front on his own. He had to change things up after going behind and Spurs definitely had more threat with the addition of Lamela and Alli but I would be staying clear of them for now. Burnley beat Bournemouth, but the score line was a bit misleading and there was a really harsh VAR decision for the penalty that only came into play after Bournemouth scored. From an FPL perspective if Wood remains injured, Vydra looks like a great option (although it was Rodriguez that took the penalty) and McNeil is also one to consider for those with an eye on the blank Gameweek 31. As expected Palace and Newcastle was an absolute snooze fest. Stevens scored a screamer for Sheffield Utd, with Lundstram benched again and many would have been devastated by a loss of a clean sheet (CS) thanks to a goal from the forgotten man Maupay. Southampton picked up an unlikely CS, but there was no goal from Ings and with only one return in his last four starts is patience starting to wear thin? Lastly, Leicester setup with three at the back to compensate for the absence of their defensive midfielders sacrificing both Barnes and Perez. Vardy came close hitting the post on a one on one and Leicester were unlucky not be awarded a penalty for a De Bruyne handball. City struggled to break Leicester down, Aguero failed to convert another penalty and it took a powerful Mahrez run with a sublime assist to put Jesus through for the finish. Similarly to Sterling, Jesus seems to do better when he doesn’t have time to think.
Sunday and Monday 23-24 February 2020
Man Utd continued their little purple patch with another CS and comfortable victory over Watford although there were some defensive lapses. Martial scored again, but the real star of the show was Fernandes with a 14 point return after a goal, assist and max bonus points. He looks to be a better version of the Pogba from their purple patch last season with the added bonus of actually being able to convert penalties. Wolves tweaked their formation to a 3-4-3 and easily beat Norwich. Traore was the player sacrificed and this formation definitely benefited Doherty (picking up an assist and hitting the bar with a header) and Jota (two goals, an assist and max bonus for 16 points). Could we see Jota go on a similar run to the end of last season, he definitely has the potential but they have a lot of big games coming up and they might start to prioritise the Europa league. I wasn’t expecting such an open contest for Arsenal v Everton. Calvert-Lewin and Richarlison extended their scintillating form, but it was Aubameyang (who I just sold) that took the plaudits with a brace (after taking just two shots) coming away with maximum bonus points. Everton were unlucky, as they were the dominant side, but they were punished for some defensive slips and Leno saved the day several times for the gunners.
The Liverpool v West Ham game had a lot of attention on it, as the vast majority of you are sporting a triple up. It started so well with an Alexander-Arnold assist to Wijnaldum then West Ham shocked everyone by scoring twice, as we waved goodbye to our CS. They weren’t going to hold out forever though and this time Robertson was the one to setup Salah. Not to be outdone, Mane scored the winner thanks to another Alexander-Arnold assist and both were unlucky not to add another return due to Mane being slightly offside. As a double defence owner it was a bit concerning to see how easily Liverpool were carved open, however it also illustrated how powerful their full backs are as FPL assets and if they had kept a CS they would both have got some serious points.
Who did I tip?
Salah (7) – he was very highly captained and although owners were hoping for a double figure return, 7 was a respectable score.
Mane (8) – the brave few that went for him as their differential would have had a very nervous game, but he has a knack of getting in the right place at the right time with his winner earning the match winning BPS points that took him above Salah. Sadly for those that took the punt, it only worked out as an additional point.
How have we done to date?
I did an analysis of my picks over the season to date to compare with the top poll choice:
This was a fairly solid week for all picks with no real ground gained, the punts are starting to do really well though and if you’re desperate to close ground on your mini league leaders then it might be worth considering a punt.
What did we learn?
Whipping Boys – Norwich have been tight recently, but they were torn apart by Wolves and there’s a chance they could revert to their leaky early season form. With only a few games remaining they have to try and go for the win to have any chance of staying up, this emphasis on the attack makes it likely they’re going to get picked off. Bournemouth, Villa and West Ham are in a similar boat. Watford are also right in the thick of it and have started leaking a few goals recently. I would be looking at targeting these whipping boys. Teams that will play two or more of these in the next few include Southampton (WHU and NOR), Wolves (WHU and BOU), Liverpool (WAT and BOU), Leicester (NOR, AVL and WAT) and Chelsea (BOU and AVL).
Form over Fixtures and Blanks – a lot of us like to focus on fixtures, it’s easy enough to spot a nice run for a team and then there’s the concern about the blank Gameweek coming up. However, that can sometimes lead to us ignoring some assets that are on fire, which can be detrimental to your rank. Everton have terrible fixtures, but Calvert-Lewin and Richarlison can’t stop returning. Man United also have a tough run, but Fernandes is averaging 7.33 points per game. On the flip side, you can see above that Leicester face three whipping boys in their next four, but none of their players are on form. I am steered by fixtures, but I wouldn’t ignore form.
FPL Gameweek 28 Captain - The Fixtures
Gameweek 28 fixtures are the reverse of Gameweek 17 (Sheffield United, Villa, Man City and Arsenal miss out this week due to the League Cup Final), here’s what happened last time:
Salah bagged a brace against Watford and looks to be a front runner for captaincy again. Wood got the only goal against Newcastle, I’m praying for his return from injury, as I have a severe lack of a bench this week. Interestingly Leicester only managed a draw last time with just an assist for Vardy. Haller scored for West Ham, things have changed a lot since that game. Man Utd had to rely on Greenwood to score last time around and this should be an interesting clash between the form teams. Traore scored a consolation goal for Wolves, as they were defated by Spurs. Lastly, there was a goal from Zaha and Maupay (will he continue his run?) in this unlikely derby.
Twitter FPL Gameweek 28 Captain Poll
Who do our Twitter followers think is the best FPL Gameweek 28 captain?
Old Hunting Ground – do any of the likely lads have a good history vs their opposition?
Salah – has an exceptional record against Watford, as his brace earlier in the season demonstrated.
Mane – isn’t far behind Salah, but usually they take it in turns to haul, so whose turn is it this time?
Jimenez – Spurs haven’t been as tight defensively as you’d expect under Mourinho and although he plays away at Espanyol on Thursday, I wouldn’t bet against him returning again.
Vardy – his stats are a bit misleading, as two of the games were from five years ago, but if he’s going to return to form this is the ideal platform.
TAA – an attacker would be pleased with this record then to top that off three of the four fixtures resulted in a CS, if you factor that in as three additional returns he would have 175%, which would make him a better option than Mane.
Ings – he hasn’t had much joy against West Ham, could his slump continue?
Members Stats breakdown - FPL Gameweek 28 Captain
These stats are pulled from the Fantasy Football Hub OPTA Stats tool that is available to all members to help you analyse the players and teams. I have pulled data from the last four Gameweeks, as we’ve had a lot of games recently and I wanted a more current overview.
Individual Player Stats – who stands out?
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