FPL Captain Metric: Gameweek 8

We explore the best options for the Fantasy Premier League captain for Gameweek 8 and reveal the results of our captain poll and our new captain metric – who will you choose this Gameweek?

BEFORE WE BEGIN: If you haven’t already seen, we released an article last year introducing the new ‘FPL Captain Metric’, which explains the concept fully and it can be viewed here >> https://fplconnect.blog/2018/08/07/the-captain-metric-explained-2/

Last GW, it was Agüero owners’ turn to suffer at the hands of Pep roulette, as Pep benched Agüero in favour of Gabriel Jesus for their trip to Everton, with Raheem Sterling starting from the left.

Those who owned Sterling and not Agüero rejoiced at the sight of this having recently suffered this pain when City demolished Watford however, Agüero captainers did not experience the same fortune as some Sterling captainers in that GW, as unlike Sterling, Agüero was substituted on thus, eliminating the chance for a VC haul.

Despite not featuring from the start though, Agüero still managed to bag himself the assist for Sterling’s goal, leaving him only 3pts shy of Sterling’s total, and in a GW where a lot of captains didn’t fire big, this wasn’t a bad end result at all.

Elsewhere, both Mané and Salah were unable to get themselves an attacking return against a resilient Sheffield United despite both seeing very good chances in the game, with Mané hitting the post from close range and Salah seeing his 1 on 1 attempt saved by Dean Henderson.

Son and Kane saw some backing for the armband and both managed a return, Son with 5 and Kane with 8, whilst Tammy Abraham had good chances to continue his form, but was unable to take them in Chelsea’s 2-0 home victory over Brighton.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang continued his 100% return ratio with a goal and all 3 bonus against Man United on the Monday night, showcasing his brilliant composure once again to chip the ball delicately over a helpless David De Gea to earn his side the draw.

Moving onto GW8 and with all of Arsenal, Manchester City and Liverpool playing at home, there are plenty of solid captaincy options once again to consider – let’s dive in to the good stuff!

Results of our poll

Screenshot 2019-10-02 at 18.10.25.png

The following underlying statistics are taken from FantasyFootballScout.co.uk. If you want to gain access to these stats yourself, register to become a member here >> https://members.fantasyfootballscout.co.uk/

Raheem Sterling – 51% of the votes 

Underlying attacking stats the last 5 GWs:

  • 43 penalty area touches
  • 12 total goal attempts.
  • 10 goal attempts inside the box.
  • 10 chances created (3 big chances)
  • 4 big chances.
  • 2 goals.
  • 0 assists.

Aubameyang – 21% of the votes 

Underlying attacking stats the last 5 GWs:

  • 21 penalty area touches
  • 14 total goal attempts.
  • 10 goal attempts inside the box.
  • 5 chances created (1 big chances)
  • 5 big chances.
  • 5 goals.
  • 1 assist.

Sergio Agüero – 19% of the votes 

Underlying attacking stats the last 5 GWs:

  • 41 penalty area touches
  • 23 total goal attempts.
  • 20 goal attempts inside the box.
  • 9 chances created (3 big chances)
  • 9 big chances.
  • 6 goals.
  • 3 assists.

Mohamed Salah – 9% of the votes

Underlying attacking stats the last 5 GWs:

  • 54 penalty area touches.
  • 16 total goal attempts.
  • 14 goal attempts inside the box.
  • 8 chances created (2 big chances)
  • 5 big chances.
  • 3 goals.
  • 2 assists.

Differential captain options

Embed from Getty Images

 

Teemu Pukki – I’m only selecting one differential captain option this week and that’s the Finnish king. Yes okay, the ‘Pukki Party’ has quietened down in recent times, but Norwich, and Pukki, are far stronger at home than away, and they have just played 3 of the last 4 games away from Carrow road, where they have only managed 1 goal (admittedly though at Anfield which is impressive) whilst they’ve scored 8 in their 3 home games against Chelsea, Man City and Newcastle, where Pukki has seen 5 goals and 2 assists.

Villa’s defensive stats are slightly worrying going into this, with plenty for Pukki owners to get excited about, as only Norwich themselves have conceded more shots inside the box (85) than Villa (74) so far and this is where we know Pukki thrives. Couple this with an impressive home form, and we should see points for Pukki.

Captain Metric

Screen Shot 2019-10-02 at 10.04.50

… Sergio Agüero.

Important Note: 

(Reliability %), basically gives us the percentage of games the player has provided a return (goal or assist) in out of the games he was available for selection (not injured) – so this includes games where the player has scored 0 because of being on the bench/rested, but not those where the player has scored 0 because he was injured or unavailable for some other reason, like personal circumstances for example. This can give us an idea of how likely the player is to return and how reliable he has been.

(Explosivity %), as the name suggests, gives us the percentage of games the player has ‘exploded in’, or in more accurate terms, has provided a double-figure return. In the same way as before, it can give us an idea of how likely a player is to return a double-figure haul and a clear view of how good he’s been at providing double-figure hauls in the past.

Breakdown of the metric:

  • Player form – Sergio Agüero has scored the most points of any of the candidates.
  • Team form – Agüero’s Man City have created the most amount of big chances (26) of any team.
  • Fixture difficulty – Arsenal’s opponents, Bournemouth, have conceded the most big chances (14) of the other candidates’ opposition.
  • Likelihood of scoring – According to the bookies, Harry Kane is the most likely to score.
  • Expected goals/assists (xGI) – Sergio Agüero has the highest expected goal involvement of all the candidates over the last 5 Gameweeks.
  • Home/Away Goal Conversion – Mohamed Salah has the best goal conversion rate for this weekends fixtures, after scoring 4 goals from his 10 goal attempts at Anfield.
  • Reliability % – Sergio Agüero and Aubameyang have the highest reliability % having returned in every game so far this year.
  • Explosivity % – Sergio Agüero and Mohamed Salah are the most explosive candidates having both returned 2 double-figure hauls to Aubameyang and Sterling’s 1 so far in their 7 games.

My View

When Manchester City play at home, it’s always very difficult to look past them, as we know that they can go off like a nuclear bomb and score 5, 6, 7 or even 8 goals (sorry Watford fans) past teams.

Wolves have not had a great start and defensively, don’t look as organised as last year,  with 12 goals conceded from their opening 7 PL games – by comparison, they conceded 6 in their opening 7 games last season.

With Europa League a part of their campaign this year, Nuno is having to battle hard with the team he has to compete on both Domestic and European fronts, and it’s proving to be a difficult challenge for them, with pretty poor squad depth.

Wolves will travel to Turkey to face Besiktas on Thursday and then they will play City on the Sunday. With not much time to rest and a difficult match, meaning Nuno should play a more or less full strength first XI, it’s difficult to see Wolves not getting a bit of a hiding on Sunday, as City played last night, so plenty of time for them to recover fully.

With all this in mind, Raheem Sterling and Sergio Agüero feel like the best options on paper, but with the recent benchings, it’s tough to know for sure if both will start.

Embed from Getty Images

 

For me though, the safest and best overall option, is Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, playing at home to Bournemouth, as our metric cannot take Pep’s roulette or other non-stat focused variables such as dressing room atmosphere (Spurs) for example.

Arsenal play Standard Liege at home on Thursday evening, so no travelling for them and a game that shouldn’t be too mentally or physically taxing, so it should mean good preparation for the game against Bournemouth on Sunday.

The Gabonese striker has started every game for Unai Emery so far, playing 90 minutes in all games, and has retuned in every game so far, and with them playing at the Emirates against a side we know can give their opposition plenty of chances – only Watford and West Ham have conceded more ‘big chances’ (23) than Bournemouth (20) – I can see Aubameyang putting in a double-figure haul in this game.

Stats obtained from https://members.fantasyfootballscout.co.uk/

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