If you’re on Twitter, you may recall @yonkersfpl producing a popular thread dispelling the, ‘only captain Salah at home’ narrative that had been going around the Twitter FPL community. He’s back to tell you why he’ll be backing Salah away from home with the captaincy against Aston Villa.
There are many great captaincy options for GW4.
When FPL Connect ran his “Captain Poll” on Twitter, KDB was the clear winner in front of Salah and Jimenez. In addition to those we also have Vardy, Ings, Sterling, Mane and Werner as good captaincy picks this week.
I think that Salah is the best option though, and here’s why…
He is the best player in FPL
KDB beat him last year, but looking over the last 3 years as a whole, Salah is the stand out player.
He has averaged 36 returns per season and over 1 return per 90 minutes over a 3 year period – it doesn’t get much better than that. He has also started this season strong with 3.4 xGI in 3 games only bettered by the penalty king Jamie Vardy.
Salah away struggles are a myth
There has been a popular saying around the Twitter FPL bubble that Salah somehow struggles away from home. This originated from Salah only scoring 4 goals away from home last season.
I looked into the stats over a 3 year period and it turn out there is no truth to this statement.
Salah got around 60% of his returns in each of the last 3 seasons, exactly the same home/away ratio as that of the team.
Villas recent defensive heroics may be overrated
Some people seem to be a little blinded by Aston Villas great defensive performances in the relegation battle last season.
They did perform at a Liverpool-level of xGC after the 3-month Covid-19 lockdown, but let’s not forget that they still had the comfortably highest xGC overall last season in the Premier League – even more than a Norwich side that conceded goals for fun.
What can we expect this year? Probably something in between. I don’t think they will be the worst team defensively, but I don’t think they will be even close to the best teams either.
Aston Villa struggled against the top teams
In 12 games vs the top 6 last year, Villa only managed to get 1 point, conceding 2+ goals in every game.
They were clearly the Premier League’s worst team for points, xGC and GC in games against the top 6.
Liverpool’s strong start
Liverpool have started the season with a bang, despite facing above average opposition in Leeds, Chelsea and Arsenal.
They have averaged an impressive 3.0 xG per game, head and shoulders above everyone else in the Premier League.
To put that into perspective, they only managed to surpass 3.0xG on three occasions last season, their highest being 3.2 xG.
With a big spread in possible captain choices this week, Aston Villa defence likely being overrated and people believing in the Salah away myth, this could be a rare opportunity to captain Salah with a relatively low effective ownership.
That is too good to turn down for me.