FPL Captain Article: Gameweek 37

We explore the best options for the Fantasy Premier League captain for Gameweek 37 and reveal the results of our captain poll – who will you choose this FPL Gameweek?

Article written by FPL Rover.

BRAND NEW METRIC EXPLAINED: This article (hit the link) explains the concept and working fully >> https://fplconnect.blog/2018/08/07/the-captain-metric-explained-2/

Results of the Poll

Captain Metric

Due to a very quick turnaround, there will be no metric calculation for gameweek 37.

Blank gameweek 36 probably didn’t go as well as expected for many, especially considering the number of hits taken to field a full playing XI. There was a strong pool of forward players transferred in, but the group of Bamford, Antonio, Ings, and DCL couldn’t pick up an attacking return between them. Throw in Pep roulette on Friday night and an undisclosed injury to Diogo Jota; there has definitely been more bad news than good.

On a more positive note, the pick of the captains for BGW36 was Mo Salah who managed to score a goal and pick up full bonus points. Labelled the ‘obvious choice’ in the captaincy article, Salah was a rare shining light in the gameweek and rewarded those who kept it simple. The metric calculation, which was performed once TGW35 concluded, unsurprisingly saw Salah come out on top for BGW36.

With just two gameweeks left, let’s take a look at the main captaincy contenders for GW37.

Who are the main contenders?

Please note the all data in the article is based on gameweeks 32 to 36. Also, due to limited data, PL rank for FPL points has not been calculated.

Salah attacking stats between gameweeks 32 & 36

Mo Salah was arguably the best captaincy pick among realistic contenders last week with a goal and full bonus points when players like DCL, Son, Mahrez and Antonio all failed. Remarkably Salah has just scored back-to-back 10+ FPL points for the first time this season, aided by a double fixture in TGW35. With Liverpool’s hopes of top four kept alive by Alisson’s injury time winner against West Brom, the motivation for their game against Burnley should be huge.

The underlying stats have supported Salah for captaincy for a while, but it’s nice to see the actual returns coming through as well. It is clear from watching Liverpool that he, alongside Alexander-Arnold, is vital to their attack right now. He features in the top 10 players for most metrics now, including xA, key passes, and big chances created. He has perhaps slightly changed his game to help create for his team mates but still has an eye for goal.

Following Burnley’s 4-0 defeat to Leeds last weekend, you have to feel this is another great week to captain the Liverpool midfielder. With just one clean sheet in their last 11 games, they have certainly lost that defensive quality they have become so renowned for. Particularly if Pope misses out again it could be another torrid evening for the Burnley defenders.

Fernandes attacking stats between gameweeks 32 & 36

Bruno Fernandes was looking in pretty poor form before the triple gameweek with just one assist to show for five appearances, but certainly made amends with two goals against Aston Villa and Liverpool. Man Utd had a break this week due to the FA Cup final so will have had a few extra days to recover from their incredibly busy schedule of late.

This week Man Utd play Fulham, who look like they’ve had enough of the Premier League following their recent relegation. Despite looking sound defensively for most of the season, cracks have emerged with five goals conceded against Burnley and Southampton in their last two; will they have the strength to shut out Man Utd?

Bruno’s underlying stats are a mixed bag, and certainly much weaker across the board when compared with Salah. However, Bruno has amassed 2.32 xG (6th) and taken 20 shots (3rd) in the past five gameweeks which shows he has a strong eye for goal. Both of those metrics are higher than Salah, but can he continue to convert these chances into goals? He is ranked 47th for goals (2), with players like Rashford, Greenwood and Cavani all looking to get on the scoresheet too.

Kane attacking stats between gameweeks 32 & 36

As discussed in last week’s article, Harry Kane wasn’t going to stay quiet for long with the underlying numbers he had been producing. The Spurs forward is ranked 1st for both xG (3.33) and big chances (6), and 3rd for shots (20) and goals (3). With a golden boot up for grabs and the European Championships taking place in a matter of weeks, it is hard to see Kane easing off as we approach the end of the PL season.

Kane also has an appealing fixture this week against Aston Villa, who have conceded six goals in their last three games. Villa have exceeded all expectations this season and you can’t blame them for playing out these final games with a little less intensity than normal. Villa’s most recent game, against fellow mid-table side Palace, involved a late collapse where they conceded twice to lose the game. Definitely a good fixture to target for the league’s in-form marksman.

Greenwood attacking stats between gameweeks 32 & 36

Like Bruno, Mason Greenwood also scored a couple of goals in the triple gameweek to continue a strong run of form at the end of the season. Greenwood has largely been anonymous this season but looks to be fulfilling some of the potential we saw at the back end of the 2019/20 campaign.

The underlying stats for Greenwood are impressive; he has a similar xG (2.21) and shots total (17) to Bruno but is touching the ball in the box much more frequently (8 times per 90). He has also scored four goals which places him 3rd in the league. With a fixture against relegated Fulham this week, Greenwood could be a more than adequate differential captain for those looking for a late rank boost.

Raphinha attacking stats between gameweeks 32 & 36

Despite having little to play for, Leeds are finishing the season in great form. Seven goals in two games against Spurs and Burnley shows just how motivated their players are to perform until the season is officially done and dusted. One player who has stood out this season, and recently returned from injury, is Raphinha.

His recently underlying stats are poor given his lack of playing time, but there’s no doubt his influence is strong when he’s on the pitch. Leeds play Southampton in GW37, who are sitting comfortably in mid table now the season is nearing its conclusion. The Saints have just won back-to-back games 3-1 so won’t be pushovers, but you would expect goals to flow nicely in this relatively meaningless fixture.

Raphinha has still managed to register two assists since returning from injury, and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him back on the scoresheet before the season is done. If you happen to own Jack Harrison, he would also make a great differential captain this week given his form.

My view

It has been a very tough FPL season for many reasons, and I must admit I am looking forward to it’s conclusion on Sunday. From late covid postponements to drawn out gameweeks, there have been many new challenges to deal with throughout the duration of the season. Fingers crossed that things resemble a bit more ‘normality’ when the season returns in August, with fans back in stadiums and games taking place simultaneously.

The two main captaincy options in BGW36, Salah and Kane, both got on the scoresheet in a gameweek dominated by disappointment. I mentioned in the article last week that I would be looking for a captain away from Salah to help boost rank; either Calvert-Lewin or Son were on my radar. Thankfully I decided to keep it simple and go with Salah even though the opportunity for gains would be low. He was the clear favourite and it didn’t feel right backing against him.

This week will be much more interesting with Salah, Kane, and Bruno all having a nice fixture. The temptation is there to captain Salah once again as Liverpool are one of the few teams left who have something to fight for in these final two games. In reality, all three of the ‘big guns’ this week could do well and there’s not much in the data to separate them.

I actually have my eye on another captaincy option this week. A season ending injury for Diogo Jota means I have transferred in Mason Greenwood and the temptation is very strong to give him the armband. He had his rest in their most recent fixtures versus Liverpool, and has enjoyed a further break over the weekend. On a personal level, Greenwood will be desperate to nail down a place in the starting line up for the upcoming Europa League final, while also proving himself worthy of a spot in England’s Euro squad this summer.

At this stage of the season, everyone will have their own strategy to deal with their personal objectives, and captaincy is very much a part of that. We should see a nice spread this week which will make for a very exciting gameweek!

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