With only four matches set to take place this gameweek, FPL managers find themselves in precarious situations. While some still have the Free Hit chip to avail, others are busy taking the point hits as they scramble to make up the numbers in their starting XI. The threat of a potentially disastrous Gameweek 31 looms on the horizon and the onus of making the right captaincy choice is more than ever this time.
To allay such fears, we have come up with something different than usual for this gameweek by bringing you 6 captaincy alternatives – two each for the three categories that we believe would be doing the rounds in the minds of managers worldwide.
” SAFE “
MOHAMED SALAH (vs WATFORD) [H]
The most-owned player on FPL had a forgetful gameweek 30 and would be hoping to make swift amends for his display at Old Trafford against Watford this weekend. The Hornets are currently among the four teams that have conceded 50 or more league goals this season. Interestingly, 26 of those goals have been shipped against top 6 clubs in just nine head-to-head’s. The reverse fixture in gameweek 1 was where Salah announced himself with a goal and an assist and his owners would be hoping him to replicate that display or even better it come Saturday.
ROBERTO FIRMINO (vs WATFORD) [H]
Firmino didn’t have much joy either against Manchester United but that shouldn’t be the case when he faces a side against whom he holds an impressive record of 3 goals and 3 assists in five league appearances. Like Salah, the Brazilian also contributed a goal and an assist when the two sides met on the opening day of the season. Having scored and assisted twice each in as many Anfield appearances in this fixture, the omens for Firmino adding to his haul of 13 league goals appear good against the Vicarage Road outfit.
Is Firmino a must-have for GW31?
— Fantasy Premier League (@OfficialFPL) March 15, 2018
” PUNT “
JUNIOR STANISLAS (vs WEST BROMWICH ALBION) [H]
Stanislas’ opener against Spurs was his first goal at the Vitality this season and he will be hoping to add more his overall tally of 4 league goals when rock-bottom West Brom travel down the south coast. The Baggies look set to be on their way down to the Championship and after shipping four games at home to Leicester City last weekend, they now have let in the most number of goals alongside West Ham (19) amongst all Premier League teams this year. Owned by just 1.4% of the managers, Stanislas could well turn out to be a great differential captaincy choice this gameweek.
More shots than any #FPL midfielder in the last 6 Gameweeks
— Fantasy Premier League (@OfficialFPL) March 15, 2018
WILFRIED ZAHA (vs HUDDERSFIELD TOWN) [A]
Making his first league appearance in over a month, Zaha nearly turned the game on its head with an assist late in the 2-1 defeat to Chelsea. The Ivory Coast international should be fit enough to start in the relegation six-pointer away at Huddersfield Town this gameweek. The Terriers kept their first league shutout of 2018 in the goalless draw with Swansea City but are next to the aforementioned duo of West Brom and West Ham with 18 goals already leaked this year. With Zaha highly likely to be reinstated into the Eagles starting eleven as a striker, the prospect might just prove too enticing for managers to hand over the armband to him.
Zaha is back & ready to ignite a spark in your #FPL team
— Fantasy Premier League (@OfficialFPL) March 14, 2018
” ARE YOU MAD?”
RICHARLISON (vs LIVERPOOL) [A]
He was Watford’s most in-demand FPL asset at one point but with no goals and assists to show up for in 2018 so far, Richarlison’s early season momentum seems to have fizzled out. A trip to the red half of the Merseyside where the hosts have conceded just 10 times in the league all season offers a bleak prospect for Richarlison as well as Watford’s chances to take something home from Anfield.
However, with Liverpool conceding 6 of those goals in their last four home league fixtures, there is some hope of visitors at least registering themselves on the scoresheet even if they are to return home empty-handed – something FPL managers with boasting of Watford midfield and forward assets would gladly accept. This fixture earlier this campaign saw the Brazilian come off the bench and register an assist against the Reds in what was his debut match for the club. Just like the reverse fixture gave a perfect start to Richarlison’s Watford career, the match at Anfield could well help revitalise his dwindling season.
JOSÉ SALOMON RONDON (vs AFC BOURNEMOUTH) [A]
West Bromwich Albion’s free fall in recent weeks have not only established them as prime contenders for relegation but also the least preferred team to sought players from on FPL. The Baggies have clearly become the whipping boys of the town and their dreadful run means that the managers are going all out after Bournemouth assets for gameweek 31 with the hope of them taking advantage of West Brom’s dire situation. However, for those who are always on the search for the hidden gem that no one fancies, this tie certainly offers one in the form Salomon Rondon.
Such a desire to go for Rondon this week for mostly no good reason
The Midlands club’s top-scorer has been just as erratic as his team but having netted two goals in his last five league appearance, Rondon is the visitors’ most in-form player at the moment. What aids his armband credentials for the forthcoming gameweek is the Cherries’ inability to stop leaking goals. Eddie Howe’s men have kept only one shutout since gameweek 13 (against Chelsea in gameweek 25) besides boasting a defensive record even worse than that of their rock-bottom rivals. Coincidentally, the Venezuelan’s only goal in this fixture came at the Vitality couple of seasons ago and Bournemouth’s porous backline could offer him the chance to improve on that haul.