There may be one match remaining in the current round of fixtures, but we are already looking ahead with the launch of our latest Captain Poll, gauging your views on the best captaincy option for Gameweek 29.
Mohamed Salah (10.5) dominated polling last time out and attracted just under half the votes cast. During Liverpool’s 4-1 home victory over West Ham, the Egyptian rewarded that show of faith with a third successive double-digit Fantasy Premier League points haul.
Indeed, Salah was the top captain in Fantasy Premier League (FPL) for the second straight Gameweek, with over 1.6m managers handing him the armband.
At home to a Newcastle side with a single clean sheet in their last 12 road trips this Saturday evening, he looks poised to add to an impressive 23-goal tally. Over the last four Gameweeks, Rafa Benitez’s troops have conceded 42 penalty area shots, an unwelcome record they share with basement-dwellers West Brom.
The Magpies’ poor defensive form strengthens the captaincy appeal of both Roberto Firmino (9.3) and Sadio Mane (9.4).
Firmino’s strike against the Hammers was his fourth goal in the last six Gameweeks, over which time he has also earned two assists and seven bonus points.
Mane is also in strong form, also netting against West Ham and scoring a hat-trick in his previous run out, against Porto in the Champions League. No player registered more shots (six) or efforts on target (three) in Gameweek 28 than the Senegal international.
Harry Kane (12.9) managed a quarter of the votes in our Gameweek 28 poll, but it would be no surprise to see this increase this time around as Spurs welcome Huddersfield to Wembley. He and Salah have been the top two captain picks in FPL for four of the last five Gameweeks.
A late winner against Crystal Palace on Sunday was Kane’s 35th goal in 36 appearances this season, maintaining his relentless scoring streak. Furthermore, Kane bagged a brace against the Terriers in the reverse fixture earlier in the campaign.
The Spurs striker has notched a league-high 95 shots in home matches, 28 more than second-placed Salah.
Christian Eriksen (9.3) presents a differential armband option in the Spurs ranks – he fired five attempts against the Eagles and provided the assist for Kane’s goal.
One caveat to backing Spurs assets is that they could see their minutes curtailed in the latter stages of the match, as they face a vital home encounter with Juventus in the Champions League four days later, with the tie finely poised at 2-2.
Leicester’s Riyad Mahrez (8.7) was another to post impressive underlying statistics in Gameweek 28, matching Mane’s six shots in the Foxes’ 1-1 home clash with Stoke.
This weekend Claude Puel’s side host a Bournemouth outfit that, over the last four Gameweeks, has conceded 64 efforts on goal – only West Brom (68) have shipped more.
Mahrez’s team-mate Jamie Vardy (8.7) only managed one shot against the Potters, but goals in each of the Foxes’ previous five in all competitions shows that he shouldn’t be overlooked.
None of Manchester United’s assets managed more than 1% of the vote last time out, but a trip to Crystal Palace on the back of a 2-1 home victory over Chelsea yesterday indicates they should fare better in Gameweek 29’s poll.
Romelu Lukaku (11.2)’s goal, assist and maximum bonus against the Blues helped him claim a first double-digit points haul since Gameweek 5 and could see him emerge as the leading Red Devils captaincy candidate.
With only one goal in his four Manchester United appearances, Alexis Sanchez (11.7) remains an under-the-radar option. However, the Chilean’s 11 shots over that spell – the same as Lukaku – suggest that further returns are just around the corner.
With James Tomkins limping off against Spurs to add to their worries at the back and with Timothy Fosu-Mensah unable to face his parent club, the Eagles are facing an injury crisis in defence.
Chelsea’s trip to Manchester City could provide goals, given that Antonio Conte’s side have shipped nine over their last four, just two behind West Brom’s league-low tally of 11. Meanwhile, the hosts have only kept one clean sheet in their last six outings.
For the Sky Blues Kevin De Bruyne (10.4) looks a strong option, having created more chances (53) and registered more assists (12) than any other player on familiar turf.
Sergio Aguero (12.0) has also impressed at home, where he has scored a record 15 goals. The Argentine should be in particularly confident mood having found the net in yesterday’s 3-0 Carabao Cup final victory over Arsenal. However, Gabriel Jesus’ return from injury at the weekend will now put question marks over his fellow forward’s pitch-time over the run-in.
We also need to keep a close eye on the City teamsheet for Thursday’s trip to Arsenal, withRaheem Sterling (8.9) hoping to have recovered from a hamstring injury. Should he look to be fit enough to start against Chelsea at the weekend, the winger could prove an intriguing captaincy option with 10 goals and five assists at the Etihad.
For the visitors Eden Hazard (10.7) is another enticing armband pick, with attacking returns, including two 16-point hauls, in each of his last four league run outs.
The poll is now live in the middle column on your homepage on desktop, or via the slide-in menu on mobile and tablet under recent comments.
Remember, we are looking for your vote for the player you think will be most effective, regardless of whether you own them or not.
We will be back to check in on progress in the poll later ahead of the Gameweek 29 deadline when we deliver our “Captain Sensible” article offering an analysis of the results and the statistics behind the leading contenders.