Fantasy Premier League managers who thought the Blank Gameweek 31 captaincy would be a simpler one may be disappointed after reading this latest article.
The depleted nature of this round of fixtures, with just 10 sides in action in the wake of the FA Cup quarter-finals, has gone some way to trimming the candidates for the armband.
But those at the top end of our poll are quite hard to separate, with form, statistical comparison and the famed eye-test all playing a part in a tricky decision, largely centred around Liverpool assets.
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Despite registering just a goal and an assist in his last seven Premier League outings, Mohamed Salah (£13.4m) is still the captain poll leader for Blank Gameweek 31. At the time of writing, the Egyptian has 47% backing.
That has him enjoying an advantage over colleague Sadio Mané (£9.9m) of 23 percentage points. The Senegalese international currently has the backing of 24% of voters in the poll, despite outscoring Salah over the last seven Gameweeks by an aggregate score of 58 points to 26.
Callum Wilson (£6.4m) is the key differential this week according to the people, with the Bournemouth striker looking at a 5% backing ahead of Newcastle’s visit to the Vitality Stadium. In his return from injury in Gameweek 30, the Englishman found the net and provided an assist for colleague Ryan Fraser (£6.2m).
The Cherries midfielder also features in our poll’s top five with 3.4% of our voters believing he is the best captain option for Blank Gameweek 31. The return of Wilson has made a big impact on Fraser, hence the interest, with him involved in four goals in his last two with the forward, compared to zero in his last eight without him.
Jamie Vardy (£9.0m) completes the top five in the vote with a 4.3% share. The fact that he is in the chasing pack for the best differential option is no surprise, considering the Leicester man’s five goals in as many Premier League outings. Also, Burnley are without a clean sheet at Turf Moor since Gameweek 20.
Even though he was the hero for Chelsea in Gameweek 30, Eden Hazard (£10.9m) has the support of just 2.5% ahead of a trip to Goodison Park. That may have more to do with the fact that he has not scored away from home since Gameweek 17.
Roberto Firmino (£9.2m), Marko Arnautovic (£6.8m) and Gonzalo Higuaín (£9.6m) are the only other options to have more than 1% of the votes in the poll.