Despite Manchester City having a fine-looking home fixture against West Ham United on Sunday, the top 10,000 managers in Fantasy Premier League have largely backed Mohamed Salah (£12.7m) for the Gameweek 26 captaincy.
Over two-thirds of the top 10k tossed the armband to the Egyptian ahead of this morning’s deadline, although they’ll have to wait a week before they see the premium midfielder in action.
Salah and Kevin De Bruyne (£10.8m) are both owned by over 90% of the managers within the top 10,000 but significantly fewer Fantasy bosses have made the Belgian their skipper.
Only 8.42% of this elite bunch have captained De Bruyne, which isn’t enough to lift his effective ownership (a figure influenced by captaincies and benchings) beyond the 100% mark.
Sergio Aguero (£12.1m), indeed is a more popular captaincy pick in the top 10,000 despite being owned by around one-third of the FPL managers that De Bruyne is.
Over half of the Argentine striker’s owners within the top 10,000 have skippered him in Gameweek 26.
Outside of the premium trio we have mentioned above, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (£10.8m) is the only other FPL asset to have been captained by more than 1% of the top 10k in Gameweek 26.
De Bruyne is the most-popular vice-captain candidate, meanwhile.
It was a fairly quiet week in terms of chip usage, with only a smattering of the top 10,000 deploying their Triple Captain (30), Free Hit (16) or Bench Boost (60) chips.
The second Wildcard was a more popular option, however, with almost 400 of our leading managers overhauling their squads.
The Triple Captain remains the most-used chip in the second half of the campaign, with Double Gameweek 24 accounting for a large chunk of the figure above.
John Lundstram‘s (£5.0m) loss of a first-team place – amongst other factors – might have been a big trigger in terms of Wildcard deployment, with the ‘out of position’ FPL defender so widely owned.
Lundstram understandably doesn’t feature in the Gameweek 26 Wildcard template above, with Dean Henderson (£5.1m) instead proving the most popular route into the Sheffield United backline despite blanks in Gameweek 28 and 31.
The fact that Nick Pope (£4.7m) is so highly owned perhaps suggests some of the more forward-thinking of our top 10k have accounted for this with a playing reserve shot-stopper.
Salah, De Bruyne and Trent Alexander-Arnold (£7.7m) are highly owned options in these Wildcard squads, with Danny Ings (£7.0m) the most-popular forward.
Compared to the overall template below, there are a not-insignificant seven differences – which could dramatically affect the ranks of those who used their Wildcard in Gameweek 26, for better or for worse.
In terms of the overall template in the top 10k, there are two changes to the ‘most-owned’ squad from Gameweek 25: Henderson and Virgil van Dijk (£6.5m) replacing Pope and Diego Rico (£4.3m).
Sadio Mane (£12.2m), incidentally, is now only owned by 13.74% of the leading group of Fantasy managers – a dramatic drop on his ownership figure of 75% ahead of Double Gameweek 24.
As we ready ourselves for the blanks and doubles on the horizon, many of the top 10k still have plenty of chips in hand.
Around one in seven haven’t used any, while just over 50% still have three chips in their back pocket.
Approximately one in ten of the top 10k have just one chip remaining, while 3.6% have already maxed out.
Stats taken from LiveFPL.net
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