Gameweek 27 Captain and Player Picks
Holly Shand from Fantasy Football Community returns with captaincy corner and her three player picks in three positions for Gameweek 27.
Gameweek 26 was the longest gameweek in fantasy history, and not very successful as far as captaincy is concerned either. Mo Salah was heavily backed with an away trip to Norwich, and failed to deliver any attacking returns, despite taking four shots and creating two chances. It’s been a whirlwind for backers of Manchester City players, with their game postponed and then rescheduled, combined with the ever-present threat of Pep roulette.
We are now coming to another busy time in the fixture schedule, as European tournaments return. Manchester City have one of the busiest periods, with a potential ten fixtures before the next International Break at the end of March. Champions League fixtures are staggered across two weeks in the immediate schedule; but Arsenal, Manchester United and Wolves have a Europa League fixture both this midweek and next.
The shield pick is likely to be the most captained player of the week, allowing you to play safe and keep pace with the pack. The sword pick will be a less popular selection: if they perform it can shoot you up the overall rankings, but the risk from failure is higher.
Shield Pick: Mohammed Salah vs West Ham (H)
Anytime Goalscorer Odds:
It’s likely to be another landslide when it comes to captaincy this week, with Salah taking the mantle once more. Only De Bruyne has higher ownership in the game, but has a tricky away fixture against Leicester. Salah has been on a blistering run of form and hasn’t blanked at Anfield this calendar year in the Premier League, amassing four goals during that period. Liverpool are likely to dominate in this game, having won the reverse fixture 2-0: a game in which Mo Salah grabbed a goal and an assist. Liverpool will be strengthened by Sadio Mane returning to the starting lineup following his short injury lay-off. Salah has five goals and two assists from five appearances against Liverpool, with an unblemished record at Anfield. He could also have penalties in his locker too. No player has had more shots over the last four. At the time of writing, West Ham have conceded ten goals in their last four games. Will you play safe and go for the Shield Pick?
Sword Pick: Sadio Mane vs West Ham (H)
Anytime Goalscorer Odds:
Sadio Mane could provide a differential captain to Sadio Mane, with many of the same perks. It’s still the best attack in the league facing one of the leakiest defences in the league on home turf. Could Mane provide redemption for managers who’ve held him since his hamstring injury prevented him from appearing in the reverse fixture? Mane grabbed a goal on his return from injury, as a substitute against Norwich. Mane hasn’t blanked in a Liverpool shirt against West Ham, with four goals and three assists in five appearances. In his most recent five home games, Mane has amassed three goals and three assists. His ownership is around half that of Salah and if you do award him the armband and he outscores his team-mate, green arrows are pretty much guaranteed. Are you going to take a risk in selecting the Sword Pick?
I share my top three players for each Gameweek, selecting one defender, one midfielder and one striker. These are players that I’m tipping for the FPL Dream Team and they could also make intriguing differential captain decisions for you to consider too.
DEF: Trent Alexander-Arnold vs West Ham (H)
It’s now ten consecutive games of fantasy returns for Trent Alexander-Arnold, as he tops the form charts. As well as nine clean sheets, he’s also picked up one goal, five assists and eight bonus points in this period. He and Liverpool are simply unstoppable right now and for those who are on board a triple up on Liverpool defenders, Trent is a worthy candidate for the armband. He’s featured in the Dream Team in three of the last ten weeks. Can he get the holy grail of goal, clean sheet and bonus points?
MID: Bruno Fernandes vs Watford (H)
Bruno Fernandes has already made an impact since arriving at Old Trafford, with an assist against Chelsea. The underlying statistics for his two games are certainly encouraging, with seven shots and three chances created. His goal threat is obvious and he looks set to dominate set pieces for Manchester United. His assist against Chelsea came from a corner, highlighting his potential. Manchester United have struggled to convert penalties this season, with Fernandes having the potential to take up spot-kick duty too.
FOR: Raul Jimenez vs Norwich (H)
Raul Jimenez could emerge as the most popular striker in the game, with no blanks for Wolves in the upcoming schedule. He has three goals in his last four games and a home fixture against relegation candidates Norwich. Jimenez grabbed a goal in the reverse fixture, which Wolves won 2-1. Jimenez is top for big chances over the last four games, with seven and second for headed goal attempts, with five.
Until next time…
Find even more Fantasy Premier League Tips over on Holly’s website: Fantasy Football Community