Gameweek 9 Captain & Player Picks
Holly Shand from Fantasy Football Community returns with captaincy corner and her three player picks in three positions for Gameweek 9.
After an unusually quiet International Break, it’s time to regroup for Fantasy Premier League Gameweek 9. Gameweek 8 was hugely frustrating for the captaincy, with most of our premium assets blanking. There’s now a number of premium players flagged, Manchester City face bogey team Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park and Liverpool travel to Old Trafford. With so many question marks over our usual suspects, it could be the perfect time to shift the captain armband to a cheaper alternative.
There’s always doubts surrounding possible rotation for players after the International Break, particularly those who’ve been busy in far flung places like Asia and South America. It’s certainly a time to order those benches carefully and at least briefly consider the vice captain pick. There’s another week of Champions League and Europa League fixtures coming up too.
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: Tammy Abraham vs Newcastle (H)
Anytime Goalscorer Odds: 13/20
It did take me slightly by surprise to see that Tammy Abraham is now the most owned attacking player in the game. It looked like it would be a tough ask to dislodge Liverpool or City attackers from the Shield position, but that day has arrived. Don’t be deceived by his price tag, he’s worth a whole lot more than £7+ million. Abraham is the joint top goal scorer this season with Sergio Aguero, tied on eight goals and loves playing against weak opposition like Newcastle. He has four goals in his last four games. His hauls tend to come in clusters and with his high ownership, it’s all about the mutual gains but you shouldn’t suffer a big drop in rank if he fails to deliver. Will you play safe with the Shield Pick?
Sword Pick: Callum Wilson vs Norwich (H)
Anytime Goalscorer Odds: 10/11
A home game against Norwich is a tantalising prospect, with many managers looking to bring on board a Bournemouth asset and hand them the armband. Callum Wilson has been hugely underrated this season, but seven returns from eight starts shows his worth. He has four goals in his last four games and hasn’t blanked this season on home turf. Norwich are by far the weakest defence in the Premier League, with their porous record showing no sign of slowing down: they are conceding on average nearly three goals per game. We know for a fact that if The Cherries are grabbing goals, it’s very likely that Wilson is right in the heart of the action and he could be a huge differential Captain this weekend. 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: Ricardo Pereira vs Burnley (H)
Leicester’s Ricardo Periera is the highest scoring defender in the game, having bagged two goals already this season. Finally Leicester’s upturn in fixtures are here and it’s a great fixture to begin with, at home to Burnley who aren’t the most attack-minded team. The bookies rate only Chelsea as having a greater chance of keeping a clean sheet this weekend and with Periera’s attacking prowess, there’s hope of the defenders holy grail: attacking return, clean sheet and bonus points.
MID: Sadio Mane vs Manchester United (A)
With Mo Salah struggling to regain full fitness for Liverpool’s clash with Manchester United, it’s Sadio Mane who’s tipped to deliver this weekend. David De Gea could miss out through injury, although second choice keeper Sergio Romero is a fine replacement between the sticks. Mane is the leading FPL candidate from Liverpool, with five goals and two assists from seven starts. We’ve seen Manchester United have struggled defensively this season and the absence of some key personnel will do little to aid their confidence.
FOR: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang vs Sheffield United (A)
Aubameyang has started the season in blistering form, scoring in almost every single game and he shows no signs of slowing down. Sheffield United could be tough to break down but we know how involved Aubameyang is in Arsenal’s goals this season, so his contributions will be pivotal. He has four goals in his last four games, and a perfect record of returns on the road this campaign. He should have penalties in his locker too, after gifting his last spot kick to Pepe.
Until next time…
Find even more Fantasy Premier League Tips over on Holly’s website: Fantasy Football Community