Fantasy Football Captain Picks Gameweek 4 2017/18
Welcome to Fantasy Football Captain Picks Gameweek 4. By the time you read this I’ll be home in Newcastle, back to dreary weather, back to 9-5 and my ‘vacation’ a distant memory. Right now however, I’m writing this by the pool in Vegas debating what type of cocktail to have next – life isn’t so bad!
As the drama of deadline day unfolded (for some of us) I followed from afar debating how potential transfers would impact on the players I would propose in my very first captains article, very little it turns out. Had Alexis Sanchez completed his move to Manchester City as predicted, it was likely his 2.4% ownership would have risen rapidly and his inclusion in this article would be a formality. Whichever side of the story you believe as to why the transfer failed to happen, the outcome is still the same, Sanchez remains an Arsenal player, and probably not a very happy one.
It feels quite fitting that I’m writing this article from the gambling capital of the world, Las Vegas. Regardless of who you stick the armband on each GW you’re still taking a gamble, an educated gamble of course but as many managers in GW3 found, having great stats or form can sometimes count for nothing in FPL. The overall top 3 captain picks in GW3 were Kane, Lukaku and Aguero, who scored 2, 0 and 1 points respectively. How were we to know that Lukaku would miss a penalty, that Kane would once again fail to score in August, or that Kun would be benched? If like myself, you captained one of the aforementioned players then I feel your pain, but let’s not dwell on our losses it’s time to role the dice once more as we head into GW4.
Firmino (Manchester City, Away)
GW4 Kicks off in style, its fourth versus second as Liverpool head to the Etihad. It’s time to set those early kick-off captain jitters aside, there are options aplenty in this one.
In years gone by Aguero would be the default choice in most if not all City home games. This season however picking a captain from Manchester City has become a game of chance, so that’s why in this instance I’m suggesting you stick your chips on red.
Liverpool sit second in the table, no doubt full of confidence after their 4-0 win over Arsenal, who quite frankly looked all over the shop. As in GW1 Mane, Firmino and Salah all made their mark on the score sheet, Liverpool are unbeaten in their previous 11 matches against last seasons top six, and the last time City beat Liverpool was back in the 2014/15 season. Any of Mane, Salah and Firmino is a sound choice for the armband this week, but with 26 points Firmino is currently joint top scorer in FPL, so he slightly edges it for me. Add in the fact he seems to be on pens only makes for a more compelling argument, Firmino gives you a lot of bang for your buck. Two goals, two assists and maximum BP in both GWs 1 and 3 says Bobby is a man in form.
Sam Vokes (Crystal Palace, home)
They say a bad workman blames his tools, not to say Crystal Palace players are tools but if they were they’d be something like a mallet – a blunt instrument good for doing a particular job but little else. Frank de Boer has inherited players more accustomed to the direct football (punt it to the big man up front) of previous manager Sam Allardyce, and its clear he’s trying to get his team to be more expansive in their play, but do the players who he’s inherited have the ability? 3 defeats in 3 would suggest not.
Do we already have a situation where we captain whoever faces Palace? It’s too early for such declarations surely, but they look a bit rubbish so it’s not the craziest idea in the world. Burnley are next to face Palace at Turf Moor, an unlikely win at the Bridge and a draw against Spurs already under their belt, Palace at home seems too good to ignore. With everyone’s favourite tweeter and all round nice guy Andre Gray now off the books, Sam Vokes looks set for more minutes than the 2064 he racked up last season. With 2 goals and maximum bonus points against the 10 men of Chelsea, he’s not as obvious or glamorous as other options, despite this it wouldn’t come as a great surprise if he registers double figures against a Palace team who have already conceded 6 goals and don’t look like improving any time soon.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan (Stoke, Away)
Romelu, you’re such a tease! 13 points in GW1 followed by an acceptable if not slightly underwhelming 6 in GW2 and then came GW3. It could have been so different, Kasper Schmeichel made a fine save to deny Lukaku’s first penalty for United but the only way Lukaku could have made it easier was if he’d been wearing a sign around his neck stating ‘to the right mate’. Zero points times 2 is still Zero, my dog is no mathematician and even he knows that, sadly FPL managers around the globe know it only too well now too. Enough trolling, United have been sensational, 3 wins from 3 regardless of opposition should be commended. This week they travel to Stoke who beat Arsenal in GW2 but it seems highly unlikely that they could repeat that feat against a Man U team who look like a very different animal to the one that drew 1-1 at the Bet365 stadium last season. So let’s give big Rom a break this week, if Lukaku is the Big Mac then Mkhitaryan is a side of fries, that whilst not the main event, you just can’t get enough of… nom nom nom.
Mkhitaryan is joint top scorer with Bailly, Pogba and Firmino on 26 points, so why Mkhi and not Pogba?
Well Mkhitaryan has 5 assists in just three matches, equalling a 23-year-old record for assists at the start of a premier league season held by Ruel Fox. Mkhitaryan is no Ruel Fox, he’s better… like a lot better. Yet to add premier league goals to his repertoire you only need look at his 2015/16 stats for Borussia Dortmund – 11 goals and 15 assists in just 31 games. Mkhitaryan is a man who deserves serious armband recognition… and if you don’t have him, Pogba is not too shabby either.
Alvaro Morata (Leicester, Away)
Had it not been for the antics of messrs Cahill and Fabregas back in GW1, Chelsea could have been sharing top spot with United heading into GW4, but as my Grandad used to say ‘aye and if your Auntie had bollocks she’d be your Uncle’, fair enough. Chelsea had their pride (slightly) saved by the introduction of Alvaro Morata in the 59th minute, the scoreline could have looked a lot worse. Trailing by three goals at the break, Morata notched a goal, an assist and picked up 2 BP for a total of 10 points. In GW3 Morata scored another 12 points with another goal, assist and maximum bonus points, he’s currently sitting on 24 points. The former Real Madrid man is no fly-by-night, he netted 15 goals in just 26 appearances for Real Madrid last season, despite largely playing second fiddle to Karin Benzema. Chelsea might have paid £70.6 million for a Real Madrid substitute (his words not mine) but I can’t see him keeping the bench warm much this season.
Harry Kane (Everton, Away)
Harry Kane doubled his points tally for the season in GW3, unfortunately his score prior to GW3 was a meagre 2 points. We were all told at the start of the season that Harry doesn’t score in August and so it came to pass, no sooner was September here and Harry was back on the score sheet with a brace for England (am I the only one who finds the international break an inconvenience?). Sometimes in life you get that feeling, you know the one, where you can’t explain it but you know that something is going to happen? Whilst this feeling seems to have eluded me after 5 fruitless casino visits this week, I do have that feeling Harry is going to score this GW. Everton have actually performed above expectations in their so called bad run of fixtures but like I said, I just have a feeling. Last year after a barren August he scored in his next 2 games before picking up an ankle injury. Whilst some players thrive at home, Harry thrives everywhere, 7 goals in 2 games away to Leicester and Hull back in May prove that he has no problem with playing away from home (bit like his mate Wayne). I’ll also point out that whilst Harry doesn’t yet have the goals he’s not lacking in confidence, he’s currently averaging 8 shots per game, as a comparison Lukaku is on 4.7, Firmini 3. Its only a matter of time until they start going in.
Good luck to you all for GW4, may the FPL gods smile upon you.
Thanks for reading Fantasy Football Captain Picks Gameweek 4
This article was written by Rosco.
The League Codes for FF247 for the 2017/18 season are as follows:
Gameweek Tracker GW4-11