Fantasy Premier League Captain Picks Gameweek 15
Welcome to Fantasy Premier League Captain Picks Gameweek 15. You can’t always play it safe. Sometimes those things with really long odds actually happen.
I was just standing there, on a hot and muggy summer’s night, minding my own business. Wet and naked. Just me and one other guy. I never did catch his name. Which seems strange to me now I think about it. Especially given that he was wet and naked too. Anyway, there we were, the sole occupants of a large outdoors communal shower block in a summer camp in Massachusetts. The young campers were tucked up in bed and another counselor and I were showering after using the gym. It was about 9pm at night and it was raining like I had never seen before. Think UK storms, multiplied by 100. Crazy rain.
After hearing several warnings that the kids at camp like to use the shower block as a toilet, my fellow showerer had opted to purchase a rather snazzy pair of flip flops. His were going to be some piss free feet. I on the other hand, full of Scottish heritage, had decided that my pennies would be better saved for a rainy day. Just not this particular rainy day. But with no kids to worry about, my feet felt safe to roam the shower block free of spongey shackles. Why bother with flip flops if the kids aren’t around to turn the water yellow? In the current situation, what purpose could flip flops possibly serve?!
And then the lightning struck.
I’m sure I’m not the only one to have played this game. You know the one, where you sneak up behind someone and jab them precisely behind the knee and watch them involuntarily buckle under their own weight. Just me? Try it. It’s fun. Anyway, that’s what it felt like. Except it felt like someone had jabbed me behind both knees, at the same time, with a pool cue. I was outraged. Why the hell would a naked man jab another naked man behind both knees, with a pool cue, whilst standing in a shower?! And why did he even have a pool cue in the shower?! [Note to self: Approach retailers with new idea for waterproof pool table]. I turned to face my attacker. “What the hell did you do that for?” I shouted, not even noticing that he had somehow hidden the pool cue from view. (Not a euphemism).
“What are you talking about?” he retorted. Apparently confused by my angry wet naked tone of voice. “You were in that shower” he continued, pointing at the now empty shower, complete with my shower gel sitting in the wonderfully convenient shower-gel-holding-mini-basket, “and now you’re in that shower”, pointing to my new home, a full 6 feet from my starting point. “I think we were struck by lightning! You flew through the air! I think we should get out of here!”
So we grabbed our towels and legged it outside, across the wet grass, through the rain and into the safety of our respective cabins. Turns out, the large puddle of ground water just outside the shower block had indeed been struck by lightning. The current had travelled through the pipes and out of the showers. Shaken up and suffering from what felt like permanent pins and needles, I was taken to the hospital where a doctor explained that if I had been wearing flip flops I wouldn’t have been grounded by the current and would’ve been fine. Just like that smug dude who was in there with me. Who knew eh? Flip flops are piss protectors AND a safeguard against lightning strikes!?!
On the plus side, for me at least, the doc expressed relief that I wasn’t in direct contact with the metal shower tap at the time of the strike. Apparently that could’ve resulted in you reading someone else’s waffle today instead of mine. So, where was i? Oh yeah, sometimes those things with really long odds actually happen. So will you adorn your flip flops and captain Sanchez this week? Or maybe you want to run naked barefoot through the shower block with Sadio Mane?
Pick one: Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal) home vs Stoke. Captain safety rating: Two flip flops.
There is no denying he is the man in form. Five goals and an assist in his last two games is not a run rate he’ll likely keep up for much longer, but there is no hotter property in the league for now.
Opposition wise, Stoke are having a decent time of it so far this season, sitting in 9th spot in the league and have fared better away than at home so far. They will face a real test against Arsenal though. With 10 goals scored in their last 4 PL games, Arsenal will fancy at least a repeat of last year’s 2-0 win and have a fantastic record vs Stoke, at least at home where they have won all eight Premier League meetings vs the Potters.
Pick two: Diego Costa and Eden Hazard (Chelsea) home vs WBA. Captain safety rating: One and a half flip flops.
Next up, Hazard. Just the one goal in his last three EPL games, but another player who has got his mojo back under new management. Plus he scored five in the four games prior to his recent mini lean spell, so it’s not a stretch to imagine him adding to his tally against 7th placed Albion.
Finally, for those of you lovers of a gamble… What if I told you there was a Chelsea player that has scored in each of his last two games against WBA? And what if I told you that goalscoring mastermind also benefitted from clean sheet points?! Step forward Mr Azpilicueta. Could lightning strike three times? Sorry. I promised myself I would resist cheesy lightning puns.
Pick three: Christian Benteke (Crystal Palace) away vs Hull. Captain safety rating: One ill-fitting flip flop.
Palace have only been outscored by the league’s top four teams (24 goals scored so far this season), and their talisman striker has four goals in the last four games all to himself. Or to be even more impressive; three goals, an assist and four bonus points in his last two games.
Benteke and his Palace teammates come up against a Hull side languishing second bottom in the league and with the league’s second worst defense. It’s an away game for Palace, and their form hasn’t been great. But after that rare win last time out against Southampton, you never know. Maybe lightning can strike… er… Sorry.
Pick four: Sadio Mane (Liverpool) home vs West Ham. Captain safety rating: No flips flops. Balls out. Running through the shower. In a storm.
Picking Mane as captain is certainly not for those who like to play it safe. As reflected in his extreme (and now patented) Captaincy Safety Rating, measured as always, in flip flops. (It’s not going to catch on is it?) Mane scored last week, but hasn’t managed to score in consecutive games so far this season. On the flip side, Mane has only blanked (not been involved in a goal or assist) in two of the last six games played. So as far as a long shot goes, maybe that’s not too bad after all.
Of the four games he did get involved, Mane scored four times and assisted three. He now has the pleasure of taking on leaky West Ham who shipped five goals at home last week to Arsenal, and Liverpool themselves are averaging just under three goals scored per game in the last six weeks. It could be worth the risk.
Good luck to everyone this week. I will be resorting to desperate tactics to try and break into that exclusive club known in some circles as “The Top 1.6mln”. Captain Mane for me.
Thanks for reading Fantasy Premier League Captain Picks Gameweek 15. This article was written by Chins and Bellies
Fixture Tracker – the next 6 games