Our captains article is back to help you choose the right captain for game week 18. This year we are using data from the RMT Bot and our experience to make our recommendations.
Rate My Team Opti-Bot picks
The bots top choice for the next 2 weeks is the red hot Chilean. Arsenal have had a rough time of it the last 2 game weeks losing to both Everton and then Manchester City but the Fixture Generator has been kind to the Gunners and thrown them a nice set of games including Palace (H), Bournemouth (A), Swansea (A), Burnley (H) and Watford (H) which should allow them to get back on track. Up first is a home tie against West Brom (H) and this is a fixture that has the bot salivating at the prospect of a huge set of Sanchez returns…
An average return of 6.28 points is a huge return as the bot’s “average predicted score” is rarely above 6, strongly suggesting Sanchez is your man for this week. In terms of goals scored during the simulations Sanchez has very healthy numbers there too; 1 goal 31.2%, 2 goals 8.4% 3 goals 1.8%. His recent fpl form is also excellent with Sanchez has also produced attacking returns in each of his last 5 games.
In summary the bot says this is an absolute banker of a captaincy pick this week.
The bots 2nd top pick of the week is also a common sense pick. Manchester United are on something good of a roll now having not lost in their last 10 games winning 7 of them (all competitions) including their last 3 league games. This up turn in form also seems to have coincided with an upturn in Ibrahimovic’s personal form- this surely isn’t coincidence.
An early season burst of goals saw the mighty Swede become the most owned player in the fpl game as he scored 4 goals in his first 4 fpl games. But then he hit the wall and the goals dried up. While the United team were playing OK they just couldn’t score and part of that problem was that Ibrahimovic was missing chance after chance. However all that seems to be in the past now as Zlatan has found the net 7 times in his last 6 games.
The bot has Ibrahimovic at 5.24 points this week and his average goals record; 1 goal at 32.2%, 2 goals at 9%, 3 goals at 1.6%. It’s worth noting that the bot has Zlatan a more likely goal scorer than Sanchez, but has Alexis the higher predicted score due to the Arsenal man getting an extra point per goal plus a point per clean sheet; and these are points that the United man simply cannot get- damn you FPL!!
This one is one of my picks and is more on the promise of the fixture rather than great recent form. Hazard seems to have gone off the boil somewhat on recent weeks with just a solitary goal in his last 4 game weeks.
The reasons I am picking him are that Chelsea have a strong looking fixture (home to Bournemouth) and also that Diego Costa is locked in the fpl suspension naughty room this week. Hopefully Costa’s absence will lead to Hazard having more opportunities in the focal point of the Chelsea attack. Hazard does have generally good shooting numbers so far this season averaging 2.7 shots per game and creating 2 chances per game.
The Liverpool forward has been in superb form recently and is my other top tip for captaincy this week. Mane has returned 2 goals and 4 assists over the last 6 game weeks including the winner in there Merseyside derby on Monday night so coming in to a Boxing day fixture at home to Stoke should see him as a genuine captain for the armband this week.
Mane is often involved in a lot of Liverpool attacks scoring 8 times while averaging 2.47 shots per game but the vast majority inside the box- 2.2 per game (34 of his 38 shots so far this season). In addition to being a good source of goals Mane has done his bit creatively with 4 assists so far with an average of 1.75 chances created per game. Liverpool are still the top scorers in the league this season with 41 goals scored so you would have to fancy them to score a couple this week and Mane should have a great chance to add to his goals or assists tally.