With Haaland and Mo Salah playing each other, there is a buzz around whether it is time to go for a differential captaincy options for the FPL team for Gameweek GW13.
Manchester City and Liverpool is one of those highly anticipated fixtures of the recent past, but a game of such high stakes means the Fantasy Premier League managers like me and you are stuck in this roulette of captaincy changes and nerves about who is probable to provide high returns.
Before we look into the captaincy options for the gameweek, let’s look a bit into Liverpool & Manchester City head-to-head fixture history;
As soon as you take a glance around that score-line, you notice the fixture has been a high scoring one with atleast 4 goals scored in eight of the last ten times both the teams have rubbed shoulders (ie over the period of last three years).
Mo Salah vs Man City: 11 goals & 5 assists in 19 games
Haaland vs Liverpool: 1 goal & no assists in 3 games
Manchester City have conceded their maximum xG through their left side this season i.e. where Mo Salah has been proficient over the years.
So if you don’t want to bag on anyone else, giving your arm-band to either of Mohamed Salah or Erling Haaland would be just a fine choice. According to draft hound, the expected points of Haaland stands at 8 while that of Salah stands at 6.8 for the gameweek. Although for this to to form an idea of the expectations – it will be widely important on how Liverpool approaches the game – whether they respect City and try to get the better of them on transitions or they play their natural game albeit where they can suffer in the midfield. For me, picking between the Egyptian king and the Norwegian powerhouse – i’d go with Haaland, respecting the fact that the game is at the Etihad Stadium and how Haaland has an impeccable record playing at home.
Although, if you aren’t convinced about picking either of Salah or Haaland – we shall dive into other captaincy options that you can look into for GW13:
Saka has always been an alternative captain choice to many on multiple occasions, and this gameweek might just be one of those where his consistent performances and ability to contribute out of thin air makes him a compelling choice for fantasy football managers.
Arsenal face Brentford away and that might be a concern. Brentford at Community Stadium generally have a history of maintaining their defensive numbers, although Thomas Frank‘s side have struggled to do so in the recent past with Everton scoring three, West Ham, Brighton and Tottenham scoring 2 each when they visited Brentford away as they have conceded an aggregate of 17 goals this season in the Premier League.
Saka vs Brentford: 1 goal & 3 assists in 4 games
Bukayo Saka shall also have his partner-in-crime Martin Odegaard back for the fixture and that can prove an essential part in impact B can have on the game.
Aston Villa under the tutelage of Unai Emery are enjoying their best start to a Premier League season in twenty five years and Ollie Watkins has been an integral part of that fifth-position placement on the table. To put it into consideration, Ollie Watkins is the only player to have registered 5+ goals and 5+ assists in the Premiership this season.
Villa face Tottenham at the White Hart Lane (or whatever it is called these days) as Unai Emery reverts back to his Arsenal days when facing this badge was all about pressure, perseverance, and bragging rights. Good thing for Villa, Ange Postecoglou will have a depleted squad at his disposal with likes of James Maddison, Mickey Van de Ven, and Richarlison serving sidelines. To put it into context, Tottenham have conceded 6 goals in the last two games and fifteen all season.
Tottenham have been a force to reckon with this season, but losing such influential figures in the dressing room has already had an impact on their performances. Emery & Watkins will be looking to take charge of Spurs’ vows and capitalise on such opportunity.
As a captaincy option, Watkins will be one of your highly differential skipper who has a possibility to provide high-returns in what looks like a big fixture from the outside but is Villa’s to lose.
At 7.7m, Bowen is a bargain in my opinion. He is someone who is nailed for ninety-minutes in the Premier League and is a player that you can maybe think about holding for the season as he seems to be getting into good places and be presented with good chances with about all the opponents he faces.
Facing Vincent Kompany‘s Burnley was looked as an tough fixture back in their Championship days – although they have found it difficult to adapt to the Premier League. They have conceded an aggregate of 30 goals all season with a record of zero clean-sheets.
With Antonio’s injury extent unknown, Bowen might get another nod at the number 9 position come the weekend.
But..But.. isn’t Bowen injured? Well, a quick Twitter surf tells me his injury is not that serious and complement it by the fact that looking at his injury record you think he is almost always available.
Have a look at this. He is almost never injured. I expect him to be pulling his socks up when West Ham face Burnley this weekend – and he is a captaincy choice you can ponder upon considering the combination of the form he is in and how poor Burnley have been defensively.
When I was going through the numbers supporting the captaincy choices, an interesting name popped up in Son. He has been playing efficiently through the middle albeit with James Maddison supporting him. Although with the latter injured, Son’s direct output is a concern among many, including me.
Son vs Aston Villa: 6 goals & 1 assist in 7 games
The South-Korean has had a phenomenal record against Villa, complement it by the fact that Aston Villa have conceded majority of their xG from the left and the middle: two spaces where Son thrives. Aston Villa, much like Tottenham Hotspur, also play a high-line and that might just play in Son’s hands.
Personally, at the time of writing, I am leaning towards giving my arm-band to Erling Haaland. He has the highest expected xG of any players for the matchweek and he is due a couple of goals against Liverpool. That being said, I shall ponder upon Haaland, Saka, and Bowen as the deadline nears it’s conclusion.