FPL Captain Picks & Tips: Gameweek 33
Posted by JackWoodfield
4:07pm Apr 5 2018
With Liverpool’s Mo Salah an injury doubt for Gameweek 33, who do we turn to when deciding on who to captain?
Patience was the virtue no one agreed to possess ahead of gameweek 32, but a trio of late goal-scorers eventually turned nail-biting FPL bosses into Antonio Conte-esque lunatics (or at least back when he cared) as the majority of top captain choices eventually delivered.
Mohamed Salah and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (twice) struck minutes from time in their respective fixtures, while Jamie Vardy registered in stoppage time.
As a bulk of the FPL Twitter community transformed from a waiting room of nerves to an orgy of capital letters and exclamation marks, there was excitement in abundance.
But arguably the most thrilling moment of the weekend occurred in Gameweek 32’s final game, as Harry Kane made a superhuman return from injury.
Originally scheduled to return in mid-April, Kane secured 16 minutes against Chelsea, and his appearance will likely throw many pre-Double Gameweek 34 plans off curve.
The Spurs talisman has two DGWs approaching, and he represents scintillating captain material in the final weeks.
As you may suspect, he’s one of the top captain picks for Gameweek 33 and rightly so. There’s also some other (very) familiar faces and a few ‘why the chuff not?’ differentials.
Aubameyang vs. Southampton (H)
The Arsenal man made his owners sweat, but a late brace against Stoke rewarded the 195,938 bosses who captained Aubameyang in Gameweek 32 with 26 points.
And at home to a Southampton side who capitulated in a dire first half at West Ham, Aubameyang is again great captaincy value and appears to be a popular choice in the @FFPundits Twitter Captain’s Poll.
He now has five goals in six, and while Southampton’s away record isn’t atrocious, they’ve kept just one clean sheet in 10.
Harry Kane vs. Stoke (A)
Sir Harold is back, and a decision must be made by FPL bosses around the globe.
Those who give their hearts to Kane will be buoyed by Spurs’ next game: Stoke (A), a fixture in which Kane and co. have had great fun in previous seasons.
Spurs have won their last two 4-0 at the Britannia, and even though Paul Lambert’s side were unlucky to concede a late penalty against Arsenal, which opened the floodgates, their defensive improvements likely shan’t be enough to deny Spurs for long.
One downside to captaining Kane though is a potential early substitution as he edges closer to a full recovery. He who dares, wins?
Mohamed Salah vs. Everton (A)
The top captain pick for Gameweek 32 with 34.4% of the vote, including 66 of the top 100 managers, Mo carried on his devastating scoring run with the winner at Crystal Palace, but the incentive to captain the Liverpool forward is intangibly less attractive this week.
In the reverse Merseyside Derby at Anfield in Gameweek 16, Sam Allardyce’s stoic Everton claimed a creditable (albeit quite fortunate) 1-1 draw, and defensive discipline will surely be the plan as the Toffees bid to stifle Liverpool’s top two challenge.
Of course, the Salah phenomenon is ostensibly impervious to fixture difficulty but, for this week at least, Mo may not be the sure-fire option.
UPDATE: Salah hobbled off in Wednesday night’s Champions League clash against Manchester City and whilst early reports suggests his substitution may have only been a precautionary measure, we await further (official) news from the club and @BenDinnery ahead of Gameweek 33.
Jamie Vardy vs. Newcastle (H)
Embed from Getty Images
A popular mid-price striker in Gameweek 32 Wildcard squads, Vardy is in a fine vein of form with six goals in eight, and Leicester’s fair fixtures make him a logical staple until the season’s end.
A caveat to captaining Vardy though is that with the exception of the first game of the season, when he scored twice against Arsenal, Vardy has since registered just one goal in each of the games he has scored in.
It’s not the most significant of stats, but it’s arresting enough to lessen his captaincy appeal somewhat against a tricky Newcastle outfit.
However, those focusing on the stat of Vardy scoring 15 league goals this season will find captaining the Foxes man much more tempting.
Dele Alli vs. Stoke (A)
Never has a player responded to a leaked sex tape so well, but boy has he risen to the occasion.
He’s had his critics on and off the pitch this season, but Dele Alli has registered two consecutive double-figure hauls, with three goals and two assists in his last three gameweeks.
With Spurs on a 13-game unbeaten league run, their second-best in the Premier League era, they are the form team to bank on, and away at Stoke, Alli and co will be confident of breaking that record.
The form captaincy pick, Alli is a bit of a maverick, but nevertheless an intriguing option.
Ashley Barnes vs. Watford (A)
I can’t have been the only one to stick a tenner on Austria winning the 2020 Euros after watching Barnes’ outrageous overhead kick against West Brom (Cristiano who?).
That was the Burnley striker’s fourth league goal in a row, and given his meagre £5.4m value and £0.2m leap since Gameweek 30, Barnes is the top in-form budget option.
But is he a credible captain shout?
Possibly not, but to play devil’s advocate, no team have conceded more at home than Watford, Burnley’s Gameweek 33 opponents, and the Clarets’ away form has seen them win twice as many on the road as Arsenal this season.
If you’re after a (needlessly) wild punt, Barnes is your man.
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