Gameweek 29: Team Selection: Salah or Kane for Captaincy?

7:32am Feb 28 2018

With favourable Gameweek 29 fixtures for both Kane and Salah, the captaincy decision is that little bit harder this time around

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Goalkeeper

In a recent press conference, Sean Dyche confirmed that Tom Heaton is still several games away from being considered for a return to the first team squad, so Nick Pope should continue between the sticks for Burnley’s home fixture against an Everton side that are struggling for goals on the road.

The Toffee’s have scored just twice during their last 4 away games; only Burnley and Watford have managed fewer over that period (1), making Burnley the firm favourites with most UK betting sites this weekend to beat Everton over 90 minutes.

Defenders

The defence looks to be in good shape this week, with both Ben Mee (EVE) and Craig Dawson (Wat) on the bench and ready to come in if Phil Jones fails to recover for Manchester United’s trip to Crystal Palace.

Nicolas Otamendi faces a Chelsea side that have scored just 3 goals in their last 4 Premier League matches against the current top 4 sides, so we can be hopeful of a tight game when they travel to face the league leaders.

Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk completes the defence, as the Reds welcome Newcastle to Anfield for Gameweek 29.

Klopp’s side conceded a consolation goal to West Ham last weekend but only Spurs (2) have conceded fewer goals than Liverpool (3) over the last 4 Gameweeks.

Midfielders

Raheem Sterling has returned to training ahead of Man City’s Gameweek 28 fixture against Arsenal and therefore, looks likely to be available for the home encounter with Chelsea in Gameweek 29.

If that’s the case, we’ll be fielding an unchanged midfield once again, giving Theo Walcott another chance to impress when Everton travel to Burnley.

Since Walcott’s arrival, Big Sam’s side have scored just 1 goal from their 2 away games against Arsenal and Watford but the 28-year-old has been directly involved in 3 of Everton’s 7 goals in total, since his move.

View team

Xherdan Shaqiri has found a goal in each of his last 3 Premier League games and faces Southampton on the road in Gameweek 29.

Over the last 5 Gameweeks, Shaqiri’s tally of 8 shots on target is on par with Kevin De Bruyne and Mohamed Salah, no midfielder has taken more than the trio, while only Aguero and Kane (11) have managed more amongst all players.                                                  

Forwards

The front 3 is also likely to remain the same, although Callum Wilson’s poor form is a concern.

Jermain Defoe is now back to fitness and likely to compete for game time, but there’s a real lack of budget forward options who have a Gameweek 31 fixture, so it may be worth giving the Bournemouth man at least one more game.

His Gameweek 29 opponents, Leicester, have conceded 9 times over the last 4 Gameweeks; only West Brom (11) have shipped more goals during that period.

Roberto Firmino has returned an impressive tally of 4 goals and 2 assists during the last 6 Gameweeks, ahead of Liverpool’s home fixture against Newcastle this weekend.

The Brazilian has registered 7 efforts on target in the last 6 Gameweeks; only Lukaku (8), Aguero (11) and Kane (17) have taken more, amongst forwards.

Spurs host Huddersfield in Gameweek 29, a side that have won their last two fixtures, scoring 6 goals against Bournemouth and West Brom.

Despite their form, Harry Kane has to be considered for captaincy, having scored 6 goals in his last 6 Premier League games, while taking a league-high tally of 17 shots on target, during that time.

Captaincy Thoughts

Once again, it will be between Harry Kane and Mohamed Salah for captaincy this week.

The Spurs man has taken more shots on target over the last 4 Gameweeks (10 to 7) and has narrowly been involved in more big chances (8 to 7) but his tally of 3 FPL involvements is far less than Salah’s 7, with the Egypt international registering 5 goals and 2 assists in that time.

Huddersfield (7) have conceded more goals than Newcastle (4) over the last 4 Gameweeks but there’s very little between the two defences when it comes to big chances conceded.

Liverpool (11) have scored almost twice as many goals as Spurs (6) over this period and narrowly beat their rivals in terms of big chances too, having been involved in 17, compared to the 15 managed by Spurs.

With Mohamed Salah’s higher ownership, he’ll be the safer pick again and as close as it is between him and Harry Kane, there’s just not enough between the pair for us to take the armband off the Liverpool man.

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