FanTeam Weekly Monster – Gameweek 20 Captaincy picks

Several of you have requested some regular articles to cover our Weekly Monster Games. As usual, when you ask, FanTeam delivers

The Importance of nailing your Captain

As you already know from playing Fantasy Premier League (FPL), your Captain gets double points and can improve a mediocre week to a great one. In the Weekly Monster it’s even more important, as you’ll struggle to finish in those crucial cash positions without a reasonable score from your Captain.

Key Considerations

Like FPL, in FanTeam the points mainly come from goals, assists and clean sheets. You don’t need to dig out the stats on number of crosses or completed passes. It’s nice and simple. 

However, what you might not be fully aware of is that the players don’t get bonus points, which can significantly change the dynamic. Instead, an impact point is awarded if a player ‘wins’ the period they’re on the pitch and they also earn another point if they play the full match.

So why is this important?

In a game like this, an additional one or two points can be the difference between finishing in the money and coming away with nothing. Therefore, captaining someone that is likely to win and play the entire game should lead to an additional four points. That means there’s less incentive to take punts on players in fixtures where it’s unclear what the outcome is going to be.

Weekly Monster Gameweek 20 – Fixtures

Unlike the main game, the deadline isn’t until kick off, so you can take advantage of any early team news. However, don’t worry if you can’t be around for that time. Anyone that doesn’t start will be automatically replaced with the closest equivalent teammatee.g. if Salah doesn’t play you will get Mane.

Weekly Monster Gameweek 20 – Which fixtures to target for Captaincy?

As mentioned earlier, you get an extra point for a win, so we want to be targeting winnable fixtures for our Captain. The three that catch my eye are:

West Brom v Manchester City – Big Sam hasn’t worked his magic yet, West Brom haven’t kept a clean sheet (CS) in their last nine games and their average expected goals conceded (xGC) is 2.07. Unlike City, who have become a real fortress (with an average xGC of 0.44) but were struggling to convert their chances. A classic case of that was in the match before Christmas between the two sides, which ended 1-1. However, since then City have been averaging 2.77 expected goals (xG) and 4.4 big chances per game, which is the best in the league by far. Without the injured De Bruyne though, who can you captain from city?

Manchester United v Sheffield United – Sheffield United finally won a game against Newcastle, but they’re still arguably one of the weakest sides in the league. From a defensive perspective they don’t tend to concede a great deal of goals (their average xGC is 1.02), however Manchester United have scored three goals against Sheffield United in the last three games (their average xG is 1.88) they have played and goals equal points.

Newcastle v Leeds – on the surface this isn’t as appealing as the fixtures above, however when you factor in the form of Newcastle and potential issues behind the scenes then they certainly have the potential to implode. Additionally, Newcastle have averaged the second most big chances (3.2) conceded and the third worst xGC (1.94) in the league. Leeds can be inconsistent, but on their day, they can overwhelm the best of defences and Newcastle are far from that.    

All stats are an average taken from the last six Gameweeks to account for the fact that some teams have played more games.

Weekly Monster Gameweek 20 – Captain Candidates

TOP CHOICE – Fernandes (14.8M)

Despite blanking the last time, he played against Sheffield United, he looks to be the stand out option this week. United are likely to win and he usually plays the entire game, so that should be two points straight away. He’s a midfielder so he also benefits from an additional point (over a forward) for a goal and a clean sheet (CS) point. Then you can also factor in that he’s the most influential player (he’s been involved in 62% of their goals in the last six games) for Manchester United and their penalty taker, which makes it highly likely he will be involved in any attacking returns. I would just be wary that he may be a bit tired if he features against Liverpool in the FA cup. 

SECOND CHOICE – Rashford (14.3M)

He scored a brace against Sheffield United a few weeks ago and he should be raring to go after he was rested against Fulham. Rashford is classed as a forward in FanTeam, which means he only gets four points for a goal and doesn’t get a clean sheet bonus. Additionally, since the resurgence of Pogba, he’s been playing from the right, which reduces some of his attacking impetus.

THIRD CHOICE – Gündogan (13.6M)

I was tempted to add a defender given how unlikely it is that West Brom will score and the potential for one of them to do a ‘Stones’. However, Gundo edges it this week due to his goal threat (he’s averaged the most shots in the box and big chances out of all the City players). City are highly likely to win, Gundousually plays the full game and they’re likely to get a CS so that’s three points straight away. He’s scored four goals in his last five games and is the first-choice penalty taker with De Bruyne out.Someone has to take the mantle, but will it be him?     

Punt – Bamford (11.3M)

Although I prefer captaining midfielders over forwards in FanTeam (for the reasons mentioned above), he is highly likely to get multiple chances against Newcastle (he averages the most shots in the box and big chances out of the Leeds players) and if he can convert some of them then he’ll be on for a monster score.He also indicated that he’s the penalty taker now and is a more consistent threat than the Leeds midfielders (with the highest goal involvement [50%]). Leeds have been having issues with the condition of their pitch lately and they will enjoy playing away. 

Whoever you decide to go for, good luck!

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