Hello and welcome back to my series for game week captaincy selection! Each week I will be picking 3 captaincy options for the upcoming game week, broken down as the following –
TOP PICK – The captaincy whom I believe will be the most highly owned and is therefore a risk to go against.
PIPPED AT THE POST – The captaincy which I believe could also haul but may well be a lower EO than we expect.
DARK HORSE – The maverick pick that may have murmurs of anticipation across the community but many will be worried to gamble on.
The picks for game week 10 scored the following points last week –
- TOP PICK – Phil Foden – 2
- PIPPED AT THE POST – Heung Min Son – 2
- DARK HORSE – Mason Mount – 0
It is fair to say that the alternatives didn’t score particularly well last weekend! Poor performances from both City & Spurs and an illness for Mason Mount led to 4 points from all 3 assets. Generally, it was a pretty poor week overall with the average score only being 42 so it was a good week to have a bad week.
Moving on, once again it will take a brave player to go against Salah perma cap this weekend given his incredibly high ownership. However, following managerial changes this week as well as some tantalising fixtures for some teams means that I genuinely believe there are good alternatives to do so. With that in mind, as I did last week, I am going to provide the alternatives to the obvious Salah choice that could be worth considering.
Now let’s get down to business and select our 3 captaincy picks for GW11.
TOP PICK – Ivan ToneyEmbed from Getty Images
So, this may seem like a huge gamble, particularly after his 4 blanks in a row, but I genuinely believe that Ivan Toney could be a great differential captaincy choice this week. I felt it was important to look at Toney’s stats over the last 4 blanks in order to ascertain whether he has been anonymous or simply a little loose when getting chances. In the 4 games in which he has blanked, he has faced tough opposition in West Ham, Chelsea, Leicester & Burnley. These aren’t exactly the type of games that you would be expecting Toney to haul in. On the flip side, Brentford now play Norwich, Newcastle & Everton, with all 3 looking incredibly leaky at the back. All 3 teams are in the bottom 5 for xGC and the bottom 6 for goals conceded so I am somewhat expecting Brentford to put a few away over the next 3 fixtures.
Ivan Toney himself has had 10 shots in the last 4 games with 8 of them coming from inside the box. He has certainly underperformed in terms of his expected points given the stats but for me it is only a matter of time before he turns it on. I am also hoping that Mbeumo returns to the starting 11 this weekend as I feel that he is beneficial to Toney’s game and the partnership they have established should work well in the forthcoming fixtures.
Brentford come up against a Norwich side lacking confidence and sitting rock bottom of the league on 2 points. It already feels as if they have accepted the inevitable relegation and although they had spells of promise against Leeds and scored a pretty good equaliser, had Leeds been at full strength and on form then I feel they would have put Norwich to bed a lot sooner. I am certainly happier going into the game week with Toney as part of my front line.
PIPPED AT THE POST – Jamie VardyEmbed from Getty Images
This was a tough decision, particularly given the recent managerial change at Tottenham with the appointment of Conte no that Nuno has been sacked, but I feel that it is too early to be throwing the armband on Kane or Son just yet so I have chosen Vardy as a suitable punt this week. Leicester may be suffering defensively this season, but going forward they have been causing teams problems. In the last 4 weeks they have scored 8 goals and come out top of the pile for shots on target with 30 so could and probably should have scored more. Vardy himself has 2 goals in the last 4 and that includes an early half time substitution after he felt a niggle pre game.
With the likes of Maddison & Tielemans performing well as of late, I am expecting Vardy to have a few chances this weekend. This will be helped by the fact that they play Leeds who will look to be on the front foot themselves and inevitably give up space in behind which Vardy loves to exploit. The fixtures between the two sides last season both had goals in them, with Leeds winning 3-1 away to Leicester & then Leicester winning 4-1 away to Leeds. I am expecting goals again in this one, with my prediction being 3-1 to Leicester given Leeds are still missing some key players within their starting 11. I own Harry Kane myself, but for those with Vardy I would certainly be holding this weekend.
DARK HORSE – Joao CanceloEmbed from Getty Images
Now this is not necessarily a proposal for captaincy, but certainly a warning against at least benching Cancelo given I have seen a few in the community suggesting it when it comes to 50/50 dilemmas. I mean, you saw Liverpool’s mauling of Man United right? In the last 4 weeks Cancelo has taken 12 shots which puts him 7th overall for shots taken during this period. He has failed to accumulate a goal or an assist in that period of time but I feel that he has been incredibly unfortunate.
I held of writing this article until after Manchester City played Club Bruges and I am glad I did. I was a little worried when I saw Cancelo was starting that tie but his performance was outstanding. He came away with 3 assists on the night and aside from a John Stones own goal, he would have had a clean sheet to go with it. Cancelo proved how pivotal he is to the success of Man City’s attacking threat and at present I feel he is one of the first names on Pep’s team sheet.
They are coming up against Manchester United who conceded 4 to Leicester & 5 to Liverpool before ending Nuno’s Tottenham career with a 3-0 which papers over the cracks, but it wasn’t exactly a brilliant performance from United and more an incredibly lacklustre one from Spurs. United were once again fortunate mid-week to get anything from their Champions League game following another of Ronaldo’s late heroics and if it weren’t for his goals this season, I do believe Ole may have been the one to have been replaced by Conte prior to Nuno being sacked.
Last season saw some tight games between the 2 sides across several competitions, but if City are on it this weekend then they could very well exploit Manchester United much like Liverpool did 2 weeks ago. They will also once again be without Varane who will be a big miss at the back, with Maguire not exactly looking at his best this season so far. I would not be surprised if Cancelo is the highest scorer this weekend! If you bench him, do so at your own peril…
So, in summary, my picks are as follows –
TOP PICK – Ivan Toney
PIPPED AT THE POST – Jamie Vardy
DARK HORSE – Joao Cancelo
Get those teams locked in and good luck for the week!
Thanks for reading! Clean Sheet Wipeout – Co Host of the ‘Season Keepers’ podcast.