FPL Captain Metric: Gameweek 17

We explore the best options for the Fantasy Premier League captain for Gameweek 17 and reveal the results of our captain poll and our new captain metric – who will you choose this Gameweek?

BEFORE WE BEGIN: If you haven’t already seen, we released an article last year introducing the new ‘FPL Captain Metric’, which explains the concept fully and it can be viewed here >> https://fplconnect.blog/2018/08/07/the-captain-metric-explained-2/

Results of our poll

Screenshot 2019-12-10 at 19.03.44.png

The following underlying statistics are taken from FantasyFootballScout.co.uk. If you want to gain access to these stats yourself, register to become a member here >> https://members.fantasyfootballscout.co.uk/

Jamie Vardy – 64% of the votes 

Underlying attacking stats the last 5 GWs:

  • 41 penalty area touches
  • 19 total goal attempts.
  • 18 goal attempts inside the box.
  • 6 chances created (2 big chances)
  • 12 big chances.
  • 6 goals.
  • 2 assists.

Sadio Mané – 23% of the votes 

Underlying attacking stats the last 5 GWs:

  • 34 penalty area touches
  • 15 total goal attempts.
  • 11 goal attempts inside the box.
  • 12 chances created (4 big chances)
  • 6 big chances.
  • 4 goals.
  • 3 assists.

Mohamed Salah – 8% of the votes

Underlying attacking stats the last 5 GWs:

  • 38 penalty area touches.
  • 21 total goal attempts.
  • 17 goal attempts inside the box.
  • 6 chances created (1 big chance)
  • 4 big chances.
  • 3 goals.
  • 1 assist.

Tammy Abraham – 5% of the votes

Underlying attacking stats the last 5 GWs:

  • 32 penalty area touches.
  • 16 total goal attempts.
  • 14 goal attempts inside the box.
  • 5 chances created (1 big chance)
  • 6 big chances.
  • 3 goals.
  • 2 assists.

Marcus Rashford

Underlying attacking stats the last 5 GWs (games where he was out injured not included):

  • 36 penalty area touches.
  • 21 total goal attempts.
  • 15 goal attempts inside the box.
  • 5 chances created (2 big chances)
  • 8 big chances.
  • 5 goals.
  • 2 assists.

Differential captain suggestion

Embed from Getty Images


Kevin De Bruyne – Now, I’m under no illusions that City are at their best this season, and I know Kevin’s form has dipped somewhat recently however, he, and City, are a player and team that can explode at any point and they are the team that have scored the most goals so far this year. With just 3 wins in their last 8 games in all competitions, they really need to step it up, and fast, before Liverpool are completely out of sight.

Arsenal are a team that were struggling under Emery and now that he’s gone, you’d have thought it would give the team a bit of a lift, but it hasn’t really had that affect and they seem to be struggling just as much. They might have picked up a much needed victory last night, but it was against the joint worst team on form in the last 10 matches in West Ham. City are an entirely different proposition and whilst they’re certainly not at their best right now, they should have more than enough to dispose of Arsenal and I think KDB will be key to that.

Captain Metric

Screen Shot 2019-12-10 at 18.35.39.png

Jamie Vardy comprehensively wins the metric again

Important Note: 

TheeGefloos from Sub-Reddit Fantasy PL, has contributed to the development of the new ‘rank order’ system where players are awarded points on the metric in an order from the best score, to the worst score at the bottom.


If player A and player B have the same points and both have the highest/best score for that particular stat, then they are awarded the highest amount of points (in this context, 4), but they then count for 2 ranks, as there is two players, which means that player C is awarded the 3rd rank and is thus awarded 2 points, rather than 3.

His profile on Reddit is here >> https://www.reddit.com/user/TheeGefloos

(Reliability %), basically gives us the percentage of games the player has provided a return (goal or assist) in out of the games he was available for selection (not injured) – so this includes games where the player has scored 0 because of being on the bench/rested, but not those where the player has scored 0 because he was injured or unavailable for some other reason, like personal circumstances for example. This can give us an idea of how likely the player is to return and how reliable he has been.

(Explosivity %), as the name suggests, gives us the percentage of games the player has ‘exploded in’, or in more accurate terms, has provided a double-figure return. In the same way as before, it can give us an idea of how likely a player is to return a double-figure haul and a clear view of how good he’s been at providing double-figure hauls in the past.

Breakdown of the metric:

  • Player form – Jamie Vardy has scored the most points of any of the candidates.
  • Team form – Leicester have created the most amount of big chances (23) of any of the candidates’ teams.
  • Fixture difficulty – Marcus Rashford’s opponents, Everton, have conceded the most big chances (14) of the other candidates’ opposition.
  • Likelihood of scoring – According to the bookies, Jamie Vardy is the most likely to score.
  • Expected goals/assists (xGI) – Jamie Vardy has the highest expected goal involvement of all the candidates over the last 5 Gameweeks.
  • Home/Away Goal Conversion – Jamie Vardy also has the highest goal conversion rate after scoring 7 goals from his 19 attempts at the King Power stadium.
  • Reliability % – Jamie Vardy and Marcus Rashford have the highest reliability % having returned in 11 of their 16 games so far this year.
  • Explosivity % – Jamie Vardy is the most explosive of the candidates having hit 6 double-figure hauls in his 16 games.

My View 

(my personal take on things NOT to be taken as fact)

I mean, it’s difficult to make a case against backing Vardy. He has everything going for him right now and the fixture does look lovely on paper.

The eye test, he passes with flying colours with Leicester playing some lovely football right now and Vardy himself was constantly getting in behind Villa’s defence and of course statistically, as evidenced above, we can see he dominates all the relevant statistics.

Perhaps, if there was one argument you could make, it would be that Norwich have improved defensively with their injury woes calming down a bit. They have only conceded 8 goals and 7 big chances in the last 5 games which isn’t brilliant of course, but it is much better than what they were doing previously.

Is it enough to stop Vardy routing though? Probably not.

Embed from Getty Images


Sadio Mané against Watford is tempting this week however, as Liverpool’s last 2 games against them at Anfield ended in 5-0 dominations with the man from Senegal hitting a brace in their last one.

Of course with the midfielder, you get the added clean sheet bonus and extra point for a goal over the forward which is always something to consider and something in Mané’s favour when debating him against Vardy.

I can’t look past these two this week for the captaincy and with 3pts between them in form and both having a beautiful fixture, it really is a coin toss as I expect both will do well but, the ridiculous current consistency of returns with rate of explosion (double-figure hauls) makes Jamie Vardy the man for me this week – simples.


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