The dust has barely settled on a gameweek 21, which saw fantasy favourites in Mohamed Salah and Patrick Bamford return to form, before attentions quickly turn to the next round of fixtures in a relentless Premier League schedule.
This week’s round of games includes a relegation six-pointer between Sheffield United and West Brom, whilst Tottenham host Chelsea on Thursday in a high-stakes clash between the two London rivals.
Elsewhere the Manchester City juggernaut heads to Burnley, with Manchester United and Liverpool looking to keep pace with the league leaders as they entertain Southampton and Brighton respectively.
We’re on hand once again to offer our advice when it comes to selecting your FPL captain.
Fantasy Premier League: The best captains for FPL gameweek 22:
Mohamed Salah vs Brighton (H)
Mohamed Salah returned to the top for total points this season after ending a six-game run without a goal by scoring twice at West Ham last time out, a performance that earned the Egyptian 15 points including three bonus.
It was a welcome return to prominence for a premium asset following a relative lull in the season, and the manner of Salah’s performance offers hopes to his ownership ahead of this weekend’s meeting with struggling Brighton.
Brighton secured victory over Tottenham in gameweek 21 but have largely struggled this season, sitting 17th in the division after winning just four of their opening 21 fixtures of the campaign.
Liverpool appear to have found their groove after back-to-back wins in the capital and will be confident of continuing their winning run when the Seagulls visit Anfield on Wednesday night.
Mohamed Salah has scored 20+ goals in every season with Liverpool 👑 pic.twitter.com/SXpvR7zjE6
— B/R Football (@brfootball) January 31, 2021
Salah currently leads the race for the Golden Boot and no player has scored more goals on home soil so far this season, the 28-year-old having netted six times in just eight league starts on Merseyside in 2020/21.
Patrick Bamford vs Everton (H)
Arguably the best budget option of the current campaign, Patrick Bamford returned to form with a clinical display in Leeds United’s impressive 3-1 win at Leicester in gameweek 21.
His goal and two assists saw him finish level with Salah and Cesar Azpilicueta as the round’s highest-scoring player, a sickener for the 323,656 managers who shipped him out ahead of the deadline following a goalless four-game run.
Bamford has now incredibly scored 40 points across the only three gameweeks in which he was sold more than he was bought, a lesson for any FPL managers looking to sell the 11-goal star.
— Fantasy Premier League (@OfficialFPL) January 31, 2021
Leeds’ ability to create opportunities against any opposition makes Bamford a hugely attractive option and his confidence is likely to be high ahead of a visit from Everton in gameweek 22.
Carlo Ancelotti’s side crashed to a 2-0 home defeat to struggling Newcastle in their last fixture and have kept just four clean sheets all season, the joint-third worst record in the division.
Raheem Sterling vs Burnley (A)
Many of us, including this writer, were left cursing Pep Guardiola following gameweek 21, the roulette of picking Manchester City assets coming back to bite as the likes of Raheem Sterling, John Stones and Joao Cancelo were all benched against Sheffield United.
The admittedly far-from-foolproof logic that those three players will return to the starting lineup in midweek leads us to the nomination of Raheem Sterling as a potential captaincy option, ahead of City’s visit to Burnley.
Burnley have proven stubborn opposition for many sides in recent seasons but they have struggled in clashes with City, losing the past seven encounters in succession by an aggregate score of 28-1.
Those results include a 5-0 thrashing at the Etihad earlier this season and with City in fine form their assets look hugely attractive, whilst Sterling has quietly racked up the points in recent weeks with attacking returns in seven of his past 10 appearances.
Raheem Sterling has been directly involved in 10 goals in the Premier League this season.
◉ 6 goals
◉ 4 assists
The first time he has scored and assisted in a Premier League game this term. pic.twitter.com/opIPKDIvfO
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) January 26, 2021
Rested and recharged ahead of the trip to Turf Moor, he could deliver hugely again in gameweek 22.
Jack Grealish vs West Ham (H)
Our weekly FPL podcast, The Fantasy Faithful, proffered Jack Grealish as a must-have asset for the coming fixtures, given the Aston Villa star’s mix of performances, fixtures and underlying statistics.
Grealish has returned in each of his past three fixtures including an assist last time out in the 1-0 win over Southampton, the midfielder continuing to excel as the creative heartbeat of an emerging Villa side.
The 25-year-old ranks third amongst midfielders for total points and sixth overall in FPL, whilst his underlying statistics point to a player who can return at any time and against any given opposition.
Grealish leads the league for key passes, shot-creating actions, goal-creating actions and expected assists, whilst only Kevin De Bruyne and Harry Kane can better his assists per 90 minutes.
Jack Grealish has now been directly involved in 15 Premier League goals for Aston Villa this season:
⚽️ 6 goals
🅰️ 9 assists
He's set a new personal best, surpassing last season's tally (14). pic.twitter.com/tVIb4qFFZL
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) January 30, 2021
Aston Villa face West Ham this weekend in a clash between two sides with ambitions of reaching Europe this season after making notable strides forward, and Grealish will be key to his side’s hopes of securing an invaluable three points.