Another HUGE double gameweek is upon us in Fantasy Premier League with some of the league’s leading sides all in action twice, a massive round of fixtures which could prove crucial in your hopes of a successful season.
Manchester City, Manchester United, Liverpool, Chelsea, Leicester and Spurs are just some of the teams whose assets play twice, making this an opportunity that must not be wasted as you bid to climb your respective mini-leagues and improve overall rank.
As always we’re here to offer our humble insight and advice, here are some of our selections for the crucial captaincy pick in gameweek 26.
FPL GW26 Deadline: Saturday, 11:00am GMT
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Bruno Fernandes v Crystal Palace (A) and Chelsea (A)
It’s not often we compile this feature without the presence of Bruno Fernandes amongst our list of names, such has been the Manchester United midfielder’s incredible consistency since arriving into the Premier League.
Fernandes is the highest-scoring player in the game on 190 points and leads the bonus point rankings for the campaign, whilst no Premier League player has been directly involved in more than his 25 goals.
Perhaps the greatest showing of the star’s ability to haul points came last weekend when in a rather subdued performance against Newcastle he still accumulated 12 points, with the Portugal international difficult to overlook with two fixtures in gameweek 26.
#FPL most points 2020/21:
190pts – Bruno Fernandes
164pts – Mohamed Salah
159pts – Son Heung-min
155pts – Harry Kane
140pts – Patrick Bamford
130pts – Emi Martinez pic.twitter.com/5JxkHr1yVr
— Fantasy Premier League (@OfficialFPL) February 24, 2021
Fernandes leads our captaincy contenders for expected assists (0.41) and big chances created (0.64) per game over the past 10 gameweeks and has managed more double-digit hauls (10) than any other player so far this season.
FPL managers may take a cautious approach given Manchester United travel to an improving Chelsea in their second fixture, but an out-of-sorts Crystal Palace offer the perfect opportunity for an explosive haul.
Harry Kane v Burnley (H) and Fulham (A)
Harry Kane is the leading points scorer amongst FPL forwards and will be relishing the prospect of taking on two of the Premier League’s bottom six this weekend, Spurs having – at least on paper – two of the most appealing fixtures.
Kane will be a popular selection for the armband given his form this season with the England captain having provided 24 goal involvements, scoring 13 times in addition to registering a league-leading 11 assists.
The 27-year-old also enjoys a formidable record against each of his opponents in gameweek 26, having scored eight goals in 10 career appearances against Burnley and a huge six in just four against Fulham.
Spurs’ concerning form, losing five of their past six, perhaps adds more risk to Kane’s selection than first appears on surface level, but the forward has shown he can score against any opposition this season and has averaged 0.32 for expected assists and 0.46 for big chances created per game over his last 10 – second only to Fernandes amongst our captaincy options.
Jamie Vardy v Arsenal (H) and Burnley (A)
Leicester will head into this weekend’s fixtures in confident mood after victories over fellow European hopefuls Liverpool and Aston Villa in recent weeks, despite the setback of a shock Europa League exit at the hands of Slavia Prague on Thursday.
Brendan Rodgers’ side will now turn their full focus towards securing Champions League football and face Arsenal and Burnley in gameweek 26, two sides they have already beaten in the Premier League this season.
Jamie Vardy has provided one goal and one assist in his three games since returning from injury, but the underlying statistics point towards a return to the scoresheet for last season’s Golden Boot winner.
Vardy leads the contenders on this list for non-penalty expected goals, big chances and shots in the box per 90 minutes over the last 10 gameweeks, an indication that opportunities are falling the way of a player who has so often been clinical in recent campaigns.
Leicester will look to the 34-year-old once more to deliver ahead of two testing encounters and Vardy could add to his record of five double-digit hauls this season.
Ilkay Gundogan v West Ham (H) and Wolves (H)
Ilkay Gundogan’s incredible form has been somewhat slowed over the past two gameweeks after missing the trip to Everton before blanking at Arsenal, but it’s difficult to overlook the midfielder given his goalscoring exploits over the past two months.
Gundogan faces two home fixtures in gameweek 26 with West Ham and Wolves visiting the Etihad, as Manchester City look to continue a run of 19 consecutive victories in all competitions.
The 30-year-old ranks second amongst our options for big chances per 90 minutes over the past 10 gameweeks, whilst no player can better his goals and assists per 90 during that time.
Gundogan has also returned double-digit hauls on six occasions and with City in such imperious form their assets are hugely attractive given the league leaders face back-to-back double gameweeks.
The returning Kevin De Bruyne shapes as an attractive alternative but may be eased in by Pep Guardiola following his recent injury problems.
Mohamed Salah v Sheffield United (A) and Chelsea (H)
The league’s leader scorer playing two games including a trip the division’s bottom side, Mohamed Salah would be a prime contender in almost any other circumstances.
Liverpool’s torrid form makes this a less straightforward selection but there remains huge potential upside in selecting the Egyptian international, given his status as the Premier League’s top scorer and continued consistency around goal.
Salah has scored 17 league goals this season and ranks third amongst our captaincy contenders for non-penalty expected goals (0.45) and big chances (0.96) per 90 minutes over the past 10 gameweeks, the 28-year-old remaining Liverpool’s most likely avenue to FPL points.
After briefly threatening a renaissance Sheffield United have lost their last three and the Reds will expect to secure all three points at Bramall Lane, before a home meeting with Chelsea which could prove crucial to the champion’s hopes of securing Champions League football.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin v Southampton (H) and West Brom (A)
Everton appear to have the best fixtures of any side with a home clash against struggling Southampton and trip to West Brom in gameweek 26, arriving into the double-header in buoyant mood following a first win at Liverpool in more than two decades last time out.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin came off the bench to win a penalty as he made a return from injury, and the England international is expected to return to the starting side for two important clashes.
Calvert-Lewin ranks second amongst our captaincy options for non-penalty expected goals per 90 over the last 10 gameweeks and has two goals and two assists in his past three appearances.
The 23-year-old will be confident of adding to his 13 league goals against a Southampton side who have conceded 19 goals in their past five, before a trip to face a West Brom team with the Premier League’s worst defence.