Fantasy Premier League

Best alternatives to Haaland as FPL captain in Gameweek 3

By The Scout 22 Aug 2023
Mitoma, Estupinan, March

The Scout says Brighton's in-form assets can reward managers brave enough to overlook Man City forward

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The 91 per cent ownership of Erling Haaland (£14.0m) is making the captaincy decision a formality for millions of managers in 2023/24 Fantasy Premier League

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This was emphasised in Gameweek 2 when Manchester City’s Norwegian was the runaway favourite despite his tough home match against Newcastle United.

Haaland was handed the armband by 5.71million managers, whereas Mohamed Salah (£12.5m) was captained by only 1.22m for Liverpool’s favourable home encounter with AFC Bournemouth.

A trip to promoted Sheffield United only enhances Haaland’s appeal further in Gameweek 3.

He scored twice to collect 13 points in his last road trip, which was also against a promoted club - Burnley - on the opening day of the season.

Although Haaland was outscored by both Phil Foden (£7.6m) and Julian Alvarez (£6.6m) in last weekend's 1-0 win over Newcastle United, the underlying numbers dampen any enthusiasm over their potential as alternatives.

Haaland's eight shots in the box so far this season equal the combined total of Foden and Alvarez, who have managed four each.

Haaland, Foden and Alvarez compared 22/23
Stat Haaland Foden Alvarez
Shots 8 6 4
Shots in box 8 4 4
Big chances 1 1 0
Shots on target 4 2 2
Chances created 3 9 8

Instead, it is Brighton & Hove Albion’s in-form players who could prove Haaland’s strongest rivals.

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The Seagulls are the top-scoring team in the league as they prepare to host West Ham United, having struck eight goals compared with Man City's total of four.

See: FPL long view: Be wary of Brighton fixtures from Gameweek 4

Crucially, Brighton’s ability to create gilt-edged opportunities has been far superior to the champions' own efforts this season.

The Seagulls have recorded 11 big chances, more than three times the total of Man City’s three.

Brighton v Man City attacking threat
Stat Brighton Man City
Shots 43 31
Shots in box 31 24
Big chances 11 3
Shots on target 20 12
Goals 8 4

Kaoru Mitoma (£6.6m) was a huge success in the corresponding fixture against West Ham last season, producing a goal, an assist and 13 points in a 4-0 home win.

Mitoma, Pervis Estupinan (£5.2m) and Solly March (£6.6m) have all been involved in three goals this campaign, and each delivered a double-figure haul against Wolverhampton Wanderers last weekend.

Elsewhere, Arsenal’s home match against Fulham can bring more points for Bukayo Saka (£8.6m) and Martin Odegaard (£8.5m).

The pair have already delivered a double-figure haul apiece in the opening two matches against Nottingham Forest and Crystal Palace.

Odegaard's penalty winner v Palace

Fulham, meanwhile, have conceded 29 shots in the box and nine big chances, with both those totals putting them among the bottom three sides this season.

Finally, the underlying numbers of Marcus Rashford (£9.0m) suggest he can produce his first attacking returns of 2023/24 against Nott'm Forest this weekend.

The Manchester United star’s seven shots in the box are more than any other midfielder in Fantasy.

Rashford delivered a goal, an assist and 14 points in the corresponding fixture last season, one of seven double-figure hauls he claimed at Old Trafford.

Also in this series

Part 1: Best replacements for benched Joao Pedro in Fantasy
Part 2: Whose FPL prospects have improved after Gameweek 2?
Part 3: FPL experts: Lessons learned from first two Gameweeks
Part 4: The Scout’s FPL Gameweek 3 Ones to watch
Part 5: Wissa or Mbeumo: Who is the better Brentford pick in FPL?
Part 6: The Scout’s Gameweek 3 Differentials
Part 7: FPL experts: What to do with Fernandes and Rashford?
Part 8: FPL long view: Be wary of Brighton fixtures from Gameweek 4
Part 9: FPL experts: Is Alvarez or Jackson the better forward to pick?
Part 10: Scout Selection: Best FPL team for Gameweek 3
Part 12: How penalty duties are changing the FPL landscape in midfield
Part 13: Best replacements for injured Shaw in Fantasy

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