Fantasy Premier League managers are encouraged to have a look at the minutes accrued by players in pre-season before picking their teams for 2018/19.
In a season where the World Cup affected the summers of players and clubs alike, it is important to see how often certain options have been involved in friendlies.
We’ve collated the game-time of every player over July and August and can bring you the numbers for the first five clubs in this part one.
If you don’t see a player’s name included it means they have played zero minutes. Furthermore, there are some players who have been involved enough in pre-season for us to draw attention to them, even if they haven’t been added to the game yet.
Arsenal have played seven pre-season matches but only five of them were public and provided detailed team-sheets. The maximum number of minutes that could have been played by any Arsenal player was 450.
- Petr Cech (£5.0m) – 180 minutes
- Bernd Leno (£5.0m) – 180 minutes
Until we either get an indication from Unai Emery before the Gameweek 1 deadline it’s worth considering the goalkeeper situation at Arsenal as unsettled. Both stoppers have played an equal number of minutes this summer.
- Hector Bellerin (£5.5m) – 307 minutes
- Sead Kolasinac (£5.0m) – 278 minutes [INJURED]
- Shkodran Mustafi (£5.5m) – 263 minutes
- Sokratis Papastathopoulous – 235 minutes
- Rob Holding (£4.5m) – 215 minutes
- Ainsley Maitland-Niles (£4.5m) – 197 minutes [MIDFIELDER IN FPL]
- Konstantinos Mavropanos (£5.0m) – 82 minutes
- Stephan Lichtsteiner (£5.0m) – 62 minutes
- Carl Jenkinson – 45 minutes
Mustafi and Sokratis have been the most used centre-backs, suggesting they will start Gameweek 1. Bellerin looks almost certain to start at right-back with Lichtsteiner’s involvement minimal thanks to World Cup leave. Kolasinac probably would have been first-choice left-back if not for his knee injury, which should open the door for Maitland-Niles if Nacho Monreal (without a minute of pre-season action to his name) fails to recover from his own fitness problems.
- Matteo Guendouzi (£4.5m) – 282 minutes
- Henrikh Mkhitaryan (£7.0m) – 233 minutes
- Emile Smith-Rowe – 212 minutes
- Reiss Nelson (£4.5m) – 200 minutes
- Mesut Özil (£8.5m) – 181 minutes
- Mohamed Elneny (£4.5m) – 163 minutes
- Aaron Ramsey (£7.5m) – 155 minutes
- Alex Iwobi (£5.5m) – 134 minutes
- Granit Xhaka (£5.5m) – 62 minutes
- Lucas Torreira (£5.0m) – 62 minutes
New signing Guendouzi has been the most used midfielder in pre-season, setting him up for a probable Gameweek 1 start. Mkhitaryan has also been involved more often than many of his team-mates but did not start the final friendly of the summer. Özil and Elneny’s minutes were curtailed by late returns to training following the World Cup but will probably still be involved on Sunday.
- Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (£11.0m) – 290 minutes
- Alexandre Lacazette (£9.5m) – 251 minutes
- Eddie Nketiah – 142 minutes
Aubameyang is the most secure of a start in the forward line with him able to play either as a central striker or a wide forward on the left. Lacazette is only 49 minutes behind but that is a result of him only starting three of the five friendlies.
Bournemouth played seven pre-season matches, all of them public. The maximum number of possible minutes for their players was 630.
- Asmir Begovic (£4.5m) – 315 minutes
- Artur Boruc (£4.0m) – 315 minutes
While the two Bournemouth goalkeepers have played the same number of pre-season minutes, Begovic is still believed to be the favourite.
- Steve Cook (£4.5m) – 315 minutes
- Charlie Daniels (£4.5m) – 315 minutes
- Simon Francis (£4.5m) – 315 minutes
- Jack Simpson (£4.0m) – 315 minutes
- Nathan Aké (£5.0m) – 275 minutes
- Tyrone Mings – (£4.5m) – 270 minutes
- Adam Smith – (£4.5m) – 270 minutes
- Diego Rico (£4.5m) – 135 minutes
Cook and Francis probably represent the more long-term investments in the Bournemouth back-line. Daniels is expected to give way to Rico when the latter returns from his suspension, Aké has been dealing with an injury and Simpson has been linked with a loan move to Steven Gerrard’s Rangers outfit.
- Harry Arter (£5.0m) – 315 minutes
- Lewis Cook (£4.5m) – 315 minutes
- Dan Gosling (£5.0m) – 315 minutes
- Jordon Ibe (£5.5m) – 315 minutes
- Mark Pugh (£4.5m) – 315 minutes
- Andrew Surman (£5.0m) – 315 minutes
- Ryan Fraser (£5.5m) – 301 minutes
- David Brooks (£5.0m) – 295 minutes
- Emerson Hyndman (£4.5m) – 162 minutes
- Brad Smith – 128 minutes
Fraser is still believed to be the most viable Bournemouth option, as their most creative player last season. The only reason he is not in the main group of midfielders who played 315 minutes in pre-season was because he was brought off with 14 minutes to go of the final friendly – suggesting manager Eddie Howe wanted him fresh and ready to face Cardiff on Saturday.
- Lys Mousset (£5.0m) – 309 minutes
- Josh King (£6.5m) – 301 minutes
- Jermain Defoe (£6.0m) – 286 minutes
- Callum Wilson (£6.0m) – 250 minutes
Like Fraser, King would have been the most-used Bournemouth forward this summer were it not for Howe bringing him off with 14 minutes left off of the campaign. As the top-scorer in July and August he is the most assured of a starting place.
BRIGHTON & HOVE ALBION
Brighton played eight matches this summer, all of them in public. The maximum number of minutes possible for their players was 720.
- Mat Ryan (£4.5m) – 276 minutes
- David Button (£4.0m) – 214 minutes
- Hugo Keto – 168 minutes
- Christian Walton – 62 minutes
Even though he came back to training late following a World Cup campaign with Australia, Ryan still proved to be the most-used goalkeeper, cementing his place for Gameweek 1.
- Bernardo (£4.5m) – 439 minutes
- Bruno (£4.5m) – 394 minutes
- Lewis Dunk (£4.5m) – 378 minutes
- Shane Duffy (£4.5m) – 336 minutes
- Ben White – 300 minutes
- Markus Suttner (£4.0m) – 270 minutes
- Gaetan Bong (£4.5m) – 256 minutes
- Ezequiel Schelotto (£4.0m) – 250 minutes
- Leon Balogun (£4.5m) – 170 minutes
New left-back Bernardo should start the season ahead of Bong based on pre-season. Dunk and Duffy look set to be the first-choice centre-backs while stalwart Bruno remains a heavily used option at right-back.
- Davy Pröpper (£5.0m) – 420 minutes
- Solly March (£5.0m) – 419 minutes
- Dale Stephens (£4.5m) – 392 minutes
- Anthony Knockaert (£5.5m) – 381 minutes
- Pascal Groß (£7.0m) – 360 minutes
- Beram Kayla (£4.5m) – 280 minutes
- Oliver Norwood – 254 minutes
- Yves Bissouma (£5.0m) – 153 minutes
- Alireza Jahanbakhsh (£7.0m) – 64 minutes
Pröpper appears to be the most secure of a start in the Brighton midfield with only Bernardo registering more minutes than him this summer. March and Knockaert have the edge over new signing Jahanbakhsh on the flanks, although the Iranian may push on the first-team door within a few weeks. Groß is the most-utilised in his number 10 behind the striker.
- Tomer Hemed (£5.0m) – 360 minutes
- Glenn Murray (£6.5m) – 229 minutes
- Jurgen Locadia (£5.5m) – 100 minutes
Injuries elsewhere have helped Hemed become the most-used Brighton forward this summer. Murray should be the favourite if fit though.
Burnley have played more pre-season matches than any other Premier League side with their involvement in their involvement in the Europa League. The maximum amount of game-time that could have been accrued by one of their players was 750 minutes. Two pairs of friendlies were played concurrently and half an hour of extra time was added on in the second leg against Aberdeen.
- Anders Lindegaard (£4.5m) – 376 minutes
- Tom Heaton (£5.0m) – 285 minutes
- Adam Legzdins – 255 minutes
- Joe Hart (£4.5m) – 90 minutes [played at Man City]
- Nick Pope (£5.0m) – 14 minutes
With injuries to Pope and Heaton, Lindegaard has been the most-used goalkeeper for Burnley this summer. New signing Hart managed 90 minutes of Man City’s pre-season campaign.
- Ben Mee (£5.0m) – 490 minutes
- James Tarkowski (£5.0m) – 490 minutes
- Charlie Taylor (£4.5m) – 470 minutes
- Stephen Ward (£5.0m) – 460 minutes
- Matt Lowton (£5.0m) – 445 minutes
- Kevin Long (£4.5m) – 440 minutes
- Phil Bardsley (£4.5m) – 440 minutes
- Ben Gibson (£5.0m) – 288 minutes [played at Middlesbrough]
Mee and Tarkowski played more pre-season minutes than any other centre-backs while Taylor and Ward had similar game-time at left-back. Lowton is probably the preferred option on the right flank but Bardsley only played five less minutes than him this summer.
- Jeff Hendrick (£5.5m) – 512 minutes
- Ashley Westwood (£4.5m) – 475 minutes
- Aaron Lennon (£5.0m) – 457 minutes
- Jonathan Walters (£5.0m) – 440 minutes
- Jack Cork (£5.0m) – 405 minutes
- Johann Berg Gudmundsson (£6.0m) – 355 minutes
- Robbie Brady (£5.5m) – 87 minutes
Hendrick has been an important figure in pre-season, with no Burnley player managing more minutes than him this summer. Westwood was the second-most used but is currently a doubt for Gameweek 1. Lennon is another player who looks set to start should be prove to be fit in time.
- Sam Vokes (£5.5m) – 493 minutes
- Chris Wood (£6.5m) – 360 minutes
- Ashley Barnes (£6.0m) – 172 minutes
It’s hard to call which striker will start Gameweek 1, especially with rotation on the horizon because of continued Europa League involvement. Vokes has been the most-used this summer with Wood and Barnes struggling with various injuries and knocks. However, all three were used at various points in the important qualifier with Aberdeen.
Cardiff have played six pre-season matches this summer. The maximum number of minutes possible for one of their players was 360 minutes.
- Neil Etheridge (£4.5m) – 315 minutes
- Alex Smithies (£4.5m) – 225 minutes
These two shot-stoppers were close in terms of game-time until the final friendly of pre-season, in which Etheridge played 90 minutes, suggesting he has the advantage.
- Bruno Ecuele Manga (£4.5m) – 373 minutes
- Sean Morrison (£5.0m) – 369 minutes
- Sol Bamba (£4.5m) – 360 minutes
- Greg Cunningham (£4.5m) – 334 minutes
- Lee Peltier (£4.0m) – 295 minutes
- Joe Bennett (£4.5m) – 251 minutes
- Jazz Richards (£4.0m) – 210 minutes
- Matthew Connolly (£4.0m) – 113 minutes
Centre-back should be considered an area to steer clear of to begin with. Manga, Morrison and Bamba have all played similar minutes, although the latter pair are thought to be the favourites. Cunningham and Peltier look set for starts at left and right-back respectively.
- Joe Ralls (£5.0m) – 421 minutes
- Junior Hoilett (£5.5m) – 348 minutes
- Callum Paterson (£5.5m) – 327 minutes
- Josh Murphy (£5.0m) – 317 minutes
- Nathaniel Mendez-Laing (£5.0m) – 258 minutes
- Loïc Damour (£4.5m) – 220 minutes
- Kadeem Harris – 169 minutes
- Aaron Gunnarsson (£4.5m) – 107 minutes
Ralls’ importance to the team was backed up by the fact that no Cardiff player registered more minutes in pre-season than him.
- Bobby Reid (£5.5m) – 360 minutes
- Kenneth Zohore (£5.0m) – 195 minutes
- Gary Madine (£4.5m) – 192 minutes
- Danny Ward (£4.5m) – 136 minutes [Midfielder in FPL]
Reid has been used more than any other Cardiff forward in pre-season, although it has largely been on the flanks of attacking midfield. Zohore’s summer campaign was curtailed somewhat by his wife giving birth, but remains an option to lead the Bluebirds’ line.
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