Scout Notes

Why key Man City assets blanked at Bournemouth

Fantasy Premier League managers need not be too concerned about Manchester City’s lack of goals in Gameweek 29.

Bournemouth’s ultra-defensive tactics look to have been the reason why the Citizens’ key assets blanked at the Vitality Stadium.

We have gone over the game in some detail ahead of Manchester City’s Gameweek 30 meeting with Watford…

Bournemouth 0-1 Manchester City

Goals: Riyad Mahrez (£8.2m)

Assists: David Silva (£8.5m)

Despite heavy backing for Gameweek 29, both Sergio Aguero (£11.8m) and Raheem Sterling (£11.4m) blanked in Manchester City’s narrow win at Bournemouth. The former was the most-captained option of the Gameweek, with 1,273,416 managers handing him the armband, while Sterling was signed by 110,000+ in the build-up to Gameweek 29.

Aguero fought off competition from a now-fit Gabriel Jesus (£9.9m) to play 89 minutes and was admittedly unlucky not to come away with attacking returns after he struck the crossbar in the second half. Meanwhile, how the match played out didn’t really suit Sterling. The way Bournemouth set themselves up meant that he was only really a threat on the rare occasions that they ventured out and left space for him to exploit with his pace. In the end, the popular options were outshone by differential Riyad Mahrez (£8.2m).

Owned by just 1.8% of Fantasy managers, the Algerian was top for shots in the box at the Vitality Stadium despite only entering the fray at half-time. No player recorded more shots on target than Mahrez at Bournemouth either. Aguero and Sterling both had the same number of accurate efforts as him, but the former Leicester man was still more threatening in the 18-yard-box.

“It’s so important for (Mahrez), the first one for the team. He has to know he has to compete with Bernardo [Silva] and [Raheem] Sterling, he has to be ready. If he is positive and thinks ‘okay my time is going to come’ then his time is going to come because there are a lot of games. I have no doubts about his quality, his mentality is aggressive but he has to understand where he is: a team that got 100 points and every single game fights and runs and plays, and the people in front are one of the most important players of last season in Leroy, the best player in the league in Bernardo and an incredible player in Raheem.” – Pep Guardiola

Crucially, no Manchester City player left Dorset with an expected goals (xG) score higher than 0.26 on Saturday afternoon. Despite their total of 23 shots, Guardiola’s outfit managed a team xG score of just 1.19. Those statistics were a testament to some heroic defending from Bournemouth as they stuck virtually every player behind the ball.

“We were pleased, overall, with how we defended. We had to answer a few questions from Wednesday against Arsenal. We pride ourselves on being organised and giving everything to every match without allowing our standards to drop. We gave everything today and our young back three did really well considering their ages and lack of experience. They produced some good performances individually and collectively that kept us in the game.” – Eddie Howe

We should perhaps not be too surprised that the Cherries kept things tight in Gameweek 29. There was naturally plenty of interest in Manchester City attacking options after seeing Arsenal beat Eddie Howe’s side 5-1 at the Emirates Stadium last week. That meant Bournemouth had lost nine away matches in a row by an aggregate score of 28-4. However, their record at home has been in stark contrast to that for some time.

In fact, in the four home matches prior to Saturday afternoon, the Cherries were one of the better teams in the league defensively. Only four sides conceded fewer penalty box shots than them in that sample and just three allowed fewer big chances. Bournemouth were also unbeaten at the Vitality Stadium from Gameweek 29 until the weekend just gone and had recorded two clean sheets in their last three outings there prior to the Manchester City meeting.

After the visit of the defending champions, no club had more representatives among the top 10 defenders for Clearances, Blocks and Interceptions (CBI) in Gameweek 29. The most impressive in this area was Jack Simpson (£3.8m), who was making his first appearance of the season in the absence of the injured Steve Cook (£4.4m). Despite playing just 83 minutes, his CBI score was the highest in the match, with Chris Mepham (£4.5m) and Nathan Aké (£5.0m) both scoring 12.

For all of the above reasons, Fantasy managers should be aware of what the Bournemouth defence is capable of at home. The next three sides to travel to the Vitality Stadium are Newcastle, Burnley and Fulham so there could even be a case for signing one of their defensive options. Artur Boruc (£4.0m) has now started the last seven matches in a row and could prove a useful goalkeeper to rotate with, considering his price. If Simpson keeps his place with Cook out injured, a starting £3.8m defender could also prove an excellent budget enabler.

More relevant perhaps is the fact that Newcastle players are being considered for Blank Gameweek 31, but based on Bournemouth’s performance on Saturday, the Magpies will have to work very hard to score at the Vitality Stadium. That said, a meeting between the Cherries and Newcastle might see Howe take a more attacking approach than he did against Manchester City, and therefore allow more space for their opponents.

In Gameweek 29, Bournemouth did not register a single effort on goal for the first time in their short Premier League history. That was a natural cause of such a deep deployment of their assets. According to the club’s official Twitter account, Howe set out a 4-5-1 formation, with Aké in central midfield, but in reality, he was the third centre-back alongside Mepham and Simpson. Against lesser opposition, we might see more from their attacking assets, as David Brooks (£5.0m) made his first appearance Gameweek 24, while Callum Wilson (£6.3m) is reportedly closer to a return.

“Their technical level is so high. We were waiting for mistakes, for them to force passes and get frustrated and they didn’t. They kept doing the right, simple things, which meant that our chances to attack in the game were limited. It’s that control that made it very difficult for us to get a foothold on the game in any way. Even when we tried to change things in the last 20 minutes and apply pressure it never really happened.” – Eddie Howe

Obviously, Bournemouth’s tactics played a large part in Manchester City’s latest clean sheet, but after a barren spell earlier this season, the defending champions have now kept six in their last eight. The shutout recorded at the Vitality Stadium was the fourth in a row, restoring some faith in Ederson (£5.6m) as a set-and-forget goalkeeper. The Blank in Gameweek 31 is something of a spanner in the works, but the upcoming schedule could still see him offer value. Watford (home), Fulham (away) and Cardiff (home) are three of the next four opponents, who look to have great clean sheet potential for Manchester City.

Whether that can be covered with defensive options remains hard to say. Aymeric Laporte (£5.9m) missed a second match in a row at Bournemouth and is not expected back until the end of the month. Meanwhile, John Stones (£5.2m) overcame his fitness doubts to start in Dorset but was withdrawn amid further concerns over his groin. Vincent Kompany (£5.2m) was his replacement but Guardiola admitted that at kick-off, Stones felt better than him, so the Belgian’s place in the side is not assured either. Oleksandar Zinchenko (£4.7m) made his third start in a row, but Benjamin Mendy (£6.1m) is reportedly close to a return. Nicolas Otamendi (£6.0m) has now started four of the last five though, and Kyle Walker (£6.4m) seven of the last eight.

“Stones felt better than Vinny, that’s why I played John. His groin felt a little bit tight and we didn’t take a risk. Now we have one long week and hopefully, it can recover.” – Pep Guardiola

Meanwhile, Fantasy managers may be able to take advantage of another injury to Kevin de Bruyne (£9.7m). Guardiola said the Belgian would be “out for a while” which may see Bernardo Silva (£7.5m), recently enjoying time on the flanks of attacking midfield, drop back into the central midfield trio, as he did at the start of the season. That would obviously reduce competition for places in the front three, good news for Leroy Sané (£9.4m), who was an unused substitute at Bournemouth. Sterling may still have to fight off Mahrez for his place in the side but Bernardo coming out of the equation in his position may be good for the England international too.

“Kevin will be out for a while with a muscular problem – hamstring. It’s normal. We played 25 games in 93 days I think. It means every three days and a little bit more we play one game so it’s a physiological issue. We demand these guys play that way every three days when the body is not always recovered. Sometimes, the muscles say ‘hello, it’s enough’. Everybody is committed and we wait for Kevin to come back.” – Pep Guardiola

Bournemouth XI (5-4-1): Boruc; Daniels, Aké, Simpson (Ibe 83′), Mepham, Clyne (D Rico 83′); Fraser, Surman, Brooks (Mousset 75′), A Smith; King.

Manchester City XI (4-3-3): Ederson; Zinchenko, Otamendi, Stones (Kompany 48′), Walker; D Silva, Gündogan, De Bruyne (Mahrez 45+2′); Sterling, Aguero (Jesus 90′), B Silva.

553 Comments Post a Comment
  1. TONY123
    • 4 Years
    6 months, 17 days ago

    Mkhitaryan looks great value from GW32 onwards if he stays in the starting XI and maintains current form.

    1. The 5% Team
      • 1 Year
      6 months, 17 days ago

      I feel none of the Arsenal attacking mids are nailed unfortunately

  2. merin
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 4 Years
    6 months, 17 days ago

    What are the best changes here? (FH32)

    Patricio Hamer
    Robertson Luiz Doherty Pereira AWB
    Salah Mane Pogba FAnderson Stephens
    Aguero Rashford Jimenez

    0.0 ITB, 1 FT

    1. TONY123
      • 4 Years
      6 months, 17 days ago

      Rashford > King?

      1. merin
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        6 months, 17 days ago

        Interresting. Why not Barnes?

        1. TONY123
          • 4 Years
          6 months, 17 days ago

          Bournemouth fixtures look so good. Barnes not worth getting in this week.

    2. Steiger
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      6 months, 17 days ago

      Team looks fine, maybe Pat>Boruc

  3. Aaa
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    6 months, 17 days ago

    Best £6m midfielder if own Salah, Son, Fand, Brooks?

    1. Holteenderinthesky
      • 1 Year
      6 months, 17 days ago

      Still waiting for H.Barnes to explode

  4. #FPLBhuna
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 2 Years
    6 months, 17 days ago

    any Sheffield United or Wednesday fans on here? big big game tonight

    1. HamezMace
      • 5 Years
      6 months, 17 days ago

      I'm supporting United tonight, by association with Chris Wilder!

      1. #FPLBhuna
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 2 Years
        6 months, 17 days ago

        haha fair, one of the wednesday defenders lives on the top floor in my apartment in sheff, michael hector

        he's buzzing for tonight, should be a cracking game

  5. No Pirlo No Party
    • 10 Years
    6 months, 17 days ago

    Hold the FT and use 2 next week? Currently on 8 for GW31

    Fabianksi
    Robertson - TAA - Luiz
    Salah - Sterling - Pogba - Richarlison
    Vardy - Jimenez - Barnes
    ___________________________________________
    Speroni - AWB - Doherty - Camarasa (1FT - £0.6 ITB)

    1. Steiger
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      6 months, 17 days ago

      Hold

      1. No Pirlo No Party
        • 10 Years
        6 months, 17 days ago

        Cheers Steiger.

        Feeling in a good position for the madness to come!

  6. Holteenderinthesky
    • 1 Year
    6 months, 17 days ago

    Current line up for next GW
    Alisson,
    Kola, WB, Digne
    Salah, Mane, Pogba, Anderson, Barnes
    Aguero, Vardy
    Speroni, Jimenez, Doherty, Schindler.

    How much of a punt is it to do Jimenez>Wilson? Chance he starts against Huddersfield? And with an international Break rest he should definitely be fully fit for the blank 31.

  7. Stefan Schnoor
    • 7 Years
    6 months, 17 days ago

    Who would you look to bench this GW?

    A) Siggy
    B) Rondon
    C) Anyone else

    Rest of team is:

    Fabianski
    AWB Pereira D.Luiz Robertson
    Salah Pogba Son
    Jiminez Vardy

    Siggy/Rondon / Doherty / Hojberg

    Currently on Siggy.

    1. FPL Pillars
      • 3 Years
      6 months, 17 days ago

      Periera on current form

  8. Rik Waller
    • 2 Years
    6 months, 17 days ago

    Which 2 to start...

    a) Peraira (FUL)
    b) AWB (BRI)
    c) Rondon (EVE)
    d) Jimi (che)

    (at least one defender)

  9. FPLGeezer
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 1 Year
    6 months, 17 days ago

    Did Hodgson give a reason for Hennessey starting over Guaita?

  10. #FPLBhuna
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 2 Years
    6 months, 17 days ago

    merely hearsay but exwhuemployee reckons he would be surprised if arnie comes in for chica

    https://twitter.com/ExWHUemployee/status/1102586839662297088

    1. #FPLBhuna
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 2 Years
      6 months, 17 days ago

      this has got me considering jiminez > chica

      1. Christina.
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        6 months, 17 days ago

        no way.

    2. Eytexi
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      6 months, 17 days ago

      As an owner this is awful.

      1. Hits from the Bong
          6 months, 17 days ago

          That’s just, like, his opinion man. Doesn’t mean Pellegrini agrees

          1. Eytexi
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            6 months, 17 days ago

            True. Waiting for pressers before doing anything this week anyway.

            1. Hits from the Bong
                6 months, 17 days ago

                He can still do damage from the bench too. His new contract has massive incentives for goals and assists so he’ll be desperate to get going again

          2. Mo Mané Mo Problems
            • 5 Years
            6 months, 17 days ago

            Yep.

            Arnie or Jimenez this week...

            Worst transfer I've probably ever made.

        • Cantwell on these things.
          • 2 Years
          6 months, 17 days ago

          This is just so not rainbow rhythms

        • avfc82
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          6 months, 17 days ago

          Yep, I wouldn't go near Arnautovic now, no reason to drop Chicharito after a 2-0 win.

      2. SHOWSTOPPERRR
        • 1 Year
        6 months, 17 days ago

        Got no replies...
        Fab
        Taa Luiz Shaw bednarek awb
        Sterling pogba salah Anderson snoddy
        Firm rondon Jimenez
        2ft 0.1 itb
        Jimenez to king/wilson this week with one free transfer left and sterling and bednarek to haz and mee/tarkowski free..

        So can field 11 players in 31 and 33 if Newcastle don't progresses..fh 32 wc 34 bb 35..leicesterless is the oly concern..Any suggestion guys???????

        1. avfc82
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          6 months, 17 days ago

          Looks like a good plan.

          You want guaranteed starters over the next couple of GW's, so King is probably safer than Wilson, and I personally prefer Rice over a Burnley defender, but you may not feel comfortable with the double up.

          1. avfc82
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 9 Years
            6 months, 17 days ago

            Sorry, just noticed you already own Fabianski, Anderson and Snodgrass!

        2. EMBOLOFAN
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 1 Year
          6 months, 17 days ago

          good work. king a more reliable, if less exciting pick.

      3. Cantwell on these things.
        • 2 Years
        6 months, 17 days ago

        Few people been asking me what my chips strategy is so here it is. Plenty of salt and vinegar and chinese curry sauce mostly generously poured on top but occasionally left in the pot for dipping to preserve those crispier ones you get. Mmm

        1. TONY123
          • 4 Years
          6 months, 17 days ago

          You need some Guacamole in your life bro.

          1. Cantwell on these things.
            • 2 Years
            6 months, 17 days ago

            Wae chips? You're surely thinking of tortillas there pal. Maybe you're not British idk. Do love guacamole though fair play.

        2. Iceball
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 4 Years
          6 months, 17 days ago

          Good one 🙂

      4. Holteenderinthesky
        • 1 Year
        6 months, 17 days ago

        What are the chances Callum Wilson starts Vs Huddersfield?

        1. avfc82
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          6 months, 17 days ago

          Quite high I'd say, he's back in training and they need goals. Definitely wait till Howe's presser though.

          1. Holteenderinthesky
            • 1 Year
            6 months, 17 days ago

            Will definitely wait until the presser. Just thinking if he is fit surely he plays. I'm benching Jimenez anyway currently so seeing it as a gamble for 1 week Vs Huddersfield. Should definitely be available for 31

            1. Rostah
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 4 Years
              6 months, 17 days ago

              He's been out for a while now, wouldn't be surprised if he got minutes at Hud but wouldn't expect more than 30 personally.

        2. Crinix
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 5 Years
          6 months, 17 days ago

          I went Fraser for safety.

          1. Holteenderinthesky
            • 1 Year
            6 months, 17 days ago

            Looking for a forward. Think Wilson offers so much more than King.

        3. Hits from the Bong
            6 months, 17 days ago

            On the bench I’d have thought. I brought in Fraser to be safe too, will bring in one, or both, of Wilson and Brooks next week

        4. Pompel
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 5 Years
          6 months, 17 days ago

          Got those not already carrying 2 Liverpool, what is the best combo going into BGW's 31-33?

          A) Salah + Mane+ one off Robbo/TAA/VvD
          B) Salah + two off Robbo/TAA/VvD
          C) Mané + two off Robbo/TAA/VvD

          Can the funds saved by going with only Salah as attacker be put to good use elsewhere? For example, expected point difference between TAA and Mané in RMT tool is only 2.3 points for GW31 and GW33. On the other hand, many will have sufficient funds to choose without regarding to budget for those two GW's. And does anyone have the balls to ditch Salah an go with Mané only?
          For me it is also a case that if I get TAA in this GW, I'll be able to hold Sterling home against Watford.

          1. Crinix
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 5 Years
            6 months, 17 days ago

            I went Arnold / Salah / mane.

            Salah is due & mane is in form. Difficult to drop any.

        5. Crinix
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 5 Years
          6 months, 17 days ago

          Good day,

          Gw 30 team:

          Fabianski
          Arnold | Awb | Daniels
          Salah | Mane | Sterling (c) | Anderson | Fraser
          Higuain | Rondon

          Sub: 3.9 gk | Doherty | Barnes | Bednarak

          -------------------------------------

          For gameweek 31 I am looking at (-4) hit to bring in Hazard & Chilwell in place of Sterling & Bednarak. (Free hit in 32 to follow).

          I put the captaincy to Sterling to cover Man City. I can also see Jesus coming in for Aguero at 65-70 minutes of the game.

          Any insights appreciated.

          1. MTPockets
            • 10 Years
            6 months, 17 days ago

            Yeah looks fine

          2. Pompel
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 5 Years
            6 months, 17 days ago

            Very strong team for next 2 DGW¨'s and good plan.

            1. Crinix
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 5 Years
              6 months, 17 days ago

              That is comforting to read. I've been having bad luck recently.

          3. pingissimus
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            6 months, 17 days ago

            Very nice

            Bit dubious about Sterling captaincy though.

        6. barcaa7
          • 1 Year
          6 months, 17 days ago

          Which one is better?
          a-Kola to TAA(double Liverpool defense)
          b-Pogba to Mane (double Liverpool attack)

          I have Salah and Robertson (FH on 32 , WC on 34)

          1. Crinix
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 5 Years
            6 months, 17 days ago

            There are limited explosive options in gw 31. Based on that I would keep the double Liverpool attack & look into other defensive options.

            For me it's Chilwell - since he may continue playing an advanced wingback.

            1. barcaa7
              • 1 Year
              6 months, 17 days ago

              Cheers mate

          2. Pompel
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 5 Years
            6 months, 17 days ago

            Would not lose Pogba ahead of DGW32 if you have value tied up, so a)

            1. barcaa7
              • 1 Year
              6 months, 17 days ago

              cheers mate

        7. The Yorkshire Pirlo
          • 3 Years
          6 months, 17 days ago

          Already own Hazard,

          Vardy or Higuain?

          1. barcaa7
            • 1 Year
            6 months, 17 days ago

            Vardy for me

          2. Freddiebell
            • 3 Years
            6 months, 17 days ago

            Vardy imo

          3. scubasmithy
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 3 Years
            6 months, 17 days ago

            Vardy

        8. pingissimus
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          6 months, 17 days ago

          Not especially scientific but it’s captain Mi for me.

          One more day of hope given Sunday fixture

        9. Freddiebell
          • 3 Years
          6 months, 17 days ago

          Of you use the FH chip can you do transfers on different days up till the deadline like a WC chip ?

          1. Freddiebell
            • 3 Years
            6 months, 17 days ago

            If#

          2. scubasmithy
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 3 Years
            6 months, 17 days ago

            certainly how I thought it worked

          3. MTPockets
            • 10 Years
            6 months, 17 days ago

            yes

        10. Tshelby
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 4 Years
          6 months, 17 days ago

          Have 2FT's might use them this way:

          Jim -> Vardy
          Doherty -> Daniels

          I will only lose 0.3 on Jimenez

        11. Freddiebell
          • 3 Years
          6 months, 17 days ago

          Thanks. Been playing this game long enough your think I should know. My mind went blank whether or not you could. Makes gw31 even more exciting now 😉

        12. Big_Andy_GAWA
          • 8 Years
          6 months, 17 days ago

          Hi All,

          What are you thoughts on David Brooks as a punt? Plays next two and good fixtures. Just signed a new contract, also. Would be getting shot of Gerard Def.

          Thanks.