Scout Notes

Salah’s FPL appeal boosted by early AFCON exit for Egypt

Mohamed Salah (£12.5m) made a much earlier-than-anticipated exit from the Africa Cup of Nations on Saturday evening after Egypt were defeated 1-0 by South Africa.

The shock result means that Salah and his country have bowed out of the tournament over two weeks before it is due to finish.

Bafana Bafana’s victory could have repercussions in Fantasy Premier League, with Salah’s summer international obligations coming to an end before those of teammates Sadio Mane (£11.5m) and Roberto Firmino (£9.5m).

With the Africa Cup of Nations final taking place exactly three weeks before Gameweek 1 kicks off, we had previously expressed concern that Salah and/or Mane could be doubts for the 2019/20 curtain-raiser between Liverpool and Norwich City in August.

Last year, Dejan Lovren (£5.5m) and Jordan Henderson (£5.5m) were handed three weeks off after their exertions with Croatia and England at the World Cup.

Klopp is, indeed, expected to give Firmino and Alisson (£6.0m) the same amount of time to recover after their run to the final in the Copa America.

Salah’s premature departure from the Africa Cup of Nations, however, has effectively killed any concern that he won’t be ready for Gameweek 1 – barring any further injuries, of course.

Egypt 0-1 South Africa

Saturday’s result was an unanticipated outcome: Egypt were not only the host nation of the competition but also the pre-tournament favourites with the bookmakers and made it to the final in 2017.

Egypt went into the weekend with a 100% record in this year’s tournament, while South Africa had lost two of their three group matches and only qualified for the knockout stages as one of the best third-place teams.

Salah had been a doubt for this last-16 tie with a cold but recovered to line up, as he so often does, on the right flank.

The Liverpool winger looked below-par and didn’t have much influence on proceedings, however, with South Africa full-back Sifiso Hlanti proving more than a match for the premium FPL midfielder.

Salah started brightly and fizzed an early effort wide via a deflection but struggled to make an impression beyond that, save for one superb pass through to Mahmoud Trezeguet that the Egypt attacker should have converted.

Trezeguet had missed another chance that Salah had teed up earlier in the game, while the Liverpool man himself had two other blocked shots and drilled wide from a long-range free-kick.

Ahmed El Mohamady (£4.5m) and Mohamed Elneny (£4.5m) both started the game for Egypt, with the Aston Villa right-back completing the game and Elneny substituted with seven minutes to go.

Both of those two players will also now return to their respective Premier League clubs.

For what it’s worth, Percy Tau had an excellent match – the Brighton and Hove Albion attacker has not been able to get a work permit since his move to the Amex but a strong showing from South Africa this summer could change all that.

Uganda 0-1 Senegal

While Salah’s Africa Cup of Nations has come to an end, Mane and Senegal have progressed to the tournament quarter-finals after edging past Uganda on Friday.

It will be interesting to see just how far Mane goes with the Lions of Teranga, given the concerns we outlined above about Liverpool assets being handed three-week breaks following their international efforts this summer.

Senegal next face Benin on Wednesday, with their opponents being one of the lowest-ranked teams left in the competition.

Mane’s nation, meanwhile, are now as short as 8/5 with some bookmakers to win the tournament following Egypt’s exit.

The former Southampton winger was again in the thick of the action, scoring his side’s winner after 15 minutes before missing from the spot for the second time in this tournament.

Mane broke the deadlock when racing through to finish M’Baye Niang’s pass but, having missed from 12 yards against Kenya last week, then saw a second-half spot-kick saved after he himself was felled by opposition goalkeeper Denis Onyango.

Mane and Senegal can occasionally look dangerous going forward but this was a match low on goalscoring opportunities, with Senegal having just five shots in total.

The premium FPL midfielder was again deployed on the left wing and lasted the whole 90 minutes.

Budget midfield pair Cheikhou Kouyate and Idrissa Gana Gueye (both £5.0m) also played the full game.

Morocco 1-1 Benin (1-4 Penalties)
Nigeria 3-2 Cameroon

Wolves’ Romain Saiss (£4.5m) played the full 120 minutes as Morocco bowed out of the Africa Cup of Nations after a penalty shootout defeat on Friday.

Saiss impressed in defence as Morocco bossed the possession and chances but his country were unable to break down a stubborn Benin side who triumphed on penalties after playing the last 25 minutes of extra-time with only ten men.

Alex Iwobi (£6.0m) was on the scoresheet in the other round-of-16 tie to take place on Sunday as Nigeria edged past defending champions Cameroon in a five-goal thriller.

The lively Arsenal winger scored the game’s winner on 66 minutes, charging through to finish low past Andre Onana after being slipped through by Odion Ighalo.

Wilfred Ndidi (£5.0m) played the whole 90 minutes in midfield while Brighton’s Leon Balogun (£4.5m) replaced Iwobi in stoppage time.

We’ll bring you up to speed on the other Africa Cup of Nations games and the finals of the Copa America and Gold Cup in the coming days, as well as revealing the latest on Alexis Sanchez‘s (£7.0m) injury after the Manchester United winger was substituted in his country’s 2-1 defeat to Argentina on Saturday.

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Posted by

1,370 Comments Post a Comment
  1. fantasyfog
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 4 Years
    12 days, 3 hours ago

    are we close to a template yet?

    1. Amey
        12 days, 3 hours ago

        Allow me to give you an idea 🙂
        Double Pool Defense + Digne/Coleman + Laporte/Walker
        Salah Sterling Siggy Perez
        King Deulofeu Jota
        And Donkey

        1. Amey
            12 days, 3 hours ago

            Perez/Jota maybe

          • pingissimus
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            12 days, 3 hours ago


            That makes me a wacko. 3 or possibly 4 only.

            1. Amey
                12 days, 2 hours ago

                Nice 🙂

            2. fantasyfog
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 4 Years
              12 days, 2 hours ago

              is that even doable £££

              1. Amey
                  12 days, 2 hours ago

                  Fodder bench, then yes

              2. The Overthinker
                • 2 Years
                12 days, 1 hour ago

                Only 4 out of this. Good going by me

            3. PUMPKINHEAD
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 10 Years
              12 days, 2 hours ago

              Ask Scotty, version B

              That's the team picked by the FFS community

          • Udo
            • 1 Year
            12 days, 3 hours ago

            I think I am getting there, please RMT:
            Ederson, Ryan
            VVD, TAA, Robbo, Digne, Diop
            Sterling, Siggy, Fraser, Brooks, Donkey
            Vardy, King, Greenwood
            Would walk away from at least 1 if not 2 Bou players by GW3,

            1. Amey
                12 days, 3 hours ago

                What a start to the post 😀
                (Like your team but you need another © option alongside Raz)

                1. pingissimus
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  12 days, 2 hours ago

                  I see two. Your subliminal suggestion that Salah is essential fails. He was my worst captain all last season.

                  1. Amey
                      12 days, 2 hours ago

                      Salah isn't essential.
                      But he's a great © option + highest Points getter for past couple of seasons.
                      Can take risks in other areas of the team imo
                      Sad to see you failed with Mo last season bro.
                      He kicked my team's ... during Christmas when i went for Raz Sane instead of him. I squandered 100 points lead in my ML during that time 😕

                      1. pingissimus
                        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                        12 days, 2 hours ago

                        Thing is once you have him he then becomes a near permacaptain - very hard to ignore even when other options are available. He skewed my team.

                        Top scorer but not by a distance and certainly not best value. To me he’s still 13,0 as all the makeweights have gone up 0.5 - feel its sleight of hand by FPL. Same goes for Raz, Kun and Mane of course.

                        1. Amey
                            12 days, 2 hours ago

                            I never perma © him. It's f... boring. I play the game for fun bro 🙂
                            I've © Redmond/Vardy last season.
                            The fact that not having him is a rank killer is annoying though.
                            He plays for one of the two best teams in PL & nailed as anything in this world + Pens + 0.5 cheaper than last season.

                            I like the idea of having Raz Mo Vardy as 3 © options

                            1. Hakim Ziyech
                                12 days, 2 hours ago

                                Exactly. I captained Pope once for a 12 pointer

                    • Dugarry_21
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 6 Years
                      12 days, 2 hours ago

                      No need for Ryan when you have Ederson. Downgrade to a 4.0

                  2. The Royal Robin
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 4 Years
                    12 days, 3 hours ago

                    Those going Sterling & Salah in a 433, who have you got up top?

                    1. Fantasy Gold
                      • 5 Years
                      12 days, 2 hours ago

                      Wickham, Andone and Gallagher.

                    2. Amey
                        12 days, 2 hours ago

                        Vardy King Deulofeu

                      • PUMPKINHEAD
                        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                        • 10 Years
                        12 days, 2 hours ago

                        Are you going to copy them again ?

                      • Warby84
                        • 4 Years
                        12 days, 2 hours ago

                        Vardy King 4.5 (Greenwood?)

                    3. Warby84
                      • 4 Years
                      12 days, 2 hours ago

                      Moutinho chopped in with 8 assists plus one goal anyone tempted by him or Neves?

                      1. Warby84
                        • 4 Years
                        12 days, 2 hours ago

                        Chipped in!

                      2. PUMPKINHEAD
                        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                        • 10 Years
                        12 days, 2 hours ago

                        Not as a starter. Surely you can work out a better option into your team

                      3. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
                        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                        • 9 Years
                        12 days, 1 hour ago

                        Yes. BUT, Wolves are in Europe.

                    4. Udo
                      • 1 Year
                      12 days, 2 hours ago

                      I've a question. What total points (season) do you guys expect from:
                      A: Vardy & Sterling
                      B: Kun & Maddison
                      And would you think there is much of a difference between Vardy & Maddison this year?
                      1: Yes, significant difference
                      2: No, marginal difference

                    5. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 9 Years
                      12 days, 1 hour ago

                      OK. Salah is finally in the team. Unavoidable, now, I fear.

                    6. Otis Kay
                      • 7 Years
                      12 days, 1 hour ago

                      Ok so here’s by far my best draft...


                      TAA, Robbo, Zinchenko

                      Siggy, Salah, B.Silva, Perez, Townsend

                      Kane, King

                      Constructive criticism will be appreciated 🙂

                    7. Juhanaev
                        11 days, 1 hour ago

                        Rate my TEAM please :


                        1.5 Budget left

                      • Sushi Boks
                        • 5 Years
                        10 days, 16 hours ago

                        Hi all , does any one know who to join the top 10K league? I just scaped in last season

                      • GlassShaw
                          9 days, 8 hours ago

                          Would really appreciate a RMT!