Scout Notes

Sterling establishes himself as best Man City option with hat-trick

West Ham United 0-5 Manchester City

Goals: Raheem Sterling (£12.5m) x 3, Sergio Aguero (£12.5m), Gabriel Jesus (£9.5m)

Assists: Riyad Mahrez (£8.5m) x 3, Kyle Walker (£6.5m), Kevin de Bruyne (£9.5m) 

Bonus Points: Sterling x 3, Mahrez x 2, de Bruyne x 1

Manchester City midfielder Raheem Sterling (£12.0m) went a long way to proving he is worth the big bucks as a Fantasy asset by scoring a hat-trick in a 5-0 win over West Ham.

Those who opted against owning the England international, perhaps opting for the cheaper Kevin de Bruyne (£9.5m), Bernardo Silva (£8.0m) or forward asset Sergio Aguero (£12.0m) were left in the wake of his 20-point haul at the London Stadium.

Those alternative options, for various reasons, simply could not compete with Sterling.

“Since China and the Community Shield, Sterling has scored one goal minimum every game. On the first day, he played striker and for me, striker will be an incredible position for him. He can play in three positions up front.” – Pep Guardiola

19% of Fantasy managers were left disappointed when it was confirmed that Aguero had been left on the bench. Given the Argentinian’s lack of any involvement in Manchester City’s pre-season campaign, this should not have come as too much of a surprise.

However, to his credit, Aguero did come on for the last 21 minutes and got on the score-sheet, albeit in perplexing circumstances. Despite Sterling being on two goals at the time, the centre-forward demanded he take City’s 86th-minute penalty. He actually saw his initial effort saved by Lukasz Fabianski (£5.0m), but the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) ordered it be retaken for encroachment by Declan Rice (£5.0m). Aguero made no mistakes with the second attempt.

Aguero did not start at West Ham but did come on and score a penalty

Either way, the Manchester City striker conundrum will have to be assessed by Fantasy managers in the coming Gameweeks, as, on the basis of the opening game against West Ham, Gabriel Jesus (£9.5m) may have the edge over Aguero in terms of likelihood of starts.

It was a clinical performance from the Brazilian, who was sharp throughout and was unlucky to not have a brace on his first league start of the season. His clever finish from a Kyle Walker (£6.5m) cross capped a free-flowing City move to open the scoring. The right-back was awarded the assist despite a touch from Issa Diop (£4.5m) as this deflection did not change the intended destination of the pass.

Jesus thought he’d added a second goal after slotting home a Sterling square-ball but VAR ruled the goal out for an offside against the Englishman after consultation with referee Mike Dean.

Kevin de Bruyne played well despite not reaching Sterling’s FPL heights

One of the most eye-catching performances at the London Stadium came from de Bruyne, whose assist for Sterling came off the back of an incisive, dazzling run. 

If the Belgian can remain fit for the duration of the 2019/20 campaign, he is arguably undroppable. And amidst a City team of considerable instability with regards to consistent starters, it could perhaps be de Bruyne who offers the strongest value at a price of £9.5m. 

While his seven-point haul paled in significance to Sterling’s 20, that reliability of starts should go a long way this season.

Meanwhile, Guardiola’s decision to bench the 27% owned Bernardo Silva will give Fantasy managers another headache ahead of City’s Gameweek clash with Tottenham.

While the Portuguese international is supposedly one of the manager’s favourite players, it might be hard for him to drop those who played at West Ham, with attacking options such as Raheem Sterling (three goals), Jesus (one goal) and even Riyad Mahrez (three assists) excelling for the Citizens. 

There will be a number of difficult decisions for managers who have backed these benched Gameweek 1 players such as Aguero or Bernardo Silva, but City’s outstanding performance against the Hammers is indicative of a team who will not only be rampant throughout the 2019/20 season but a team that managers simply must invest in the attack of.

This was both a clinical performance and a statement of intent from City and Guardiola, with a number of Fantasy assets both emerging into potential relevance alongside consolidating their already imperious credentials for the 2019/20 campaign. 

There was a welcome clean sheet for Manchester City assets, in particular Zinchenko, who started at left-back

City’s defensive quartet of Walker, John Stones (£5.5m) Aymeric Laporte (£6.5m) and Oleksandr Zinchenko (£5.5m) were firm at the back to resist a number of attacks from West Ham.

That will be of great encouragement to those invested in the City defence as they continued to demonstrate an improved ability to withstand pressure. West Ham started the game brightly, only to tail off in the face of superior attacking play and sheer determination from City, but it was important to see Guardiola’s men look well organised and disciplined even when asked to defend.

Felipe Anderson came off with a thigh injury in the second half

There really wasn’t much to be positive about for West Ham in this game, as was expected. Hammers manager Manuel Pellegrini is likely to be frustrated at such a despondent final scoreline after his side had started brightly, but defensive lapses against one of the league’s most clinical attacking sides is not a recipe for success. The East London side will look to bounce back from their 5-0 thrashing and get their season started in earnest when they travel to Brighton, who beat Watford 3-0 on Saturday, in Gameweek 2.

Club-record signing Sebastian Haller (£7.5m) had rare glimpses of promise as a target man in the Hammers attack but offered little to convince Fantasy managers to sign him up for some upcoming appealing fixtures.

Perhaps the biggest concern for the Hammers was the fact that Felipe Anderson (£7.0m) went off injured, with what look like a thigh problem in the 66th minute. Interestingly, Pellegrini did not provide any updates on the player in his post-match press conference.

However, he did confir that Jack Wilshere’s (£5.0m) removal from play was not injury-related and was focused on ensuring his fitness due to coming back from a long-term absence. 

“Jack was OK, I made that change because he is coming back from a long injury. No problem.” – Manuel Pellegrini

Members Analysis 

West Ham United XI (4-2-3-1): Fabianski; Cresswell, Diop, Balbuena, Fredericks; Rice, Wilshere (Snodgrass 56′); Antonio (Fornals 46′), Lanzini, Anderson (Chicharito 66′); Haller.

Unused substitutes: Ogbonna, C Sánchez, Zabaleta, Roberto

Manchester City XI (4-3-3): Ederson; Zinchenko, Laporte, Stones, Walker; D Silva (Foden 80′), Rodrigo, de Bruyne (Gündogan 79′); Sterling, Jesus (Aguero 69′), Mahrez.

Unused substitutes: Bravo, Otamendi, B Silva, Cancelo

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Lessons learned from Gameweek 1

2,859 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Hairy Potter
    • 4 Years
    4 months, 3 hours ago

    I expect Arsenal to win today, but looking forward to seeing Joelinton's league debut. Hopefully he'll bag some goals this season. Arsenal and Norwich's defences may struggle to keep him out.

    1. Martial Mathers
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 10 Years
      4 months, 3 hours ago

      Yep have put Joelinton in as my punt from the start.

      Think everything will be aimed at him and there will be goals both ends at Arsenal

      1. Hairy Potter
        • 4 Years
        4 months, 3 hours ago

        Saint Maximin could be Newcastle's wildcard. Not sure if he starts and he may be a bit of an Adama Traore, but might be fun to watch if he gets some minutes.

  2. Liastro ⭐️
    • 7 Years
    4 months, 3 hours ago

    Best Trossard replacement?

    1. Bullet Eder
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      4 months, 3 hours ago

      McGinn but monitor Barkley and Mount today.

    2. SPorting
      • 8 Years
      4 months, 3 hours ago

      Give him another week.

      1. Miguel Sanchez
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        4 months, 3 hours ago

        Brighton gonna change a winning team? 1 pointer next gw.

        1. dunas_dog
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 4 Years
          4 months, 3 hours ago

          Read posts 2 pages back- persuaded me to keep one more week.

  3. Vitamin C
    • 5 Years
    4 months, 3 hours ago

    Since Pep came, all the MC vs Spurs @ Etihad
    21 Jan 2017 2-2 (PL)
    16 Dec 2017 4-1 Sterling x2 (PL)
    17 Apr 2019 4-3 Sterling x2 (CL)
    20 Apr 2019 1-0 (PL)

    Sterling (c) anyone?

    1. Eat my goal!
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      4 months, 3 hours ago

      Spurs didn’t look all that tight yesterday either

      1. el polako
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 2 Years
        4 months, 3 hours ago

        Are they selling Vertonghen ?

        1. Eat my goal!
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 1 Year
          4 months, 3 hours ago

          Tactical exclusion apparently

        2. Gimli son of Gloin
          • 7 Years
          4 months, 3 hours ago

          May have been sat out with City in mind. You'd never know a players condition after pre-season.

        3. MANGE TOUT RODNEY
          • 4 Years
          4 months, 2 hours ago

          Something's not right there, why wouldn't he be on the bench? Odd.

          1. Lazaretti
            • 2 Years
            4 months, 2 hours ago

            Same with Eriksen. They said that Eriksen were not fully fit but who knows. Levy want to get some cash by selling him, Eriksen.

  4. CHRISFF
    • 5 Years
    4 months, 3 hours ago

    Anyone have a link to the fpl mods and cons league?

  5. el polako
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 2 Years
    4 months, 3 hours ago

    Dont want to sound like a gumpy old fart but think that peeps are getting to excited about some players post GW1.
    Always seen the 1st and last GW's of the season as a bit of freaks so personally not going to jump to any conckusions about players just yet.

    1. Kiwivillan
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      4 months, 3 hours ago

      I regret no Sterling like I knew I might

      1. el polako
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 2 Years
        4 months, 3 hours ago

        Going without Sterling is pure incompetence.

        1. Kiwivillan
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 5 Years
          4 months, 3 hours ago

          Need Vardy to score well to justify

      2. Lazaretti
        • 2 Years
        4 months, 3 hours ago

        This. Do you have a plan to get Sterling? I think I need to downgrade Kane to get Sterling.

        1. Lazaretti
          • 2 Years
          4 months, 3 hours ago

          Tried to reply Kiwis post

      3. Martial Mathers
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 10 Years
        4 months, 3 hours ago

        Same but holding Auba v Burnley and then getting Sterling week 3

  6. IRBOX ⚽
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 2 Years
    4 months, 3 hours ago

    Don’t like the change that you can’t see players points on your bench until you click on them / auto-sub

    1. Zlatanzo
      4 months, 3 hours ago

      Is it a change or another one of their million bugs?

      1. IRBOX ⚽
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 2 Years
        4 months, 3 hours ago

        True. Could be a bug

    2. MANGE TOUT RODNEY
      • 4 Years
      4 months, 2 hours ago

      Surely a bug

  7. New Post
  8. Flynny
    • 4 Years
    4 months, 3 hours ago

    Spurs have Newcastle at home gw 3

    Are none kane owners looking to somehow shoehorn him into their teams for them?

    Possibly by saving ft this week and rearranging for gw3? Thanks

    1. Zlatanzo
      4 months, 3 hours ago

      Not for me, happy with the balance. Trying to fit salah sterling kane is a nightmare, especially with a big defence

    2. Hairy Potter
      • 4 Years
      4 months, 3 hours ago

      My plan was Wilson + Moura for GW1-2 and then swap them for Kane + 4.5 bench mid for GW3. Now need to monitor price rises and hope Kane doesn't rise before the deadline.

    3. The Curse of Falcao
      • 4 Years
      4 months, 3 hours ago

      If Kane is going to rise i'll probably get him, likely going to have to downgrade one of my 2 Liverpool defenders to fund the move, currenty thinking Robertson & Wilson > Montoya(or another 4.5) & Kane, this could change though after GW2.

  9. Rash
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 2 Years
    4 months, 3 hours ago

    Anybody gone without sterling and salah?

    1. MANGE TOUT RODNEY
      • 4 Years
      4 months, 2 hours ago

      Mad people?

  10. timmyotool
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 1 Year
    4 months, 3 hours ago

    Is Rashford nailed on for United now? Can't see him being dropped.

    1. The Curse of Falcao
      • 4 Years
      4 months, 3 hours ago

      Yes, United nailed players: De Gea, Shaw, Lindelof, Maguire Wan-Bissaka, Pogba, Martial, Rashford

      1. Arctic_Orangutans
        • 4 Years
        4 months, 2 hours ago

        Agreed

      2. timmyotool
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 1 Year
        4 months, 2 hours ago

        Thanks, Not sure I can work him into my team with Kane there right now, but seems like a decent option.

  11. Gattuso
    • 1 Year
    3 months, 29 days ago

    Is it just me, or can you no longer see what number of subs your rivals make during a gameweek this season ??