We begin our Fantasy Premier League (FPL) Gameweek 12 Scout Notes with analysis of Manchester City v Everton.
For a briefer summary of Saturday’s action, click here.
MANCHESTER CITY 3-0 EVERTON
- Goals: Raheem Sterling (£10.6m), Rodri (£5.5m), Bernardo Silva (£7.2m)
- Assists: Joao Cancelo (£6.5m), Cole Palmer (£4.5m)
- Bonus (projected): Cancelo x3, Rodri x2, Kyle Walker (£5.5m) x1
After his excellent defence splitting pass for Raheem Sterling’s (£10.6m) opener, Joao Cancelo (£6.5m) has now produced five FPL assists this season, more than he managed across the entire 2020/21 campaign.
As a result, the Portuguese sits joint-top of the defender standings alongside Trent Alexander-Arnold (£7.8m), while across all positional categories, only Mohamed Salah (£13.0m) has returned more FPL points to date.
Against Everton, it was another strong showing from Cancelo, who created two chances, attempted one shot and accumulated 85 opposition-half touches, more than any other player on the pitch bar Kyle Walker (£5.5m).
Joao Cancelo’s touch heatmap v Everton in Gameweek 12
Discussing Cancelo after the game, Pep Guardiola said:
“Since Joao arrived he played good at a high level because he has one big huge quality: he loves to play football. He likes training sessions, he would play football 24 hours a day every single day and when you find a player like that – like Riyad [Mahrez] or Phil Foden – you have a diamond on your hands.
Most of the players love or like to play football but I remember these three examples. Always I see them like little boys playing in the street when they are seven years old. They play football right now like when they were on the street or in school. This is great and that is why Joao has been consistent in his game and that is so good.”
STERLING RIGHT, FODEN LEFT, PALMER THROUGH THE MIDDLE
With Kevin De Bruyne (£11.8m) and Jack Grealish (£7.7m) absent with Covid and a minor knock respectively, Guardiola opted for a front three of Raheem Sterling (£10.6m), Phil Foden (£8.3m) and Cole Palmer (£4.5m), who made his first Premier League start.
The set-up meant that Sterling was deployed on the right, a role he thrived in, and in addition to his goal, he also thought he had won a first-half penalty, only for it to be overturned.
Elsewhere, Foden ended the day with just one FPL point, as he was replaced on 57 minutes as Guardiola looks to manage his fitness, while Bernardo Silva (£7.2m) bagged his fourth attacking return in his last five appearances.
Ruben Dias (£6.1m), meanwhile, was benched along with Gabriel Jesus (£8.7m), with Aymeric Laporte (£5.5m) – who was back from suspension – partnering John Stones (£5.3m) in the centre of defence.
“We had rhythm in our game, they defended really well, so deep, on the counter-attack. In general, we controlled the game. We played the game we should play to beat teams like Everton.
It [Rodri’s goal] was great, the strike was amazing. Great goal. When one team comes just to defend it is always going to be difficult and you have to be careful. Everything is going to be well in the right moment. The quality of the players we have made the difference.
I know him [Raheem Sterling] quite well. Since I arrived, he has been a key player for us. He has to perform like he performed today, and I am happy for him. He did a great job.
He [Cole Palmer] played almost 90 minutes. He has more experience. He is a huge talented player. It was difficult with not much spaces there, but he played a good game, and he will improve in the future as he is so young.” – Pep Guardiola
INJURIES HURTING EVERTON
With Yerry Mina (£4.9m), Abdoulaye Doucoure (£5.4m) and Dominic Calvert-Lewin (£8.0m) out, Everton were already struggling with injuries before today, but saw Demarai Gray (£5.7m) add to their woes as he pulled up with a groin injury in the first-half.
The winger was able to walk off unaided, but will be a big miss if he is set for a period on the sidelines.
One player who will definitely sit out next weekend’s fixture at Brentford is Richarlison (£7.4m), who is now suspended having picked up his fifth booking of the season at the Etihad.
After today’s loss, Everton have now failed to win a single match since Gameweek 6, scoring just four goals and conceding more big chances than any other side in the process. They may have to wait a while longer before things improve, too, with a particularly tough set of fixtures to come.
“I don’t like to lose against anyone, it doesn’t matter about the name of the team. You have to be a threat on the counter-attack in these kinds of games, we had our chances without creating too much, and it was a matter of time after defending before you make a mistake.
We tried, we had two or three situations in the first half where we didn’t do well, and normally you lose these games. Clearly, he [Demarai Gray] is one of our most dangerous players on the counter attack, without him we were missing something, but with the players we had up front we had to create something more.
The goal at the end of the first half changed things, you don’t want to concede, but when you concede you don’t want it to be at the end of the first half. Then you have to take more risks and then you are more exposed, and they have more chances on the counter.” – Rafa Benitez
Man City XI: Ederson, Walker, Stones, Laporte (Ake 76), Cancelo, Rodri, Bernardo, Gundogan, Sterling, Foden (Mahrez 58), Palmer (McAtee 87)
Everton XI: Pickford, Coleman, Godfrey, Keane, Digne, Delph (Rondon 63), Allan (Onyango 90), Gordon, Townsend, Gray (Iwobi 17), Richarlison
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