Manchester City took on Yokohama F Marinos in their first game of the preseason with a couple of significant departures in the form of Gundogan to Barcelona and the outbound Riyad Mahrez to Saudi, the latter absent from the match day squad.
Pep Guardiola used 22 players for the game with no outfielder crossing the 45-minute game time mark.
Amongst the most significant note on fantasy assets are the continued deployment of John Stones in the midfield, scoring from an Alvarez assist, he is now the 2nd most popular Manchester City asset in the game being in 21% of the teams behind the ever-popular Norwegian.
Speaking after the game, Stones noted, “I love the freedom to get forward and create and bring my qualities and that side of my game out. I surprise myself sometimes in the positions I get in.”
Cancelo’s transfer to Bayern had created a dearth of viable defenders providing FPL value from the champions. Stones is likely going to fill that gap for many teams already an indication of so given his popularity.
On another note, Foden found himself in the role he had played in the UEFA Champions League Final right in the center of the park.
Kovacic has been brought as a replacement for the mercurial German Gundogan’s departure, but the Croat lacks the legs of his predecessor, a perfect solution to this problem provided by Phil Foden.
The England international exerted control of the game from the middle of the park without ever looking out of position assisting Haaland for his goal before wasting a massive opportunity himself.
The Fantasy game always has buyers of the England international and it would be interesting to see his fantasy outputs if he continues in this new role.
Erling Haaland came on in the second half to score two, with manager Pep issuing a note of serious statement of intent on the Norwegian. “Compared to last season in the pre-season period, he is fitter. He is much better than last season when he arrived.
He is not injured and looks good, but he is still away from the best condition, like everyone. He needs to score two goals the first but last season, in the last games he could not score.
It is important to take the rhythm and the principles we work with all the time. He knows exactly what he has to do, we know him, and, in a few weeks, he will be in better condition than he is now.”
Pep’s comment solidifies Haaland is all rearing to go and if there are any sorts of flirtation of going without the Norwegian. The start of the season is not at all the right time, he is simply the best asset in the game.