Pep Guardiola’s decision to freshen up his Man City side with one eye on the midweek Champions League return clash against Liverpool proved their undoing. Elsewhere, Jurgen Klopp made significant alterations considering the Champions League tie against Man City, while Harry Kane returned to the Tottenham Hotspur teamsheet. In the following piece, we analyse the teamsheets and formations of Manchester City, Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur in Gameweek 33 and how they would have an impact in fantasy land in the coming Gameweeks.
Starting XI: Ederson, Danilo, Kompany, Otamendi, Delph, Gundogan (Aguero 76′), Fernandinho, David Silva (De Bruyne 72′), Bernardo Silva (Jesus 72′), Sterling, Sane. Unused Subs: Bravo, Walker, Laporte, Toure.
Team Formation: Guardiola rested some of his key players in the Manchester Derby ahead of the second leg of their UEFA Champions League quarter-final against Liverpool as expected. Danilo, Ilkay Gundogan and Bernardo Silva came into the side, as Kyle Walker, Kevin De Bruyne and Gabriel Jesus dropped to the bench. Fabian Delph returned at left-back as Aymeric Laporte made way, while Sergio Aguero was fit to be named among the substitutes. Bernardo Silva started as the lone striker, with Raheem Sterling on the right of the front three in the usual 4-3-3 formation. But after close to 20 minutes, the pair switched positions to great effect. Guardiola ended up setting up his team in a 4-4-2, having fallen 3-2 behind. De Bruyne joined Fernandinho in central midfield as Gabriel Jesus and Aguero played up front.
Analysis and Lessons learned: With the title not yet won, Guardiola should probably name something near to his strongest starting XI against Spurs this week. After getting a rest against United, Walker should return at right-back, but Danilo, Laporte and Zinchenko remain possible alternatives to Delph on the left. Laporte, Stones and Nicolas Otamendi are some options for Guardiola in central defence. Fernandinho will miss next Saturday’s game as the Brazilian picked his tenth yellow card of the season at the Derby and will now serve a two-match ban. Gundogan could probably be considered to join David Silva and De Bruyne in the middle of the park, while Stones too remains to be an option there.
Standout and Suggested Picks: Sterling and Jesus are some strong options to be considered towards the end of the season now. Aguero’s return makes him viable too to be monitored in his next PL game. However, the safest options for me would be David Silva and Kevin De Bruyne as they are benched comparatively than the other attackers. Gundogan could be a risky but fantastic punt.
Starting XI: Karius, Clyne, Lovren, Van Dijk, Klavan, Wijnaldum, Henderson, Milner (Oxlade-Chamberlain 68′), Ings (Alexander-Arnold 89′), Solanke, Mane (Firmino 74′). Unused Subs: Camacho, Mignolet, Masterson, Jones.
Team Formation: After the 3-0 win over Manchester City in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League quarter-final, Jurgen Klopp decided to make five changes for the Merseyside Derby. Trent Alexander-Arnold, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Roberto Firmino all dropped to the bench, while Andrew Robertson and Mohamed Salah missed out with injuries. Ragnar Klavan and Nathaniel Clyne came in at left-back and right-back respectively, with Georginio Wijnaldum returning in central midfield in the usual 4-3-3 system. Dominic Solanke and Danny Ings joined Sadio Mane in the front three.
Analysis and Lessons learned: With Klopp playing his strongest side in the second leg of the Champions League, his line-up against Bournemouth this weekend remains difficult to predict. Salah playing close to 90 minutes too leaves his managers scared whether he would start against the Cherries. Either Oxlade- Chamberlain or James Milner may drop to the bench in Gameweek 34, with Wijnaldum a more probable starter. Solanke and Ings if Klopp decides to rest either Mane or Salah at the weekend. Klavan may be an option in central defence to replace Dejan Lovren or Virgil van Dijk if needed.
Standout and Suggested Picks: Managers with no Free Hit chip should definitely keep hold of their Liverpool assets. Managers who have sold Salah should monitor him for this week and plan to get him in their squads soon if he blasts in the league again. Mane, Firmino and Robertson remain strong fantasy assets for the upcoming Gameweeks.
Starting XI: Lloris, Aurier, Sanchez, Vertonghen, Rose, Wanyama (Dier 82′), Dembele, Eriksen, Alli (Sissoko 89′), Son Heung-min (Lamela 67′), Kane. Unused Subs: Vorm, Dier, Llorente, Moura, Davies.
Team Formation: Mauricio Pochettino decided to rotate his side for the trip to Stoke City. Danny Rose and Serge Aurier were recalled in the full-back positions, while Victor Wanyama came in for Eric Dier at the base of midfield in the 4-2-3-1 formation. Harry Kane started as the lone striker, with Son Heung-min featuring as part of a fluid attacking midfield trio.
Analysis and Lessons learned: Spurs face Man City at Wembley this weekend, before travelling to face Brighton and Hove Albion three days later in their second match of Double Gameweek 34. Also, that comes four days to their FA Cup semi-final against Man United. So, Pochettino will most probably name his strongest sides against City and United, with rotation likely against the Seagulls. Kieran Trippier and Ben Davies could be replaced by Aurier and Rose in the full-back positions on Tuesday. Wanyama may earn a start in central midfield, while Erik Lamela could come into the side, replacing Son. Toby Alderweireld may also be given a start in central defence against Chris Hughton’s side.
Standout and Suggested Picks: With two double Gameweeks to come, Spurs assets are essential for managers. Kane, Alli and Eriksen are safe and explosive picks but Son and Davies could get in some points too, provided they don’t get rotated often. Kane is one of the strongest captain as well as Triple captain for Spurs’ double Gameweek 37.
There are just five weeks to go now and this is the most crucial part of the season. Plan your double as well as blank Gameweeks very carefully and you can jump ranks to a large extent. I hope you had a good read and I wish you all the very best for double Gameweek 34!