Anyone playing draft fantasy games will be familiar with the tactic of handcuffing players. The tactic of handcuffing is where you draft both players from the same side in a position to ensure you get their points either way i.e. draft both Trippier and Aurier from Spurs and not worry about rotation. Managers in the regular game often do the same with a 4.5/4.0 goalkeeper rotation – Lossl and Hamer being a popular tactic this season.
Manchester City’s run of games gives a chance for a handcuff with a twist – we cover any rotation with the added bonus of both players having the possibility of starting.
Manchester City fixtures weeks 3-8
These fixtures and in particular the home games have lead me to consider owning both Sergio Aguero and Gabriel Jesus. It would be the first time I have owned two strikers from the same team at the same time time but this City side could be worth it. Plus I wouldn’t need to worry about any Guardian articles.
Pep Guardiola has hinted that playing both could be required in home games against teams who defend deep, this combined with the re-emergence of Mendy, the 352 formation, the current lack of faith in Sane and de Bruyne’s injury mean we could easily see both Jesus and Aguero play in the next few weeks. Now owning both could see one dropped and losing a Forward spot in our teams but the reward is there for the risk.
Aguero and Jesus Premier League starts together: 9
Aguero goals: 11
Jesus goals: 7
Aguero assists: 6
Jesus assists: 3
Partnership goal contributions: 27
% of games with at least one partner contributing: 89
% of games with both partners contributing: 67
The sample size of 9 matches is admittedly small but is quite revealing. The only side to shut both players out was Everton last season and even then Jesus was subbed off at half time due to a Kyle Walker red card. The other 8 games saw at least one of Jesus or Aguero either score or assist, with 6 games seeing both score or assist. The average goals scored or assisted by the partnership in the 9 games is three, with four instances of at least four goals or assists.
The figures reveal that Aguero is the easy choice as captain but also that Jesus pretty much also guarantees a return too.
So the numbers are there, what better way of cheating the Guardiola Tombola than by buying both strikers?