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Sky Blue News: Finishing Up Saints, Akanji Acclaim, João Accolades, and More

Happy Monday form Bitter and Blue.

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Manchester City v Southampton FC - Premier League Photo by Visionhaus/Getty Images

Manchester City quickly turn their attention to a Tuesday tilt in Denmark. Before we get there, we have all the latest headlines here at Sky Blue News.

Manchester City vs. Southampton: 4-0 ease to victory - Laura Graves - Man City Square

Laura looks at City’s romp over Southampton.

The City boys flew, scoring 4 goals and keeping a clean sheet, Southampton made it too easy for City with their highline looking like a Beluga Whales’ fod, it was surely only a matter of time before the blues took the lead.

Overall City dominated the game, with 66% possession, 21 shots to Southampton’s 5, and 8 shots of target and none on target from the Saints.

There were some raised eyebrows at 14:00 when the team sheet was released and after some brilliant MotM performances, Grealish had been dropped to the bench in favour of Mahrez; and it was a change that did pay off in the end.

3 Up & 2 Down: Manchester City 4-0 Southampton - CITYZENDuck - Bitter and Blue

Let's take a peek at my risings from the match.

3 UP

João Cancelo - A nearly perfect performance from the Portuguese defender. It is easy at times to take João for granted., but then he has a day like he had against the Saints. A goal, an assist, and an afternoon full of beautiful, impactful football. Man of the Match well deserved.

Phil’s Finish - City’s second goal was a cultured and mature finish from the Stockport Iniesta. After being sprung by KDB, and with Southampton keeper Gavin Bazunu closing him down. Phil lifted a sublime chip over the Ireland international and in the net to double the Sky Blues’ advantage.


Manu receives some deserved praise from the City boss.

The City boss was quick to praise Akanji’s display against the Saints, insisting that the quick adjustment the defender made to an unfamiliar position is testament to his footballing intelligence.

“With [assistant manager] Carlos Vicens on set pieces, he said: ‘you only have to tell him once [and] he knows it’,” Guardiola said of the centre-half.

“The movement defensively and offensively, he executes it perfectly. This is a gift for the manager.

“Some players, you have to explain ten times or train ten times to show what you are thinking or what you want to do. This guy needed just one training session and he got it.

“The movement he has to do as a full-back, the high pressing, he didn’t train once, and he did it perfectly.

Manuel Akanji shows off new trick to help Man City solve defensive crisis - Joe Bray - Manchester Evening News

He’s proving to be versatile as well. Football IQ and position flexibility are a manager’s dream.

It’s not that Akanji did much wrong, but simply he looked unsure of what to do as a full-back in this Guardiola set-up, often slowing down play or choosing to pass when the manager wanted him to drive - albeit during a generally slow performance all round.

As City scored one then two in the first half, Southampton’s targeted attacks became less frequent and Akanji could enjoy some more freedom with the ball. He definitely grew into the role as City’s lead grew, and against similarly-defensive teams, he’s a perfectly good placeholder at right-back.

Compare him to Stones, or Ake on the left, these are players who perhaps know more of their requirements having been a part of the squad for longer. For now, this was an experiment that maybe didn’t have the impact Guardiola wanted, while still showing plenty of promise.

Joao Cancelo: “I’m always happy when we score...” - Saul Garcia - Bitter and Blue

It really does feel like João could play wherever needed on the pitch.

The world’s best fullback had a game to remember! The star fullback had a really good game and was the star as he tore through the S’ampton defense and nailed a really good goal. The star man played really well everywhere else too making defensive stops and more.

Let’s check out his reaction-

“I’m always happy when we score and even happier when we win,” he said.

“Yeah, It’s true I can play in two positions and I feel comfortable in both, right and left. I played more advanced today but as I say I’m comfortable in both right back and left back.

“I always try to help the team wherever the team need me, even if the manager asks me to be a goalkeeper I can also do it! I always try to do my best and try to help the team to achieve the targets.”

FPL Review: Cancelo Shines, Solanke Surprises And Maddison Disappoints In GW10 - Yatish Jain - Thick Accent

Cancelo has big value as a fantasy option as well.

Cancelo’s 18 points have him as the current highest points-getter of the gameweek ahead of the remaining matches.

The fullback started the scoring for City, twisting and turning in the box before a sweet finish past the keeper.

He then went on to get an assist for the last goal of the game.

A clean sheet locked in, thanks to a 69th-minute substitution meant Cancelo recorded his third double-digit haul of the season.

FPL Saturday review: Top midfielder Foden is No 1 target -

And finally... Speaking of Fantasy, Philly is a hot commodity in the FPL.

The Manchester City star claimed an 11-point haul in a 4-0 win over Southampton, taking him to 62 points for the season.

Foden has blanked only once in his last six matches, scoring five goals and supplying three assists in that time.

Although Man City visit Liverpool before their Blank Gameweek 12, Foden has emerged as the No 1 target in Fantasy ahead of Gameweek 11.

He has earned 108,000 new owners, more than double the total of any other player.

There you have it Cityzens. Stay with us as we get ready for UCL trip to Copenhagen. We’ll have all the latest for you right here at Bitter and Blue.