Champions League Fantasy Football: The Scout squad for Matchday 12
The Scout’s squad for the penultimate round of fixtures on #UCLfantasy, presented by Playstation, relies heavily on Inter Milan for defensive returns, with the likes of André Onana, Federico Dimarco and Francesco Acerbi all included, while the bulk of the attacking threat comes from the Manchester City-Real Madrid second leg – particularly Erling Haaland, Kevin De Bruyne, Karim Benzema and Vinícius Júnior.
Highlights: Milan 0-2 Inter
It’s as you were in goal with the two Matchday 11 selections both keeping their places for the semi-final second legs. As the only goalkeeper to manage a clean sheet last time out, Inter’s André Onana (€5.0m) is the selection for the Milan derby on Tuesday; the Cameroon international has managed four clean sheets in his five knockout appearances this season and has five shut-outs in his last seven Inter matches.
Only four behind Onana’s total of 55 Fantasy points for the season, Thibaut Courtois (€5.9m) is likely to be in for a busy evening in Real Madrid’s trip to Manchester City, but has three clean sheets in his last four Champions League games and has also picked up ten points from saves, which may be his best route to returns in Manchester on Wednesday.
Tomori: ‘We have to believe’
Inter’s excellent defensive record in this season’s knockout rounds, and the relatively favourable prices of their assets, means three players make the cut in the five-man defence. Federico Dimarco (€4.7m) was the top-scoring defender in the first leg with nine points, his clean sheet bolstered by a fifth assist in this season’s competition, while Francesco Acerbi (€4.5m) and Matteo Darmian (€4.4m) each scored eight points, both adding two to their total thanks to ball recoveries; indeed, both players are in the top ten defenders for balls recovered in this season’s competition.
Top of that chart is Milan centre-back Fikayo Tomori (€5.0m), who has picked up 16 of his total 38 Fantasy points via that route – including two in the first leg. The defence is completed by Manchester City’s John Stones (€5.1m), who has 20 points from his two home appearances to date in this season’s knockout phase.
Watch unseen angle of Vinícius Júnior stunner
Four of the five top-scoring midfielders remaining on the Fantasy game are selected for the squad, with only budget considerations preventing the inclusion of Rodrygo. Vinícius Júnior (€10.4m) is in 47% of squads at the time of writing, his seven goals – including one in the first leg – and six assists making him the overall top scorer on the game with 91 points. Second among midfielders is Real Madrid team-mate Federico Valverde (€7.0m) while Kevin De Bruyne (€10.5m) is the Manchester City representative, 33 of his season total of 58 points having come in his last four matches.
Nicolò Barella (€6.9m) is the sole Inter representative in midfield, his four points in the first leg at Milan making it 50 for the season and 20 in three appearances. Junior Messias (€4.9m) is included for budget reasons, although the Milan man did score on Matchday 6 and has three goals in his last seven Serie A games.
Unseen angle of De Bruyne strike
Once again it is all but impossible to pick a side without selecting Erling Haaland (€11.2m) and Karim Benzema (€10.9m), who are in 65% and 29% of all Fantasy squads respectively. The Norwegian made it 52 goals for the season in Manchester City’s weekend win – and 19 in his last 14 club appearances – while Benzema has 11 goals in his last ten matches against English opponents, including two at the City of Manchester Stadium in last season’s semi-final.
Olivier Giroud, Edin Džeko and Romelu Lukaku all have their strengths for the third forward role, but Lautaro Martínez (€8.5m) is the pick having made it 20 Serie A goals this season on Saturday; the Argentinian has five goals in his last five league appearances and also found the net in Inter’s last home Champions League game.