After a week where the FA Cup took centre stage, the Premier League is front and centre this time around. Below is a game-by-game run down of all the injury news ahead of every fixture for Gameweek 29.
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West Bromwich Albion vs Arsenal
Albion have a fresh injury worry after Tony Pulis reported that James Morrison may miss the game against Arsenal. “[James] Morrison has hurt his ankle this week so we aren’t sure if he will be available for the game,” Pulis said.
There’s no news on whether Matt Phillips will return, although Pulis did bemoan the lack of balance that has stemmed from his absence. The absence of both Morrison and Phillips means that James McClean may retain his starting berth out wide.
As for Arsenal, central midfielder Mohamed Elneny has joined in training this week and will be available for selection, however, Kieran Gibbs is highly unlikely to play and, despite an England call-up, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is also doubtful. Elneny’s return means that both Granit Xhaka and Francis Coquelin should fear for their places.
Crystal Palace vs Watford
Sam Allardyce will be without first choice left back Patrick van Aanholt due to an ankle injury picked up in the 2-0 win at West Brom. His replacement will be Jeffrey Schlupp, although van Aanholt shouldn’t be missing for too long as Allardyce added that he is “moving forward quite quickly”.
Another who won’t be available is Loic Remy, but the Frenchman will return after the international break.
Watford manager Walter Mazzarri has one huge doubt with the news that Etienne Capoue has an illness and may miss the trip to Crystal Palace.
“Capoue has had a fever for two days and hasn’t been training so we will check tomorrow,” the head coach said.
Capoue boasts an average of 6.6 FPPG, the second highest among all Watford players, and only Troy Deeney has scored more than his five goals.
Better news is that right wing backs Daryl Janmaat and Nordin Amrabat are back in contention. That is key as it should allow Mazzarri to play his favoured three centre back formation and it means that Janmaat or Amrabat and left back Jose Holebas became far more valuable as fantasy commodities.
Even with those two back, Christian Kabasele, Ben Watson, Roberto Pereyra and Mauro Zarate all remain injured.
Everton vs Hull City
Left back Leighton Baines has recovered from a back injury that forced him off against West Brom and is expected to be available for the visit of Hull. That’s good news for fantasy managers thinking of selecting him.
James McCarthy has suffered a recurrence of a hamstring injury and will not threaten the starting places of Morgan Schneiderlin and Gareth Barry.
Hull City will attempt to arrest their awful form without last week’s two-goal hero Oumar Niasse, who is ineligible due to Everton being his parent club. It will almost certainly mean that Abel Hernandez gets the nod up top as he aims to build on a meagre three goals and two assists in 17 games.
Another who will not play is Evandro, who has a calf problem, yet fellow midfielder Markus Henriksen is close to a return from a two-month lay off due to a shoulder injury.
Marco Silva’s team have as long an injury list as anyone and it includes Michael Dawson, Dieumerci Mbokani, Ryan Mason, Moses Odubajo and Will Keane.
Stoke City vs Chelsea
Antonio Conte has injury worries ahead of the trip to the Potteries and Victor Moses’ calf problem is chief among them. He is one of a couple of doubts that the Italian will keep tabs on ahead of the clash. The top candidates to replace Moses are Nathan Ake and Pedro.
As for the other doubts that Conte refers to, it’s anyone’s guess. Eden Hazard was on the end of plenty of hefty challenges on Monday night, however, you’d think it will take a lot for Conte to leave his star man out.
Gaffer Mark Hughes will make changes to his line-up for this game, admitting as much in his pre-game press conference.
“They play in a slightly different way than Manchester City do with three at the back, as opposed to four, so we will do a bit of work on that,” Hughes said. “There may well be a few changes but not radical ones.
Make of that what you will, but one thing that’s certain is that he can call upon Swiss international Xherdan Shaqiri, who has recovered after a number of ‘small injuries’ kept him on the sidelines since January.
The same cannot be said for first choice goalkeeper Jack Butland – well, not just yet any way.
“Jack is doing consistent work now,” he added. “He starts the morning with the physios and once Andy Quy has done his work with the goalkeepers and they are sent over to us, he has some one-on-one time with him. He’s progressing well but we are not going to force it or push him too hard. We’ll just steadily increase his workload and he’ll be back very soon I’m sure.”
Glen Johnson is also unavailable against his former club.
Sunderland vs Burnley
David Moyes will be missing central midfield battering ram Jan Kirchhoff for up to another six weeks after the German suffered a recurrence of an earlier injury. Apart from that, there is no other injury news coming out of the Stadium of Light.
Burnley will go in search of a first away win of the season without wide midfielder Johann Berg Gudmundsson who is still injured, however Steven Defour could well make his return. Defour has two goals and five assists in all competitions this season and is one of the team’s regular set piece takers thus offering good fantasy scoring potential. Especially against the league’s bottom side.
West Ham vs Leicester City
Slaven Bilic is missing captain Mark Noble for this weekend’s game after the midfielder picked up a knock. That opens up a starting berth in central midfielder that is likely to be filled by Cheikhou Kouyate with Sam Byram playing at right back in the Senegalese player’s place.
Opponents Leicester City, who are England’s sole remaining representative at Europe’s top table, have no new injury worries following the win over Sevilla. “Everyone is okay,” Craig Shakespeare told the media on Thursday.
Nampalys Mendy, the man who was bought to replace N’Golo Kante last summer, is back in training and Shakespeare rates him as ’50-50’ for the squad this weekend.
Bournemouth vs Swansea City
Eddie Howe has two big calls to make ahead of the visit of Swansea. One of them is central midfielder Harry Arter, who picked up a calf injury in the win over West Ham, and the other is long-term absentee Junior Stanislas. Both will be late decisions.
“Harry is a doubt for tomorrow’s game. He felt his calf during the West Ham game but didn’t come off and got through the full 90,” said Howe. “Junior Stanislas is making progress after a groin problem, but again, it’ll be a late call on that one. Other than that, we don’t have any other concerns ahead of the game.”
Arter’s place could be taken by fit again Jack Wilshere or Andrew Surman whereas Stanislas will have to fight Marc Pugh for a place in the starting XI. Tyrone Mings serves the second game of a five-game ban.
Paul Clement’s woeful defence will be without Martin Olsson and the manager has already confirmed that Stephen Kingsley will start in his place. Olsson has hit double digits for fantasy points in two of the last four games thanks to two goals.
Clement won’t be without leading striker Fernando Llorente who has recovered from a dead leg and Kyle Naughton is also back in training following a hamstring injury.
“Fernando is okay, he is training with the group, as is Kyle Naughton,” Clement added.
Middlesbrough vs Manchester United
As I’m sure you’ll have seen, Aitor Karanka is no longer Boro boss and it was down to caretaker Steve Agnew to take Friday’s press conference. Thankfully he has no new injury problems to report going into the match with United.
Jose Mourinho’s plans for Sunday were hit with a huge blow on Thursday night against Rostov when world record signing Paul Pogba sustained a hamstring injury that rules him out until after the international break.
READ MORE: Pogba confident he’ll be back soon
That’s just the tip of the iceberg for United as they are also without Ander Herrera which opens up plenty of possibilities in central midfield. The likes of Michael Carrick, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Maraoune Fellaini, Phil Jones or Juan Mata could be asked to fill in as a result.
Another player who definitely won’t appear is Zlatan Ibrahimovic as like Herrera he is still serving a suspension. Marcus Rashford should start up front on his own as a result, but don’t rule out one of Wayne Rooney or Anthony Martial playing there instead.
Tottenham vs Southampton
Harry Kane is the highest profile absentee for a Spurs side that is once again beset by injuries in key parts of the team. Kane is expected to be replaced by either Son Heung-min or Vincent Janssen.
Erik Lamela remains out and the same goes for Danny Rose, Ben Davies stepping into the breach once more.
It could be even worse from there on in if Kyle Walker and Victor Wanyama both fail to recover from respective ankle and neck injuries. Walker will be replaced by Kieran Trippier whereas the fit again Mousa Dembele should come in for Wanyama.
Southampton boss Claude Puel, on the other hand, has no new injury worries ahead of the trip to North London. However, free agent signing Martin Caceres could make his debut at centre back after coming through a couple of games for the Under 23s.
“It was important for him and now he’s available for the team and he will provide competition for Yoshida and Stephens. It’s a good thing for the next month because we have to play every three days and it’s good to have of solutions,” Puel added.
Manchester City vs Liverpool
Pep Guardiola spoke at length about captain Vincent Kompany in Friday’s presser, a player who will not be rushed into the starting XI before the international break. That’s despite him training for the past two weeks.
“The reason why is because he didn’t play games because he was injured. He was a long time injured and sometimes he has arrived and been injured again. It was a risk, I wanted to be sure,” Guardiola said.
In the opposing dugout, Jurgen Klopp can call upon first choice central defender Dejan Lovren after the Croatian made it through 75 minutes for the under 23 side. As for who will not play, I’ll let Jurgen take it away…
“Who will not be involved? Hendo [Jordan Henderson], but I said already last week he had no chance. Daniel Sturridge, no chance.
Roberto Firmino is rated as pretty doubtful considering he hasn’t trained with the team all week, but Klopp did state that he “could be an option”. Divock Origi, meanwhile, is not 100% but is another who could be involved. Both are expected to be on the bench.