Laurent Koscielny (£5.4m) is a doubt for the Gunners after picking up a foot injury in the 3-0 win at home to BATE last night. After the Europa League win, Unai Emery said: “I think it's precaution and we are going to wait for tomorrow. But, I hope he will be okay for Sunday and for the next week. It's muscular, it's not a break. But it was only precaution because he was starting to feel not good. I think it's not broken. I think it's only a precaution because he didn't feel good and with the possibility that maybe if he carried on in the match, it could break.”
Ainsley Maitland-Niles (£4.4m) missed the UEL tie with illness so Stephan Lichtsteiner
(£4.5m) may continue at right-back. The Swiss defender could also form part of a back three if Emery reverts to a wing-back system. Nacho Monreal (£5.4m) can also operate as a left-sided centre-back. The Spaniard, who began at left-back against BATE, will rival Sead Kolasinac (£5.1m) for a starting berth if Emery continues with a back four. Alexandre Lacazette (£9.5m) looks a good bet to start after missing out yesterday through suspension as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (£11.1m) completed 90 minutes. The latter could be pushed out to a wide-left role in a 4-2-3-1, though Emery could also pair the strikers as part of a 4-3-1-2 formation.
Mesut Ozil (£7.9m) impressed at the Emirates and could earn another start on Sunday, though Aaron Ramsey (£7.1m) will be pushing to take that No 10 role. Of the German, Emery explained: “I said to him to carry on and be available like today and the last two weeks to continue training and helping us. Today I am happy and this is the way we want with him. He needs to be available and carry on. He wants to do this and today he showed what he wants. If he is available, like the last two weeks, we are going to play a lot of matches and maybe sometimes we need him in the starting XI and sometimes on the bench because we have a lot of players to also help us. His spirit like today is good and his quality and capacity and combination with some players is good, like with Matteo Guendouzi (£4.4m) and Henrikh Mkhitaryan (£6.7m) and Alex Iwobi (£5.4m) in the attacking third. I think we need every player and today playing Mesut was important and positive.”
Callum Wilson (£6.3m) and David Brooks (£5.0m) remain sidelined for Bournemouth. Eddie Howe said: “There are no dramatic changes to our team news. David Brooks and Callum Wilson are both still out - they're some way away yet. We'll also have to make a late call on Junior Stanislas (£6.0m).”
If Stanislas isn’t passed fit, Andrew Surman (£4.6m) or Jefferson Lerma (£4.5m) could be used as part of a three-man central midfield or Howe may opt for a wing-back system to match up with Wolves’ formation. Dominic Solanke (£4.7m) is an option to partner Josh King (£6.4m) up front.
After a false alarm, Johann Berg Gudmundsson (£5.5m) and Robbie Brady (£5.4m) look set to be available this weekend. The midfielders were both scheduled to return in GW26 but suffered late setbacks. Sean Dyche said
on Thursday: “We think Johann and Robbie [can] come back. They trained today and were good, so they come back into the thinking, which is good. We’re getting there and hopefully they stay fit. Steven Defour (£5.3m) is still struggling with his calf. He keeps getting niggly calf injuries. We’ve had to send him away to a specialist now to get another opinion to double-check that it’s something simple. We are waiting for news on that, so that’s a bit of a blow.”
Sean Morrison (£4.7m) is back in training for Cardiff, while the Bluebirds have some other injury concerns - though Neil Warnock declined to name the players with minor issues. He said: “We’ve got two or three niggles. We’re optimistic one or two might be doing full training, but we’re not far from a full squad at the moment. Morrison is training. He had another tough session yesterday, he’s just got to have a bit of football in his locker. It’s pointless rushing him with three games in a week - I’m hoping he’ll be involved at some stage.”
On Victor Camarasa (£4.6m), who returned from injury in a GW26 cameo, Warnock explained: “He has a medical team from Spain that look after him. Sometimes we don't agree. It's difficult for Victor because he's got so many people talking to him. It's [an ongoing] calf injury. He's doing most things really well.”
Kenneth Zohore (£4.6m) is set for a start next week [GW28] with Oumar Niasse (£5.0m) ineligible against his parent club. Warnock added: [Ken’s] attitude has been tremendous. I can’t fault him in the last six weeks, he tried really hard to get back into my good books. He looks as sharp as I’ve ever seen him and he’ll get his opportunity soon with Niasse not available against Everton. People that can score goals are few and far between and we’ve got to hope one of those hits a purple patch.”
Aaron Wan-Bissaka (£4.6m) and Martin Kelly (£3.9m) are sidelined for Palace, so Joel Ward (£4.3m) could earn a start at right-back. Roy Hodgson said at his presser today that AWB has a “hamstring problem”, while Kelly picked up a “muscle strain”.
Michy Batshuayi (£6.5m) and Jordan Ayew (£5.7m) will be pushing Christian Benteke (£6.3m) for a start up front. Cheikhou Kouyate (£4.7m) is back in contention for a midfield spot after returning from injury in the Eagles’ FA Cup win last weekend.
On team news, Claudio Ranieri said: “All our players are in good condition. Alfie Mawson (£4.8m) has just started to run.”
Elias Kachunga (£4.8m) is battling illness, while Jonas Lossl (£4.4m) and Chris Lowe (£4.4m) have returned to training. Jan Siewert said: “Unfortunately Elias Kachunga had some flu in the week. Chris Löwe and Jonas Lossl are back in training.” With Kachunga a doubt, Karlan Grant (£5.0m) will be pushing for a first start since joining the club after being awarded Huddersfield’s goal in the 2-1 defeat to Arsenal in GW26. On the new signing, Siewert stated: “In training he is coming on more and more. Competition in each position helps the players move forwards.”
Midfielders Danny Williams (£4.5m) and Abdelhamid Sabiri (£4.3m) are not yet ready for the Terriers. Siewert added: “Danny Williams has been in training for three days and is improving. He still needs more time, even though he’s been back in the grass. You can’t replace game fitness with training, which is why Sabiri has been with the academy.”
The new Huddersfield boss was full of praise for two more midfield men in Juninho Bacuna (£4.2m) and Adama Diakhaby
(£4.5m). Siewert explained: “Juninho Bacuna is doing really well. He’s started three games and that’s a real statement from me. He’s aggressive, he’s fighting and never gives up the ball. Adama is having a real impact on games. He’s improving and I think Bacca and Adama have both taken their chance since I came in. Adama is very quick and I appreciate that.” Bacuna’s rise to prominence under the German boss could be bad news for owners of Philip Billing (£4.5m).
Ben Chilwell (£5.0m) and James Maddison (£6.6m) face late fitness tests ahead of Crystal Palace’s visit tomorrow evening. Yesterday, Claude Puel said: “We have an issue with [Ben] Chilwell and [James] Maddison and we will make a point [to check] in tomorrow’s (Friday) training session. It’s not serious but we will see tomorrow.”
Papy Mendy (£4.5m) is fit while Daniel Amartey (£4.3m) and Marc Albrighton (£4.3m) are long-term injury losses. Rachid Ghezzal (£5.0m) could earn a consecutive start if Maddison is ruled out, though Puel could also switch from 4-2-3-1 to 4-3-3. Jamie Vardy (£8.8m) will expect a line-up recall after finding himself on the bench in GW26.
On team news, Jurgen Klopp said: “Dejan Lovren (£4.9m) and Joe Gomez (£4.9m) out, all the rest in training. Rhian Brewster in little parts of training, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (£6.4m) in bigger parts but still not ready. Usually around this time I get a message to say that someone is ill!”
The Liverpool boss praised Fabinho (£5.5m) at his press conference – the Brazilian filled in for the suspended Virgil van Dijk (£6.5m) as the Anfield club drew 0-0 with Bayern Munich on Tuesday. Klopp said: “It’s brilliant to have him as an option for both positions. Unbelievably valuable player for us. He helps us a lot. We will use him most of the time in midfield.” On VVD, the German added: “We didn’t miss him as much as some expected. We defended so well as a unit. It’s very good to have Virgil back. [It’s the] first time in many weeks that we have a decision to make in terms of selection.”
Anthony Martial (£7.2m) and Jesse Lingard (£6.7m) both have a chance of featuring against Liverpool despite Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s previous quotes seemingly ruling out the pair for BGW27. This morning, the United boss said: “I hope and think Anthony will be ready and I hope Jesse will be ready because it’s two different injuries. So maybe more hope than think, with Anthony as well, but he’s got a chance. Anyway, we still hope Jesse could be ready. Let’s see. We’ve still got a couple of days’ training left and they need to be part of it. Every single player has the attitude to give us something and the way we played against Chelsea shows we can cope without them as well. If they don’t make it, it might be the same team as we played against Chelsea.”
Romelu Lukaku (£7.8m) and Juan Mata (£6.1m) started in attack for the 2-0 FA Cup win against Chelsea on Monday, as Solskjaer used a 4-4-2 diamond set-up. Lukaku and Mata could be used in that system again, or as part of a more typical 4-3-3, if Martial and Lingard fail to make Sunday’s clash. The out-of-form Alexis Sanchez (£10.0m) is another option on the wing. The attacker’s pace could see him favoured over Mata to combat Liverpool’s marauding full-backs. Chris Smalling (£5.6m) has started ahead of Eric Bailly (£5.0m) in United’s last two fixtures.
On the injury front, Rafa Benitez said: “Apart from Rob Elliot (£4.3m) and Ciaran Clark (£4.5m), the rest of the players are available. Jonjo Shelvey
(£5.3m) is the last one coming back now and he is pushing, and Ki Sung-Yeung (£4.7m) and Mohamed Diame (£4.8m) are training well. Miguel Almiron (£6.0m), for me, was doing quite well (in training) too, so that’s good for us. You have to make decisions - it’s a dilemma. You have to decide which players are in the squad and which have to wait.”
Club-record signing Almiron could earn a first start for the Magpies in place of Christian Atsu (£5.1m) or Ayoze Perez (£6.1m). On the attacking midfielder, Benitez added: “Almiron is ready to start. It’s more good news for us. It’s a big decision for me to make.”
On team news, Ralph Hasenhuttl said: “We have a few players back in training. Michael Obafemi (£5.0m) has been training for two weeks with the team; it seems like his injury has gone. That helps us because it's another option in front. Mainly with his speed and quality he's a good option for me. Stuart Armstrong (£5.1m) is also back on the pitch, there's been no problems for the last two weeks. Mario Lemina (£4.7m) isn't training with the team. There's still problems but it's getting better and better. Danny Ings (£5.4m) is still out. The Arsenal game is too early. For Fulham and Man United it could be close – more likely for the Tottenham game [GW30].”
Harry Kane (£12.4m) is back in full Spurs training, as is Ben Davies
(£5.6m). Danny Rose (£5.8m) is a BGW27 doubt with illness, while Dele Alli
(£8.8m) is ‘continuing on-field rehabilitation’. On Kane, Mauricio Pochettino said
yesterday: “He's good, he's very good. I think we need to assess him in one more training session tomorrow and then decide. But I think he's doing well, I'm happy with him and maybe he'll be available to be part of the squad on Saturday. Everyone knows that Harry is an animal, he wants to be ready as soon as possible. We're so happy that in the last ten days he was fantastic, back in training again, and he can be available again. It's going to be a massive impact for everyone.”
With Rose a doubt and Davies only just back from injury, Jan Vertonghen (£5.9m) could continue at left-wing back after starring in Spurs’ 3-0 win against Dortmund last week. The Belgian may also be stationed at left-back if Pochettino opts for a 4-4-2 diamond formation instead of 3-4-1-2. The former system would present an opportunity for Lucas Moura (£6.8m) or Erik Lamela (£6.1m). Pochettino has plenty of options in central midfield if he chooses to rest either of first-choice pairing Moussa Sissoko (£4.9m) or Harry Winks (£5.5m), with two London derbies on the schedule for next week.
Roberto Pereyra (£6.1m) returns to contention for the Hornets. Javi Gracia said on Wednesday: “Roberto and Isaac Success
(£4.6m) are both ready to compete. Roberto is a very important player, making the difference in a lot of games, scoring goals and assisting. Isaac hasn’t played the same minutes as other players, but the time he played, he played with quality and is helping the team. He’s a good option for us in attack with his power and pace. He is something different for us to help us manage different games.”
Sebastian Prodl (£4.3m) is also available but Kiko Femenia (£4.2m) is not going to make BGW27 - though could return in GW28. Gracia added: “Kiko is feeling very well in all the training sessions. For the next game, it’s impossible [for him to play] but I think for the game after, he will be ready.” Jose Holebas (£4.8m) is suspended until Gameweek 29.
Samir Nasri (£5.3m) and long-term injury loss Manuel Lanzini (£6.4m) could both be available for West Ham tonight. On Wednesday, Manuel Pellegrini said: “For this game, we have the squad which was playing most of the games and for this week I think we will have the squad list [on Thursday] and maybe Lanzini and Nasri can be included on the squad list. [They did] not only [work] today, they worked the complete week. We will talk [Thursday] with the medical staff and then we will decide. The return of both of them will be a good injection for the squad. Manu is coming back from a long injury so we are going to decide the best way for him to return to the team, starting from the beginning or coming on after some minutes. He is a player who gives you different things, he is a very technical player, he is a fast player. If you review the last part of the last season at West Ham, Marko Arnautovic (£6.8m) had a good performance but most of the goals also involved Manu Lanzini making good assists and good plays.”
Arnautovic will be seeking to oust Chicharito (£6.1m) up front after the Austrian was only used from the substitutes bench in GW26.
Matt Doherty (£5.4m) and Diogo Jota (£6.1m) look set to be available for Wolves’ clash at Bournemouth tomorrow. The right wing-back back picked up a knock in the club’s FA Cup win last weekend but was pictured
in training yesterday, as was the Portuguese attacker. At his press conference today, Nuno said: “Everybody is OK.”
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