Ahead of this evening's 7:00pm deadline, we will be combing through all 20 Premier League press conferences to bring FPL managers the need-to-know team news, injury updates and predicted XIs for DGW34.
Unai Emery had high praise for Aaron Ramsey (£7.1m) last night after the Welshman’s showing in the Gunners’ 2-0 win at home to Napoli. The Arsenal boss said: “His performances in this moment for us [show] that he wants to do something important with us, because I think he feels a lot for Arsenal as a club. When he’s here with our supporters, he gives us all he can, not individually, but in the collective.”
Considering how often Emery switches personnel and systems, it would be no surprise to see several starting XI changes for the visit to Watford. On rotation, the Arsenal boss added yesterday: “On Monday, I am sure we are going to play different players but [try] to find the same performance. Some players after playing with this demanding performance physically, maybe we need something different. Next week it will be the same in Naples. We’re going to prepare for Monday first, and also recover the players after the game today thinking that we are going to play a lot of matches [every three days].”
Sokratis (£5.1m) is banned for the next two gameweeks, while Granit Xhaka (£5.2m) missed out again last night so must be considered a GW34 doubt. Lucas Torreira (£4.7m) started against the Italian outfit and could begin again on Monday, with Mohamed Elneny (£4.2m) another central midfield option to partner likely starter Matteo Guendouzi (£4.4m).
Eddie Howe is going to be without two left-backs for the remainder of the campaign. The Cherries boss explained: “We've got a few long term injuries. Added to that list were Charlie Daniels (£4.1m) and Diego Rico (£4.1m) so that's a huge blow for us.”
Artur Boruc (£4.1m) could earn a recall from Howe after Asmir Begovic (£4.3m) performed poorly in last weekend’s 3-1 defeat at home to Burnley.
Pascal Gross (£6.7m) and Solly March (£4.8m) could both be fit as Brighton face into consecutive double gameweeks. On Thursday, Chris Hughton said: “Everybody trained today and we'll make decisions tomorrow. Pascal Gross trained this morning and the injury is now fine, which is a positive. Jose Izquierdo (£5.9m) has been a miss for us – he scored five goals last term. But it's part and parcel of the game and you have to be able to cope. You sometimes look at other clubs and some have had it worse than us. You have to get on with it.”
Phil Bardsley (£4.2m) is ‘touch and go’ to feature in GW34, while Peter Crouch (£4.5m) remains out.
On availability, Neil Warnock said: “We got one or two knocks in the week, one or two scares, but I think the selection will be pretty much from everyone. We’ve got the long-term injuries – Sol Bamba and Callum Paterson, and Alex Smithies is still injured. He has struggled the past six to eight weeks with his knee. He might play for the Under-23s on Monday just to see if he can get through a game.”
Asked what the Bluebirds’ minimum points requirement is for their DGW34 fixtures, Warnock responded: “We are going to be in a situation where we definitely need to take points from these two games now. [Over the rest of the season] we need 10 points really to have any chance whatsoever.”
Callum Hudson-Odoi (£4.2m) and Emerson (£5.2m) were both absent from the Chelsea squad
last night as Maurizio Sarri’s men won 1-0 away to Slavia Prague. Asked if CHO is set to start at Liverpool, Sarri said: “I don't know. But in my opinion he needed to rest. And so, in this match, he was out. Emerson was also out. But of course he is in my mind for the next match, but I have to see the last two trainings.”
The Eagles will be without James Tomkins (£4.3m) for the rest of the season. Fellow first choice centre-half Mamadou Sakho (£4.9m) is still sidelined. Roy Hodgson said: “We lost James Tomkins in the game against Newcastle. He has been operated on, so he will miss the remainder of the season which is a major blow coming on top of Mamadou Sakho's injury five or six games ago. Those two have been such important pillars in the centre of our defence and helped us get where we are. It is a big ask for Scott Dann
(£4.4m) and Martin Kelly (£3.9m), they're going to have to step into some quite big shoes but I am confident that they can do that, and they will get their first chance on Sunday.”
Michael Keane (£4.8m) is fit for the Toffees. Morgan Schneiderlin (£4.2m) is back in training, while Yerry Mina
(£5.4m) remains out. Marco Silva said: “Michael is OK. He started to work at the beginning of the week with us. Morgan started also with the team, just now Mina has this problem. He has started doing some recovery on the pitch. Let's see how he can recover the next few weeks.”
Scott Parker said on team news: “Floyd Ayite (£4.3m) has been back training, today was his first day back. Alfie Mawson (£4.7m) has come through a couple of Under-23 games. He’s probably still a little bit short in the sense of being ready for the weekend, but he’s getting closer which is pleasing.”
On the state of his squad, Jan Siewert explained: “We’ve had some small problems and some illness. Ben Hamer (£3.9m) had a good game against Crystal Palace. He will start against Spurs. At the moment Isaac Mbenza (£5.9m) is a bit ill. I need to see how his body reacts. He didn’t train today.”
Jamie Vardy (£9.2m) is available after coming off with a knock in BGW33. Brendan Rodgers said: “He’s absolutely fine. He felt a slight niggle in his groin at the end of the game. Rather than risk it we took him off, but he’s fine and as sharp as normal. He’ll be fine for Friday. Harry Maguire
(£5.4m) is back in the squad and Jonny Evans (£4.8m) has trained with the squad this week. Marc Albrighton (£5.1m) has been training as well over the last week or so.”
On the status of Joe Gomez (£4.8m), Jurgen Klopp said: “Having Joe around is a very difficult situation. He’s a wonderful footballer and needs time. We have to make sure he is 100% fit. If the other boys are fit, we can give Joe time to get to full fitness and match practice elsewhere. Dejan Lovren (£4.9m) did really well after being out quite a while against Porto. When Fabinho (£5.5m) played in centre-back he did really well too. The boys have dealt with that position very well.”
On Jordan Henderson (£5.3m) playing a more advanced midfield role, Klopp explained: “Players come into my office and ask for another position they play there! Ha. We had that talk and I knew he could play that position but you could see he wanted it, he was energetic and lively and that’s my job to bring the players in the strongest position if possible and if not you play in another position. It’s not difficult that he’s now in contention for the [No 8 role] though after that performance against Porto.”
Bernardo Silva (£7.6m) could be available for GW34 after a thigh injury ruled him out of Champions League action. Oleksandr Zinchenko (£4.7m) may also return to bolster Pep Guardiola’s options at left-back, with the pair facing late fitness tests ahead of Sunday’s clash at Selhurst Park. The City boss said: “They are feeling better. We’ll see today and tomorrow, feeling better but I don’t know about Sunday.” On the Portuguese midfielder, Guardiola added: “Bernardo is an incredible player. Playing wide he is a fighter and he helps us defensively. He's so intelligent and clever defensively. He knows when to cut back inside and with the ball he can do anything.”
Ashley Young (£5.7m) and Luke Shaw (£5.0m) are suspended for the Red Devils. Alexis Sanchez (£10.0m) is closing in on a first-team return, though Ander Herrera (£5.0m) remains out. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer told MUTV: “We don't have full-backs this week. Not too many as we've lost Luke and Ashley through suspension. Antonio Valencia
(£6.4m) is still not fit. Maybe Matteo Darmian (£4.6m) will be available for the bench and Marcos Rojo (£4.9m) has been training for a while. He's available and we've got Jonah [Phil Jones (£5.1m)], who could also play there. Rojo needed to get out on the big pitch [for the Under-23s against West Brom last Friday] so he could have that game but we've had a couple of practice matches so let's see what we decide. We're getting better and better but, of course, Nemanja Matic (£5.0m) fell ill. I'm not sure he's going to be ready. Alexis is getting close but I'm not sure he'll be ready yet.”
Neither Jesse Lingard (£6.7m) nor Anthony Martial (£7.2m) started against Barcelona midweek as United lost 1-0. That pair could earn wing berths if Solskjaer opts for a 4-3-3, with Marcus Rashford (£7.4m) and Romelu Lukaku (£10.8m) potentially battling for the No 9 role. Juan Mata (£6.1m) is another option in attack. With the return leg in Spain on Tuesday to consider, further changes in the United XI would be no surprise. Asked about rest and rotation, Solskjaer explained: “I’ve still got options of course to rest one or two because there are games coming up and they’ll all play a part, we had players on the bench on Wednesday night like Jesse and Anthony who normally start games. There will be a couple of changes. Let’s see what we’ll decide on.”
Florian Lejeune (£4.4m) is out for the remainder of the season after suffering a serious knee injury in BGW33. Sean Longstaff (£4.5m) is Rafa Benitez’s only other absentee. The Magpies boss said: “We have Lejeune injured, Longstaff too, and the rest of the players are available. Florian did very well because in four months he was fine when normally it takes six or seven months (to recover). When he was not playing, we were not doing so well. When he came back, he helped us pick some good results, not just because of him, but because he is comfortable on the ball. Now, we have to manage again and hopefully the other players can do well. We can change and play with four or five at the back. We can manage, but it is never good news to lose such an important player. He was really unlucky that he has suffered a similar injury but on the opposite knee. We hope he has a good operation and comes back soon.”
Danny Ings (£5.4m) returns to contention after being ineligible to face Liverpool, while Mario Lemina (£4.7m) remains out. Ralph Hasenhuttl said: “We have Ingsy back who can play at the weekend. Mario Lemina is still injured and he cannot train with the team at the moment. Ingsy is always itching to go, he is always with energy and he trains very hard. He wants to come back into the team and to score again. Jannik Vestergaard (£4.6m) made a good step in the game against Liverpool and he doesn’t have any problems so far. It was important for him that he got through such an intensive game without problems. The rest, apart from the more long-term injuries like Michael Obafemi, are in the group so it is not easy for me to pick the 18 or the first team. It’s a very interesting atmosphere in the team, it’s a good balance of having fun with what they’re doing but also being very concentrated on what they’re doing in the training sessions and the video sessions. We need this because we all know we can make a big step at the weekend. That is what we’re working for.”
Harry Kane (£12.6m) is unavailable
after suffering a “significant lateral ligament injury to his left ankle” in Spurs 1-0 win against Man City midweek. Dele Alli (£8.8m) fractured his left hand in that UCL quarter-final clash. The midfielder is being assessed ahead of GW34. Serge Aurier (£5.7m), Eric Dier (£4.7m) and Erik Lamela
(£5.9m) are all out
of GW34. On Kane, Poch said: “It’s a tough moment for Kane, the team and us. We need to assess him every day but [we need] to have proper answers to see when he possibly can start training. Today it is impossible to give a date. He suffered a similar injury last time and that took five weeks.”
On Alli, the Spurs boss added: “We need to asses him this afternoon and tomorrow and take the decision. I’m not too optimistic. He broke hand in two parts. It is so painful, yesterday he saw specialist and today we see how he will deal with situation. I’m not optimistic about tomorrow, I am more optimistic he will be available for Man City in the second leg. We’ll see and we’ll take decision that is best for everyone.”
On rotation and rest, Pochettino explained: “Tomorrow is not to rest players, but to take the best decision after the big victory over Manchester City. The massive risk is how we are going to approach the game tomorrow. We have a lot of players who played 90 minutes, who are not in a condition to play tomorrow. We have a strong squad, rather than rest tomorrow we want to provide the team with good energy and fresh legs to be sure we can approach the game in the best condition and be sure we are going to get the three points.”
Heung-min Son (£8.7m) required some treatment on his calf against City but went on to complete the game. Pochettino made no mention of the attacker or Kieran Trippier (£6.0m), who also had the physios on but saw out the 90 minutes at Spurs' new stadium. With the return leg of the quarter-final in Manchester on Wednesday, it would be no surprise to see Poch alter personnel and formation for the visit of Huddersfield.
Jose Holebas (£4.8m) will miss the upcoming match against Arsenal. “I’m not sure about Holebas,” said Gracia. “We need time to see how he is. He will not be ready for the next game, for sure.” Tom Cleverley (£5.0m) and Domingos Quina (£4.4m) are also expected to be absent.
Better news though for owners of Kiko Femenia (£4.2m) and GerardDeulofeu (£5.7m) who both have overcome their niggles and are expected to be available for the weekend: “Kiko trained all this week and Gerard as well.”
For those fearing rotation in the future Gracia put a lot of those doubts to rest stating, “I try to choose the best players for the next game,” he said. “I am only thinking about trying to win the next game. I don’t want to think any further. I prefer to only focus on the next game.”
On West Ham’s injured contingent, Manuel Pellegrini said: “Jack Wilshere (£4.8m) is almost ready. He played one game for the U23s last week and hopefully he’ll play another one. Next week, I think that he’ll be working 100 per cent with our squad. Andriy Yarmolenko (£6.7m) and Carlos Sanchez (£4.3m) are continuing with their recovery. Both of them are very good so I hope that, in a couple of weeks they can be ready to work with the first team squad. Winston Reid (£4.4m) also has a long injury. Andy Carroll (£5.4m) has had surgery on his ankle and Samir Nasri
(£5.0m) has a minor injury on his calf. We knew when Samir came here that there was a risk of him having some muscle injuries, because he was more than one year without playing. We'll see how he is.”
Nuno did not report any injury worries at his press conference today, with the Wolves boss expected to have a full squad to choose from for the trip to Southampton.