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17 Aug 2018 by Colm Hayes & Tim Blackwell

FPL Gameweek 2 – Fixtures, Team News & Predicted Line-ups

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Ahead of Saturday's 11.30am deadline, we have gone through every Premier League press conference with a fine tooth comb to bring FPL managers the need-to-know team news and predicted XIs for GW2.

GAMEWEEK 2 FIXTURES

Saturday 18th August

Cardiff vs Newcastle (12:30)

Everton vs Southampton (15:00)

Leicester vs Wolves (15:00)

Spurs vs Fulham (15:00)

West Ham vs Bournemouth (15:00)

Chelsea vs Arsenal (17:30)

Sunday 19th August

Burnley vs Watford (13:30)

Man City vs Huddersfield (13:30)

Brighton vs Man Utd (16:00)

Monday 20th August

Crystal Palace vs Liverpool (20:00)

TEAM NEWS & PREDICTED LINE-UPS

Team news and predicted line-ups will be updated throughout the day following club press conferences.

ARSENAL

  • Unai Emery has confirmed that Petr Cech (£5.0m) will start in goal against former club Chelsea on Saturday. The Arsenal boss said: “For Saturday, the decision for me is easy. Petr Cech can continue to start the match, I believe in him.”
  • Nacho Monreal (£5.5m) will compete with Stephan Lichsteiner (£5.0m) for the left-back spot, with Ainsley Maitland-Niles (£4.5m midfielder) out for 6-8 weeks.
  • Emery added: “This week Nacho Monreal is working every day, training every day with us. The two options we have now are Nacho Monreal and Lichtsteiner to continue in this position.”
  • Lucas Torreira (£5.0m) will be pushing for a start in midfield while Alexandre Lacazette (£9.5m) may be preferred to Henrikh Mkhitaryan (£7.0m) in attack, which would push Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (£11.0m) out to the left.

BOURNEMOUTH

  • Eddie Howe is unsure whether Jefferson Lerma (£4.5m) will be available this weekend, though the manager will be tempted to retain the same XI after a 2-0 win against Cardiff in GW1. Junior Stanislas (£6.0m) remains sidelined.
  • Lewis Cook (£5.0m) and Jordon Ibe (£5.5m) will be vying for starts in midfield against West Ham.

BRIGHTON

  • Jose Izquierdo (£6.0m) and Florin Andone (£5.0m) remain out for the Seagulls this weekend but are “close to being back”. Bruno (£4.5m) is also unavailable after going off injured early in GW1.
  • Left-back Gaetan Bong (£4.5m) replaced the full-back against Watford as Bernardo (£4.5m) switched to the right side of defence.
  • However, new signing Martin Montoya (£4.5m) could be in line for his debut at right-back away to Manchester United. Manager Chris Hughton said: “Martin Montoya is at a good level and is available to play as it stands.”
  • Anthony Knockaert (£5.5m) and Solly March (£5.0m) will face stiff competition from Alireza Jahanbaksh (£7.0m) for a wing spot. Yves Bissouma (£5.0m) also impressed from the bench last weekend and could displace Dale Stephens (£4.5m) in the coming gameweeks.

BURNLEY

  • The Clarets made it through to the Europa League play-offs on Thursday night after extra-time against Istanbul Basaksehir with a much-changed line-up.
  • Joe Hart (£4.5m), Stephen Ward (£5.0m), Ashley Westwood (£4.5m), Aaron Lennon (£5.0m) and Jeff Hendrick (£5.5m) were the players retained from the GW1 0-0 draw against Southampton.
  • Sean Dyche will revert to his strongest line-up for the visit of Watford. Ben Mee (£5.0m) was not in the Europa League squad, but the boss did that comment post-match that Ben Gibson (£5.0m) will be “looking at [Mee and James Tarkowski (£5.0m)] thinking ‘these are decent players’.”
  • On new striker Matej Vydra (£6.0m), Dyche added: “Vyds has to get fit, he’s hardly been involved at Derby, let’s see what he can offer.”

CARDIFF

  • Forward Kenneth Zohore (£5.0m), who missed GW1 through injury, returned to full training on Friday. Neil Warnock said: “He’s training fully today and we’ll make an assessment this afternoon. I hope he can be on the bench.”
  • On loan signing Harry Arter (£5.0m), the Cardiff boss added: “You’ll definitely see him in the 18. He can give us another dimension. I think Victor Camarasa (£4.5m) can too when he gets up to tempo.”
  • If Arter makes the XI, Sol Bamba (£4.5m) would drop out of midfield to compete with Bruno Ecuele Manga (£4.5m) for a centre-half spot alongside Sean Morrison (£5.0m). Iceland midfielder Aron Gunnarsson (£4.5m) is “out for a while”.
  • If Bamba moves back, Manga could threaten the start of Lee Peltier (£4.0m) at right-back. Greg Cunningham (£4.5m) provides competition for Joe Bennett (£4.5m) in the other full-back slot.
  • Josh Murphy (£5.0m) may have to settle for a spot on the bench again. Of the winger, Warnock said: “He’s got to learn to do other things in his game. Him and Bobby Reid (£5.5m) are a breath of fresh air. I think he’ll improve away from home when we ask him to do the defensive side. I think he’ll learn that.”

CHELSEA

  • Cesc Fabregas (£6.4m) will take no part for the Blues against his old club Arsenal in GW2 due to a leg injury.
  • Mateo Kovacic (£6.0m) could make his debut for Chelsea, but is not ready for a full game. Manager Maurizio Sarri said: “Mateo will be very useful for us. He is a very technical player. At the moment he has to work. He is not ready now for 90 minutes, but maybe tomorrow, for the first or last 30 minutes, he can be used. I expect a lot from him because for me he is a very good player, and in my opinion he can improve more.”
  • That realistically leaves Ruben Loftus-Cheek (£5.5m) as the main competitor to Ross Barkley (£6.0m) for a spot in Sarri’s midfield three alongside Jorginho (£5.1m) and N’Golo Kante (£5.0m).
  • Asked about managing the minutes of players who have recently returned from World Cup duty, Sarri explained: “At this level, players play a lot of games in the season. For them it’s very dangerous. Kante for physical characteristics is very quickly ready to play. He played very well in the last match. He is ready, but for the other players at the World Cup it’s a little bit different.”
  • Those comments suggest Eden Hazard (£10.5m) could be used from the bench again in GW2, though it would be no surprise to see the Belgian star oust one of Pedro (£6.5m) or Willian (£7.5m) following an excellent GW1 cameo which produced an assist.
  • Olivier Giroud (£8.0m) also looks set to remain out of Sarri’s XI, with Alvaro Morata (£9.0m) - who “needs only to gain confidence” according to the Chelsea boss - poised to start again.

CRYSTAL PALACE

  • Eagles chief Roy Hodgson has a fully-fit squad to select from. He said: “The squad is looking very good, we picked up a couple of knocks against Fulham but the players who have had those knocks are now fit, so I now have a full squad to choose from which is good."
  • On new signings, Hodgson added: “The new players are coming along in leaps and bounds as their fitness improves, so we are happy with all of them too.”
  • Aaron Wan-Bissaka (£4.1m) looks to have nailed down the right-back spot in Hodgson’s four-man backline. The manager said: “He was very good in pre-season and his opening game was excellent. We believe he’s got the qualities to become a top right-back. We’re delighted with him.”

FULHAM

  • Joe Bryan (£5.0m) has recovered from an ankle knock which saw the left-back substituted in GW1 against Crystal Palace. Centre-backs Tim Ream (£4.5m) and Alfie Mawson (£5.0m) remain out.
  • On the several defensive injuries in his squad, Slavisa Jokanovic said: “Joe Bryan didn’t lose any sessions and he is going to be available. Right now we have a kind of problem with our centre-backs.
  • "Tim Ream hasn’t started working with us this week. Alfie Mawson, too, is still to start working with us. We expect Alfie is going to start working with us next Tuesday. Denis Odoi (£4.5m) is suspended, but the positive news is that Floyd Ayité (£4.5m midfielder) started working with us, but he needs to build up his condition.”
  • Defensive midfielder Andre-Frank Anguissa (£4.5m) is expected to make the bench for the Spurs clash after starting training on Wednesday, while keeper Sergio Rico (£4.5m) will challenge the start of Fabri (£4.5m).

EVERTON

  • Richarlison (£6.6m), one of the top GW2 transfer targets after a GW1 brace against Wolves, is fit to play.
  • Kurt Zouma (£5.0m) is available, and will battle it out with Mason Holgate (£4.5m) to replace the suspended Phil Jagielka (£4.5m) in central defence. Boss Marco Silva said: “It is between Zouma and Holgate.”
  • Yerry Mina (£5.5m) is unavailable due to a “small problem” in his foot, while Silva added that the Toffees’ deadline day signings need time to “adapt”.
  • Andre Gomes (£5.5m) remains out with a hamstring problem but is “recovering very well”, while Bernard (£6.0m) could make the matchday squad. Cuco Martina (£4.5m) has joined Stoke City on a season-long loan.

HUDDERSFIELD

  • Zanka (£4.5m) is out of Sunday’s trip to Manchester City with a muscle injury, while Jonathan Hogg (£4.5m) is doubtful. Danny Williams (£4.5m) remains sidelined.
  • Boss David Wagner admitted at his press conference that a change in formation (from 3-5-1-1) is possible considering Zanka’s injury. Jon Stankovic (£4.0m), who failed to play a minute of Premier League football for the Terriers last year, is Wagner’s like-for-like replacement in a back three.
  • Adama Diakhaby (£5.0m) is in line for a full debut after an impressive cameo against Chelsea in GW1, particularly considering a switch to 4-2-3-1 is on the cards for Huddersfield - though Hogg will begin in a central midfield three if passed fit.
  • Rajiv van La Parra (£5.0m) and Ramadan Sobhi (£4.9m) are the other two main options for a wide attacking midfield spot.
  • Ben Hamer (£4.0m) started in the GW1 defeat to Chelsea and should retain his place in goal ahead of Jonas Lossl (£4.5m).

LEICESTER

  • Matty James (£4.5m) and Shinji Okazaki (£5.5m) are both out for the Foxes. Centre-back Caglar Soyuncu (£5.0m) has been confirmed a Leicester player but will not be available for the Wolves clash.
  • Jamie Vardy (£9.0m) is set to start up front, displacing Kelechi Iheanacho (£6.0m) – who will battle it out with Rachid Ghezzal (£5.5m) and Demarai Gray (£5.5m) for a starting spot in Claude Puel’s 4-4-1-1 or 4-2-3-1.
  • Ricardo Pereira (£5.0m) - who assisted Vardy’s late GW1 strike - began in an attacking right position against Man United in GW1, but may drop back to his recognised right-back spot considering the competition in midfield. Jonny Evans (£5.0m) will push Wes Morgan (£4.5m) for a centre-back spot.

LIVERPOOL

  • Dejan Lovren (£5.0m) remains out for the Reds, as does Ragnar Klavan (£4.5m) – who is reportedly set for a move to Cagliari. On injuries, Jurgen Klopp said: “Ragnar [Klavan] and Dejan [Lovren] didn’t train. That’s it, pretty much.”
  • The Liverpool boss added his thoughts on Joe Gomez (£5.0m), who started alongside Virgil van Dijk (£6.0m) in the 4-0 win against West Ham in GW1.
  • “I was never in doubt about Joe and his ability to play as a centre-back, but he needed time. With Virgil, they have a very good understanding and on a personal level too.”
  • Klopp hopes to have another centre-half in Joel Matip (£5.0m) in his GW2 squad for the trip to Crystal Palace.
  • “Joel will hopefully be able to be in the squad on Monday.”

MAN CITY

  • Manchester City have confirmed that Kevin De Bruyne (£9.9m) is expected to be out for around three months.
  • On David Silva (£8.5m), who was not in the 18 for City’s 2-0 win at Arsenal in GW1, Pep Guardiola said: “David Silva trained with us in the last few sessions and trained good. Last week he wasn't fit.”
  • Leroy Sane (£9.5) will push Riyad Mahrez (£9.0m) for a start in attack if Guardiola continues with a 4-3-3 formation, in which Sergio Aguero (£11.0m) is expected to begin ahead of Gabriel Jesus (£10.5m).
  • The Citizens boss has previously said that a 3-5-2 system is an option this season, something which could be employed sooner rather than later considering KDB’s absence. However, after dominating the Gunners at the Emirates, a similar set-up at home to Huddersfield would be no surprise.

MAN UTD

  • One guaranteed starter in GW2 is Paul Pogba (£8.1m), who Jose Mourinho confirmed will captain the Red Devils against Brighton. The United boss said: "I couldn't be happier with him than I am now."
  • Antonio Valencia (£6.5m), Nemanja Matic (£5.0m) and Jesse Lingard (£7.0m) have returned to training but are not available for Sunday.
  • With the Serie A transfer window closing today, it looks as though Matteo Darmian (£5.0m) will remain at Old Trafford. Mourinho added: "He's always an option for us, he's always a reliable player. He's a fantastic professional. He's a guy that is loved in the group, so, for me in the end it's good news if Matteo is not leaving."
  • The full-back started in the GW1 win over Leicester but Ashley Young (£6.0m) could be restored to the defence this weekend. Romelu Lukaku (£11.0m) may oust Marcus Rashford (£7.0m) from the striker’s role in Mourinho’s 4-3-3.

NEWCASTLE

  • DeAndre Yedlin (£4.5m) is sidelined for the away tie at Cardiff. Rafa Benitez said: “It is too soon for Yedlin. He will stay here, he will be working and he will need time to get back to his level.” Javier Manquillo (£4.5m) looks set to deputise at right-back.
  • On his new players, Benitez added: “The new signings were training well, and we will see (if they will play) tomorrow. I am happy with them.”
  • Salomon Rondon (£6.0m) is perhaps the likeliest of the fresh recruits to start, though Joselu (£5.0m) may have granted himself a stay of execution after netting against Spurs in GW1.
  • Fabian Schar (£5.0m) and Federico Fernandez (£4.5m) will both be looking to depose Ciaran Clark (£4.5m) in the centre of the Newcastle defence.

SOUTHAMPTON

  • Mohamed Elyounoussi (£6.5m) is ‘unlikely to feature’ for the Saints due to a hamstring problem, but Stuart Armstrong (£5.5m) is available.
  • Mark Hughes said: "At the moment, apart from maybe Moi at the weekend, we’ve got everyone fit and available. Stuart Armstrong is okay after his knock.”
  • After switching to a back four with the introduction of Elyounoussi and Danny Ings (£5.5m), Southampton were much more threatening against Burnley. This could lead Hughes to a formation switch from his usual 3-5-2/3-4-2-1.
  • Ings’ impact is likely to see the striker dislodge one of Charlie Austin (£6.0m), Nathan Redmond (£5.5m) or Armstrong in whatever set-up the Saints boss chooses. Manolo Gabbiadini (£6.0m) will also be pushing for a start.

TOTTENHAM

  • Erik Lamela (£7.0m) returned to training this week and will push for a start in attacking midfield. Heung-min Son (£8.5m) is away at the Asian Games.
  • Kieran Trippier (£6.0m) was not on the bench in GW1, so Serge Aurier (£6.0m) - who assisted Dele Alli's (£9.0m) goal against Newcastle - should retain his start at right-back for the visit of Fulham.

WATFORD

  • Gerard Deulofeu (£5.5m), Nathaniel Chalobah (£4.5m), Tom Cleverley (£5.0m) and Stefano Okaka (£5.0m) are all unavailable for the Hornets. Javi Gracia has an otherwise fully-fit squad to choose from.
  • The Watford boss said: “We have no news about injuries this week. The players who were injured last week still are so we haven’t recovered any players for this game. Deulofeu, Chalobah and Cleverley are injured and we are waiting for them in the next weeks. Maybe next week Okaka will start training with the team, but he needs time to recover his best condition.”
  • On new signings, Gracia added: “From the first day they’ve felt really well. Now we are stronger with the new players; we have more options in different positions. Okay, in the first XI only Ben Foster started last week, but I’m sure in the next weeks we can see the rest of the new players playing with the team.”
  • That said, the manager is unlikely to tinker with his XI too much after a convincing 2-0 win over Brighton, in which Roberto Pereyra (£6.1m) bagged both goals.

WEST HAM

  • Marko Arnautovic (£7.0m) has recovered from a minor knock which forced him off against Liverpool in GW1, while Manuel Pellegrini has no fresh injury concerns.
  • Declan Rice (£4.5m) was subbed at half-time as the Hammers were hammered, with Pellegrini moving from 4-3-3 to 4-2-3-1.
  • Robert Snodgrass (£5.5m), Andriy Yarmolenko (£7.0m) and Chicharito (£6.5m) are all vying for a starting spot, particularly if Pellegrini goes with just two central midfielders.
  • No word again on Aaron Cresswell (£5.5m), who missed GW1 altogether, but Pellegrini said "all the other players are OK" - suggesting the left-back is available, at least, to battle with Arthur Masuaku (£4.5m midfielder) for a place in the XI.
  • Deadline day signings Lucas Perez (£6.5m) and Carlos Sanchez (£4.5m) could make the bench for Cherries’ visit to the London Stadium.

WOLVES

  • Adama Traore (£5.5m) is ready to play in Wolves’ away fixture at Leicester. Boss Nuno said: "He's available for tomorrow. Adama joined us late, he came with an injury in his shoulder. He was two weeks out, he started training and is adapting and getting better."
  • Fellow new signing Leander Dendoncker (£4.5m) is not available, however. The Wolves manager added: “It's a different situation. Dendoncker came really late, after a period of holiday and the World Cup, he's only one week of training He has to be fit...he's not on the list for tomorrow. Ivan Cavaleiro (£5.5m) is not available, he'll be out for a couple of weeks or so but from the last game everybody is okay.”
  • Ryan Bennett (£4.0m) will be hoping to keep his place in Nuno’s three-man backline ahead of Romain Saiss (£4.5m), while Traore will be aiming to displace Helder Costa (£5.0m) in attacking midfield.
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