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01 Mar 2019 by Colm Hayes

FPL Gameweek 29 – Fixtures, Team News, Press Conference Quotes & Predicted Line-ups

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Ahead of tomorrow's 11:30am deadline, we have combed through all 20 Premier League press conferences to bring FPL managers the need-to-know team news, injury updates and predicted XIs for GW29.

The Stats Zone's other Gameweek 29 FPL content includes Captain Picks, Fixture Analysis, Projections & Team TSZ Discussion.

We also have a featured Eligibility, Suspension & International Duty page which will be updated after each gameweek.

GAMEWEEK 29 FIXTURES

Saturday 2nd March

Spurs vs Arsenal (12:30)

Bournemouth vs Man City (15:00)

Brighton vs Huddersfield (15:00)

Burnley vs Crystal Palace (15:00)

Man Utd vs Southampton (15:00)

Wolves vs Cardiff (15:00)

West Ham vs Newcastle (17:30)

Sunday 3rd March

Watford vs Leicester (12:00)

Fulham vs Chelsea (14:05)

Everton vs Liverpool (16:15)

TEAM NEWS & PREDICTED LINE-UPS

ARSENAL

  • Laurent Koscielny (£5.4m), who sustained a knock in GW28, and Stephan Lichtsteiner (£4.5m) are in full training for Arsenal. Sead Kolasinac (£5.1m) was not mentioned in the club’s injury bulletin, so the defender should be fit for tomorrow’s north London derby. Unai Emery said this afternoon: “The players are all well.”
  • The Arsenal boss used a wing-back system in GW28 as Alexandre Lacazette (£9.5m) was rotated. If Emery wants to pair the French striker with attacking trio Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (£11.0m), Mesut Ozil (£7.9m) and Henrikh Mkhitaryan (£6.8m), a back four might be employed for the short trip to face Spurs. On whether or not Ozil might start in the early kick-off at Wembley, Emery explained: “We are doing a plan for a lot of matches. Each match is different. Home, away, depending on the opposition. The most important thing is every player is OK for tomorrow.”
  • Alex Iwobi (£5.4m) and Aaron Ramsey (£7.1m) will both be pushing for starts in either a 3-4-2-1 or 4-2-3-1 set-up. Lichtsteiner or Ainsley Maitland-Niles (£4.4m) could replace Carl Jenkinson (£4.5m), who earned a rare start at right wing-back in the Gunners’ 5-1 win on Wednesday.

    BOURNEMOUTH

    • Steve Cook (£4.4m), Junior Stanislas (£6.0m) and Dominic Solanke (£4.7m) remain out. Jefferson Lerma (£4.5m) serves the second game of a two-match ban. Eddie Howe said: “We're still without Junior Stanislas, Dom Solanke and Steve Cook.” The manager added that he does not see an “immediate return” for centre-half Cook.
    • Callum Wilson (£6.3m) could return, while David Brooks (£5.0m) made the GW28 bench and may be drafted in tomorrow. The Bournemouth boss added: “Callum Wilson has been making good progress, so we'll have to make a late call on him. Injury-wise, he’s fine, it’s just building up his fitness. David Brooks to start? He's fit enough to be involved and the injury is fine, but we need him to be right at it. Again, we'll assess him ahead of the game and make a late decision. He's done very limited training with us. We need to make a call as to whether he can function in the way that he wants to.”
    • On the Cherries’ 5-1 hammering away to Arsenal on Wednesday, Howe lamented: “The goals against column is obviously something we're concerned about. We have a problem with our consistency right now.”
    • Charlie Daniels (£4.1m) formed part of a back three for the final half-hour at the Emirates and could be drafted into Bournemouth’s starting XI if Howe chooses a more defensive formation for City’s visit.

        BRIGHTON

        • The Seagulls will be without the services of Pascal Gross (£6.7m) tomorrow. Chris Hughton said: “Pascal Gross will miss the game this weekend. He felt his hamstring, the good news is it's not as bad as we first thought, but the game comes too soon. Leon Balogun (£4.2m) will also still miss out.”
        • Depending on how Hughton decides to set up his troops, Yves Bissouma (£4.6m) or Jurgen Locadia (£5.3m) could take Gross’ place in the Brighton XI. Jose Izquierdo (£5.9m) is another option on the wing, having made is comeback from injury off the bench in GW28. Florin Andone (£5.0m) provides an alternative to Glenn Murray (£6.3m) up front.

        BURNLEY

        • Ashley Westwood (£4.6m) has recovered from the illness that ruled him out midweek but did not train yesterday. Sean Dyche said: “At four o’clock in the afternoon [of GW28] he had been ill for the previous hour. He thought he could carry on but we had to make a decision. He’s a great professional and he would have done it if I’d asked him but that could also affect the group. We’ve had enough injuries and didn’t want to start an illness thing, so we got him off in a car and away from the building. He’s not in today, even though he feels fine, just to be sure. He’s done really well for us. He’s been very strong.”
        • If the midfielder makes an instant return to Dyche’s starting XI, Jeff Hendrick (£5.2m) will compete with Johann Berg Gudmundsson (£5.5m) for the right-midfield spot. Robbie Brady (£5.4m) will rival Dwight McNeil (£4.4m) on the other flank – the Irishman replaced the young winger at half time during Burnley’s 2-0 defeat to Newcastle on Tuesday. Steven Defour (£5.3m) remains out.

        CARDIFF

        • Victor Camarasa (£4.6m) is set to feature in some capacity for the Bluebirds after being ruled available. This morning, Neil Warnock said: “We’ve still got a couple of knocks, but Victor is back into the squad. There’s one or two doubts but nothing untoward. I’ll have a chat with Victor, he’s trained and he’ll be involved. I’ve been informed by our medical people that he’s okay. He was disappointed he couldn’t play in the last few games, you’re not going to get less than 100% from him and he’s got so much ability – we’ve missed that. He’s a game-changer.”
        • After two defeats in a row with eight goals conceded, Warnock said of his side: “I had a chat with them all yesterday and put my point of view yesterday about the rest of the season and after that they had a meeting of their own, no doubt commenting on what I said. They’re a good group of lads and they know they’ve been sloppy. It’s about trying to rectify that and give a good account of ourselves. With players at any level, if you do make mistakes you don’t tend to look in the mirror and you look around. All I’ve said to them is, ‘have a look at your own performance’. There’s a few lads who know they’ve under-performed and they’ll be desperate to put it right.”
        • Lee Peltier (£3.9m) could come in at right-back, with Bruno Ecuele Manga (£4.4m) moving to the centre, if Sean Morrison (£4.7m) is not used for a third time in nine days following his return from a burst appendix. Oumar Niasse (£5.0m) is expected to return up front after being ineligible for Everton’s visit, while Harry Arter (£4.9m) and Callum Paterson (£5.0m) will be seeking recalls. Josh Murphy (£4.8m) is another player pushing for a GW29 start.

        CHELSEA

        • Asked if he had any injuries to report, Maurizio Sarri said: “No, I don’t think so. I need to value the recovery of every player and then decide. We need to change three or four players.”
        • The Chelsea boss is looking for Higuain (£9.5m) to up his fitness. Sarri stated: “He contributed well [against Spurs]. He interacted well with the team-mates. Now he needs the acceleration, he needs to improve in the physical condition, then he will improve.”
        • Asked if Kepa (£5.5m) will return between the sticks, Sarri explained: “As I said in the press conference after the match, the Kepa situation is closed. Kepa is our first goalkeeper, but we are very happy for Willy Caballero (£4.7m) that he can play in a very difficult match. Kepa will be on the pitch for one of the next two matches. I have not decided yet, I want to see the last two trainings of course, for every player. On Sunday we played 120 minutes and 95 on Wednesday. We ran for 15km on Sunday on average and Wednesday was 12km, so we have to consider it.”

          CRYSTAL PALACE

          • Aaron-Wan Bissaka (£4.5m) is available for the Eagles, but Mamadou Sakho (£4.9m) could face an extended period on the sidelines after knee surgery. Roy Hodgson said: “Aaron Wan-Bissaka's fit again now, that's a boost for us. Pape Souare (£4.2m) is progressing well. Mamadou Sakho had an operation in Paris yesterday and will need time to recover. We hope to get him back as soon as we can. We're going to miss Mamadou. He's been very good for my time here. Exceptional. He and James Tomkins (£4.3m) formed a fantastic partnership, so he's always going to be a miss. Glad we have Scott Dann (£4.4m) & Martin Kelly (£3.9m) to call on.”
          • On AWB, Hodgson added: “It's been a fantastic year for Aaron. I like how hard he works and how firmly he has been able to keep his feet on the ground. His consistency, work rate and humility to learn and grow are all wonderful assets.”
          • Christian Benteke (£6.3m) will seek to oust countryman Michy Batshuayi (£5.7m) up front. Jordan Ayew (£5.7m) and Max Meyer (£5.6m) offer alternative options in attack.

          EVERTON

          • On team news, Marco Silva said: “Leighton Baines (£5.0m) is the only injury. Yerry Mina (£5.4m) is OK and is in a better condition than the last match.” Mina or Kurt Zouma (£5.0m), who returns from suspension, could replace Phil Jagielka (£4.3m) at centre-half. Bernard (£5.9m), Ademola Lookman (£5.1m), Andre Gomes (£5.4m) and Cenk Tosun (£6.5m) will all be pushing for starts in Silva’s XI.

          FULHAM

          • On team news, caretaker boss Scott Parker said: “The injuries are the usual - Alfie Mawson (£4.8m) is still recovering from a knee injury, he may be back in April. Andre Schurrle (£5.5m) is recovering from a virus and Marcus Bettinelli (£4.3m) is more long term.”

          HUDDERSFIELD

          • On team news, Jan Siewert said yesterday: “We are still looking at Demeaco Duhaney’s (£4.0m) injury. Adama Diakhaby (£4.5m) could be out for another three or four weeks. We have some small problems, which hurt them a little, but hurting isn’t too bad.”
          • Aaron Mooy (£5.0m), Elias Kachunga (£4.8m), Laurent Depoitre (£5.1m), Chris Lowe (£4.4m), Juninho Bacuna (£4.2m) and Zanka (£4.4m) will all be seeking starts and changes would be no surprise considering the tight turnaround between games.

          LEICESTER

          • On team news, new Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers said: “Apart from those two boys [Daniel Amartey (£4.3m) and Marc Albrighton (£5.1m)], everyone else will be available for the weekend. We have one more session to go and hopefully everyone will be ready to go.”
          • On playing style, Rodgers explained: “The team needs to play with a greater intensity. We have to defend with a higher block. The team likes to play with a real emphasis at the top end of the field but we have to put a structure in place defensively to allow them to do that. We have to play with a higher tempo.”

          LIVERPOOL

          • Roberto Firmino (£9.2m) is in contention for the Merseyside derby. Jurgen Klopp said: “He was out there in the running yesterday but we have to see how he reacts. I will see him in a few minutes for the first time since yesterday. He is very positive, that’s Bobby’s nature. We have to see. I don’t see any other player – OK, we have maybe two or three more of them – being even in contention for that game after the little problem he had. It looks really good but if he will be ready for Sunday, I don’t know in this second.”
          • Trent Alexander-Arnold (£5.3m) notched three assists in Liverpool’s 5-0 win against Watford on Wednesday and Klopp stated: “That game was exceptional; I don’t think I was ever part of a game that somebody had a hat-trick of assists. It was special. He wanted the match ball so he got it. It was really cool. Now let’s try to do something like that again.”

          MAN CITY

          • Gabriel Jesus (£9.9m) returns to contention for the Citizens. Pep Guardiola said: “Gabriel is back.” The Brazilian could begin up front away to Bournemouth after Guardiola admitted Sergio Aguero (£11.7m) was tired during the 1-0 win over West Ham on Wednesday. Post-match, the City boss explained: “We cannot live with just Sergio – in the last 15 minutes he was exhausted.”
          • Fernandinho (£5.3m) and Aymeric Laporte (£5.9m) have been ruled out until after the post-GW31 international break. John Stones (£5.2m) is now available, with either the England defender or Vincent Kompany (£5.2m) set to partner Nicolas Otamendi (£6.0m) at centre-back. On the Belgian, Guardiola stated: “He is the only guy I have met in my career that is able not to train for two months, make one session and play 90 minutes at a high level. You always need time but he knows his body perfectly. It’s a risk but it is what it is. John is coming back too like Gabriel and we will see tomorrow how tired they are. We are going to decide on their physical condition. Nico cannot play against Schalke so we don’t have too many central defenders.”
          • Kyle Walker (£6.4m) could be expected return at right-back, while his midweek deputy Danilo (£5.1m) could oust Oleksandr Zinchenko (£4.7m) on the other side of defence. Benjamin Mendy (£6.1m) made Guardiola’s GW28 squad but the boss revealed after the match that the defender is “not completely ready”.

          MAN UTD

          • Marcus Rashford (£7.7m) is set to start against Southampton. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said: “He still felt it Wednesday night but he’ll be ready. He is fully fit now, I’ll probably start him.” The interim United boss added: “We need to get back to winning ways at home. We've been fantastic away, but at home we've not scored in the last two. I'm sure Romelu Lukaku (£10.7m), Alexis Sanchez (£10.0m) and Marcus, whoever is going to play up top, will get their chances to score.”
          • Anthony Martial (£7.2m) is the only member of the club’s injury contingent that could return tomorrow. Solskjaer explained: “It’s the last session today but we’re not going to take any risks – maybe Anthony – but it might just be a few more days before he’s ready so probably the squad will look similar to what it did at Wednesday [GW28].”
          • Asked about the Red Devils’ Champions League clash away to PSG next Wednesday, Solskjaer stated: “Wednesday doesn’t come in mind whatsoever – Saturday three o’clock, Wednesday night in Paris, we’ve got so much time to get our recovery in. It’s more about Saturday afternoon and see if everybody is available again, 100% focused on this one.”

          NEWCASTLE

          • Rafa Benitez has an almost fully-fit squad to select from. The Magpies boss explained: “Jonjo Shelvey (£5.3m) has asked to play for the Under-23s, so he will play with the Under-23s (against Fulham) tonight. It means he’s pushing in the right direction. Ciaran Clark (£4.5m) and Rob Elliot (£4.3m) are out (of Saturday's game) but the others are available.”

          SOUTHAMPTON

          • Danny Ings (£5.4m) and Mario Lemina (£4.7m) remain out for the Saints. Ralph Hasenhuttl said: “These two guys are still not able to train with the squad but the rest I think passed the last game healthy and we have no more injuries.” Shane Long’s (£4.8m) pressing ability might see the Ireland forward preferred up front to Charlie Austin (£5.5m) at Old Trafford.
          • The Southampton boss praised James Ward-Prowse (£5.1m) following his goal in the club’s 2-0 win at home to Fulham on Wednesday. Hasenhuttl stated: “I think he shows in every game that he’s not only a hard-working guy, but he can also come into positions where he has the chance to score. Against Arsenal he had two situations where he could score, so it’s not a coincidence that he’s scored four times – maybe he’s in a position that’s a little bit more offensive-orientated that allows him to score a little bit more. He’s the complete package at the moment that fits perfectly in our game.”

          TOTTENHAM

          • Dele Alli (£8.8m) and Eric Dier (£4.7m) remain out for Spurs. On the pair’s fitness, Mauricio Pochettino said: “I don’t know. Now we’re focusing on tomorrow. After tomorrow we’re going to assess both and we’ll see if they can be in contention [for future games] or not, but we’ll see in the next few days.”
          • Jan Vertonghen (£5.9m) and Harry Winks (£5.5m), who both have hip issues, face late fitness tests ahead of the NLD. Regarding the potential availability of the two first-teamers, Poch explained: “I don’t know because now we are going to train in the afternoon and we’ll see. I cannot say 50/50 or a percentage. We need to assess and see if they will be available or not.”
          • If Vertonghen is deemed fit, Pochettino would have the option of reverting to a wing-back system for Arsenal’s visit. Juan Foyth (£5.0m) is a further option for a three-man central defence. Serge Aurier (£5.8m) might expect to oust Kieran Tripper (£6.1m) at right-back or right wing-back, while Danny Rose (£5.8m) is favourite to begin on the opposite side after Ben Davies (£5.6m) started the 2-0 defeat to Chelsea in GW28. If Poch sticks with a 4-1-2-1-2 formation, Lucas Moura (£6.8m) will battle with Erik Lamela (£6.0m) for the role behind Harry Kane (£12.4m) and Heung-Min Son (£8.9m).

          WATFORD

          • Jose Holebas (£4.8m) returns from suspension for the Hornets, while Kiko Femenia (£4.2m) is battling illness. At his press conference today, Javi Gracia said: “He [Jose] was playing really well before his suspension and now he is available. In that position we know we also have Adam Masina (£4.3m), who played in the last two games, and we will try to decide what is the best option for Sunday. Kiko has been training with the team but not today because he was sick. We will see his evolution tomorrow and if he is available for the next game, but in this moment Kiko is sick and he is the only player who did not train.”

          WEST HAM

          • Marko Arnautovic (£6.8m), who missed GW28 with illness, could return to the Hammers’ XI after Manuel Pellegrini ruled all of his senior forwards fit. The West Ham boss said: “The problem is not when you have too many players, it's when you don't. We have four strikers fit, we have wingers too and we are prepared for the last part of the season.”
          • Young defender Ben Johnson (£4.0m) was forced off with a calf injury on his debut in the 1-0 defeat to the champions, so Ryan Fredericks (£4.5m) could move to left-back tomorrow with Pablo Zabaleta (£4.3m) drafted in at right-back. Pellegrini did not provide an update on the club’s full-back situation at his presser but Football London correspondent Sam Inkersole reports both Aaron Cresswell (£5.0m) and Arthur Masuaku (£4.3m) "should return", which could see either player start ahead of Zabaleta.
          • Club captain Mark Noble (£4.8m) and Robert Snodgrass (£5.0m) will be seeking instant recalls to the manager's starting XI. Manuel Lanzini (£6.4m) managed 45 minutes off the bench in GW28 as he edges closer to a first start since returning from injury. Pellegrini added: “We have had less than 72 hours to prepare. We made some changes against City to have some players fresh for tomorrow.”

          WOLVES

          • John Ruddy (£4.2m) will start in goal for Wolves as Nuno Espirito Santo begins preparations for the club’s FA Cup quarter-final against Man Utd, which will be played during blank Gameweek 31. The manager explained: “In terms of who’s going to play, we already made our decisions. Usually I don’t do it but to avoid any kind of things, John Ruddy’s going to play tomorrow because we consider it’s the right moment to prepare him for what’s coming in front of us. In two weeks’ time we’re going to play the FA Cup and John Ruddy will be in goal, we consider this is the right moment for him to get some game time and be stronger.”
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