Scout Notes

Hazard back in starting XI as Arsenal injury crisis worsens

Chelsea and Arsenal were both in action in the Europa League on Thursday night, both experiencing contrasting fortunes.

Neither side played particularly well but while the Blues were able to hand minutes to an important player and emerge with three points, the Gunners lost more personnel to injury.

We’ve got all the key talking points in this latest Scout Notes article.

BATE Borisov 0-1 Chelsea

Goals: Olivier Giroud (£7.7m)

Assists: Emerson Palmieri (£5.2m)

Eden Hazard (£11.3m) recorded an encouraging 62-minute spell against BATE Borisov on Thursday night to calm any fears of him missing out of Gameweek 12. The Belgian midfielder’s recent back injury caused him to be absent from the Gameweek 10 win at Burnley and play just 26 minutes in last week’s 4-1 win over Crystal Palace. However, getting a run-out in the Europa League, which he completed without any obvious problems, does increase the possibility that he’ll be back in the starting XI when Everton visit Stamford Bridge on Sunday afternoon.

Things were more discouraging for Ross Barkley‘s (£5.9m) 9.6% ownership as he played the entirety of the match. He has been competing with Mateo Kovačić (£5.9m) for a space alongside Jorginho (£5.0m) and N’Golo Kanté (£4.9m) thus far, so the fact that he played more minutes than him on Thursday could suggest he will miss out against his former club. Kovačić featured as a 64th-minute substitute against Borisov while Jorginho played the whole match and Kanté remained on the bench.

Kovačić’s entry into the match was at the expense of Ruben Loftus-Cheek (£5.2m) who did not have his best game for Chelsea. His passes were sloppy and he struggled to offer much either offensively or defensively. That was disappointing for him after making a case for inclusion in the first team regular when he scored a hat-trick in the reverse fixture against Borisov at Stamford Bridge. Loftus-Cheek still has a lot of work to do to get into the side with so much aforementioned competition in central midfield.

However, Loftus-Cheek was not the only one to put in a poor performance. In fact, it was viewed by local press as the worst performance of the Sarri era so far. There were claims that Chelsea rode their luck in Belarus with their hosts hitting the woodwork on three occasions. With a bit more fortune for their opponents, they could have easily found themselves on the end of a 3-1 defeat. This is not the first time this season that the local press have claimed Chelsea were fortunate not to lose a match. They continue to suggest there may come a time when the Blues’ luck will run out and their undefeated streak will end.

“We didn’t play very well. I didn’t like the first half because we moved the ball only horizontal and slowly, so it was really very difficult to be dangerous. Better in the first 20-25 minutes of the second half. Then we managed not the end very well, the last 15 minutes. The best situation this evening is the result.” – Maurizio Sarri

Centre-forward Olivier Giroud (£7.7m) scored the winner in the match and he will be delighted to finally get his first goal under Sarri. It was a long wait for the Frenchman as he’d gone 792 minutes without finding the net for the Blues, his last strike coming against Liverpool in May. Giroud faces serious competition in Álvaro Morata (£8.7m), who has four goals in his last four Premier League appearances, so may still have to up his game. That said, Sarri has always explained he is a fan of what Giroud offers outside of goal-scoring.

“Yes, I’m pleased for him. He’s a very important player for us because he’s very useful for the team. But I know very well that strikers want to score. And so, for his confidence, I think it’s very important. But I don’t want him to be worried about scoring because, for us, he’s very important and very useful. Very important.” – Maurizio Sarri

Sarri named a completely different back four to the one which faced Crystal Palace in Gameweek 11. Emerson Palmieri (£5.2m) started at left-back and also put in the ball for Giroud’s goal. That meant another European night off for the popular Marcos Alonso (£7.0m). Emerson played alongside Andreas Christensen (£5.0m), Gary Cahill (£5.1m) and Davide Zappacosta (£5.1m).

Meanwhile, Ethan Ampadu (£4.4m) was deemed fit enough for a place on the bench following a knee injury that kept him out for several weeks.

Chelsea XI (4-3-3): Kepa; Emerson, Christensen, Cahill, Zappacosta; Barkley, Jorginho, Loftus-Cheek (Kovačić 64′); Hazard (Willian 62′), Giroud, Pedro (Hudson-Odoi 85′).

Arsenal 0-0 Sporting CP

Goals: None

Assists: None

The result itself was not really the headline news to come out of Arsenal’s 0-0 draw with Sporting CP. Striker Danny Welbeck (£6.5m) was forced off after just half-an-hour with a serious-looking ankle break. For a player who has struggled with knee injuries for much of his career, this really was a horrendous stroke of misfortune. Although the extent of the injury is not yet known, it is probable that Welbeck may not feature again this season, and with his contract up at the summer, last night could prove to be his last for Arsenal.

“The other injuries (he has had in his career) are different. This one, he broke something in his ankle. It’s a different injury than the other. He has been taken to the hospital. We are going to wait for news on this injury, but we think it is serious.” – Unai Emery

Welbeck’s exit from the match certainly had an effect on his team-mates, most notably 19-year-old Mattéo Guendouzi (£4.5m) who looked on the verge of tears. It is possible that this was what caused Arsenal’s performance to be so flat as they were unable to create much on the night, even with the addition of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (£10.9m) as a 30th-minute substitute.

The Gunners’ injury problems worsened in the second-half when Stephan Lichtsteiner (£4.6m) was taken off a with a hamstring problem. Hector Bellerín (£5.4m) should slot back in for Premier League matches, but if his Swiss colleague misses several weeks there will be little cover in the right-back area for cup matches. Lichtsteiner’s withdrawal was also frustrating for 19-year-old striker Eddie Nketiah. The youngster was about to get his first appearance of the campaign but it was the services of Ainsley Maitland-Niles (£4.4m) that were required once Lichtsteiner pulled up injured. The 21-year-old is only recently back from injury himself but has little experience of playing at right-back. He has been used at left-back and right-midfield before but has not been asked to perform defensive duties on that side of the pitch before.

“Lichtsteiner’s injury changed our idea on the match, we wanted to change for Eddie Nketiah and give another chance for the striker. But when he had the injury we needed to play with a right-back which was the reason we played with Ainsley [Maitland-Niles]. But for us, this was good because he needed minutes for the pace and to take confidence and get our rhythm. So it only changed our idea tactically for the last 25 minutes.” – Unai Emery

There were 90-minute outings for Rob Holding (£4.4m), Sokratis Papastathopoulos (£5.1m), Guendouzi, Aaron Ramsey (£7.4m), Alex Iwobi (£5.5m) and Henrikh Mkhitaryan (£6.7m). All of those options may well be considered only for the bench in Gameweek 12 accordingly.

Key players not involved on Thursday night, and therefore more likely to start against Wolves were Bernd Leno (£4.8m), Bellerín, Shkodran Mustafi (£5.4m), Mesut Özil (£8.4m), Granit Xhaka (£5.3m), Lucas Torreira (£4.9m) and Alexandre Lacazette (£9.7m).

Arsenal XI (4-2-3-1): Cech; Jenkinson (Kolasinac 60′), Holding, Sokratis, Lichtsteiner (Maitland-Niles 74′); Guendouzi, Ramsey; Iwobi, Smith-Rowe, Mkhitaryan; Welbeck (Aubameyang 30′).

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1,598 Comments Post a Comment
  1. King Sarri
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 4 Years
    3 days, 2 hours ago

    Best Maddison replacements? Can’t afford Anderson now.

    1. CRO KLOPP
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      3 days, 2 hours ago

      Use bench

      1. King Sarri
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        3 days, 2 hours ago

        Have a bench of ward Bennett and awb. Also own Richarlison. Think a hit might be worth it.

        1. CRO KLOPP
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 1 Year
          3 days, 2 hours ago

          You may be right just in my case there's no one appealing long term in that price bracket

    2. pressdpm
      • 6 Years
      3 days, 2 hours ago

      If you're like me and can't afford anyone more expensive than Maddison, then I think it's best to hold. He'll only miss one game. Price falls are going to be annoying I admit.

    3. sunzip14
      • 1 Year
      3 days, 2 hours ago

      Why? Aren,t they the same price?

      1. sunzip14
        • 1 Year
        3 days, 2 hours ago

        Oh sorry, may b u got him earlier than I did

    4. french holiday
        3 days, 2 hours ago

        How much mitb?

        1. King Sarri
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 4 Years
          3 days, 2 hours ago

          6.8m

          1. french holiday
              3 days, 2 hours ago

              Sterling/Mane/Salah

        2. BAMBAA
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 1 Year
          3 days, 2 hours ago

          Was set on Milner but now thinking Gray.

          1. King Sarri
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 4 Years
            3 days, 2 hours ago

            Looking at Gray as well. Or maybe Kenedy and upgrade elsewhere next gw.

        3. jomikijiq
          • 3 Years
          3 days, 2 hours ago

          Diangana

        4. FaraBro
            2 days, 6 hours ago

            gudm, pereyra

        5. pressdpm
          • 6 Years
          3 days, 2 hours ago

          1FT and nothing in the bank, any advice?
          Some dead wood creeping in. Mitrovic > Ings sound good?

          Fabianski
          Alonso - Shaw - Robertson
          Salah - Hazard - Richarlison - Maddison
          Mitrovic - Aguero - Jiminez

          Stekelenburg - Bennett - Wan Bissaka - Biling

        6. Silecro
            3 days, 2 hours ago

            GW4 - West ham 0 wins, last on table
            GW12 - I have 3 west ham players in my team....

            1. TRASH BOAT
              • 5 Years
              3 days, 1 hour ago

              They had dreadful fixtures early on...

          • #FPLGuru
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 1 Year
            3 days, 2 hours ago

            A) jiminez
            B) ings

            And why?

            1. french holiday
                3 days, 2 hours ago

                B) due to pens and 2 good games

              • Fagaazi
                  3 days, 2 hours ago

                  was about to ask the same question bud! im leaning towards keeping ings for this weekend then dropping Jiminez for wolves next 2. interested to hear other thoughts

                • RedArrows
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 1 Year
                  2 days, 21 hours ago

                  A because Wolves actually score goals.

              • britzdubb
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 1 Year
                3 days, 2 hours ago

                play one

                a. doherty away to arsenal
                b. pogba away to citeh
                c. fernandinho home to utd

                1. french holiday
                    3 days, 2 hours ago

                    b and c

                  • I Member
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 3 Years
                    3 days, 2 hours ago

                    B

                2. sunzip14
                  • 1 Year
                  3 days, 2 hours ago

                  Gtg? 1.0itb

                  Fabianski
                  Robbo, Alonso, Luiz
                  Mane(C), Hazard, Anderson, Kenedy
                  Aguero, Arnie, Vardy

                  Hamer, Duffy, Kayal, stankovic

                  1. Miguel Sanchez
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 2 Years
                    3 days, 2 hours ago

                    GTG

                3. KingOllie
                  • 3 Years
                  3 days, 2 hours ago

                  My teams falling apart, and this is BEFORE the international break. Oh lawd

                  1. Paddington Bear
                    • 1 Year
                    3 days, 2 hours ago

                    Gray or Gudmundsson

                    1. Paddington Bear
                      • 1 Year
                      3 days, 2 hours ago

                      This wasn’t meant to be a reply to you 😆

                      1. TRASH BOAT
                        • 5 Years
                        3 days, 1 hour ago

                        Kick a man when he is down.... lol

                      2. TRASH BOAT
                        • 5 Years
                        3 days, 1 hour ago

                        Kick a man when he is down....

                        1. TRASH BOAT
                          • 5 Years
                          3 days, 1 hour ago

                          echo in here

                4. Miguel Sanchez
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 2 Years
                  3 days, 2 hours ago

                  Afternoon all - can I get a GTG?

                  Ryan
                  Alonso Robertson Mendy
                  Salah (c) Mane Hazard Richarlison* Fraser
                  Arnautovic Wilson

                  Hamer Doherty AWB Kamara

                  Best of luck all!

                  1. french holiday
                      3 days, 2 hours ago

                      Richarlison is a doubt.

                    • I Member
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 3 Years
                      3 days, 2 hours ago

                      Yep gtg.

                  2. gellinmagellan
                    • 1 Year
                    3 days, 2 hours ago

                    Ryan Patricio
                    Alonso Robertson Chilwell Wan-Bissaka Bennett
                    Hazard Salah Maddison Barkley Fraser
                    Aguero Mitrovic Success

                    0.1 ITB 1 FT

                    Yet to make my moves for -4. Mitro > Arnie is decided.
                    Who should I get for Maddison? Less than 6.6

                    1. shadeslayer
                      • 3 Years
                      3 days, 34 mins ago

                      Diangana

                      1. gellinmagellan
                        • 1 Year
                        3 days, 22 mins ago

                        Since I already have someone like Barkley, not sure I can do with Diangana. Also will be getting Arnie so doesn't make sense to double on with Diangana

                  3. Tempestic
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    3 days, 2 hours ago

                    Robbo better start this gw...

                    1. KingOllie
                      • 3 Years
                      3 days, 1 hour ago

                      I just seen he was in training with the group in an official video.. that guy on twitter is a fraud

                  4. Mackans
                      3 days, 1 hour ago

                      -Pick one to start:

                      A: Zabaleta (hud)
                      B: Doherty (ars)
                      C: Richarlison (che)

                      1. Mic
                        • 1 Year
                        3 days, 36 mins ago

                        That is tough. If Zaba is a 90 mins or 0 mins kind of player id go him with Doherty next to come on

                    • TMF86
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 5 Years
                      3 days, 1 hour ago

                      Start Barkley or Diangana?

                      Team is:

                      Allison
                      Mendy/Robertson/Luiz (Wan B/Bednarek)
                      Hazard/Salah/Fraser/ ???
                      Aguero/Wilson/Arnie

                      1. Mic
                        • 1 Year
                        3 days, 38 mins ago

                        Both will blank but barkley id say in case he gets 20 mins. Diangana was in the PL2 last year and got like 3 or 4 attacking returns in 20 apps or so. Hojbjerg more likely to get points this week imo

                          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                          • 3 Years
                          3 days, 34 mins ago

                          How is the „PL2” argument even viable? Dele Alli was playing deeper and not scoring that much at MK Dons/youth teams before becoming a regular starter for Spurs.

                          Diangana has been used as na offensive winger, looks dangerous, status back him up and he is playing one of the wprost defences in the league.

                    • Sol
                      • 4 Years
                      2 days, 23 hours ago

                      Maddison >
                      A) Pereyra
                      B) F. Anderson

                      Cheers

                      1. RedArrows
                        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                        • 1 Year
                        2 days, 21 hours ago

                        B