Six Premier League managers held their pre-Gameweek 30+ press conferences on Thursday, with some key quotes and injury updates emerging from the various conference calls.
It’s too late for Fantasy Premier League managers to do anything about this fresh information, of course, but those playing the Sky game can still tinker with their sides ahead of Friday’s action.
We’ll round up the main headlines from today’s virtual media gatherings in the article below.
Jose Mourinho confirmed that Harry Kane, Son Heung-min and Moussa Sissoko will all start against Manchester United on Friday, with that trio and Steven Bergwijn having all recovered from injuries during the lockdown period.
Speaking to the media, Mourinho said:
Kane, Son and Sissoko, they recover and they are ready to play.
I can tell you, no problem, [Kane] is going to start the game. Does Harry have 90 minutes, 80, 70, 60 [in him]? I don’t know. I think only the game will tell us that.
The three players who had surgery – Sissoko, Son and Kane – yes, they are going to start.
The Spurs boss added that he was unsure if Giovani Lo Celso will be able to start tomorrow’s match after some fitness issues but is hopeful that he can feature in some capacity.
Japhet Tanganga (back) and Dele Alli (suspended) miss out.
United will be down two back-up centre-halves in north London on Friday but Ole Gunnar Solskjaer otherwise reported a clean bill of health, saying:
We have two players, Phil Jones and Axel [Tuanzebe] will miss this game and the start. Let’s see how bad they are. Apart from that the rest of the squad is fit and available.
On the fit-again Paul Pogba and Marcus Rashford, Solskjaer added:
If selected, Marcus and Paul… they’ve been out for a long, long period but they are available. How long they’re going to play for, let’s see.
Norwich City were handed a triple injury blow on Thursday as Daniel Farke revealed that Grant Hanley (hamstring), Sam Byram (hamstring) and Christoph Zimmermann (back) will miss the rest of the season.
Marco Stiepermann has returned to training having self-isolated following a positive coronavirus test but won’t be considered for the visit of Southampton.
Ashley Barnes (hernia), Chris Wood (Achilles) and Johann Berg Gudmundsson (calf) will all miss the trip to Manchester City on Monday.
That trio may be sidelined for a little while longer, too, with Sean Dyche saying:
They definitely won’t make this early period of these games.
We’re really working hard with them and you’re going into the world of keeping your fingers crossed when you’ve got so many games in such a short space of time.
You only have to miss a couple of weeks and you could miss five or six games.
Watford have three definite absentees ahead of the visit of Leicester City, with Nigel Pearson telling reporters:
Isaac Success has ruptured his Achilles. Deulofeu won’t be available this season, he’s got a serious knee injury with his cruciate. Janmaat won’t be available this season either. But everybody else more or less is available.
Pearson confirmed that Troy Deeney was available for selection following his belated return to full-contact training.
Ayoze Perez and Ryan Bennett were both passed fit on Thursday, although Brendan Rodgers did reveal that Dennis Praet (calf) was a concern ahead of the trip to Watford.
Both those players [Perez and Bennett] have been back in training this week, so they’ll be available. Dennis Praet is a doubt, but we’ll see tomorrow if he’s going to make the squad or not. If he doesn’t then he should be fine for Tuesday.
We’ll hear from Jurgen Klopp on Friday ahead of the Merseyside derby but the Liverpool boss has already been speaking to the Reds’ own website and sounded fairly positive when asked about his side’s injury situation, saying:
In the moment, nobody really is ruled out for Sunday, but we have to see. A few trained more, a few trained less, most trained all [sessions], so that’s good news and in the end we will have a good team on the pitch, 100%.
Four teams have already been in Gameweek 30+ action, of course, and there were plenty of injury updates to report from the respective managers’ post-match interviews.
John Fleck (knock) and John O’Connell (knee) missed out on Sheffield United’s goalless draw with Aston Villa but the Blades may have one of those players back on Sunday, with Chris Wilder saying:
Fleck, we’ve got great reports that he trained nearly full tilt so he’ll train tomorrow [Thursday] and he’ll be available for Sunday. Fingers crossed he comes through a clearance session.
Jack [O’Connell], we’ve got a decision to make. We’ve got a specialist report on it but we’re hopeful that it’ll be short-term. He isn’t out for the season just yet, we’ll look at it, but if he is, then we’ll adjust and adapt.
Dean Smith said of Villa’s absentees, meanwhile:
Bjorn Engels has an Achilles issue. He’s not going to be around for the next week or two at least. Frederic Guilbert’s the same, he’s injured. Danny Drinkwater should be back training at the end of the week. He picked up an injury against Leicester last week.
Pablo Mari (ankle/calf) and Granit Xhaka (ankle) were forced off early in Arsenal’s defeat at Manchester City, with Mikel Arteta saying afterwards:
They are getting assessed at the moment then we will know something more tomorrow morning. Pablo’s one didn’t look very good to be fair.
The Athletic’s David Ornstein reported bad news on Thursday evening, tweeting:
City announced on Thursday afternoon that Eric Garcia has been released from hospital after suffering an injury during the win over the Gunners.
The defender will be monitored in the coming days, ahead of a return to training and competitive action.
Pep Guardiola hinted at changes against Burnley on Monday in his post-match interview.
Nominated for ‘Best in Fantasy Football – Editorial’ at the Football Content Awards 2020
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