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Late Fitness Check | Week Thirteen

by Ben Dinnery
Updated On: November 22, 2019, 3:39 pm ET

We’re already a third of the way through the campaign, and with a glut of fixtures coming up over the next six weeks, season-defining territory is upon us.

Stay ahead of the game and follow Rotoworld for the latest Premier League updates while breaking news is added to our Player Page and the Injury Report. Remember to keep checking throughout the weekend.  

Good luck!  

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West Ham United – vs – Tottenham Hotspur

Mark Noble (ankle), Michail Antonio (hamstring) and Jack Wilshere (groin) have worked with the squad all week without issues. "They will probably be involved in the game on Saturday," said Manuel Pellegrini. Roberto is set to continue in goal after receiving the managers backing. "Every player when they are in a bad moment needs the confidence of us behind them. He has a lot of experience in a lot of countries. He knows it's not his best performance in the last game, but I think that all of us must be behind him." Winston Reid was given 45 minutes for the National Team (vs Ireland) during the international break, but Manuel Lanzini could miss the remainder of the year after going under the knife to fix a fractured collarbone.

Erik Lamela (hamstring) continues his rehabilitation and won't be ready this weekend. Hugo Lloris is targeting a return in early 2020 following surgery on his elbow, and back-up goalkeeper - Michel Vorm – is also out after suffering a calf strain in training. Tanguy Ndombele (groin) and Jan Vertonghen (hamstring) have begun their reintegration into training, and the pair will be assessed ahead of Saturdays' early kick-off.

 

AFC Bournemouth – vs – Wolverhampton Wanderers

A hamstring strain rules Joshua King out of the game, and Eddie Howe feels he could be sidelined for around two weeks. Ryan Fraser faces a late test after missing out for Scotland because of a knee problem. David Brooks (ankle) is still not training with the squad, but Jefferson Lerma is back in contention after serving a one-match ban. "He's okay after the internationals," confirmed the Cherries boss. Lloyd Kelly (thigh) is hoping to be available, but Charlie Daniels and Junior Stanislas remain out long-term. No status update on Andrew Surman who has been sidelined for the last month with a knee problem. Dan Gosling was able to build fitness in Tuesday’s friendly match away at Reading after a lengthy hip injury.

"We have a couple of players we have to assess,” Nuno said on Friday when asked for team news. “We will see whether - Adama Traoré (hamstring) and Ryan Bennett (groin) - are available." Willy Boly has a chance for late December while Morgan Gibbs-White is hoping to overcome a persistent back problem which has hampered him since October.

 

Arsenal – vs – Southampton

Dani Ceballos (hamstring) is aiming to return to full training by mid-December. The Spaniard is the only definite absentee, although there are doubts over Sead Kolasinac (tight hamstring), Rob Holding and Bukayo Saka. None are believed to be serious, and if they do miss out, a return in the Europa League is a strong possibility. Unai Emery will make a late decision on whether he feels Granit Xhaka is ready to return. Travel delayed Pepe’s return to London, and despite a session away from the squad on Thursday, he will be in contention.

Ralph Hasenhüttl reveals the Saints have a clean bill of health. "Everyone is fit, and back [from international duty] with a few good experiences..." Ryan Bertrand returns for the first time since his dismissal in week nine (the loss to Leicester).

 

Brighton and Hove Albion – vs – Leicester City

Graham Potter confirms Leandro Trossard "rolled his ankle while he was away", but his withdrawal from the Belgium squad was more of a precautionary measure, and he will be fine. Shane Duffy will retain his place as Lewis Dunk sits this one out through suspension. Davy Propper and Steven Alzate returned from international duty unscathed, but despite Bernardo training, he won’t be considered. Aaron Connolly (groin) will miss out, but he could be back in week fourteen. Meanwhile, there was better news regarding Adam Webster, who might return well ahead of schedule. "He's trained [Thursday], and we'll see how he is tomorrow. We have good options in that area of the field."

James Maddison has overcome a minor calf complaint, and even though Jonny Evans was “quarantined” for the Republic of Ireland this week following a virus, he should be included in the matchday squad. Wes Morgan remains on standby just in case. Only long-term absentee Matty James (Achilles) remains in the treatment room, and Brendan Rodgers maintains that with a bit of luck, the midfielder could feature in the league this season.

 

Crystal Palace – vs – Liverpool

Roy Hodgson reveals. "We have no injuries and a full squad to choose from." There were some concerns regarding Wilfried Zaha and the foot issue that forced him out of the Ivory Coast squad. But the injury is “fine,” and he will be in the squad. Joel Ward has managed to overcome a minor groin problem, and Mamadou Sakho is injury-free, although the centre-back might need to be a "little bit patient" before returning to the matchday squad. "It's an area of the pitch where we have great options, and the two that have been playing there - James Tomkins and Gary Cahill - have done well."

Jurgen Klopp says Mo Salah only completed "the things we wanted him to do" in training on Thursday, and therefore, his availability hangs in the balance. “Today is another important session to see how it looks,” the German said in Fridays’ press conference. “We have to be sensible with things like this." Andy Robertson (ankle) remains a doubt also, and both players could be afforded more time to recover with a hectic set of fixtures coming up. Fabinho, Roberto Firmino, Gini Wijnaldum and Alisson all played on Tuesday for their respective national teams, and they will be checked. “It’s always how it is with the first game after the [break], we have to wait until the last second pretty much to make the decision.” Xherdan Shaqiri is working again, but after five weeks out, the Swiss star needs time to build fitness, and there’s no reason to rush it now and risk a potential setback.

 

Everton – vs – Norwich City

Fabian Delph (hamstring) and Bernard (knee) are being gradually integrated back into training, and while it seems unlikely that either player will feature, Marco Silva wouldn’t rule them out. André Gomes is back at Finch Farm, but the Portuguese star faces a long road ahead following a fracture-dislocation of the ankle. “Now is the moment to be patient. He is already at a different stage of his rehabilitation.” Cenk Tosun has shaken off a groin injury and forgotten man Cuco Martina is nearing a comeback after more than three months out.

Grant Hanley (groin) hasn't progressed as hoped and his comeback has been delayed until next month. Josip Drmic suffered a “serious muscle injury” in week twelve which is expected to keep him out for about eight weeks. Jamal Lewis (knee) is not available following his withdrawal from international duty. "He doesn't feel comfortable at the moment," said Daniel Farke. The bad news, however, was tempered by the return of Christoph Zimmermann although a start maybe a little "optimistic" as the German only has 36 minutes of Premier League football under his belt this season. Kenny McLean has been passed fit despite not being able to travel with Scotland.

 

Watford – vs – Burnley

Troy Deeney is edging closer to a start after returning to the matchday squad in week twelve. “He feels much better,” said Quique Sánchez Flores. “Little by little, he is progressing. He is ready, and he wants to play, of course." Ismaïla Sarr is also in contention after recovering from the ankle injury he picked up playing for Senegal. The Hornets, do, however, still have several players where Saturday is not an option. Domingos Quina (groin), Tom Cleverley (heel), Daniel Bachmann (hamstring), Danny Welbeck (hamstring), Sebastian Prödl (knee) and Roberto Pereyra (hamstring) remain out. Christian Kabasele is suspended after his dismissal in the win over Norwich.

The Clarets could be without Johann Berg Gudmundsson (hamstring) and Matej Vydra for the trip to Vicarage Road. “Johann is going well, he’s back on the grass with the physios, but I don’t expect him to make it," explained Sean Dyche. Meanwhile, Vydra may not recover from the hip injury, which kept him out of week twelve. “It was a strange one; we didn’t think anything of it, but [it] showed up [on a scan]. We’ll see how it settles. He’s got a chance, but probably a slim one.” Danny Drinkwater is closing in on a return to action after playing 90 minutes in a friendly against Preston on Tuesday – his second outing since recovering from an ankle injury.

 

Manchester City – vs – Chelsea

Pep confirms he has no fresh injury concerns heading into Saturday nights’ fixture. Ederson will replace Claudio Bravo in goal, and David Silva could return as Bernardo is suspended. Benjamin Mendy will be hoping to force his way back into the matchday 18 after being dropped for the top-of-the-table clash with Liverpool last time out.

Christian Pulisic has been passed fit after recovering from a hip injury, and the US international is likely to start with Callum Hudson-Odoi struggling due to the hamstring problem he picked up playing for England. Antonio Rüdiger and Ruben Loftus-Cheek are targeting a return in December, but there was no fresh news on Ross Barkley who is managing an ankle injury.

 

Sheffield United – vs – Manchester United

Chris Wilder says defender John Egan "has a chance" of recovering from the calf injury he sustained playing for the Republic of Ireland. "We’re going to leave it to the last minute, but we’ve got replacements if needed. Phil [Jagielka] will slot in there, and his experience in big games will be huge.” No other injury concerns, but goalkeeper Dean Henderson is unable to face his parent club, and Simon Moore is expected to make his Premier League debut. "All of the players have come back okay apart from that."

Scott McTominay will be out "for a little while" as he continues his recovery from an ankle injury. "He has not been training with us,” said Ole. “Hopefully we can see him, maybe, around the time of Tottenham or City. He heals quickly." Paul Pogba is "improving" but won't be considered until next month amid fears of a setback. Axel Tuanzebe, Luke Shaw and Nemanja Matic are training fully, but none are considered match fit, so a place on the bench seems the most likely outcome. Timothy Fosu-Mensah and Eric Bailly (both knee) have stepped up their respective recoveries and are “not far away” according to the United boss. Marcos Rojo will miss a couple of weeks with an unspecified muscle strain.

 

Aston Villa – vs – Newcastle United

Jack Grealish has trained all week; however, given the nature of his calf injury, there are still no guarantees he can stay fit for Monday after several setbacks. There was better news regarding Tom Heaton who began working again on Friday and barring a setback he will start against Newcastle. Jed Steer has a "partial tear" of his Achilles, and the club have opted for a conservative approach to his recovery which could mean up to four months out. Matt Targett (concussion) has been cleared after following protocol, and Bjorn Engels has trained well this week having had an injection in his hip around ten days ago. "All the internationals came back in quite a buoyant mood. They've all gone and got their minutes for their countries [and returned] fit and well."

"Where we’ve got one or two back fit, we’ve maybe lost one or two with the internationals, but that’s how it is," Steve Bruce said in his pre-match press conference. Ciaran Clark picked up a minor hamstring problem playing for the Republic of Ireland. "We think he’s going to be OK, but we’ll see how he is.” Florian Lejeune (ACL knee) is back in first-team contention after missing the previous seven months through injury. Fabian Schär has also overcome a niggling knee issue. Jamaal Lascelles suffered a tibial fracture which is expected to keep him out for several weeks; however, the skipper has been cleared of any knee ligament damage. "So, it's not as bad as first feared." Matt Ritchie is still struggling with an ongoing ankle issue. "He went to see his specialist again yesterday. It’s a difficult one because he was so close a couple of weeks ago, and unfortunately had a setback.” Sean Longstaff serves the final game of his three-match ban.