Player News

Date: Team: Pos:

Paul Pogba will play no part in Saturdays FA Cup fifth-round tie against Huddersfield at Old Trafford.

Jose Mourinho fielded a host of questions during the build-up to this game about his relationship with Pogba and growing speculation of a rift, accusations which were given short shrift by the United boss. "I don't want to speak to you about my conversations with my players. It's a big lie that our relationship is not good, a big lie that we don't communicate, a big lie that we don't agree with his positions and his involvement in the dynamic of the team." Mourinho revealed that Pogba would play a part this weekend, but news on Saturday broke confirming he was ill sending the rumour mill into overdrive. Academy prospect Ethan Hamilton has taken his place in the squad. Eric Bailly is poised to provide a timely boost after more than 3 months out, but Ander Herrera and Marcus Rashford remain sidelined, although the pair are hoping to be ready for the Champions League meeting with Sevilla on Wednesday.
Feb 17 - 11:31 AM

Alfie Mawson is an early doubt for next weekends’ crucial trip to Brighton after missing the FA Cup fifth-round tie at Sheffield Wednesday.

The Swansea centre-back was initially named in Carlos Carvalhal’s starting XI, but following an injury during the warm-up, he was withdrawn and replaced by Kyle Naughton. Mawson was spotted in the visitors’ dugout wearing a protective knee brace, although post-match the Portuguese manager confirmed it wasn’t a "big, big problem" revealing he was already feeling better. Fortunes at the Liberty have changed dramatically in recent weeks and Saturdays 0-0 draw means that Swansea are now unbeaten in ten matches [all competitions], a run of results which has seen the Premier Leagues basement boys rise to 16th in the table. Swansea have a tricky set fixtures coming up, playing bottom half sides in five of the next 6 weeks, and Carvalhal may look to experienced defender Kyle Bartley to help plug the gap should Mawson be out for any significant period.
Source: Wales Online
Feb 17 - 10:57 AM

There are growing concerns at Goodison Park that centre-back Eliaquim Mangala may have played his last game for the club.

The Manchester City defender joined Everton on a six-month loan deal in January but was forced off last weekend against Crystal Palace following an awkward fall. Although Mangala had a scan scheduled before the team flew out to a warm-weather training camp in Dubai, it’s believed that those results were inconclusive, and tests remain ongoing. However, reports do indicate that there is knee ligament damage, but the precise details and nature are currently unknown. Depending upon the severity, a tear to either collateral ligament – medial or lateral – is likely to result in 2/3 months out while a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament could keep Mangala sidelined for the remainder of 2018. Fortunately, Ramiro Funes Mori is on the comeback trail having missed the previous 11 months and following a couple of appearances for the development side, the Argentine will be back soon to help bolster the ranks.
Source: Daily Mail
Feb 17 - 10:23 AM

Willian was excellent and scored twice as Chelsea cruised into the FA Cup quarter-finals with a 4-0 win over Hull City at Stamford Bridge.

Antonio Conte made six changes from the 3-0 win over West Brom, as cup regulars Caballero, Ampadu, Drinkwater and Willian came in alongside Cahill and debutante Emerson Palmieri. Willian was lively throughout and curled Chelsea ahead after just two minutes. Pedro doubled the lead with a cool finish in the 27th minute, while Willian got his second with a blast from 25 yards after a clean one-two exchange with Giroud. Giroud capped the scoring with his first goal since arriving from Arsenal just before the break, finishing off an Emerson cross. Chelsea did concede a penalty early in the second-half, but Caballero rose to the challenge and denied David Meyler. The Blues will now turn their attention to next Tuesday's UCL clash with Barcelona.
Source: BBC
Feb 16 - 5:19 PM

Jamie Vardy scored the lone goal as Leicester City reached the quarter-finals of the FA Cup with a 1-0 victory over Sheffield United on Friday.

Riyad Mahrez returned to the starting XI and Wes Morgan made his first start since New Year's Day. The Foxes dominated possession and had to work hard to break down a well-organized Sheffield defense. With the match goalless after 65 minutes, Mahrez and Vardy combine to break the deadlock. The Algerian lofted the ball to the back post for Vardy, who looped a cushioned header over Blades goalkeeper Jamal Blackman. Kasper Schmeichel produced a fine save to keep their advantage before Vardy had the ball in the back of the net again, though it was ruled out for offside. The victory sends the Foxes through to the quarter-finals for the first time since 2012.
Source: BBC Sport
Feb 16 - 5:04 PM

David Wagner confirmed midfield ace Aaron Mooy will miss Huddersfield Town's FA Cup clash with Manchester United and potentially two additional matches with a knee infection.

The Australia international sustained a deep gash to his left knee which forced him off in the comprehensive 4-1 victory over Bournemouth at the weekend. While the 27-year-old escaped ligament or muscle damage, the stitched wound became infected and he now faces at least two weeks on the sidelines. "Aaron’s injury is only a cut but, unfortunately, there was infection when he got the stitches and this means a slight setback, but nothing serious," said Wagner, who doesn't believe the midfielder will be out long-term. "But he will be back, it is nothing like where there is ligament or muscle damage, it is just infection." Expect Philip Billing and Danny Williams to see more minutes for the duration of Mooy's absence.
Feb 16 - 2:07 PM

Chelsea will be without David Luiz for Friday's FA Cup fifth round tie against Hull City.

The Brazilian center-back hasn't featured since playing 90 minutes in the 4-1 defeat at Watford on February 5th. Considering Luiz has fallen out of favor with manager Antonio Conte, his absence isn't a major concern with Andreas Christensen, Antonio Rudiger and Cesar Azpilicueta all fully fit. Conte, however, will likely rotate some of his starting XI ahead of next Tuesday's Champions League clash with Barcelona. January signing Emerson Palmieri could make his debut, while youngsters Ethan Ampadu, Trevoh Chalobah and Dujon Sterling are expected to be in the matchday squad.
Feb 15 - 5:00 PM

Chelsea manager Antonio Conte confirmed Tiemoue Bakayoko will miss Friday's FA Cup match against Hull City.

Bakayoko, who missed the 3-0 win over West Brom through suspension, picked up a knock in training this week and won't be available for Friday's FA Cup fifth round tie. Conte is expected to rotate his squad for visit of Hull City ahead of crucial week in which Chelsea will play their Champions League first leg tie against Barcelona before clashing with Manchester United on Sunday. Danny Drinkwater will likely start in midfield with Ross Barkley still unavailable, while Ethan Ampadu or Kyle Scott could also come in if N'Golo Kante is rested.
Feb 15 - 4:35 PM

Nacho Monreal was at it again opening the scoring for Arsenal as they cruised to a 3-0 victory at Ostersund.

It was a business-like effort from Arsenal who weren't spectacular but were efficient as they dispatched Ostersund 3-0 in the away leg of their round of 32 tie. Nacho Monreal was notable as he continued his recent torrid scoring pace. Henrikh Mkhitaryan instigated an own goal for the second and turn provider as Mesut Ozil scored the third. There was a concerning blip late as Bellerin gave up a penalty in added time but Ospina saved to keep the clean sheet.
Feb 15 - 3:07 PM

Respected Spanish journalist Jose Alvarez Haya believes Manchester United defender Eric Bailly will make a return to full training this week.

The centre-back has been sidelined since suffering a training ground ankle injury while on international duty more than three months ago, and Haya believes Bailly will be available for the Champions League tie with Sevilla on February 21. However, while Bailly may have fully recovered from his surgery, with less than a week with the group, it’s unlikely in my opinion that he will make the matchday squad due to a lack of conditioning. Phil Jones, Chris Smalling, Marcos Rojo and Victor Lindelof are all better placed in terms of fitness and involving Bailly at this stage in his rehab would represent a huge risk. Zlatan Ibrahimović, heavily linked with a move to MLS side LA Galaxy, has also returned to the training pitches after suffering a setback in his recovery from a serious knee injury in December.
Feb 15 - 5:42 AM

Manuel Lanzini is targeting a comeback against Liverpool on February 24.

The Argentine playmaker has been sidelined since limping off versus Bournemouth last month, but the player is bang on schedule to return for the clash at Anfield when the Premier League fixtures resume. "If we're talking recovery time, maybe four to six weeks," said a despondent David Moyes after losing Lanzini and Marko Arnautovic back in game week twenty-four. The Austrian marked his return with a goal in the 2-0 win over Watford last weekend, and the Hammers will be looking for something similar from Lanzini who was in excellent form before his injury. Speaking to West Ham TV, goalkeeper Adrian revealed. "Manu is ready to come to the team," providing Moyes with a major boost ahead of the season run-in. "We hope all the injured players will come back as soon as possible," he continued. However, West Ham are likely to be without Pedro Obiang, Edimilson Fernandes and Andy Carroll for most, if not all, of the remaining fixtures.
Feb 15 - 5:06 AM

Wes Morgan is hoping to make his long-awaited return in the FA Cup fifth-round on Friday evening.

The Leicester skipper pulled up on New Year’s Day following a hamstring tweak and hasn’t featured since. However, having trained fully, Morgan is close to being considered for the clash with Championship outfit Sheffield United. "Perhaps [he] come back in the squad," revealed Claude Puel ahead of the game. Leicester abandoned their usual 4-4-1-1 at The Etihad last weekend in favour of three at the back, but following a 5-1 defeat, due in the main to a Kevin de Bruyne and Sergio Aguero masterclass, Puel may be tempted to revert to a more tried and tested back four. The Foxes boast an almost fully fit squad - only Shinji Okazaki is missing after he picked up a knee injury in game week twenty-six. Kelechi Iheanacho will be champing at the bit after his goals helped fire Leicester past Peterborough in the last round, while Fosseni Diabaté will be looking to add to his two-goal cup tally.
Feb 15 - 4:40 AM

Forward Islam Slimani is widely expected to make his Newcastle debut in Gameweek 28 against Bournemouth.

The Leicester City forward arrived on loan in a Deadline Day move but has yet to feature for the Magpies due to a minor thigh injury. Rather than risking Slimani in a surprise 1-0 win against Manchester United over the weekend, Benitez said he would rather give Slimani, who is likely to become the club's No. 1 option up top, the next two weeks to build fitness during the FA Cup break before the trip to Bournemouth next Saturday. "He was fine, but he was still feeling it a little bit. It was a case of waiting because we have 15 days now before the next game so we can keep working with him."
Feb 14 - 7:20 PM

Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey faces a race to be fit for next weekend's League Cup final as he fights off a groin injury.

Ramsey was a surprise scratch from the club's 1-0 loss in the North London derby over the weekend due to a minor injury. However, manager Arsene Wenger said he doesn't think the Welsh international will be available for either leg of the club's Europa League round of 32 matchup and could be a doubt for the League Cup final against Manchester City on February 25. "It is a little bit sensitive case because we expected him to be a bit further in his development of the groin problem and he doesn't move forward as quickly as we expected it. Today we would say that certainly he will not be available even for the next game against Ostersunds. Maybe for the cup final, we don't know yet, it depends how he will progress from now."
Feb 14 - 7:16 PM

Danny Welbeck is expected to lead the Arsenal attack in Sweden on Thursday night after Alexandre Lacazette underwent surgery to address a minor knee problem.

Arsène Wenger suggested the France international has been managing an ongoing issue for a while which flared up following his cameo in Saturdays north London derby. "He got a surprising swell of the knee after the game against Tottenham and he needed surgery very quick," the Arsenal boss told beIN Sports. "He’ll be out for the next four to five weeks. It’s a massive blow for us and we have to find a solution, and nobody could predict that." With Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang ineligible for the Europa League competition, Welbeck is poised to make his fourth start of the year having recently recovered from injury. The setback leaves Arsenal a little short of cover, and the Gunners may call upon the inexperienced Eddie Nketiah as back-up following some impressive displays for the under-23s. The 18-year-old regularly trains with the senior squad and has scored 9-times in eleven starts for the development side.
Feb 14 - 11:05 AM

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