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Premier League Injuries & Suspensions Week 13

A look at who may be missing from your potential fantasy line-ups due to suspension, injury or rotation and returning players who will look to make an impact.

Will Branislav Ivanovic's return from injury leave Chelsea fans clapping, or Norwich's instead?
Will Branislav Ivanovic's return from injury leave Chelsea fans clapping, or Norwich's instead?
Ian Walton/Getty Images

Out: Fantasy-relevant players who have been confirmed out for the week, either through injury or suspension

Doubt: Players facing the dreaded fitness test, rotation concerns and those who are out of form/favor

In: The likeliest replacements for the Outs & Doubts or those returning from injury

Win: Fantasy player to watch / my hunch pick of the week



Out: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Aaron Ramsey, Tomas Rosicky, Theo Walcott, Danny Welbeck, Jack Wilshere

Doubt: Laurent Koscielny

In: Hector Bellerin, Gabriel Paulista

Win: Mesut Ozil

It's that time of year -- well, any time is that time of year really -- when Arsenal's training table is overloaded with injuries. However, Bellerin returns from injury and Koscielny appears to be this weekend's only doubt, with Gabriel ably slotting into his place should Wenger choose to sit the Frenchman. The recently quiet Alexis is definitely due for a big performance while Olivier Giroud has been a pretty consistent goal scorer, but you have to go with Ozil to continue with his masterful service.


Aston Villa

Out: Jordan Amavi, Jores Okore

Doubt: Gabriel Agbonlahor, Rudy Gestede, Ashley Westwood

In: Kieran Richardson

Win: Jordan Ayew

Plenty of fantasy managers will lament Jordan Amavi's unfortunate season-ending injury over the international break. They will certainly look elsewhere for cover as his replacement will fall well short of his offensive phantom point delivery and Villa is unlikely to put a string of clean sheets together. Let's take a punt on the other Jordan (Ayew) for fantasy glory at Everton.


AFC Bournemouth

Out: Tommy Elphick, Max Gradel, Tyrone Mings, Callum Wilson

Doubt: Christian Atsu, Marc Pugh

In: N/A

Win: Simon Francis

Bournemouth stopped giving up five goals a game, so that's nice, but it's also probably the best thing you can say about the struggling squad. Swansea is having its own troubles scoring, so your hope for fantasy gold comes from the defensive end.



Out: Thibaut Courtois, Radamel Falcao

Doubt: Baba Rahman (rotation), Kurt Zouma

In: Gary Cahill, Branislav Ivanovic

Win: William

Miserable Mou will likely remain loyal to elder statesman Ivanovic upon his return from injury, removing Rahman from the starting lineup. Meanwhile, Gary Cahill may also get the start in place of Kurt Zouma. Of course, it would be foolish to back the Blues' gaffe-prone back line, so picking Willian to get another brilliant set piece goal or two seems like a good play if you're looking for Chelsea representation in your fantasy squad.


Crystal Palace

Out: N/A

Doubt: Dwight Gayle; Martin Kelly or Papa Souare (rotation)

In: Marouane Chamakh, Joel Ward

Win: Scott Dann

Monday's game gives Gayle some extra time to recover, but if he cannot make it Chamakh should be able to take his place. With Sunderland visiting I'd look to the defensive side for fantasy spoils, especially since Palace's back line has combined for a handful of goals already this season. With a hazy wing back situation as Kelly, Souare and Ward continue to fight over the two spots, look instead to central defenders Dann and Damien Delaney.



Out: Phil Garbutt, Tony HibbertPhil Jagielka, Brian Oviedo

Doubt: Tyias Browning

In: Leighton Baines

Win: Romelu Lukaku

There is a good chance for the long-awaited return of Baines, but Everton's constantly battered, rotating defensive line has struggled after a strong start. So all hail King Troll at home against meek Villa!


Leicester City

Out: Matty James

Doubt: Jamie Vardy

In: Leonardo Ulloa

Win: Riyad Mahrez

Jamie Vardy is a dreaded game time decision and Claudio Ranieri has said he will only play the super striker if he is 100% fit (but really, is anybody ever truly 100%?), so Leonardo Ulloa may earn a start. As such, I'm picking Mahrez as the "win" to be safe, but be sure to check on Vardy's status as things get closer to game time.



Out: Jose Enrique, John Flanagan, Joe Gomez, Jordan Henderson, Danny Ings, Mamadou Sakho

Doubt: Daniel Sturridge

In: Dejan Lovren, James Milner

Win: Christian Benteke

Milner should see a return to the starting line-up after recovering from injury, likely displacing Jordon Ibe. Sturridge is another option after shaking off his latest injury, but he seems more likely to earn a cameo appearance off the bench. Traveling to Manchester City is a tough enough task as it is, but with Loven slotting in for Sakho on top of that, Liverpool's best bet may be an offensive shootout. Benteke will look to take advantage of the absence of fellow Belgian Vincent Kompany from the Citizens' back line.


Manchester City

Out: Wilfried Bony, Vincent Kompany, Samir Nasri, David Silva

Doubt: Fabian Delph, Pablo Zabaleta

In: Sergio Aguero, Eliaquim Mangala

Win: Raheem Sterling

With Bony out injured, Aguero may jump into the starting line-up a week earlier than otherwise following his long-awaited return to fitness, but even so you would have to expect him to be subbed early in the second half. Meanwhile, Mangala should replace the recently re-injured Kompany. As for someone who will surely make the starting side, and who could lead the line if Pellegrini chooses to have Kun come off the bench, Sterling will look to shake off a loud chorus of boos from the visitors' section and wreak havoc against his old team in the comforts of his new light blue home.


Manchester United

Out: Michael Carrick, Marouane Fellaini, Anthony Martial, Patrick McNair, Wayne Rooney (illness), Luke Shaw, Antonio Valencia

Doubt: N/A

In: Ander Herrera, James Wilson

Win: Chris Smalling

United has an unusually high list of injuries on the offensive end with Martial and Rooney missing out, leaving a defensive-minded approach at Watford even more likely than it would be otherwise (and as we know, it would still be extremely likely otherwise). Look for Smalling to control things in the back while getting some chances on the offensive end via corner kicks.



Out: Rolando Aarons, Jack Colback, Tim Krul, Emmanuel Riviere, Steven Taylor

Doubt: Robert Elliot, Massadio Haidara, Gabriel Obertan

In: N/A

Win: Ayoze Perez

Wijnaldum had the big single game performance a few weeks back, but Perez looks like a more consistent player, so let's go with the latter in what hopes to be a high-flying game against the visiting Foxes.


Norwich City

Out: Matt Jarvis

Doubt: Nathan Redmond

In: N/A

Win: Robbie Brady

The electric Brady should look forward to terrorizing cement-footed Branislav Ivanovic upon the Chelsea defender's likely return.



Out: Fraser Forster, Florin Gardos, Jay Rodriguez

Doubt: N/A

In: N/A

Win: Ryan Bertrand

Jay Rodriguez sadly suffered another injury setback, but the offense was used to operating without him. Visiting Stoke will look to keep the score down here, so I'm going with the defensive side in the form of old fantasy favorite Ryan Bertrand.


Stoke City

Out: Marc Muniesa

Doubt: N/A

In: N/A

Win: Jack Butland

Southampton will be difficult to stop for the full 90 minutes, but if anybody's up to the challenge, it's magnificent shot stopper Butland.



Out: N/A

Doubt: Sebastian Coates (rotation), Jordi Gomez (rotation)

In: Lee Cattermole, John O'Shea

Win: Costel Pantilimon

With Cattermole and O'Shea returning to fitness, Sunderland has a full squad. Of course, it's still not a particularly good one. The Black Cats will have trouble putting forth much of an attack at Crystal Palace, so you could always take a punt on Pantilimon racking up the saves. Or you could stay away from the entire team, which is what all but the most ardent Sunderland fan will do.


Swansea City

Out: N/A

Doubt: N/A

In: N/A

Win: Ashley Williams

Swansea's offense has been in a rut, so backing its defense against fellow sputtering visiting Bournemouth seems like the way to go.


Tottenham Hotspur

Out: Nacer Chadli, Erik Lamela (suspension)

Doubt: Moussa Dembele

In: Heung-Min Son

Win: Harry Kane

Finally getting over injury, Son comes in for the suspended Lamela, but you have to peg Kane to keep up his recent goalscoring form at home against the error-prone Hammers.


Watford FC

Out: Joel Ekstrand, Sebastian Prodl

Doubt: N/A

In: N/A

Win: Craig Cathcart

In case you haven't noticed, I got on board with Watford this season pretty early and I'm still rooting big time for the plucky defensive-minded newcomer with just enough offense to threaten, thanks largely to Odion Ighalo. This weekend I'd go with the former over the latter, as Cathcart and company could nab another clean sheet at home to plodding Manchester United in the game that probably has the best chance of going nil-nil.


West Bromwich Albion

Out: Ben Foster, Gareth McAuley (suspension)

Doubt: N/A

In: N/A

Win: Boaz Myhill

Amidst McAuley's continuing suspension, West Brom will probably not be able to do much on either end against visiting Arsenal, but Myhill owners can always hope for a heroic tally of saves.


West Ham United

Out: James Collins (suspension), Dimitri Payet, Enner Valencia

Doubt: Pedro Mba Obiang, Darren Randolph, Alex Song

In: Diafro Sakho

Win: Victor Moses

With Collins suspended and the mercurial Payet injured, the visit to Tottenham seems somewhat daunting. Even so, Victor Moses remains an affordable option with a decent shot at paying off handsomely.


My fantasy teams at the moment:

Hennessey / Bellerin, Cathcart, Ward / Ayew, Cabaye (V), De Bruyne, Mahrez (C), Sanchez / Lukaku, Vardy [Official BPL]

Stekelenburg / Hutton, Monreal, Simpson / Ayew, Cabaye, De Bruyne, Mahrez, Ozil / Sanchez, Vardy [Fantrax]

Hennessey / Dann, Monreal, Smalling, Van Dijk / Cabaye, De Bruyne, Mahrez, Ozil / Lukaku, Vardy [Togga Perfect XI]

While injuries to Amavi and Martial stand out as particularly painful for fantasy owners over the recent international break, at least we can look forward to the possible return this weekend of numerous stars. Are you adding any of them straight away or are you taking a wait-and-see approach? How are your squads coming together?