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EPL GW-1 Pre-Deadline Chat

Injury concerns cast a shadow over several key players.

Christopher Nkunku - Chelsea FC - Premier League
Nkunku is out until at least December |
Photo by Matthew Ashton - AMA/Getty Images

As summer draws to a close, football fans worldwide are gearing up for the highly anticipated return of the English Premier League (EPL). With just hours remaining before kickoff, anticipation is at an all-time high as teams prepare to battle it out for the coveted title.

Clubs are grappling with injuries to key individuals, raising questions about their availability and the potential impact on team performance. Fans (and fantasy managers) eagerly await updates on these players’ conditions as they anxiously anticipate the start of the season.

The week and the season kickoff with one Friday match between Burnley and Manchester City, which means that Fantrax managers should see those two lineups confirmed before their deadline. Be here during the countdown hour to confound Pep roulette.


Burnley vs Man City

After losing the Community Shield, Man City should be kick-starting the 2023-24 Premier League season at Burnley’s expense. Pep already cleared fears about Nathan Ake’s injury, saying that Aké has recovered from a knock and is available to face Burnley. Joško Gvardiol is also “ready and available” ahead of GW-1, according to Pep Guardiola.

The only player still giving Burnley worries is Michael Obafemi with a thigh Injury.

Arsenal vs Nottingham Forest

Arsenal has lot of players injured, which can deplete them. After winning the Community Shield, the Gunners have to be well prepared for the season ahead because you don’t expect to win the EPL with most of your key players out.

Gabriel de Jesus required follow-up knee surgery, so he will be out for several weeks (ETA 16-Sept). Arteta: “Obviously, he was very disappointed; he was feeling really good. This issue came up, which nobody expected, so we had to do a little procedure there. We made the decision, and hopefully, he’ll be back soon.” Other Gunners unavailable this week include Sambi Lokonga and Reiss Nelson.

Oleksandr Zinchenko and Jorginho have returned to training after recovering their muscle injuries.


Out for Nottingham Forest: Felipe, Omar Richards (hip), Wayne Hennessey (knee), Taiwo Awoniyi (Ankle), and Moussa Niakhate.

Bournemouth vs West Ham

Bournemouth injuries: Marcus Tavernier, Lloyd Kelly ... “Unfortunately, both got injured in Marbella. Marcus especially will be out the first few games. We hope we can have Lloyd [for the opener], but it will be tight the schedule.’

Adam Smith : ‘I think it is a muscle injury. It is going to be tough for him. I think he will probably be out for the start of the season. It is something we have to think about for the first game.’

Ryan Christie (75%): ‘Ryan, I think it was a small issue. I think he even could have played today, but seven days from the beginning of the season, it doesn’t make sense to take any risk.’


Sporting a clean bill of health, the Hammers enter the new season with all of David Moyes’ personnel available to him.

Brighton vs Luton

There have been transfer rumours swirling around Brighton’s Caicedo, which always gives fantasy managers pause, but he is also a slight doubt with a hamstring injury too. Jakub Moder is currently out of action due to a knee injury, and his potential return before the season ends remains uncertain.


Luton town has its own fair share of injury, currently missing Reece Burke (ETA 1-Sept), Gabriel Osho (knee), Dan Potts, and Jordan Clark.

Everton vs Fulham

Imagine going to a war without your best hands. That’s happening to Everton at the moment. With the EPL starting today, the backbone of the team is sidelined: Dele Alli (hip) has suffered a setback (ETA Oct). Dwight McNeil is out (ankle, ETA Sept), and so is Seamus Coleman (knee). Fortunately James Tarkowski and Arnaut Danjuma are back at 100%. Dominic Calvert-Lewin is short of match fitness but could feature from the bench.


For the Cottagers, Joao Palhinha is out, and Andreas Pereira and Tom Cairney are doubts.

Sheffield United vs Crystal Palace

Sheffield United is facing injury challenges: John Fleck (ETA 21-Oct) and Oliver Norwood were injured in recent friendlies, while Brewster, Coulibaly, Bogle, Ollie McBurnie, and Norrington-Davies being assessed, and others have late fitness tests with a 50% status. Tough times ahead.


Palace is grappling injuries of its own: Michael Olise, (thigh), Tyrick Mitchell (quad), Will Hughes (knee). Unfortunately, Matheus Franca’s promising future is put on hold due to an undisclosed injury with no return date.

Newcastle vs Aston Villa

Newcastle has been one team that has enjoyed a great preseason, undefeated with 5 wins and 2 draws. But Newcastle United still faces these setbacks:

Emil Krafth (knee, ETA 17-Sept), Javier Manquillo (groin, ETA 27-Aug), Joseph Willock (thigh, 25%, late August), Fabian Schar (thigh, 50%)


Aston Villa: The big news here is that Emi Buendia suffered a serious knee injury in training this week and will be sidelines for 6-8 months. Jacob Ramsey (metatarsal fracture, ETA mid-Sept), Bertrand Traore (muscular injury, mid-Sept), Leander Dendoncker (muscular injury, mid-Sept), Jhon Duran Palacio (ETA Sept), Alex Moreno (thigh, mid-Aug) round out the injury list for the Villans.

Brentford vs Tottenham

Brentford faces obstacles as key players deal with setbacks: Ivan Toney is suspended until mid-January, and Bryan Mbeumo, Rico Henry, Frank Onyeka, and Josh Dasilva are doubts due to minor knocks/dead legs.


The buzz around Tottenham’s new season is that Harry Kane agreed to terms with Bayern Munich and was supposed to fly to Germany yesterday for a physical. It now seems that Spurs may have revoked his permission to travel and want to reopen negotiations. At any rate, if you drafted him, you should swap him out. He’s unlikely to feature even if the transfer hasn’t gone through this weekend, and even if he does suit up he’ll surely be angry and distracted.

Spurs also have some injury news: Ryan Sessegnon (thigh, out ‘til late Oct), Bryan Gil (hip, ETA late Oct), Rodrigo Bentancur (knee, mid-Sept), Fraser Forster (lower back, 25%, late-Aug), Tanguy Ndombele (25%), Alfie Malik Whiteman (ankle, out indefinitely).

Chelsea vs Liverpool

Chelsea’s form has been compounded by an injury list that keeps registering new casualties after every match, the latest being Christopher Nkunku who suffered a knee injury that will reportedly sideline him for months. He has plenty of company: Benoit Badiashile (thigh, 25%, late-Aug), Armando Broja (knee, 25%), Chukwunonso Madueke (thigh, 50%), Wesley Fofana (knee, no return date), Marcus Bettinelli (no return date).


Liverpool looks fresh ahead of the new season after facing a ferocious injury crisis last season. The Reds currently have “only” two players to worry about: Thiago Alcantara (groin, 25%, ETA late Aug), Stefan Bajcetic (groin, 25%, late Aug)

How are your squads setting up for GW-1? Will you be shopping for Man City assets for your Fantrax sides in the countdown hour? Please log in and post in the comments!