Every now and then, a Premier League weekend provides FPL managers with an absolute nightmare. And GW11 was that all over.
With a lamentable average score of just 32, fantasy players were left frustrated by a lack of returns across the board, as Erling Haaland, Mohamed Salah, Son Heung-min and Co failed to deliver as they have in recent weeks.
To make matters worse, popular assets such as James Maddison, Matty Cash, Dan Burn and even Haaland were hooked off because of injury, meaning the headache of GW11 is set to linger on past its welcome.
Most managers will not only see a measly points tally when they log into the FPL page or app this week. They will also notice a red and yellow wall of flags to remind of who’s unavailable.
Mail Sport takes a look at the key players at risk ahead of GW12 and provides a comprehensive guide to injuries and suspensions.
GW11 was a rubbish week for FPL managers, as most key players like Mohamed Salah blanked
James Maddison hobbled off with a concerning knock during Tottenham’s 4-1 loss to Chelsea
Erling Haaland, who was taken off due to injury at the weekend, returned in midweek to net twice for Manchester City during their 3-0 win over Young Boys in the Champions League
Highest xG in 2023-24 so far
Who’s suspended – and who’s close to a ban?
Tottenham defenders Cristian Romero and Destiny Udogie made headlines on Monday after the pair were both sent off against Chelsea for reckless challenges.
The Argentine was shown a straight red card for his dangerous tackle on Enzo Fernandez and will thus miss his next three matches for Tottenham. Meanwhile, Udogie will only be absent for Spurs’ trip to Wolves in GW12 because his sending off came from a second bookable offence.
Newcastle midfielder Bruno Guimaraes will also miss GW12 against Bournemouth after picking up his fifth booking of the season Saturday’s 1-0 win over Newcastle.
The same goes for Liverpool’s Alexis Mac Allister, who hit the five yellow card threshold with a booking against Luton.
Bruno Fernandes is among the notable FPL players just one booking away from a suspension, with Aston Villa duo Lucas Digne and Douglas Luiz also on four yellow cards.
Excluding the three aforementioned stars, the full list of players on four bookings include: Jordan Ayew; Yves Bissouma; Jarrad Branthwaite; Craig Dawson; Kai Havertz; Boubacar Kamara; Mario Lemina; Joao Palhinha; Sean Longstaff; Orel Mangala; Marvelous Nakamba; and Ibrahim Sangare.
Cristian Romero was shown a straight red against Chelsea and will now miss three matches
Destiny Udogie was the second Spurs player to be sent off after being shown two yellow cards
Manchester United captain Bruno Fernandes is just yellow card away from a one-match ban
How to deal with Tottenham’s injury crisis
Tottenham’s 4-1 defeat by Chelsea on Monday will likely cost the north London club more than just three points, with a hatful of injuries and suspension set to plague Ange Postecoglou in the near future.
Alongside red cards for Romero and Udogie, influential summer signings Micky van de Ven and James Maddison hobbled off with worrying injuries, casting doubt over their availability in GW12.
Postecoglou provided a positive update on Maddison after the match, hinting that the injury was less concerning than first feared.
‘He got a knock on the ankle,’ the Spurs boss revealed. ‘We were down one man already. It made sense to make a couple of changes at that point.’
The Tottenham manager’s comments would indicate that, even if Maddison is not risked for GW12, he is not set for a lengthy spell on the sidelines. Unless you have a burning desire to bring in another midfielder such as Jarrod Bowen or Bryan Mbeumo, it’s probably best to give Maddison one more week and reassess.
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There was more agony for Tottenham and Micky van de Ven (left), who limped off in some pain
Ange Postecoglou has a major selection crisis ahead of Tottenham’s trip to Wolves this week
Van de Ven, however, is an entirely different story. The defender was clearly distressed after pulling up with a suspected hamstring injury on Monday and Postecoglou admitted the problem looked a ‘pretty significant one’. Seeing as he could feasibly be for months, I’d move him on to another budget defender.
Marc Guehi and Tyrick Mitchell look like shrewd replacements at Crystal Palace, with Everton, Luton, West Ham and Bournemouth up next, while Vladimir Coufal appears a handy pick at the London Stadium ahead of a kind run.
Richarlison has also confirmed he is set for surgery after suffering from a long-term issue on his pubic bone. If you still own the Tottenham star, there’s little reason to keep him around in your midfield.
Who else is on the Premier League injury list?
Those fearing the worst on Haaland breathed a huge sigh of relief in midweek as the Manchester City superstar returned to net twice against Young Boys in the Champions League on Wednesday.
Although his one-pointer against Bournemouth was extremely frustrating, the silver lining is that he won’t be set for an extended period on the treatment table.
Over 200,000 FPL managers have transferred the Norwegian out ahead of GW12 and, while he does have Chelsea and Liverpool in his next two matches, the striker has the ability to haul big in any fixture.
Burn’s injury-provoked substitution against Arsenal appears more serious, with the Newcastle defender set to be ‘out for some time’ according to Eddie Howe.
Dan Burn could be set for an extended period on the sidelines, with Eddie Howe admitting the Newcastle defender will likely be ‘out for while’ after suffering a back injury against Arsenal
Meanwhile, Callum Wilson (right) is a doubt after coming off with a knock against Dortmund
Although he couldn’t give an exact timeframe on the Englishman’s return, Howe expected the left-back to be out for approximately two months.
Callum Wilson was also hooked off against Borussia Dortmund after feeling a tightness in his hamstring, causing Newcastle a headache in attack as Alexander Isak is also enduring a spell on the sidelines.
Howe urged it is ‘too early to tell’ whether Wilson will be available for the weekend against the Cherries.
Should he miss out, it could spell good news for Anthony Gordon owners, as the former Everton star could be deployed as false nine or central striker in the absence of Newcastle’s forwards.
Fellow Magpie Jacob Murphy, who some may have been considering as a differential after his superb 17-point tally in GW9, is set to undergo surgery on his shoulder and miss out on three months of football.
Speaking of shoulder injuries, Aston Villa defender Cash, who is owned by 34 per cent of fantasy managers, was substituted against Nottingham Forest after picking up a problem, but Unai Emery revealed after the match that the issue was ‘minor’ and ‘nothing serious’.
He was then pictured in training on Wednesday ahead of Villa’s midweek Europa Conference League clash against AZ Alkmaar, leading many to believe he will be fit to start in GW12.
Bear in mind, the Polish star is on three yellow cards and only two bookings away from a one-game suspension.
Finally, Arsenal were handed a minor blow on Wednesday night as Bukayo Saka was substituted with a ‘knock’ in their 2-0 win over Sevilla.
Mikel Arteta didn’t appear too concerned by the England international’s early exit, playing down his chances of missing out on Friday.
‘It was just a kick and I was told by the physios he wasn’t happy to continue. I want to assume he will be OK,’ he said after the match.
Matty Cash came off as a precaution against Nottingham Forest but trained with Aston Villa on Wednesday ahead of the club’s Europa Conference League clash against AZ Alkmaar
How could Spurs and Newcastle line up this weekend?
Newcastle and Tottenham are no doubt suffering from the deepest injury and suspension lists ahead of GW12 and are set to name depleted sides against Bournemouth and Wolves respectively.
Kieran Trippier (above) could move over to the left flank for Newcastle in Burn’s absence
Burn’s absence will likely see Kieran Trippier switch over to the left flank and Tino Livramento come in at right-back as he did against Borussia Dortmund, with Fabian Schar and Jamal Lascelles holding the fort at the heart of defence.
Joe Willock was given a short rest by Howe after being substituted against the German side and will likely regain his place at the weekend alongside Sean Longstaff and Joelinton.
The Brazilian midfielder could reclaim his spot up front in the absence of Wilson, but his importance in midfield will likely see Gordon shift into the middle and form a hybrid front two with Miguel Almiron.
However, at this stage, it’s safe to assume Howe will do everything he can to get Wilson fit and ready for the weekend, seeing as Isak is still out of contention.
Meanwhile at Tottenham, Postecoglou has a crisis to manage in defence.
With Romero’s definite and Van de Ven’s very likely absence, Postecoglou will almost certainly deploy Eric Dier at the heart of defence and perhaps partner him with Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, who impressed at centre-back after coming on against Chelsea.
According to The Athletic, Spurs hope Ben Davies will be available to face Wolves at the weekend, which would be a huge boost for Postecoglou in the absence of Udogie.
However, should Davies remain unavailable, Postecoglou could opt for Emerson Royal on the left flank despite him naturally being a right-back by trade.
Eric Dier (right) is set for an extended run in the Tottenham defence while Van de Ven is injured
In midfield, Yves Bissouma and Pape Matar Sarr are almost destined to start in a double pivot for Postecoglou. Spurs fans will hope Maddison is fit and available ahead of the trip to Molineux but may have to settle for the more defensive-minded midfielder Oliver Skipp should he fail to recover in time.
Remember to listen out for Friday’s press conferences, which will hopefully provide an update on the two teams’ injury problems.
Predicted Newcastle XI vs Bournemouth: Pope; Livramento, Schar, Lascelles, Trippier; Longstaff, Willock, Joelinton; Almiron, Wilson, Gordon.
Predicted Tottenham XI vs Wolves: Vicario; Porro, Dier, Hojbjerg, Royal; Sarr, Bissouma, Maddison; Kulusevski, Son, Johnson.
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