Alonso and Digne absent, Jimenez benched again

Five more Gameweek 28 matches get underway at 3pm GMT this afternoon and there are some unwelcome surprises on the teamsheets around the grounds.

Starting at Turf Moor, there is no Marcos Alonso for Chelsea amid unconfirmed reports that the left wing-back has tested positive for Covid-19.

There are no other real curveball calls in Thomas Tuchel’s line-up, however, with well-backed FPL assets Kai Havertz, Mason Mount, Reece James and Antonio Rudiger all getting starts.

The injured Ben Me and the benched Maxwel Cornet are replaced by Nathan Collins and Jay Rodriguez in Sean Dyche’s two alterations from the Tuesday night loss to Leicester City.

The shock omissions continue at Villa Park as Steven Gerrard’s two changes affect both absent defenders in the form of Ezri Konsa and Lucas Digne, who reportedly have tested positive for coronavirus. Calum Chambers and Ashley Young replace them.

Ralph Hasenhuttl has matched his opposite number for starting XI alterations, as Jack Stephens and Romain Perraud replace Mohammed Salisu and Kyle Walker-Peters. Both of those ousted players had been flagged as injury doubts going into Gameweek 28 but Walker-Peters is fit enough for bench duty, at least.

Raul Jimenez and Ryan Ait-Nouri are benched for the second straight league match but Pedro Neto makes his first start for Wolves since returning from a 10-month injury lay-off, while Joao Moutinho and Daniel Podence are also recalled.

Vicente Guaita, Jean-Philippe Mateta and Cheihou Kouyate are recalled in place of Jack Butland, James McArthur and Luka Milivojevic in Palace’s three changes from last weekend.

Allan Saint-Maximin makes the bench after recovering from a calf injury as Eddie Howe names an unchanged Newcastle side.

Graham Potter makes four changes: Danny Welbeck, Shane Duffy, Steven Alzate and Pascal Gross are in and Yves Bissouma, Alexis Mac Allister, Solly March and Neil Maupay are out.

At Carrow Road, Tim Krul and Sam Byram replace Angus Gunn and Max Aarons.

But the biggest team news from East Anglia concerns the visitors, as Christian Eriksen starts a game for the first time since suffering a cardiac arrest while playing for Denmark last summer.

Sergi Canos and Ivan Toney come in alongside him, with Mathias Jensen, Yoane Wissa and the suspended Josh Dasilva dropping out.


Aston Villa XI: Martínez, Cash, Chambers, Mings, Young, Luiz, McGinn, Ramsey, Watkins, Ings, Coutinho.

Subs: Olsen, Sanson, Buendía, Traoré, Hause, Bailey, Chrisene, Iroegbunam, O’Reilly.

Southampton XI: Forster, Livramento, Stephens, Bednarek, Perraud, Romeu, Ward-Prowse, Armstrong, Elyounoussi, Adams, Broja.

Subs: Caballero, Walker-Peters, Armstrong, Redmond, Djenepo, Smallbone, Diallo, Walcott, Valery.

Burnley XI: Pope, Taylor, Tarkowski, Collins, Roberts, Lennon, Brownhill, Westwood, McNeil, Weghorst, Rodriguez.

Subs: Hennessey, Lowton, Bardsley, Long, Thomas, Cork, Cornet, Barnes, Richardson

Chelsea XI: Mendy, Rudiger, Chalobah, Silva, James, Kante, Jorginho, Saul Mount, Pulisic, Havertz.

Subs: Kepa, Kenedy, Christensen, Sarr, Kovacic, Loftus-Cheek, Ziyech, Lukaku, Werner.

Newcastle XI: Dubravka, Krafth, Schar, Burn Targett; Willock, Shelvey, Joelinton, Murphy, Wood, Fraser.

Subs: Darlow, Dummett, Lascelles, Manquillo, Longstaff, Guimarães, Saint-Maximin, Almirón, Gayle,

Brighton XI: Sanchez, Veltman, Dunk, Cucurella; Lamptey, Moder, Gross, Alzate, Duffy, Welbeck, Trossard.

Subs: Steele, Roberts, Bissouma, Maupay, Mac Allister, Lallana, March, Caicedo, Ferguson

Norwich XI: Krul, Byram, Gibson, Hanley, Williams, Gilmour, Normann, McLean, Rashica, Teemu Pukki, Sargent.

Subs: Gunn, Aarons, Zimmermann, Dowell, Placheta, Sørensen, Lees-Melou, Giannoulis, Rowe.

Brentford XI: Raya, Henry, Pinnock, Ajer, Jansson, Canos, Nørgaard, Eriksen, Janelt, Toney, Mbeumo.

Subs: Lössl, Jensen, Wissa, Ghoddos, Onyeka, Zanka, Baptiste, Sørensen, Roerslev.

Wolves XI: Jose Sa, Kilman, Coady, Saiss, Hoever, Neves, Moutinho, Marcal, Neto, Podence, Hwang Hee-Chan.

Subs: Ruddy, Ait-Nouri, Jimenez, Trincao, Boly, Fabio Silva, Jonny, Chiquinho, Dendoncker.

Crystal Palace XI: Guaita, Mitchell, Clyne, Andersen, Guehi, Olise, Schlupp, Kouyate, Gallagher, Zaha, Mateta.

Subs: Butland, Milivojevic, Ayew, Eze, Hughes, Benteke, Edouard, Kelly, Riedewald.

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