First Gameweek 30 blanks confirmed after City and Palace progress in FA Cup

We round up the key Fantasy Premier League (FPL) talking points of the day in FPL Daily, a weekday series that serves non-Premier League matchdays and days when we don’t bring you a team news/press conference round-up.

BLANK GAMEWEEK 30 LATEST

We have our first two confirmed blanks of Gameweek 30 of Fantasy Premier League after Tuesday’s FA Cup fifth-round ties.

Manchester City v Brighton and Hove Albion and Crystal Palace v Newcastle United will definitely be postponed after City and the Eagles made it through to the quarter-finals of the cup competition, which happen to clash with the Gameweek in question.

As a result of Tottenham Hotspur’s elimination at the hands of Middlesbrough, one of Burnley v Southampton and Spurs v West Ham United will go ahead in Gameweek 30, while the other won’t. That will be determined by the cup tie between the Hammers and the Saints on Wednesday.

The only three confirmed Gameweek 30 fixtures so far are Arsenal v Aston Villa, Leicester City v Brentford and Wolverhampton Wanderers v Leeds United.

Gameweek 30 Match Current status Game will go ahead if…
Wolves v Leeds Guaranteed to go ahead in Gameweek 30
Arsenal v Aston Villa Guaranteed to go ahead in Gameweek 30
Leicester v Brentford Guaranteed to go ahead in Gameweek 30
Man City v Brighton Blank
Newcastle v C Palace Blank
Norwich v Chelsea Possible blank Chelsea are beaten by Luton *and* Norwich are beaten by Liverpool in the FA Cup fifth round
Watford v Everton Possible blank Everton are beaten by Boreham Wood in the FA Cup fifth round
Burnley v Southampton Possible blank Southampton are beaten by West Ham in the FA Cup fifth round
Spurs v West Ham Possible blank West Ham are beaten by Southampton in the FA Cup fifth round
Liverpool v Man Utd Possible blank Liverpool are beaten by Norwich in the FA Cup fifth round

Tuesday’s results ensure that Manchester City will have at least one Double Gameweek at some point between Gameweek 33 and 38, with a possible Double Gameweek 36 against Brighton and Newcastle – both at home – one scenario.

JAMES FITNESS LATEST

The best FPL defenders for a Gameweek 28 Wildcard 2

We had a smattering of pre-FA Cup press conferences on Tuesday, the most interesting of which from a Fantasy perspective was Thomas Tuchel’s.

Chelsea will have a Double Gameweek 28 if they beat Luton Town (and/or Norwich defeat Liverpool) in the FA Cup fifth-round, with the Blues’ meeting with Dean Smith’s side brought forward to next week.

The newly available Rece James (£6.2m) would be top of many Fantasy managers’ shopping lists if he was 100% fit but after two months on the sidelines, the wing-back still has a bit to go before he is fully up to speed.

James played 70 minutes of the EFL Cup final on Sunday, with Tuchel saying in Tuesday’s conference call that the defender was only meant to play 20 minutes.

“Now with a huge overload on his shoulders. The recommendation was 20 minutes before the match and it was like over 70 in a final with extra tension and extra pressure.” — Thomas Tuchel on Reece James

The hope from an FPL perspective is that he is rested in the FA Cup in midweek and comes back into first-team reckoning for Premier League duty, but it might still be a big ask of him to start the following three league matches should a Saturday -Thursday-Sunday turnaround materialise.

Other changes look likely at Luton tomorrow for the European and world champions, meanwhile.

“We have now a lot of players in physical overload and we have some injuries from the [EFL Cup final]. It’s actually, in the moment, too much to comment about it, it would be a long list.

“Hakim [Ziyech] is not available for tomorrow. He feels still uncomfortable, he was not in team training today.” — Thomas Tuchel

Jurgen Klopp also promised to make changes in the FA Cup this week, with Thiago Alcantara (£5.3m) the only reported injury-related absentee.

Southampton and West Ham don’t have any fresh concerns for their cup clash, but Norwich have doubts over Ozan Kabak (£4.3m), Brandon Williams (£3.9m) Max Aarons (£4.3m) – none of whom have trained since their Gameweek 27 defeat to Southampton.


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