Injuries and Suspensions

Well, the injury crisis at Chelsea was apparently somewhat overstated with Alex looking like he'll be able to play and Terry being readied for mid-week.  The dire predictions about the value of CHE's cheaper defenders (and Cech) appear to be a bit overblown.  That said, Zhirkov is apparently ruled out and there's a choice to be made between Bosingwa and Ferreira at right back.  So, there's definitely a better chance of a clean sheet now but the uncertainty now lies with selection. 

In other news, the takeover at Rovers is complete.  It will be interesting to see how the league's first Indian owners approach their investment in a club.  Is there the possibility that Rovers could become the unofficial club of India in the same way that all Americans have a soft spot for Fulham due to the number of American players who have (and currently) play there? India isn't ready to start supplying Premier League players but if Rovers could carve out a niche, it could be an opportunity to capture an over-sized portion of interest from a huge country that is growing incredibly quickly from an economic standpoint that is paralleled by a rising interest in the Premier League as well.  For those of our readers in India, I'd be curious to hear if Indian ownership makes you even slightly more interested in following Rovers.  If it doesn't right now, is there anything that would?

Finally, we welcome TheScore to our blogging family.  The start-up Irish sports site has asked Jeremy and I to derive a more general version of "The Week Ahead" appropriate for people playing any fantasy game for their site and our first installment was published this morning.  Check it and the rest of the site out.  If you like what you see, remember to hit the "Like" button - it's always important to show some traction when you're launching a new media property and advertisers like to see things like that.

OK, on to the injuries:

  • Almunia/Diaby/Vermaelen/Ramsey - The list continues to shrink with Koscielny back from suspension and RVP back in the squad (but no word on whether he'll start).  The big question is now selection with so many attackers and attacking midfielders all available.  This increases the value of Cesc and Nasri (who I can't imagine would be rotated given current form).
  • Dawson/King/THud/Keane - This list is notable for the lack of Lennon and Defoe on it - Defoe will be in the squad and Lennon is still doubtful but Spurs are slowly returning to health as well.  The down side is that the small chance of Lennon playing devalues Bentley somewhat.
  • Essien/Zhirkov/Terry/Lamps - With Essien suspended and the rest injured the following players will start with the RB decision mentioned above the only question: Cech, Alex, Ivanovic, Cole, Mikel, Ramires, Malouda, Anelka, Kalou and Drogba
  • Gilks - Ouch! A broken knee cap sounds really painful.  On the plus side, Adam may be fit - there are conflicting reports on his readiness ranging from "he looks doubtful" (Football365) to "confident he will play" (BBC).  
  • Tiote/Barton - Both are suspended for NUFC (just a reminder) which should improve Bolton's chances
  • Gerrard/Spearing/Lucas - Injuries to the spine of Liverpool's team.  Not good.  Good thing the opposition isn't strong.
  • Rooney - The injury report implies that he'll be on the bench rather than starting so Berbs is probably the bet if you want in on this match-up and then take a sedative until the matches start to prevent yourself from going crazy over having picked a striker who hasn't scored in 10 matches or something like that.  Rafael is also a doubt.
  • Ollson/Miller - I don't think either of these guys will concern you but the fact that Brunt is a major doubt could make a difference to a lot of fantasy managers.
  • Villa's entire team - OK, not really but there's a lot of them missing, so much so that Pires may go right into the starting line-up (sadly, he's not available in the Yahoo game yet) - would be a fun pick-up for old time's sake.
  • Dembele - He's hurt again but Salcido is back.
  • Not Joe Hart! - He has apparently recovered from his injury and should be joined by Tevez who was famously subbed out for a dead leg toward the end of the match last weekend.
  • Fellaini - Still suspended but both EVE and SUN are pretty healthy with DBent likely to feature in some way or another.
So, that's the news - good luck with your final selections and we'll look forward to seeing you on the Live Chat tomorrow if you can make it.

Have a great weekend.


  1. I thought Alex was out for a month or two?

  2. Alex is delaying his surgery to play.

  3. Anonymous12:41 PM

    So Jeremy, will Adam play ?
    If not, anybody else from Blackpool we can counting on?

  4. Adam seems doubtful. I would look at Grandin and Eardley who will probably share kicks in Adam's absence.

  5. Anonymous12:59 PM

    vaughan might take the kicks without adam, solid consistent ff player also

  6. Anonymous1:10 PM

    As an Indian fan who already follows EPL, the Rovers takeover doesnt inspire an interest in following them yet.

    What could? Perhaps a Rovers match in India in summer (which i heard is a possiblity).

  7. Anonymous3:39 PM

    As for Fulham fans in America, I'm on the East Coast Raleigh, NC and you can't find Fulham anything anywhere. What you fail to factor in is youth soccer here is HUGE, and in our area there is the Capitol Area Soccer League or CASL. They have, apparently signed an exclusive youth partnership with Chelsea Football Club. So I see every other mini-van with the CASL stickers here that basically have the Chelsea branding all over it. Also, Americans like to back a winner or a team with a tradition of winning. So I'll make a pretty safe bet that FC Fulham are getting no traction...Dempsey or no.

  8. Nigel MC4:14 PM

    With Carroll having taken his international debut 'against club advice' do you think he'll still play 90, or is pettiness like that overlooked.

  9. Anonymous4:46 PM

    can anyone confirm if Boateng is injured?

  10. Anonymous7:32 PM

    Nickname proposal...

    Golden Holden.


  11. Anonymous1:09 AM

    yes ofcourse, il be rooting for rovers after barca and wont change my loyalties and i wont watch much of blackburn cause they arent fun to watch.

  12. Golden Holden sounds cool to me...

    For his initial cost, Holden has been pretty consistent so far this season.

    Let's hope he's not jinxed this week as I now have him in my team.

    By the way, he's a potential season-keeper.


  14. Anonymous6:46 AM

    As another Indian fan, and having discussed the takeover numerous times amongst mates, feelings are mixed.

    The new owners of the Rovers have cashed in on the (rising) Indian sentiment for the league, but from the fans' perspective, in a nutshell, perhaps there's a sense of dissatisfaction with the choice of team. That Blackburn Rovers is, for the best part, predominantly a defensive-minded side is well known. It's all good though. They're a strong unit, with a reputation. With a good manager, and a few good names in that side (like Robinson, Dunn, Salgado). A middle-of-the-table side, and one that wouldn't see relegation from the top flight soon.

    It's exciting enough that there's Indians invested in the league now, albeit it could've been a more exciting side. And I do think, this is the beginning of a new trend, and more Indian investors will be linked soon. Like billionnaire Anil Ambani, who's been linked with Newcastle for a while now. It's in large, thanks to the IPL (in cricket) that team-ownership in sports has found fancy.

    -Bombay Blues (CFC supporter)