Gameweek 18: Team Selection: Morata & Richarlison Injured?
Posted by FFPundits
5:38pm Dec 14 2017
Chelsea’s Alvaro Morata and Watford’s Richarlison are possible transfers out for Gameweek 18
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Alvaro Morata missed Chelsea’s midweek game due to a back injury and Antonio Conte is yet to comment on his availability for the home fixture against Southampton.
Hopefully, the Chelsea forward is able to recover but if he were to look likely to miss out again, Roberto Firmino could be the man to replace him.
Klopp has been rotating his side in recent weeks but after a goalless draw with West Brom, he’ll be expected to name a strong side for the trip to Bournemouth this weekend.
Richarlison suffered a groin problem towards the end of the midweek defeat to Crystal Palace, making him a potential doubt for the home game against Huddersfield this weekend.
Again, the extent of the injury is unknown for now and keeping the Watford midfielder may turn out to be an option.
If he were to be ruled out, Xherdan Shaqiri looks like the obvious like-for-like replacement, with his price tag of £6.2m and having contributed to 9 Premier League goals so far this season (4 goals, 5 assists).
Riyad Mahrez is also making a strong case for himself, after finding his 12th attacking return of the season midweek (5 goals, 7 assists) and the downgrade to Firmino would allow the extra cash needed, potentially.
For now though, no transfers have been made and here’s how the team is shaping up for Gameweek 18:
Goalkeeper & Defenders
After keeping their 8th clean sheet of the season midweek, Burnley travel to Brighton for Gameweek 18; a side that have mustered up just 1 goal in their last 4 games, which is fewer than every other Premier League side, during that period.
With that in mind, Nick Pope and Ben Mee make the lineup, though Kevin Long is once again on standby, should the Burnley defender miss out through injury for a 3rd game.
Man City welcome Spurs to the Etihad for Gameweek 18, so Nicolas Otamendi will have the tough task of keeping Harry Kane quiet if he’s to keep a clean sheet.
Having registered 7 attempts at goal during the last 4 Gameweeks, the Man City defender also has attacking potential in his locker.
Finally, Andreas Christensen keeps his place, as Chelsea host Saints, on the back of their 4-1 defeat to Leicester midweek.
Only 6 teams have scored fewer goals than Southampton over the last 4 Gameweeks, while Chelsea have conceded fewer big chances than every other team, during the same period.
Raheem Sterling has started in each of the last 7 Gameweeks and has made himself a key player for Pep Guardiola in recent weeks – with Spurs up next for Man City, the England midfielder looks likely to keep his place.
After failing to find a win in their last 2 games, Liverpool will be expected to field a strong side for the away trip to Bournemouth in Gameweek 18, so Mohamed Salah should find himself in the starting lineup once again, despite the recent news of his minor hamstring problem.
Eden Hazard completes the midfield, as Chelsea welcome Southampton to the Bridge.
He was unable to find FPL returns during the win over Huddersfield but his tally of 7 shots on target in the last 4 Gameweeks can be beaten only by Kevin De Bruyne and Harry Kane (8).
Harry Kane took an impressive tally of 5 shots on target against Brighton without managing to find the back of the net, but no player has taken more shots on target than the Spurs forward, during the last 4 Gameweeks.
Finally, Dominic Calvert-Lewin lines up as Everton host a Swansea side that have conceded 7 goals during the last 4 Gameweeks. Only Stoke (12) have conceded more big chances than the Welsh side over that period (10).
Harry Kane needs 4 more goals from his next 3 games to break Alan Shearer’s record for the most Premier League goals in a calendar year.
But with the Spurs forward travelling away to Man City in Gameweek 18, the temptation will be to overlook him for captaincy in favour of Eden Hazard or Mohamed Salah; who each have more favourable fixtures.
The Liverpool midfielder failed to register FPL points midweek, for the first time in 9 league games. He’s scored 3 goals in the last 4 Gameweeks but from just 4 shots on target; half of the tally that Hazard has managed during that period.
However, 6 of Hazard’s last 8 shots on target came during a single game against Newcastle and the Belgian midfielder has registered just 2 shots on target during the last 2 Gameweeks; in games against Huddersfield and West Ham.
With that in mind, Mohamed Salah may be the safer option but Eden Hazard, on his day, certainly can be explosive. So, it’s a real 50-50 call but the Chelsea man is edging it slightly, for the moment, after Southampton conceded 4 goals midweek to Leicester.
If you’re new to the channel, please note that this team is subject to change, so follow @_FPLtips on Twitter, to be notified of any updates to the team in advance of the Gameweek 18 deadline.
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