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Saturday's Premier League team news

Updated: Friday, 05 Apr 2013 15:47 | Comments

There are key matches at the bottom of the Premier League table
There are key matches at the bottom of the Premier League table

Norwich v Swansea

Goalkeeper Mark Bunn returns to the Norwich squad after serving his one-match suspension for being sent off against Sunderland. Alexander Tettey has also recovered from a knee injury but fellow midfielder Anthony Pilkington (hamstring) misses out, although he is likely to be fit next week.

First-choice goalkeeper John Ruddy will play a development match on Monday as his recuperation from thigh surgery gathers momentum.

Swansea centre-back Chico Flores aggravated an ankle problem in the defeat to Tottenham, a match right-back Angel Rangel missed due to a calf problem, but both players have returned to training and are set to be involved against the Canaries.

Kemy Agustien is also training after a thigh problem, while Neil Taylor is edging closer to a first-team return after his lengthy spell on the sidelines with a broken ankle.

Reading v Southampton

Jimmy Kebe has been ruled out as he continues to recover from a groin problem. Kebe apart, Nigel Adkins reported a fully-fit squad and the Reading manager has a decision to take over who starts in goal against his former club.

Adam Federici and Alex McCarthy are both looking to claim the goalkeeper's jersey from Stuart Taylor after overcoming ankle and shoulder injuries respectively.

Southampton manager Mauricio Pochettino hopes to have Artur Boruc and Adam Lallana fit.

Poland goalkeeper Boruc was forced off at half-time of last weekend's 2-1 defeat of Chelsea due to dizziness caused by a virus, although he returned to training on Monday.

Lallana missed the game due to a slight groin problem but could feature against former manager Nigel Adkins at the Madejski Stadium.

Stoke v Aston Villa

Winger Matthew Etherington is Stoke manager Tony Pulis' only doubt. He sat out last week's 1-0 defeat at Everton with a groin and back complaint for which he is currently receiving treatment.

Aston Villa defender Ciaran Clark suffered a shoulder injury while on international duty for the Republic of Ireland and was ruled out of last weekend's home setback against Liverpool.

Midfielder Brett Holman (hamstring) is available but defender Chris Herd and winger Marc Albrighton (both foot) plus defender Richard Dunne (groin) remain on the casualty list.

West Brom v Arsenal

West Brom midfielder Youssouf Mulumbu will start a three game-ban for his red card for violent conduct during the 3-1 away defeat against West Ham last weekend.

But Albion have a ready-made replacement in James Morrison who has recovered from a hamstring injury suffered against Stoke before the recent international break.

Arsenal could still be without both Jack Wilshere and Theo Walcott. Wilshere (ankle) and Walcott (hip/thigh) have returned to training but assistant manager Steve Bould has only given the England pair an "outside chance" of being involved at the Hawthorns.

Abou Diaby (knee) is a long-term absentee for the Gunners, with manager Arsene Wenger again having to make a decision on whether to recall captain Thomas Vermaelen.

Sunday, April 7

Chelsea v Sunderland

New Sunderland manager Paolo Di Canio has doubts over midfielder David Vaughan (groin) and defender Carlos Cuellar (ankle).

Captain Lee Cattermole (knee) and striker Steven Fletcher (ankle ligaments) will both miss the rest of the season but there is some hope for long-term absentee Wes Brown (knee), who is continuing to train without suffering a relapse.

Chelsea striker Demba Ba is set to return up front in place of Fernando Torres. Ba, scorer of Monday's FA Cup winner against Manchester United, was cup-tied for Thursday's Europa League defeat of Rubin Kazan, when Torres scored twice, but is poised to be restored as Blues interim manager Rafael Benitez rotates his squad for the fourth match in nine days.

Ashley Cole (hamstring) and his fellow England defender Gary Cahill (knee) remain out alongside long-term absentee Oriol Romeu (knee).

Liverpool v West Ham

Raheem Sterling is Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers' only doubt. Rodgers said Sterling has had "an ongoing issue with his thigh" which is being assessed and could lead to him being out for several weeks in order to protect it.

With the exception of long-term absentees Fabio Borini and Joe Allen (both shoulder) and Martin Kelly (knee), Rodgers otherwise has a full squad to choose from.

West Ham striker Andy Carroll is ineligible to face parent club Liverpool. Carroll scored twice in a 3-1 win over West Brom last weekend and is likely to be replaced by Carlton Cole or Marouane Chamakh.

Joe Cole (hamstring) joins Carroll in missing out on an Anfield return.

Defender George McCartney's knee injury is not as bad as first feared and does not require surgery, although he misses out, while Mark Noble (shoulder) is unavailable.

Newcastle v Fulham

Newcastle boss Alan Pardew has Yoan Gouffran back available but there remain doubts over Mathieu Debuchy and Cheick Tiote.

Like forward Gouffran, Debuchy was ineligible for Thursday's 3-1 Europa League defeat at Benfica, but he has also been nursing a hamstring problem and Pardew is unsure whether or not the defender, or midfielder Tiote (hamstring), will be fit enough to feature this weekend.

The manager does not expect Massadio Haidara (knee) to be ready to make his return to action against the Cottagers and has ruled out Fabricio Coloccini (back) doing so, while fellow defender Danny Simpson says he should be fit to play despite suffering a knock to the ankle in the Benfica match.

Fulham midfielder Steve Sidwell is suspended following his sending-off against QPR on Monday night.

Midfielder Ashkan Dejagah is out for a week with a sprained ankle while striker Mladen Petric is unavailable because of an adductor problem.

Midfielder Mahamadou Diarra is out for the rest of the season with a knee injury.

QPR v Wigan

QPR winger Shaun Wright-Phillips will miss out against Wigan after undergoing ankle surgery.

Wright-Phillips will miss Rangers' remaining seven matches but should be fit for the start of next season. Manager Harry Redknapp has otherwise declared a clean bill of health at Loftus Road.

Wigan striker Callum McManaman definitely figures in manager Roberto Martinez's squad. McManaman aggravated an ankle injury during a 2-1 win over Newcastle three weeks ago, and was withdrawn midway through the second half of last Saturday's 1-0 victory over Norwich, but is now fully fit.

Aside from a number of players out injured long term, midfielder Fraser Fyvie is the only new addition to the casualty list with "a knock" Martinez claims will keep him out for seven to 10 days.

Tottenham v Everton

Tottenham forward Gareth Bale is out after suffering an ankle injury in the Europa League draw against Basle.

Winger Aaron Lennon and defender William Gallas will undergo scans on the respective knee and calf injuries they suffered against the Swiss champions.

Midfielder Sandro (knee), striker Jermain Defoe (pelvis), and defender Younes Kaboul (knee) are unavailable.

Everton are sweating on the fitness of Kevin Mirallas, who suffered a groin injury against Stoke last week. Marouane Fellaini and Steven Pienaar are both missing as they complete two-match suspensions, with the Toffeemen looking to close within three points of their fellow Champions League chasers.

Monday, April 8

Manchester United v Manchester City

Wayne Rooney is set to return for Manchester United.

The England striker returned from international duty with a groin strain that has kept him out of games against Sunderland and Chelsea but after returning to training on Thursday, he should be involved against Roberto Mancini's men.

Rafael (groin) is also fit, while Nemanja Vidic (back) and Jonny Evans (hamstring) are 50-50.

Right-backs Micah Richards and Maicon (both knee) are the only Manchester City players definitely out.

The pair could return in the coming weeks while midfielder Jack Rodwell (hamstring) could be close to making his comeback.

Playmakers David Silva and Samir Nasri are both fully fit after suffering minor knocks in last week's defeat of Newcastle and defender Matija Nastasic (foot) returns.

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