PREMIER LEAGUE BRIEFING
(Current league positions in brackets)
Sunday, May 6
Aston Villa (15) v Tottenham (4)
Stephen Ireland could return to Alex McLeish's Aston Villa side after recovering from a hip injury and a more recent hamstring problem but striker Emile Heskey (Achilles) is still a doubt. Defender James Collins and midfielder Chris Herd will wait to see if they are included in the starting line-up following their involvement in an incident at a nightclub in the early hours of Tuesday morning.
Tottenham midfielder Scott Parker is making a good recovery from his ankle injury and should be fit. Kyle Walker broke a toe during Wednesday's win over Bolton but will play against Villa after having a pain-killing injection but Ledley King could miss out again with his knee problem.
Last season: Aston Villa 1 Tottenham 2, Tottenham 2 Aston Villa 1
Last five league matches: Aston Villa D L D L D; Tottenham D L L W W
Top scorers: Darren Bent (Aston Villa) 10; Jermain Defoe & Emmanuel Adebayor (Tottenham) 16
Referee: Lee Probert (Wiltshire)
Bolton (18) v West Brom (10)
Bolton midfielder Nigel Reo-Coker will undergo a fitness test on a leg injury. Reo-Coker had a similar assessment before Wednesday's 4-1 home defeat against Tottenham and had to come off in the second half of that game. Wanderers boss Owen Coyle has confirmed Gretar Steinsson has been out of action with a thigh injury rather than illness and the defender remains a doubt, while midfielder Darren Pratley is still sidelined with a virus.
New England coach Roy Hodgson has no fresh injury problems for his penultimate match as West Brom manager. Midfielder James Morrison has resumed training after recovering from his knee problem. Striker Shane Long picked up a knock during the goalless draw with Aston Villa last weekend but should be available.
Last season: Bolton 2 West Brom 0, West Brom 1 Bolton 1
Last five league matches: Bolton L D W D L; West Brom W L W W D
Top scorers: Marvin Sordell (Bolton) 10; Keith Andrews & Peter Odemwingie (West Brom) 11
Referee: Kevin Friend (Leicestershire)
Fulham (9) v Sunderland (11)
Andrew Johnson is one of several players ruled out by Fulham. The striker missed recent trips to Everton and Liverpool with an adductor injury and will not recover in time to feature on Sunday. Johnson will be joined on the sidelines by midfielders Simon Davies (hip), Steve Sidwell (hernia) and Bryan Ruiz (foot), while defender Zdenek Grygera (knee) remains out.
Sunderland defender John O'Shea and striker Nicklas Bendtner are fighting to be fit after both men picked up foot injuries in training this week. Midfielder Craig Gardner is available after serving a one-match ban and defender Titus Bramble (Achilles) is back in training but short of fitness.
Last season: Sunderland 0 Fulham 3, Fulham 0 Sunderland 0
Last five league matches: Fulham W D W L W; Sunderland D L D D D
Top scorers: Clint Dempsey (Fulham) 22; Nicklas Bendtner, Sebastian Larsson & Stephane Sessegnon (Sunderland) 8
Referee: Martin Atkinson
Man Utd (2) v Swansea (12)
Jonny Evans and Danny Welbeck have both been ruled out of Manchester United's final home game due to foot injuries. Anders Lindegaard (ankle) is available for the first time since January as the Red Devils look to retain their severely-damaged title hopes.
Leon Britton (knee) is a doubt for Swansea but Angel Rangel is set to return from a hamstring injury at Old Trafford.
The problem kept the Spaniard out of last weekend's 4-4 draw with Wolves, but with Alan Tate (calf) also available, manager Brendan Rodgers is set to return to his favoured 4-3-3 formation.
Last season: No Corresponding fixture
Last five league matches: Man Utd W L W D L; Swansea L L W D D
Top scorers: Wayne Rooney (Man Utd) 34; Danny Graham (Swansea) 13
Referee: Chris Foy (Merseyside)
Newcastle (5) v Man City (1)
Newcastle midfielder Cheick Tiote will be fit despite suffering a nasty head injury in midweek. The Ivory Coast international needed seven stitches to repair a gash above his eye after a collision with John Obi Mikel in Wednesday night's 2-0 win at Chelsea. Full-back Danny Simpson (ankle) remains a doubt.
City boss Roberto Mancini may be tempted to stick with the starting line-up from Monday's crucial win over Manchester United, although Micah Richards and James Milner might both hope to be involved.
Last season: Newcastle 1 Man City 3, Man City 2 Newcastle 1
Last five league matches: Newcastle W W W L W; Man City L W W W W
Top scorers: Papiss Cisse (Newcastle) 22; Sergio Aguero (Man City) 29
Referee: Howard Webb
QPR (17) v Stoke (13)
QPR are able to welcome back Adel Taarabt after the Morocco international missed last week's 6-1 thrashing at west London rivals Chelsea through suspension. Samba Diakite is a doubt as he struggles with a virus, although manager Mark Hughes hopes he will be an option for the Loftus Road encounter.
Thomas Sorensen will replace Asmir Begovic as Stoke goalkeeper to ensure he is match sharp ahead of the European Championships next month. Winger Jermaine Pennant (hamstring) and defender Andy Wilkinson (groin) remain doubtful after missing Tuesday's 1-1 draw with Everton while midfielder Rory Delap (back) is also struggling.
Last season: No Corresponding fixture
Last five league matches: QPR L W L W L; Stoke W D L D D
Top scorers: Bobby Zamora & Heidar Helguson (QPR) 9; Peter Crouch (Stoke) 14
Referee: Andre Marriner
Wolves (20) v Everton (7)
Wolves interim boss Terry Connor is hopeful on-loan Tottenham defender Sebastien Bassong will be fit after missing last weekend's 4-4 draw at Swansea with a hamstring injury and will be given a late fitness test. Winger Matt Jarvis had a tight groin at the Liberty Stadium but is confident he will be available as Wolves search for their first win under Connor at the 12th attempt.
Everton left-back Leighton Baines has been ruled out despite progressing well in his recovery from a hamstring problem. Forward Victor Anichebe is also missing after suffering a groin injury in midweek and joins midfielder Jack Rodwell (hamstring) on the sidelines. Versatile captain Phil Neville and midfielder Darron Gibson could be doubtful after suffering slight knocks.
Last season: Wolves 0 Everton 3, Everton 1 Wolves 1
Last five league matches: Wolves L L D L D; Everton D W D W D
Top scorers: Steven Fletcher (Wolves) 11; Nikica Jelavic (Everton) 27
Referee: Lee Mason (Lancashire)
Monday, May 7
Blackburn (19) v Wigan (16)
Wide man Martin Olsson could return to the Blackburn starting XI after being on the bench for the last three games due to a niggling groin complaint. Bradley Orr (Achilles) will be assessed ahead of kick-off David Goodwillie will be in the squad despite being given a community service order earlier this week for assaulting a man in Glasgow. Defender Grant Hanley (knee) remains sidelined.
Wigan manager Roberto Martinez has a full squad to choose from with striker Franco Di Santo free of a calf injury and defender Ronnie Stam (hamstring) also available.
Last season: Wigan 4 Blackburn 3, Blackburn 2 Wigan 1
Last five league matches: Blackburn L L L W L; Wigan L W W L W
Top scorers: Ayegbeni Yakubu (Blackburn) 17; Franco Di Santo & Victor Moses (Wigan) 6
Referee: Mark Clattenburg (Tyne & Wear)
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