ANDREW VORCE - Friday, August 27, 2010
Brad Friedel and Tim Howard will go head to head as both clubs are in desperate need of positive movement, while Clint Dempsey and Stuart Holden both look for starts in a full weekend of English action.
Aston Villa - Everton
Brad Friedel and Tim Howard will have much to prove as both clubs are struggling to regain the forward momentum they exhibited at long lengths last season.
Last week Friedel's Aston Villa were emberrased away to Newcastle after letting in six goals after missing an early penalty chance.
Thursday the team was dumped out of the Europa League by Austrial club Rapid Vienna.
After missing a second half penalty kick, the nerves set in and Vienna came back to win the game 3-2 to advance to the next round.
Fabian Delph is the only injury concern for Fulham, while Everton have three out.
Aiyegbeni Yakubu is out with a calf injury, while Victor Anichebe and Phil Neville could both be ready for squad selection on the weekend.
Blackpool - Fulham
Clint Dempsey was a super sub in Fulham's midweek Carling Cup match, while Eddie Johnson was not brought on as the London club stomped their opponents.
Dempsey will likely start for the Cottagers while Johnson will be lucky to make the gameday roster.
Fulham coasted to a 6-0 win over Port Vale in the Carling Cup, while their weekend opponents were unable to cope with Milton Keynes Dons, falling 4-3 at Stadium: MK.
Mark Schwarzer may be healthy enough for a selection, but Mark Hughes may not want to tamper with his winning formula.
Diomansy Kamara is out with an ankle injury, while Philleppe Senderos is out with an Achilles rupture.
The last Fulham injury is Andy Johnson, who has been out with Jumpers Knee.
His American strike partner in Johnson has not benefitted from his absence, however.
Blackpool enjoyed opening day success, but were undone at Arsenal after Ian Evatt was sent off.
His absence makes six ineligible players, with five out to injury.
Jason Euell is on the verge of recovery from a knee injury which sees Billy Clarke, Paul Rachubka, and Keith Southern all sidelined. Louis Almond is out until October with a shoulder injury.
Wolverhampton - Newcastle
Marcus Hahnemann will regain control of the back line after his midweek rest in the Carling Cup as high flying Newcastle come to Molineux.
Mick McCarthy's charges were able to see off Southend United 2-1 on their home turf, but face Newcastle who have scored nine goals in their last two outings.
Wolves could have a trio of players available for the game, with David Edwards, Steven Mouyokolo, and Jelle Van Damme all nearing full fitness.
Newcastle beat Aston Villa 6-0 in their last Premier League outing, and defeated Accrington Stanley 3-2 in the Carling Cup.
Danny Simpson will look to return in September, while Steven Taylor should return in October from a shoulder injury.
Tamas Kadar and Dan Gosling are both out with knee injuries, while Leon Best is out with an ankle injury.
Bolton - Birmingham
Stuart Holden will look to hold down his starting position for Bolton as Birmingham City come to town.
Bolton have only conceded one goal in their opening three matches, scoring four times.
Gavin McCann may be able to return after an ankle injury, being the only Wanderer with injury implecations.
Birmingham haven't been short of goals in their opening three matches, scoring seven but conceding five.
Without a loss to their name, both teams find themselves in fifth and sixth places, tied with four points.
Birmingham are without Kevin Phillips due to a thigh muscle strain, while Stuart Parnaby may return after an injury lay off due to a hamstring injury.
Derby County – Queens Park Rangers
Conor Doyle looks to feature as Derby County travel to take on Queens Park Rangers in Championship action this weekend.
The young Dallas native has played the last two games for the Rams, including starting their last game against Coventry City.
Doyle should see the field once again this Saturday.
Derby will look to record their second win of the season. Their only win so far was the opening game against Leeds United.
Queens Park Rangers are enjoying a dream start to the Championship. They are currently on top of the standings having won the three games they have played.
The Hoops won last week's game 2-0 over Scunthorpe United.
Russell Anderson is still nursing an injured groin and will not feature for the Rams.
Stephen Pearson is still recovering from a knee operation and will miss as well.
QPR's defender Fitz Hall could not recover in time for last week's game and is questionable for this weekend's game.
Colchester united - Carlisle United
Frank Simek will assume hos normal starting spot on the Carlisle back line when the Cumbrians travel to Colchester United on Friday evening.
Simek started and went the distance in last week's emphatic 4-1 win over MK Dons.
Carlisle are sitting pretty at the top of the League One standings with seven points.
The visitors will be looking to test Colchester goalkeeper Mark Cousins who coughed up two soft goals in their midweek Carling Cup loss to Sunderland.
Paul Reid will be a gametime decision for Colchester while Simon Hackney, Steven Gillespie, John-Joe O'Toole and Morten Knudsen are all out with injuries.
Carlisle head coach Greg Abbott will not have the services of defender Danny Livesey due to a groin injury and striker Jason Price who has a small muscle tear.
Plymouth Argyle – Peterborough United
Anton Peterlin and Plymouth Argyle will play Peterborough United this Saturday.
Peterlin did not feature for the Pilgrims in last week's loss to Walsall. He has featured this season on occasion for Plymouth and could get playing time this weekend.
Plymouth lost their first game of the season against Walsall last week and will look to reverse that result against Peterborough.
Peterborough currently have six points in the standings and are having a successful start to the season.
They hope to keep that momentum going against the Pilgrims.
This week they beat Cardiff 2-1 in the Carling Cup.
The Posh could be without Gabriel Zakuani who has a groin injury, Lee Frecklington who is nursing a knee problem and Chris Whelpdale who has a hurt thigh.
The Pilgrims left last week's game unscathed and have no reported new injuries.
Wycombe Wanderers – Northampton Town
Jon-Paul Pittman and the Wycombe Wanderers take on fellow American Seb Harris and Northampton Town.
Pittman featured last week and played 74 minutes for the Wanderers. He is expected to also play a part in this weekend's game.
Wycombe tied 0-0 last week against Oxford United and are hoping to score some goals this time around.
Northampton Town have yet to win in League Two action this season, but they did record an upset this week in Carling Cup play when they beat Reading in a penalty shootout.
Town hope that they can keep that momentum and record their first win of the League Two season.
Harris did not feature this week's Carling Cap win, but he did come off the bench last week against Bury. He hopes for the same against Wycombe.
Paul Rodgers left the Reading game injured for Town and should miss out this week.
Allan Bennet was injured in last week's tie against Bury and is questionable for Wycombe.
Mike Grella hopes for playing time as Leeds plays Watford.
Zak Whitbread is injured and will not feature as Norwich City play Nottingham Forest.
Jonathan Spector will look to make the bench when West Ham travel to Manchester United.