LONDON - Brief news ahead of this weekend's Premier League matches: Champions Manchester United are boosted by the return of defenders Gary Neville and Nemanja Vidic for the trip to Wigan Athletic on Saturday. However, Rio Ferdinand (thigh), Edwin van der Sar (finger) and Rafael (shoulder) are all out. Fulham will be without striker Andy Johnson for two months, starting with their west London derby at home to Chelsea on Sunday, after he dislocated his collarbone in the 3-1 Europa League win over Russian side Amkar Perm on Thursday. "The opponent quite cold-bloodedly smashed into him. As a result he will be out for eight weeks," manager Roy Hodgson said of the incident. Arsenal's Croatian striker Eduardo da Silva should be fit to face Portsmouth on Saturday after missing the Champions League playoff win over Celtic on Tuesday when he suffered a tight groin in the warm-up. England winger Theo Walcott (back) is still not fit and joins Tomas Rosicky (hamstring), Samir Nasri (leg), Johan Djourou (knee) and Lukasz Fabianski (knee) on the injury list. Tottenham Hotspur goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes will miss Sunday's London derby at West Ham United after sustaining a groin injury, manager Harry Redknapp told reporters on Friday. Gomes was injured in the 5-1 victory at Hull City on Wednesday and was replaced by Carlo Cudicini. Ledley King should return to central defence after resting his knee in midweek. Manchester City strikers Robinho (ankle) and Emmanuel Adebayor (groin) are expected to shake off injuries for the home match against Wolverhampton Wanderers on Saturday. Manager Mark Hughes said on Friday that Carlos Tevez was ready for 90 minutes after coming on as a substitute at Blackburn last weekend and impressing in the friendly against Barcelona on Wednesday. Sunderland said French midfielder Steed Malbranque could be available for Saturday's home match against Blackburn Rovers after he missed Tuesday's 3-1 home defeat by Chelsea with an ankle injury but midfielder Lee Cattermole is struggling with a back problem and goalkeeper Marton Fulop has a sore heel. Everton youngster Jack Rodwell could miss the trip to Burnley on Sunday after twisting his knee in Thursday's Europa League victory over Sigma Olomouc in which he scored two great goals. Steven Pienaar also picked up a knock. "Jack and Steven both came off with injuries and at this present time are a doubt for the weekend. Jack has a twisted knee and Steven got a kick on his foot," Everton manager David Moyes told the club's website.
21 August 2009
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