Christian Benteke – he wasn’t terribly effective midweek in the EFL Cup match, but at least he got 45 minutes of real(!) actual(!) game time, something he hasn’t gotten in ages. The big Belgian should be licking his chops at the prospect of Premier League action, especially against a Bournemouth defense that has given up four goals in two games. Start him if ya got him.
Nathan Redmond – Redmond looks the most likely goal threat for a Southampton team that really needs to get going.
Jose Fonte – We like all Southampton defenders this week at home v. Sunderland, but we particularly like the well-coifed Portuguese man. Good chance at a clean sheet and some great passing numbers as he works himself up to match fitness.
Wily Caballero – one more week between the sticks for Bill Gentleman, who faces an injury-plagued West Ham side. It’s unlikely that Payet will play and Manuel Lanzini will almost certainly miss out, in addition to their long-term absentees.
Sadio Mané – Any concerns of the shoulder injury he suffered in training were shrugged off in his midweek MotM performance in the EFL Cup. He’s quickly established himself as Liverpool’s best attacker and is a great goal scorer with midfield eligibility.
Ahmed Musa – Shinji Okazaki’s work rate might relegate Musa to a super sub role most of the season, but he has certainly looked lively whenever he’s played. If he gets the start for his reality team, we suggest he get the start for your fantasy team.
Michy Batshuayi – A goal and an assist in just 33 minutes of Premier League action, he also bagged two goals in Chelsea’s midweek EFL Cup game. Not sure what else he has to do to get a start, but he’s proving to be very productive no matter how much time he plays.
Dusan Tadic – We’re not sure what’s happening with the crafty Tadic, but he’s looked more like the player prone to getting benched under Ronald Koeman than the one who was scoring and creating goals. After another summer with plenty of turnover, this Saints team is still finding their legs and none more so than the Serbian attacking midfielder.
Christhian Stuani – If you picked up Stuani this week, it likely means you’re desperate for some firepower, but it’s probably best to take a wait-and-see approach with the Uruguayan. He scored a phenomenal goal last weekend (and a second, less spectacular one) but he won’t get that kind of space against a Tony Pulis rugby team. His strike rate over the course of his career is about 1-in-4, and hopefully you have better options on your bench.
Firmino – A sluggish start to the season thus far, you likely have a better option at forward than the man-bunned Brazilian. He did nod in a goal against Burton Albion in Liverpool’s EFL Cup game on Tuesday, but he has a ways to go before he’s back to must-start status.
Granit Xhaka – Reports surfacing that a calf strain will sideline the Swiss foul machine for six weeks. Also known as a rite of passage when you sign for Arsenal.
Coutinho – A hamstring injury means he’s unlikely to make the trip to White Hart Lane.
Claudio Bravo – Guardiola has said the Chilean keeper will not play this week.