VILLA can maximise their Uefa Cup chances with a ninth win in 11 games under their manager, John Gregory. Their striker Stan Collymore is fit to return and could partner Savo Milosevic, playing his final game before a probable move to Real Zaragoza in Spain. Midfielder Ian Taylor (thigh) is doubtful but Lee Hendrie (calf) should recover. The champions, Arsenal, will surely protect vulnerable players six days away from the FA Cup final but still recall Tony Adams, David Seaman, Martin Keown, Patrick Vieira, Nigel Winterburn and Nikolas Anelka. Emmanuel Petit, Marc Overmars and Ian Wright are also fit.
Barnsley v Manchester Utd
BARNSLEY have no injury worries and who would begrudge them a clean bill of health as they bid adieu to the Premiership after one sweet season? The defender Chris Morgan and their Macedonian striker, Georgi Hristov, are available after suspensions. Second-placed Manchester United, who after promising so much finish the season without adding to the clutter in the Old Trafford trophy cabinet, give a start to Henning Berg and will give a first taste of the Premiership experience to Michael Clegg and Philip Mulryne. John Curtis could also get another start but Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is suspended.
Blackburn Rovers v Newcastle
APPEARING certain of at least a Uefa Cup place earlier in the season, Rovers have slumped badly in the run-in and could miss out if they lose and Villa and Leicester or West Ham win. They have the Scottish midfielder Billy McKinlay fit for the fray but the captain Tim Sherwood and defender Callum Davidson are out. Jason Wilcox, Stuart Ripley and Damien Duff vie for the two wide positions. Newcastle's Alan Shearer takes time off from controversy to join another Blackburn old boy, David Batty, in warming up for next week's FA Cup final while also trying to avoid injury. Steve Howey and Rob Lee should be available.
Chelsea v Bolton Wanderers
FOR Bolton, the equation could not be simpler. Win and they are in the Premiership for another season. Lose and they depend on an Everton slip-up. "The only people we can rely on are ourselves," Colin Todd, the Bolton manager, insisted. Wanderers must check hamstring injuries to two of their strikers, Bob Taylor and Dean Holdsworth. Three days away from a European Cup Winners' Cup final date, Chelsea have the centre-back Franck Leboeuf fit again, Gianfranco Zola is training but not match fit while Dennis Wise (toe), Frank Sinclair (groin), Michael Duberry (ankle) and Graeme Le Saux (calf) are doubts.
Crystal Palace v Sheffield Wed
WITH nothing but pride and Premiership prize money resting on the result, Brian Sparrow, the Crystal Palace coach, ponders a first start for Tony Folan, a Republic of Ireland Under-21 international wing back, and central defender Hayden Mullins. Definitely out is Valerien Ismael (knee) which means Jamie Smith comes in on the right with Marc Edworthy moving inside. Wednesday give a first start to Francesco Sanetti, the 19-year-old Genoa striker who made such a strong impression when he came on as a substitute against Aston Villa last weekend. He partners Paolo di Canio in place of Andy Booth (suspended).
Derby County v Liverpool
DERBY ended their run of defeats with last week's win at Southampton and need a repeat to keep up their remote chance of a Uefa Cup place. They have not beaten Liverpool for 20 years but will be encouraged by the return of the fans' Player of the Year, Francesco Baiano. His Italian compatriot Stefano Eranio (groin) and the Croatian defender Igor Stimac (chest infection) are out. Liverpool are missing Steve McManaman, Paul Ince, Rob Jones, Jason McAteer, Robbie Jones, Robbie Fowler and Jamie Redknapp and add Danny Williams, Gareth Williams and Haukur Ingo Gudnason to their squad.
Everton v Coventry City
ALTHOUGH a draw will be enough if Bolton lose at Chelsea, Everton must win to give themselves every chance of a 45th consecutive year in the top flight, not to mention wrenching a smidgen of pride from their season. The Blues' former QPR striker John Spencer, signed for next season but on loan for this, is doubtful with a groin injury, but the French forward Mikael Madar could start on the pitch rather than on the bench. Coventry's attack is depleted with Darren Huckerby (ankle) doubtful and Viorel Moldovan absent with the Romanian World Cup squad, so Simon Haworth may partner Dion Dublin.
Leeds United v Wimbledon
PROGRESS at Elland Road has been swifter than expected - Leeds will finish fourth if they beat Wimbledon and Chelsea lose to Bolton - and a Uefa Cup place is already assured. Martin Hiden (hamstring) is Leeds' only doubt and the Austrian international defender faces a late fitness test. For Wimbledon, left-back Kenny Cunningham's groin injury rules him out as the side attempts to finish with some pride following last week's 6-2 thrashing at home by Spurs. "It was disappointing conceding those goals, particularly as we have been outstanding in that department," their manager, Joe Kinnear, commented.
Tottenham v Southampton
A TIME for farewells at White Hart Lane as Spurs' German striker/saviour, Jurgen Klinsmann, and Gary Mabbutt, who at over 600 games is a servant of rather longer standing, take their leave, the defender starting the game on the bench. With David Howells, Clive Wilson and Steffen Iversen definitely out, Ramon Vega (broken nose) is their only doubt. Southampton could have the former Newcastle full-back John Beresford (ankle) back after missing two games and Richard Dryden, a virus victim, should also be available. But the England Under-21 striker, Kevin Davies (knee), must sit out the end-of-the-season fun.
West Ham Utd v Leicester City
THE winners of this match - and Leicester last won at Upton Park in 1966 - will finish seventh if Aston Villa do not beat Arsenal and will thus claim the final Uefa Cup place if, again, Chelsea win the Cup Winners' Cup. If Villa and Blackburn lose, the winners will finish sixth and qualify automatically. All very clear. For West Ham, Rio Ferdinand's stiff neck has loosened, much like their defence which has conceded 12 goals in three games (hardly European form). His return frees Steve Lomas to rejoin midfield; Trevor Sinclair moves up front. Leicester have Garry Parker and Pontus Kaamark fit again.Reuse content