Tuesday evening Paul Lamert ruled Benteke out of action for 4-6 weeks. Wegner has sidelined Walcott for a similar amount of time, possibly aiming for a return to the side for GW8 following the international break. More bad news - Moyes has given Van Perie only an 'outside chance' to make Saturday's clash with WBA.
Odds are that when reading this you own at least one of these three players so we'll run through the transfer options with you.
The obvious straight swap is to Oliver Giroud who we actually rate as the best forward in FPL today and as it stands today he's the same price as the Belgian. You likely already own him though, right?
An alternative is Alvaro Negredo at £9.3m. After Dzeko and Jovetic played in the league cup last night it looks certain Negredo will start against Villa in GW6 and could be a very rewarding captain pick.
A much cheaper but no less tantalising transfer is to Romelu Lukaku. He's off the mark already with his goal from the bench against West Ham last week and had more shots than anyone else in that Everton game despite just 45 mins on the pitch. He's not guaranteed to start yet. He made his full debut in the cup last night with Jelavic unused on the bench but considering his impact at Upton Park it has to be considered very likely.
Pre-season we billed Theo alongside Eden Hazard as the two FPL midfielders who could make it big this season. Indeed both are in the InsideFPL team (which you can follow in our free newsletter). Neither have done much yet and this injury has to be considered a blow to those FPL managers who had kept faith in Theo through some low key scoring weeks and watched as Ozil and Ramsey bandwagons roared by.
Our straight swap recommendation is Michu at £9.0m. He's picking up steam and fixtures are brightening. You would be forgiven for wanting to replace Walcott with either Ozil or Ramsey. Ozil is hard to ignore right now despite not having the "proper" fantasy football credentials. As has been seen, he's an assister, and frankly assists will never be as as good as goals in FPL and we have to factor that in and we continue to prefer Ramsey over Ozil.
For something different, and if you are not too risk adverse,you could tryKevin Mirallas. He finally picked up his first attacking points with an assist for Lukaku last week. He's 7th overall for midfielders in our attacking rankings (aPts) and has an immediate "Fixture of Hope" on the agenda with Newcastle at Goodison this weekend. Martinez has commented on Lukaku's ability to create space for others... "Romelu is the type of striker that influences everyone around him because of the gaps he creates. Other players around him become a threat...". Other players = Mirallas.
Van Persie (£14m)
RVP's injury is nowhere near as serious as Benteke's and Walcott's but his price tag is nowhere near either. The knives are out for Van Persie already. Those who have stuck with him from GW1 have suffered, and now it's possible he could miss one of the fixtures where you expect him to make a difference to your team.
The straight swap alternative is to Wayne Rooney (£10.7) who is outscoring RVP for fantasy points so far this season. The impact of Rooney on Van Persie is actually the featured article in our newsletter this week where we have analysed their points scored last season with and without each other on the pitch.
Other alternatives, the more cheeky ones, are to bring in Suarez orAguero. Both could come straight in and captain your teams this week despite away games. Sunderland and Villa are not teams to be afraid of, but both players come with downsides that Rooney doesn't have.
We don't know whether Suarez will start and if he does where he'll fit in with Sturridge. These two also get the same analysis as Rooney/RVP in our newsletter this week.
For Aguero, occasional rotation looks likely plus the numbers are not on his side. His shot numbers are way below where they should be and compared to United and Liverpool the fixtures don't look so hot, ranked 16th over the next 6GW. Both players have something you do want though - and that's genuine class, but the same must be said for Rooney, which is why we prefer him right now of the three.