Hello and welcome to my Premier League team of the week for the weekend just gone. I have gone through and analysed this weeks top performers for each position, in my opinion, and decided to go for a 4-2-2 formation this week. Let me know your thoughts and who would you keep and swap?
GK: Edouard Mendy (Chelsea)
It’s safe to say that Chelsea’s 0-0 stalemate against Manchester United wasn’t the greatest of watches, as it was the defences that came out on top. Key to Chelsea’s shut-out was Edouard Mendy. The Senegalese international, who recently has pushed Kepa Arrizabalaga out of the No.1 spot, showed just why Frank Lampard was so keen to bring him to Stamford Bridge. Mendy made a total of four saves from four on target, even denying a fabulous strike from Marcus Rashford as he became the first Chelsea goalkeeper to keep a clean sheet in both of his first two Premier League matches since Petr Cech in 2004.
LB: Joao Cancelo (Manchester City)
One of the few positives for Pep Guardiola to take from his sides 1-1 stalemate with West Ham was the performance of Portuguese full back Joao Cancelo. Full backs have been a sticky area for the Citizens for the last couple of seasons and Cancelo, usually a right sided player, has been increasingly deployed on the left in replacement for the injury prone, and inconsistent, Benjamin Mendy. Despite being on his weaker side, Cancelo impressed this weekend registering one assist as well as an 80% pass accuracy, two key passes, 106 touches, and 6 ground duels won.
CB: Thiago Silva (Chelsea)
At 36 years of age, many would argue that Thiago Silva’s days are beyond him, but the Brazilian stalwart’s performance against Manchester United proved otherwise. Brought in as an experienced leader in a youthful, and often shaky back line, Silva led by example this weekend with some impressive numbers. Silva made 6 clearances, 3 recoveries, 2 tackles, 2 interceptions, 0 fouls and all without being dribbled past. Silva’s all-round performance was capped off with a goal saving block against former PSG teammate Edinson Cavani which helped his team to a hard-earned point.Embed from Getty Images
CB: Victor Lindelöf (Manchester United)
Since his arrival in Manchester, Victor Lindelöf has often found it difficult to consistently produce the type of performances which prompted United to sign the Swedish international. However, in the 0-0 draw with Chelsea, Lindelöf had a very solid game and had the numbers to back it up. The centre back finished the match with an 84% pass accuracy, 100% tackle and aerial duel completion rate, 7 ball recoveries and 3 clearances. If Lindelöf can produce these stats and performances on a more frequent basis then he could forge a much stronger partnership with Harry Maguire.
RB: Jacob Murphy (Newcastle United)
Just last season, 25-year-old Jacob Murphy, was on loan at Championship outfit Sheffield Wednesday and probably thought his Newcastle stint was going to be coming to an end. But an injury struck roster for the Toon meant that against Wolves, the winger turned wing-back, got his chance, and maybe one of his last. However, no expected it would be Murphy who would score a last minute freekick to earn his side a point against a Wolves side who ultimately dominated proceedings. His strike was his first Premier League goal since nearly three years ago. With Newcastle’s injury woes set to continue, and his MOTM performance this weekend, it surely could be time for Murphy to fully cement his place as a regular.Embed from Getty Images
LM: Jack Harrison (Leeds)
Joining teammate Patrick Bamford in this week’s team is Jack Harrison. The Manchester City loanee was a thorn in the Aston Villa side as Leeds ended the Villains unbeaten start with a 3-0 win. Harrison’s stats show just how influential he was for his side, with the winger producing 36 ball carries as well as covering the most distance with the ball (273 yards), which was the most of any Leeds player. Harrison also carved out 5 chances for his teammates, including an 80.6% pass accuracy rate. At just 23, Harrison has a bright future ahead and may even have Leeds perusing a potential deal to bring him to the club on a permanent basis.
CM: James Ward-Prowse (Southampton)
Skipper, freekick specialist, and consistent performer, it was James Ward-Prowse, on his 200th start for the club, who was at the heart of Southampton’s 2-0 victory over early table toppers Everton. The 25-year-old drilled home to put the saints in-front in the first half, a goal which now means that only striker Danny Ings (26) has scored more for Southampton since the start of last season then Ward-Prowse (6). The goal-output from the midfielder is key to Saint’s boss Ralph Hasenhüttl, having scored 13 Premier League goals in 64 games under the Austrian, whereas before he’d only managed 10 in 173 appearances for previous different managers.Embed from Getty Images
CM: Jordan Henderson (Liverpool)
With Virgil Van Dijk now out for the foreseeable future, and the 7-2 embarrassment at the hands of Aston Villa, it hasn’t been the best of title defences so far for Liverpool. The reds will be now looking to the stewardship of Jordan Henderson to guide them through what looks to be an interesting period for Jurgen Klopp’s side. Henderson proved his responsibility with a proper captain’s display in the 2-1 victory over Sheffield United. The England international made 12 ball recoveries, 3 dribbles, 4 created chances, alongside an impressive 92% pass accuracy.
RM: Ademola Lookman (Fulham)
Despite being just 23 years of age, Ademola Lookman has had an up and down career so far to say the least. From breaking through the ranks at Charlton, scoring on his Everton debut against Manchester City, to not quite making the cut so far at RB Leipzig in Germany. This season newly promoted Fulham took the winger on loan from the Bundesliga side, in the hope he could add some much-needed quality to the Cottager’s outfit. Despite losing against Crystal Palace 2-1 this weekend, Lookman displayed he still has the ability to contest at a top level. Lookman was unlucky not to score his first goal for Fulham, hitting the post twice, as well as an overall positive performance with two key passes, 18 accurate passes and 53 touches and easily looked Fulham’s best and most dangerous player against the Eagles.
FW: Patrick Bamford (Leeds)
It’s no surprise that Leeds were to be an entertaining watch this season with their murder-ball like approach being at the centre of the Leeds way of playing. What was less expected has been Patrick Bamford’s start to the campaign with the striker netting a hat-trick against Aston villa this weekend to make it six from six, numbers which no one would have predicted following his previous, and less fruitful, Premier League spells with Middlesbrough, Crystal Palace and Norwich respectively. Bamford’s 20-minute hat-trick was only the second of his career, and in the process, he has become just the second Leeds player to score in all three opening top-flight away games.Embed from Getty Images
FW: Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace)
Crystal Palace’s talisman Wilfried Zaha put in another classy performance as he helped the Eagles to a 2-1 away win against London rivals Fulham. Zaha registered an assist for Jairo Reidewald’s opener, before netting himself just past the hour mark. The Ivorian has now scored five goals in his last six Premier League games, as many as in his last 41 games combined.