Manchester City and Southampton stars form most of this weekend’s Team of the Week, as Benjamin Wills finds that most of the Premier League teams provide a standout player in a weekend full of exciting results.
Goalkeeper: Heurelho Gomes (Watford)
Watford are doing well to avoid being amongst the relegation candidates, thanks to their ability to not lose a match. Saturday’s 1-1 draw with fellow promoted side Bournemouth was their fourth in eight games.
Only an 85th minute penalty save from ex-Tottenham keeper Heurelho Gomes prevented Bournemouth from securing all three points. Gomes made a further four saves to limit Bournemouth to just the one goal, as the Hornets rose to 11th.
Right back: Glen Johnson (Stoke City)
Stoke have been rather below-par so far this season, but thanks to a goal from Marko Arnautovic, they have secured back-to-back wins for the first time since March.
Glen Johnson signed on a free transfer this summer following his release from Liverpool, and looked invigorated as he kept a clean sheet and provided the assist for Arnautovic’s goal.
Centre back: Phil Jagielka (Everton)
The Merseyside derby did not disappoint neutrals this weekend, but it did not produce a winner, due in some part to some decent defending.
Ironically, both goals came about through diabolical rather than decent defending, but Phil Jagielka was a rock at the back for the Toffees at Goodison Park, and, furthermore, Danny Ings, scorer of Liverpool’s goal, was not his man from the corner.
Liverpool would have scored more had Jagielka not made a number of crucial blocks and interceptions.
Left back: Jeff Schlupp (Leicester City)
Leicester are still on fire, and, thanks to a 2-1 win at Norwich City in east Anglia, they have climbed up to fifth.
Schlupp put the Foxes 2-0 in front shortly after the restart to all but finish the tie, and was impressive while doing his defensive duties too.
Centre midfielder: Yohan Cabaye (Crystal Palace)
Like Leicester, Crystal Palace have been surprisingly impressive this season, with the Eagles currently flying as they soared to fourth with a 2-0 win over West Brom.
Yohan Cabaye’s arrival was a coup in the summer as he joined from PSG for £10 million, and showed his value this weekend with a goal and an assist.
His goal came from the penalty spot but his assist was anything but easy, as an inviting cross was headed home by Yannick Bolasie for a routine Palace win.
Centre midfielder: Yann M’Vila (Sunderland)
Sunderland squandered a 2-0 lead against West Ham to draw 2-2 on Saturday, and that was the last straw for Dick Advocaat, who resigned the following day.
M’Vila was good though, providing both assists for the Sunderland goals that temporarily had the home support in good spirits.
His free-kick led to Steven Fletcher’s opener, and then Jermaine Lens’ delicious chip was put on a plate by M’Vila for number two.
Right winger: Sadio Mane (Southampton)
Mane was unplayable in Southampton’s 3-1 defeat of Chelsea as he got a goal and an assist to his name following a wonderful performance.
His goal came through a defensive error, but he showed impressive composure to finish beyond Asmir Begovic to complete a Southampton turnaround.
The Senegalese winger also turned provider for Pelle’s goal, which finished off Chelsea once and for all with 18 minutes left.
Centre attacking midfielder: Kevin de Bruyne (Manchester City)
Sergio Aguero (more on him in a moment) is quite rightly the man of the moment, but de Bruyne by no means put in an average performance.
De Bruyne scored one of the six City goals – the only one not scored by Aguero – with a tidy volley, and assisted two of Aguero’s strikes.
A low cross was swept home by the five-goal hero who was replaced straight after, and the diminutive Belgian also passed to link with Aguero for another.
Left winger: Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal)
Arsenal’s record against the so-called top four has been horrific in recent years, but a 3-0 win over fierce rivals Manchester United yesterday slightly improved matters.
Alexis Sanchez is officially back among the goals, and the three he scored against Leicester last weekend were added to with another two on Sunday.
The first was a bullet from the edge of the box that sailed past David de Gea to put the Gunners 1-0 up after just six minutes, and Sanchez added another from 18 yards to make it 3-0 after just 19 minutes to embarrass United.
Striker: Sergio Aguero (Manchester City)
There is no surprise to see Aguero in this team; the Argentine assassin scored FIVE goals for Manchester City in a 6-1 win over bottom-of-the-table Newcastle United.
A close range header was how he scored his first, and a deflected shot past Krul made it 1-1 and 2-1 respectively either side of the half-time break.
Goals three, four and five followed soon after with a delicate chip, a curler from the edge of the box and a tap-in from de Bruyne’s cross all finding the back of the net in an 11/10 performance.
His performance saw him join a very exclusive list; Alan Shearer, Dimitar Berbatov, Andy Cole and Jermain Defoe are the only other players to score five goals in one Premier League match.
Striker: Graziano Pelle (Southampton)
Sadio Mane may have been impressive, but Pelle was peerless, as he had a hand – or foot – in all three of the Saints’ goals.
He scored one to put Southampton 2-1 up, with an effort from an angle, after he previously chested the ball into the path of Davis, who had initially equalised for Ronald Koeman’s side.
Pelle then provided the pass for Mane to make it three, and Southampton now find themselves in eighth.
Follow Ben at @BenjaminWillsSJ