Team of the Week: Fraser Forster gives Southampton helping hand, young guns fire Manchester United’s win and Harry Kane’s at the double for Tottenham

This week Benjamin Wills picks out the midweek star performers in the league from Saints, Leicester, Everton, Tottenham and the Manchester clubs.

Goalkeeper: Fraser Forster (Southampton)

Arsenal’s 0-0 draw at home to Southampton might live long in the memory as the match in which Arsenal threw away the title… again, but it should be looked back on for what was a superb Fraser Forster goalkeeping display.

England’s third choice goalkeeper made a whopping 10 saves at the Emirates with Mesut Ozil, Theo Walcott, and Alexis Sanchez all being denied by the Saints stopper.

Right-back: Danny Simpson (Leicester City)

Leicester kept up their indescribable run with a 2-0 win over Liverpool and while their attack gets people excited, it is their defence that impresses and perplexes in equal measure.

Danny Simpson was once cast aside by Manchester United, but he has a new lease of life under Claudio Ranieri with the Foxes.

Centre-back: Nicolas Otamendi (Manchester City)

One high-profile man who has struggled to make an impact in England since his arrival has been Nicolas Otamendi who joined Manchester City from Valencia last summer.

Otamendi finally had a good game on Tuesday away at Sunderland to secure a rare Stadium of Light win for the Citizens.

The Argentine defender made three blocks and a number of crucial interceptions to keep the Black Cats at bay.

Left-back: Cameron Borthwick-Jackson (Manchester United)

Manchester United’s first home goal – which was set up and scored by academy graduates – for 12 matches was a welcome relief for every United fan watching at Old Trafford and on TV.

Cameron Borthwick-Jackson drilled in a low cross that Jesse Lingard headed in as the 19-year-old put in a performance well beyond his years in a defensive capacity to earn Louis van Gaal a much-needed win.

Right midfielder: Aaron Lennon (Everton)

Roberto Martinez needed a win after being controversially dumped out of the League Cup by Manchester City and a 3-0 win over Newcastle in one on Wednesday eased the pressure.

Ross Barkley converted two late penalties to pull gloss on the scoreline but it was Aaron Lennon who gave the Toffees the lead with a low finish after 23 minutes.

Lennon was also brought down for one of Barkley’s penalties, too, as Everton rose to 11th.

Centre midfielder: Dele Alli (Tottenham Hotspur)

Another round of football, another impressive outing by that man again – Dele Alli.
Alli put in another Man of the Match performance as Spurs saw off Norwich 3-0 at Carrow Road to maintain their top-four challenge and maybe even a shot at the title…

Keeper Declan Rudd pushed out Christian Eriksen’s shot but only into the path of Alli, who tapped in for 1-0 and later on the ex-MK Dons midfielder went down in the area for a penalty that Harry Kane stuck away.

Centre midfielder: Mark Noble (West Ham)

It took them a while against an Aston Villa side that were down to 10 men for the majority of the match but West Ham did eventually secure the three points – and they largely have Mark Noble to thank.

“Mr West Ham” played a pinpoint ball to Michail Antonio who headed the Hammers into the lead halfway through the second half.

Noble also covered 11.47km – the most of anyone else on the pitch.

Left midfielder: Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace)

Despite the loss at home to Bournemouth, Wilfried Zaha was the star of the show at Selhurst Park as he was a constant nuisance to the Cherries.

Palace took the lead when centre-back Scott Dann turned in Zaha’s cross and the 23-year-old was unlucky not to set up more goals for the Eagles.

Zaha took on opposition players an incredible 16 times over the course of the 90 minutes, more than anyone else on the pitch.

Striker: Anthony Martial (Manchester United)

Manchester United’s rejuvenated performance against Stoke City got people purring again, and some neutrals would have been glad that the Red Devils were entertaining to watch again.
No moment was more entertaining than Anthony Martial’s goal.

A wonderful give-and-go, pass-and-move set up the Frenchman who curled in from the edge of the box for a beautiful goal that rolled back the years. He turned provider in the second half too to set up his captain Wayne Rooney for a tap-in.

Striker: Jamie Vardy (Leicester City)

The second of February may go down in footballing history as the day people believed that little Leicester City could make history and win the Premier League.

Their 2-0 win over Liverpool, courtesy of a Jamie Vardy brace under the watching eyes of England manager Roy Hodgson, sent the Foxes five points clear at the top of the Premier League.

Vardy opened the scoring with a Goal of the Season contender – a volley from the edge of the area to catch Simon Mignolet off his line and then he doubled his tally from close range.

Striker: Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur)

If England pull up any trees at Euro 2016, they can give a massive thank you to Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino, who is doing wonders in producing English talent.

Harry Kane was the first player Pochettino nurtured at Spurs and his star striker scored two against Norwich.

He netted a penalty to make it 2-0 and in second-half stoppage time he calmly added a second for himself to secure a comfortable win for the north Londoners.

Read more from Benjamin Wills here.

Follow Ben at @_BenWills

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