Benjamin Wills picks the top eleven performers in a stunning weekend of Premier League action.
Goalkeeper: Heurelho Gomes (Watford)
Despite all the best efforts of Heurelho Gomes, Watford came up short at White Hart Lane on Saturday.
Gomes, formerly of Tottenham, make a total of eight saves in a commanding display, with Ben Davies, Harry Kane, Christian Eriksen and Son Heung-min all denied by the Brazilian as Tottenham edged past the Hornets and moved up to second.
Right-back: Kieran Trippier (Tottenham Hotspur)
With Harry Kane proving all his “one-season-wonder” doubters wrong and Christian Eriksen in good form recently, it was perhaps surprising that Spurs needed Tripper to win them the game.
Trippier was impressive at right-back as Watford rarely troubled Hugo Lloris and he tapped in his first goal for the club since his arrival from relegated Burnley last summer for just £3.5 million.
Centre-back: Robert Huth (Leicester City)
There are no prizes for pointing out what the result of the weekend was, but Leicester City’s 3-1 win over Manchester City was a truly remarkable performance.
Robert Huth put the away side in-front after just three minutes to unsettle City right from the off and, after Riyad Mahrez made it 2-0 with a cultured finish, the powerful German nodded in a second for him and a third for Leicester to get the footballing world thinking of the unthinkable.
Huth’s defensive contribution should not be forgotten though. The old saying goes “when the going gets tough, the tough get going,” and that can certainly apply to Huth.
Centre-back: Maya Yoshida (Southampton)
Southampton’s 1-0 win over West Ham will not live long in the memory. Maya Yoshida won’t mind too much though, he will just be glad his first goal of the season and his defensive performance secured three points for the Saints.
Yoshida fired in from point-blank range just before the ten-minute mark and was good defensively too as the travelling Hammers failed to score.
This was even more impressive considering Southampton were down to ten for over half-an-hour when Victor Wanyama was sent off for the third time this campaign.
Left-back: Joleon Lescott (Aston Villa)
Aston Villa do not win much, but when they do Joleon Lescott has been the unlikely hero most often.
Lescott headed the relegation-threatened club in-front to put a rare smile on Remi Garde’s face this weekend and the ex-Wolves, Everton and Manchester City man also kept a clean-sheet.
Bizarrely, Lescott is Villa’s third top scorer in the league with three goals.
Right midfielder: Riyad Mahrez (Leicester City)
He may had gone seven games without a goal, but Riyad Mahrez demonstrated on Saturday why he should be picking up the Player of the Year gong at the end of the season with a sumptuous showing at the Etihad.
Mahrez danced past Martin Demichelis before lashing the ball beyond Joe Hart for his 14th goal of the season and he then assisted the first of Huth’s two goals.
The Algerian Mahrez’s assist for the first of Huth’s two goals meant he became the first player this season to register double figures for both goals and assists at the weekend (ten assists, 14 goals).
Central midfielder: Tom Cleverley (Everton)
It is safe to say Tom Cleverley has had his share of abuse throughout his relatively short career and has had some rebuilding to do at Everton.
Cleverley was instrumental in the Toffees’ 3-0 win at Stoke City and his performance had Roberto Martinez dancing for joy…
Romelu Lukaku’s opener from the penalty spot came about after Cleverley intelligently got himself fouled by Jack Butland and then Seamus Coleman’s header was provided by Cleverley’s corner.
Central midfielder: Aaron Ramsey (Arsenal)
Arsenal’s title hopes took a significant blow in their last league outing so they needed a much-improved result against Bournemouth and, thanks to Aaron Ramsey, they got one.
Ramsey assisted Mesut Özil for Arsenal’s first of two goals and then carried on in much the same vein.
The Welshman made four interceptions, won four tackles and created two chances in an all-round incredible showing.
Centre attacking midfielder: Gylfi Sigurdsson (Swansea City)
Swansea failed to get their first league win under new boss Francesco Guidolin despite a wonderful goal and outing from Gylfi Sigurdsson.
The Iceland international gave a typically cool performance and opened the scoring with a beautiful free-kick to get the Swans flying early on.
They could not build on that however, even though Sigurdsson constantly gave Crystal Palace trouble and almost grabbed a second late on.
Left midfielder: Wahbi Khazri (Sunderland)
It was under the radar, but Whabi Khazri’s January switch to Sunderland from Bordeaux has paid immediate dividends for the Wearside club.
Khazri was fouled for the free-kick that Adam Johnson swept in to give the away side some hope and he was provider again soon after. Jermaine Defoe stole a point for the Black Cats with a neat turn and finish as a result of Khazri’s pass and Sunderland had their second goal from only their second shot on target.
Striker: Roberto Firmino (Liverpool)
Roberto Firmino has had a slow start to life in Liverpool after working wonders with Hoffenheim in the Bundesliga, but Jürgen Klopp’s arrival has led to the birth of the Premier League’s latest star.
With Christian Benteke out-of-form, Daniel Sturridge only just off the treatment table and Divock Origi simply unable to find the net, Firmino has been deployed up top and is bang in form.
As a result of his headed goal against Sunderland the Brazilian now has five goals in five games. He could have had six later on in the game, but he selflessly squared it instead into the path of Adam Lallana.
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