Rich Laverty picks his best Premier League combined XI from the weekend’s action.Embed from Getty Images
GK: David DE GEA (Manchester United)
De Gea may have been left frustrated by his defenders in front of him on Saturday, but his reaction save to deny Xherdan Shaqiri in the second half was a timely reminder of why he’s regularly considered as the best in the world.
It was an effort that most humans would have failed to react to, but the Spaniard managed to prop up a strong right hand and tip the effort over for a corner. Unfortunately for De Gea – and Manchester United – the resulting corner ended in Stoke’s equaliser, a goal which would earn them a point.
RB: Mame Biram DIOUF (Stoke City)
Not a player you regularly find in TOTW, and certainly not in this position. But needs must, and Diouf has been regularly deployed this season as an auxiliary right-back/wing-back under Mark Hughes.
The former Manchester United striker came back to haunt his former team, regularly finding space down the right-hand side and placing a perfect cross for Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting to score the opener.
CB: Davinson SANCHEZ (Tottenham Hotspur)
Sanchez’s introduction into life in England wasn’t easy when Chris Wood stole Burnley a point at Wembley before the international break, but Sanchez was a rock as Tottenham tore through Everton at Goodison Park.
Playing alongside Toby Alderweireld, Sanchez looked the part of the talented young defender he’d been touted as and Spurs fans are right to be excited about their new man. Honorary mention to John Stones too.Embed from Getty Images
CB: Jamaal LASCELLES (Newcastle United)
Days don’t get much better if you’re Lascelles. Defenders are paid to defend, but even Swansea couldn’t believe it when he managed to turn Jordan Ayew’s goal-bound effort away with the game poised at 0-0.
And to top it off, not long after, Lascelles went down the other end of the pitch and headed home what was already a vital winner, even just four games into the new season. Quite a performance.
LB: Benjamin MENDY (Manchester City)
Manchester City will be happy for as long as Mendy’s performances on the pitch match his performances on social media. The Frenchman appears to like a joke at the expense of his team mates but he was excellent down the left for Pep Guardiola on Saturday.
With Liverpool flailing, Mendy continuously put menacing balls into the box and showed why Guardiola was so keen to sign him in the summer.
RM: Eric Maxim CHOUPO-MOTING (Stoke City)
Free agents don’t come much better than two goals against Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United. Choupo-Moting arrived with little fanfare in the summer, but anyone who had watched him play knew he could be a shrewd pick up for Mark Hughes.
And what an inspiration he proved to be on Saturday, slotting home the opener to put United behind, before heading home a powerful equaliser after United had turned the game on its head. A well-earned spot.
CM: Pascal GROSS (Brighton & Hove Albion)
Not a signing that got many people out of their seats, the German midfielder from Ingolstadt appears to be the solution to Brighton’s goal issues.
After Chris Hughton missed out on every striker and his dog on a downbeat deadline day, Gross popped up with two well-taken goals to ensure Brighton picked up their first three points in Premier League history against West Brom.
CM: N’Golo KANTE (Chelsea)
Players can sink or swim after being named PFA Player of the Year, and Kante is certainly going down the route of the latter. While no longer as popular as he was down at the King Power Stadium, Kante came back to haunt his former employers with a rare goal on Saturday.
Once again dictating play with his energy from midfield, Kante’s goal was similar to few others we’ve seen from him in England, and he appears to be going from strength to strength under Antonio Conte this season. You can have your say on Kante and Chelsea this season with some in-play betting by BetOnline.ag
LM: Kevin DE BRUYNE (Manchester City)
Fantasy Football managers have let out many a sigh so far this season when seeing the influential Kevin De Bruyne deployed in a deeper midfield role for Manchester City, but the Belgian reminded everyone of his talent with a virtuoso display against Liverpool.
Drifting through the middle as well as out to the wing, De Bruyne was a constant threat and put in a delightful cross which led to City’s second shortly before half-time. The only thing that was missing was a well-deserved goal for himself.Embed from Getty Images
ST: Harry KANE (Tottenham Hotspur)
August is history so it’s only natural Harry Kane has bagged himself a spot in TOTW for the first time this season as we enter September.
The international break appeared to do Kane good as he scored twice as Tottenham comfortably dispatched a below-par Everton side at Goodison Park. Whether genius or luck, Kane inadvertently found the top corner from out on the right to put Spurs ahead, before a classic Kane finish sealed the deal on a good afternoon for Tottenham.
ST: Gabriel JESUS (Manchester City)
You do wonder how many goals Gabriel Jesus could score this season if he starts up top in every match City play. Unfortunate to have a goal disallowed as Liverpool tried to reset after Sadio Mane’s red card, Jesus did punish Jurgen Klopp’s men just minutes later.
In the second half, Jesus scored his second after unselfish play from Sergio Aguero, before denied the chance of a hat-trick after he was substituted by his boss.
Follow Rich on Twitter at @RichJLaverty