Monday, 6 October 2014
Premier League Team of the Week: Hazard shines for Chelsea
Hold the front page! Cesc Fabregas set up Diego Costa for a Chelsea goal, but neither make our Premier League Team of the Week.
Instead, it was Eden Hazard who was the main inspiration for the Blues as Jose Mourinho picked up another routine win against Arsenal. Elsewhere, Angel Di Maria drove Manchester United forward against Everton but it was their goalkeeper who impressed most with two world-class saves late in the game.
With Manchester City and Liverpool both winning, and goals galore in most of the weekend's games, just who made it into our line-up?
David De Gea (4) is the clear choice between the sticks after rescuing Manchester United with some memorable saves. After keeping out a penalty on the brink of half-time, he denied Leon Osman with the clock ticking down and then, late into injury time, produced a world-class stop to tip Bryan Ovideo's effort over the bar.
Chelsea’s Cesar Azpilicueta (4) is in our team for the second successive week. The Spaniard, keeping new signing Filipe Luis out of the team so far this season, was again given the nod against Arsenal on Sunday and kept Alexis Sanchez, and anybody else for that matter, quiet down his left flank.
Two players on the pitch at Villa Park on Saturday evening make up our central defensive partnership. First, Vincent Kompany (4) was in imperious form, putting in a couple of crunching tackles and using the ball well, while at the other end Nathan Baker (4) was also impressive, making a number of clearances and tackles as Paul Lambert's side tried to absorb City's pressure.
Hull City's Andrew Robertson (4) was our man of the match on Saturday and he makes our team as a result. He set up Mohamed Diame for the opening goal and kept Jason Puncheon quiet at the back.
Riyad Mahrez (4) gets the nod ahead of Tottenham's Christian Eriksen and lines up on the right of our midfield three. The Leicester man set up Jeffery Schlupp for his goal before scoring himself. He was withdrawn late on to a standing ovation and also named Goal's man of the match.
It may not contain too many defensive players, our midfield, but it certainly boasts creativity. Gylfi Sigurdsson (4.5) and Jordan Henderson (4) both shone this weekend and make our team of the week as a result. The Swansea man racked up another two assists against Newcastle on Saturday to take him up to six for the season, just one behind Cesc Fabregas.
Henderson scored one and set up another with a fine flick to hand Liverpool a hard-fought 2-1 win against West Brom. The England midfielder was full of energy, too, and keeps out Manchester City's David Silva (4), who was increasingly influential against Aston Villa but did not have Henderson's cutting edge.
Our wide men this week are among the best players in Europe. First, Eden Hazard (4.5) finally stepped out of the considerable shadow of Cesc Fabregas and Diego Costa to spearhead a Chelsea victory (although the two summer arrivals did combine to finish the game off yet again). The Belgian won and scored a penalty in the first half and caused Arsenal trouble all afternoon.
On the other side, Angel Di Maria (4) was again the star man for Manchester United, scoring a fine first goal and setting up Radamel Falcao. The Argentine was the driving force which pushed Louis van Gaal's men forward and kept Everton away from an untested defence for long periods. Although De Gea was called into action late on, of course.
Leading the line is Newcastle United striker Papiss Cisse (4.5) who was back among the goals with a brace against Swansea. The Senegal forward has been out of form for a while now but tucked away his two chances perfectly against the Welsh side to keep Sunderland striker and north east rival Steven Fletcher (4) out of the side.