Greetings to you and welcome to Team of the Weekend. What a coincidence that the Premier League fixture computer totally at random pulled out three derby games in the same week. Who’d have thunk it? Anyway, here we are with the best and worst of the weekend and a manager to get them organised.
Jordan Pickford – The very last action of the Premier League weekend finally brought the goalkeeping incident we needed for this team. Jordan, mate. What were you doing here? Virgil Van Dijk’s hopeful swipe looked set to float into the Kop but as luck would have it, it dropped towards goal and Pickford managed to keep the ball in play, via the crossbar, for Origi to head home. What an absolute howler.
Bruno – What a ball! Hooked over his shoulder right into the danger zone. Ignore that it was at the wrong end and delivered the ball perfectly onto Jorgensen’s head. That’s not what this is about. He more than made up for by getting his leg higher at the age of 37 than I could at 17 to win the corner that led to Brighton’s equaliser.
Cedric Soares – Direct free kick goal means only one thing – guaranteed selection in Team of the Weekend. Despite having to play as a makeshift left back that didn’t stop the Portuguese international stepping up and curling a beautiful free-kick over the wall. Southampton have won once at home in a year. That’s incredible.
Jan Vertonghen – I think Jan will want to re-do Sunday if at all possible. Giving away a penalty with a stupid handball in the first 10 minutes was bad enough but with his team 4-2 down, the last thing his manager would want is for him to needlessly pick up a second yellow for a bit of a horror tackle. Vertonghen obviously doesn’t live with an Arsenal fan.
Junior Hoilett – What a way to start the weekend this was. I was bemoaning the decision to televise Cardiff vs Wolves but I was left eating my words as Hoilett curled a wonderful shot in off the crossbar to give his manager the perfect 70th birthday present. Cardiff just keep on scrapping and it’s working out for them just now. The less said about Wolves the better.
James McArthur – Scoring Crystal Palace’s first home goal from open play should be a special occasion. Instead, it was a weak left-footed cross that nobody could get a touch on that crept into the corner. Quite why Joe Hart decided to just watch it remains to be seen but I suppose Max Meyer nearly got a touch on it so Hart nearly decided to move.
Andros Townsend – Arjen Townsend, if you will. It’s been a while since Townsend did what he does best which is cut in from the right onto his left and shoot but that was just what Roy needed to get Crystal Palace moving for the first time in a while.
James Maddison – After being such a naughty boy last week it was good to see the real James Maddison this week. A bit of a juggle and a right foot volley to ease Leicester past Watford. And no diving. That’s more like it.
Javier Hernandez – I was surprised to see Hernandez start but West Ham’s bold tactics certainly paid off. The man known as Chicharito scored twice to send the Hammers on their way to three points which eases them away from the dog fight and puts Newcastle right back in it.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang – Arsenal were in a bit of a tight spot against Tottenham on Sunday but Aubameyang’s second goal was as stunning as it was pivotal. He followed that up with a beautiful pass to put Torreira through to seal the match for the Gunners. Arsenal have broken the top four now and frankly on this form it’s hard to see them giving that spot up any time soon.
Divock Origi – I had no idea Divock Origi was still at Liverpool and on Sunday’s evidence, neither does Jordan Pickford. An unlikely a hero as you will ever get, I don’t think even the most staunch of Liverpool fan wouldn’t have bet on him getting the winner but Klopp used everything he had at his disposal to find the win in the Merseyside derby.
Claude Puel – After everything Leicester have had to go through, Saturday’s win saw Leicester up to 8th in the table, only just outside of the top 6. From the outside looking in, Puel has done a great job in very difficult circumstances and even though football hasn’t been the main focus recently, Puel has handled the situation admirably.
That’s all from me this week but there are midweek games so I’ll be back on Thursday with a team of the midweek. You lucky dogs. Goodbye for now!