Another slew of fixtures down, another not-at-all questionable team of the week. You’re welcome, football fans.
Joining us today are three Liverpool players, the Premier League’s favourite example of nominative determinism and, er, Dominic Solanke. Strap in, folks. Here are 90min’s star performers from Gameweek 11.
The Kepa Arrizabalaga redemption arc is officially GO. The £71.6 million signing (still the world record for a goalkeeper) has been a figure of ridicule for almost the entirety of his Chelsea career to date but has now made three starts out of three in the Premier League under Graham Potter and kept clean sheets in two of them.
Against Aston Villa on Sunday he played like a man possessed, making seven saves – some of which were spectacular – and shutting the door completely on Villa as they racked up over 2.2 xG. Given his superior abilities with the ball at his feet, it seems as though Edouard Mendy has been ousted as Chelsea’s number one for the foreseeable future.
Although Jurgen Klopp has something of an obsession with bringing on the 36-year-old James Milner in central midfield when he really has no need to, this is where ‘Millie’ really shines.
Filling in for the partially injured and desperately out-of-form Trent Alexander-Arnold (who did come on in stoppage time), Milner did everything that was asked of him at right-back against Manchester City and Phil Foden, which is no mean feat.
Winger-turned-wing-back Ivan Perisic is a menace whenever he’s on the pitch given his willingness to sprint from corner flag to corner flag for the entirety of the 90 minutes.
His movement against Everton caused them problems as he drifted centrally to support Kane and Son as well as crossing from wide positions – one of which led to Doherty’s shot and the eventual penalty.
Like Milner, Joe Gomez is some way down the pecking order at Anfield these days but that didn’t stop the 25-year-old stepping into the starting line-up against ‘the best team in the world’ according to Jurgen Klopp and having himself a blinder.
Along with Virgil van Dijk, who also had a fine game, Gomez kept Erling Haaland and the City attack as quiet as you probably can.
The other big Dutchman, sorry Virgil, was also superb this weekend. Signed from Lille in the summer for €35m, the 22-year-old has quickly established himself as the rock of Eddie Howe’s defence and proved it again on Sunday.
He won 100% of his duels as Manchester United were unable to break down his partnership with the rejuvenated Fabian Schar. Newcastle are yet to lose with him in the team, which says it all really.
A skipper’s performance from Declan Rice, who took it upon himself to have a crack as West Ham were struggling to break down Southampton.
While his first goal in a year wasn’t enough for the Hammers to pick up a third consecutive win, it did at least earn a point along with his typically combative display in the middle of the park.
Two goals thanks to a wonderful assist from Tyrone Mings and Emi Martinez momentarily forgetting he can use both his arms and his legs gave a sub-par Chelsea a 2-0 win at Villa Park.
Mount, to his credit, took both opportunities well and keeps up his brilliant form heading into the World Cup next month.
Always a solid and underrated performer, Hojbjerg capped another selfless showing with a calmly taken goal that ensured all three points for Spurs at home to Everton.
Like Perisic he can run for days, something Antonio Conte will appreciate more than most. His partnership in midfield with Rodrigo Bentancur – who also impressed – seems to be getting better by the week.
A deserving matchwinner for Liverpool as they held on against City. Salah took his goal brilliantly and caused Pep Guardiola’s back four all kinds of problems throughout.
Unlucky not to have scored earlier in the game thanks to a miraculous save from Ederson.
The man just can’t stop scoring. While his composure from the penalty spot goes without saying, the opener proved that Toney is far more than just a target man and capable of converting all kinds of chances for Brentford.
If England find themselves heading to extra time in Qatar, there will be no better man to bring on for Gareth Southgate.
Solanke finished the 2-2 draw with Fulham as Bournemouth’s best player and with a goal and assist to his name.
A player who loves getting down the channels and stretching defences, Solanke’s running is vital to the way Bournemouth play and this weekend he had the end product to match his work rate.
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