Jordan Pickford (GK) – After cementing his place as England number one during the World Cup in Russia, like many players not just in the Premier League but across Europe, Pickford has had an uncertain start to the campaign. His performance against Crystal Palace however, sees the Three Lions’ stopper take a place in Gameweek 9 team of the week. In what was a close game against the Eagles which could have gone either way, Pickford saved Luka Milivojevic‘s poor penalty kick, and also made four further stops together with keeping a clean sheet at Goodison Park. Pickford showed his superb vision and distribution skills in Russia also, and gave a glimpse of such facets at times during the game on Merseyside.
Hector Bellerin (RB) – As Arsenal went to 10 straight wins in all competitions at home to Leicester, Bellerin was heavily involved all all four goals at the Emirates. Conceding an own goal via Ben Chilwell‘s cross initially, the Spanish full-back was a regular source of threat on the Arsenal right and notched two assists – the second of which he not only created but supplied Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang with. Bellerin had fallen foul of the Gunners’ fanbase in the early weeks of the season as the North Londoners adapted to Unai Emery‘s new system, but as the raiding right-back has now more of a considered approach to his game, he is once again an asset for Arsenal at both ends of the field, putting in one interception and a tackle.
Michael Keane (CB) – Keane is the second Everton player to make the grade this week, and the former England international is beginning to find his feet again for his club side. As the Toffees finally broke down a dogged Palace defence, Everton bagged two late goals at Goodison Park and the centre-back’s sharp eye to pick out substitute Cenk Tosun from his own penalty box saw Keane grab an assist. He also made eight clearances, three tackles and had two shots on goal.
Lewis Dunk (CB) – On the subject of clearances, Brighton & Hove Albion’s defensive duo of Shane Duffy and Lewis Dunk are rapidly becoming one of the Premier League’s most dependent in the top flight. Between the two, the Seagulls men made a quite astonishing 34 clearances as Brighton recorded a second successive clean sheet away to struggling Newcastle, but Dunk also made two interceptions and five tackles and blocks. A star turn for a rapidly improving player.
Benjamin Mendy (LB) – Mendy’s untimely injury break last month brought many a fantasy Premier League manager to their knees after the Frenchman’s flurry of assists and clean sheet to begin the campaign. As City hammered Burnley 5-0 at the Etihad on Saturday, Mendy supplied the cross from the left for Leroy Sane to score the Citizen’s fifth over the weekend. Mendy, who will surely be a consistent figure for Pep Guardiola throughout the season also made three key passes.
Fernandinho (CM) – It is easy to overlook the importance of Fernandinho for Manchester City, especially given the players that surround him. Make no mistake though, the Brazilian is an integral part of the team and that showed on Saturday. Not only was he able to shut down many of Burnley’s attempts to come forward, Fernandinho popped up with a goal and an assist as his side thrashed the Clarets and as the second of three City men in out Dream Team of Gameweek 9. It was a fine performance from him once again
Abdoulaye Doucouré (CM) – Watford grabbed a very impressive 2-0 win away at Wolverhampton Wanderers on Saturday and that is in large part down to the performance of Doucoure. The Frenchman assisted both goals and made four key passes over the course of the 90 minutes. His defensive contribution was also impressive with two tackles and two interceptions as the Hornets shut out the Wolves in front of their home fans.
Riyad Mahrez (RAM) – Mahrez has not found life at Manchester City the easiest since joining from Leicester in the summer. Displays like this though can soon erase the penalty miss against Liverpool. The Algerian saw more of the ball than any other player against Burnley, taking 96 touches over the 90 minutes. His dribbling ability was a constant problem for the Clarets and he capped off a fine performance with a late sublime goal.
Mesut Ozil (CAM) – The German is often scapegoated at Arsenal when the Gunners under-perform, but whether that is fair or not one cannot deny Ozil’s quality when he is in full flow. Ozil’s performance against Leicester was arguably the best of the weekend. The German was a maestro in midfield, having a hand in all the goals including bagging one for himself. If he can continue that form throughout the season, Arsenal will become a real danger.
Anthony Martial (LAM) – This was the obvious choice for game of the week, but what we got was a far better spectacle than many of us might have imagined. Chances are rare for Martial at Manchester United, but if he continues to fire like he did against Chelsea then he should cement his place in the starting eleven. The Frenchman netted twice as United came from 1-0 behind to lead 2-1 at Stamford Bridge. Martial showed his calmness and composure in the attacking third and if not for a late equaliser he would have been the match winner for Jose Mourinho’s side
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (ST) – Cardiff City’s Bobby Reid came close to claiming what might be a rare and unlikely appearance in our XI courtesy of a goal and assist against Fulham that gave the Bluebirds their first Premier League win, but Aubameyang’s cameo off bench for Arsenal against Leicester on Monday snags the striking spot. The Gabon International scored twice from close range as Arsenal defeated the Foxes 3-1 at the Emirates, taking his goal contribution to 21 in 22 games since joining from Borussia Dortmund. Is he an outside shot for the Golden Boot?
Here is our Premier League Gameweek 9 team of the week. Do you agree with our picks?
Premier League Gameweek 10 sees Tottenham Hotspur host Manchester City at Wembley Stadium, on Monday 29 October.
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