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Premier League Team of the Week

The final day of the Premier League saw Manchester City pip Liverpool to the title, beating Brighton 4-1 to be secure back-to-back titles.

Elsewhere there were goals galore as Palace beat Bournemouth in an eight-goal thriller, whilst relegated Cardiff earned a surprise win at Old Trafford.

Here in an attack-minded 3-4-3, for the final time this season, is the Football Faithful’s Team of the week.

Goalkeeper

Neil Etheridge – Cardiff

Already relegated Cardiff surprised everyone with a shock 2-0 win against an out-of-form Manchester United. Nathaniel Mendez-Laing was the hero with two goals, though Philippines international Etheridge played a vital role making 10 saves.

The 29-year-old has been a solid performer for Cardiff in their ultimately failed bid to stay up, and will be key for Neil Warnock’s side as they bid for an instant return to the Premier League next season.

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Defender

Trent Alexander-Arnold – Liverpool

Liverpool were ultimately pipped to the title by Manchester City, though Jurgen Klopp’s side did their part with a 2-0 win over Wolves at Anfield.

Young full-back Trent Alexander-Arnold finished off a superb individual season, providing the assists for both goals to take his league tally to 12 for the season.

Having also notched two assists in last weekend’s win at Newcastle, as well as the genius quick corner that secured Liverpool’s progression to the Champions League final, it’s been a fine personal week for the 20-year-old.

Liverpool’s league season ended in disappointment, though securing a sixth European cup next month will be quite the consolation.

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Defender

Aymeric Laporte – Manchester City

Few thought Brighton would cause a shock on the final day, so when Glenn Murray opened the scoring at the Amex Stadium the title race picture began to take on an unexpected look.

Champions bounce back, and City were level in little over a minute, before defender Laporte headed home minutes later to give them a lead they wouldn’t relinquish.

Laporte has been first-choice for Guardiola’s side this season, and his return from injury has been a major factor in the club’s flawless end of season form.

It’s now back-to-back titles for Man City, few would bet against them securing a third next season.

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Defender

Fabian Schar – Newcastle

Rafael Benitez’s hands have been tied in the transfer market for much of his time at Newcastle, so picking up bargain signings is vital for the club’s chances of progression.

Swiss defender Schar has emerged as one such low-cost gem, having been signed for just £3m following Spanish side Deportivo La Coruna’s relegation last season.

The 27-year-old is comfortable on the ball and a solid defender, and finished his season on a high with a goal in Newcastle’s 4-0 win at Fulham.

Completely unmarked, the centre-back will not have had an easier chance all season.

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Right-wing

Riyad Mahrez – Manchester City

The £60m club-record signing has endured an indifferent debut season in Manchester, having barely featured recently in City’s March to the title.

Included from then start for the crucial final day fixture with Brighton, Mahrez responded with a fine performance on the South Coast.

It was the Algerian’s corner will allowed Laporte to head home City’s second, before scoring a superb goal for their third.

Having sold an outrageous dummy on the edge of the area, Mahrez fired into the top corner from the edge of the area for a goal that reminded everyone of the quality the winger possesses.

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Midfield

Jonjo Shelvey – Newcastle

Having spent much of the season out-of-favour under Rafael Benitez, Shelvey played his first 90 minutes since October in Newcastle’s final day win at Fulham.

The six-cap England international impressed at Craven Cottage, opening the scoring with a stunning goal for his first of the season.

The 27-year-old has been linked with an exit from St James Park this summer, with West Ham reportedly keen on a deal.

Whilst the midfielder can often frustrate, he possesses a quality that few in Newcastle’s current squad can match.

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Midfield

Mark Noble – West Ham

The West Ham captain delivered another fine performance, having also been included in last week’s Team of the week.

Noble scored twice as Manuel Pellegrini’s side impressively won at FA Cup finalists Watford, even surprising himself with the quality of his first.

The midfielder started and finished the move, playing a one-two with Michail Antonio before turning Christian Kabasele and slotting home from the edge of the area.

The 31-year-old helped West Ham secure a top half finish, and the club will hope to improve on that next season.

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Left-wing

Nathaniel Mendez-Laing – Cardiff

Already relegated, Cardiff finished their Premier League campaign on a high with a surprise 2-0 win at Manchester United.

Neil Warnock’s side have shown spirit all season, and continued in that vein at Old Trafford.

Mendez-Laing scored both goals in an impressive win, the first confidently from the penalty spot before being in the right place to tap home Josh Murphy’s cross.

The Bluebirds will now rebuild ahead of the new Championship season, looking to bounce back at the first time of asking.

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Forward

Michail Antonio – West Ham

Antonio has spent much of Manuel Pellegrini’s debut season in and out of the West Ham team, but the 29-year-old started the final four games and has shown impressive recent form.

The former Nottingham Forest player was a constant menace to Watford’s defence in West Ham’s 4-1 win at Vicarage Road, with his pace and power proving too difficult for the hosts to handle.

Antonio was involved in three goals, and was also the man who was fouled for Jose Holebas’ red card. Holebas will now miss next week’s FA Cup final, punishment following a testing afternoon against the West Ham man.

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Forward

Wilfried Zaha – Crystal Palace

If this is to be Zaha’s last game in a Crystal Palace shirt, the 26-year-old certainly exerted his influence at Selhurst Park.

The Ivory Coast international has enjoyed a superb season for Roy Hodgson’s side, and was involved in all five goals as they beat Bournemouth 5-3 in a final day thriller.

Arsenal, Tottenham and Borussia Dortmund have all been credited with an interest in Zaha, who has made it clear he would like to play Champions League football.

Having developed into a talismanic figure for Palace, Zaha’s departure would be a huge blow to their hopes of progress next season.

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Forward

Sadio Mane – Liverpool

Liverpool’s 2-0 win wasn’t enough to deliver the title, but forward Mane did his bit in keeping their faint hopes alive.

The Senegal international scored twice at Anfield, earning him a share of the Premier League’s Golden Boot.

Mane’s 22 goals this season put him level with teammate Mohamed Salah and Arsenal’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang at the top of the scoring charts, with a three-way tie for the Golden Boot award.

Focus will now turn to next month’s Champions League final, to see if Liverpool can end an impressive season with silverware.

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