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Premier League Team of the Week – Matchday 23

Our Premier League Team of the Week for Matchday 23, after the division went goal-crazy on an unforgettable weekend of top-flight action.

Goalkeeper: Emiliano Martinez – Aston Villa

Had little to do, but what he did he did brilliantly. The mark of a good goalkeeper can be keeping concentration when inactive for long periods and Martinez did just that in Aston Villa’s 5-0 win at Sheffield United, making a superb double-stop to prevent the Blades from pulling a goal back.

On a goal-laden weekend of Premier League football, that solidity was a rare.

Right-back: Chiedozie Ogbene – Luton


Dan Burn will be having nightmares about the Luton flyer, though the ease at which Ogbene burst past the Newcastle defender will mean he’s more likely to be remembered only as a blur.

The Ireland international was in devastating form on the counter-attack for Luton, rampaging forward from his right wing-back role all game. The 26-year-old, who has adapted brilliantly to the top level, won 10 ground duels and completed five of his seven dribbles at St James’ Park.

Such was the mismatch in his battle with Burn, it’s a mystery why Eddie Howe did not make changes sooner.

Centre-back: Lisandro Martinez – Manchester United

An excellent performance that underlined his importance to Manchester United. The Argentine was combative out of possession and composed in it, dealing with the threat of Jarrod Bowen against West Ham.

He won some big challenges and made crucial blocks, with the Red Devils backline looking more assured since his return from injury. That he hobbled off, with an issue that Erik ten Hag has warned does not look good, is a huge concern.

Centre-back: Micky van de Ven – Tottenham

An outstanding performance from the Dutch defender whose attributes are essential to Ange Postecoglou’s game plan.

Van de Ven’s incredible recovery pace bailed out Tottenham’s high defensive line on multiple occasions at Everton, with the centre-back eating up the ground to slide in on Dominic Calvert-Lewin, before flooring the accelerator once again to get back and catch Jack Harrison.

He’s been a brilliant signing for Spurs this season.

Left-back: Tariq Lamptey – Brighton

Back in the side in place of Pervis Estupinan and an encouraging performance from a player whose potential has been blunted by fitness problems. Lamptey was excellent in an attacking wing-back role, offering drive down the left and racing ahead of Joao Pedro to offer an outlet.

His marauding run won the set-piece for Brighton’s opening goal against Crystal Palace before another surge into an advanced area saw Lamptey cross for fellow full-back Jack Hinshelwood to head home. His energy and pace added to Brighton’s forward threat in their 4-1 win, as Roberto De Zerbi’s team found their goalscoring groove after three games without a goal.

Midfield: Jorginho – Arsenal

Brought back into the team for his first start in the Premier League since November, Jorginho produced arguably his best performances for Arsenal at the Emirates. The Italian was at the centre of a huge win for the Gunners against Liverpool, forming a two-man pivot with Declan Rice that allowed the North Londoners to control the contest.

Composed and careful in possession, Jorginho proved he can be relied upon in the biggest games. His experience was crucial to an Arsenal team who will gain real belief from this win.

Midfield: Ross Barkley – Luton

Ross Barkley is fast emerging as the signing of the season and he is leading Luton’s bid for survival. The 30-year-old has resurrected his career with the Hatters and ran the show during the club’s bonkers 4-4 draw at Newcastle this weekend.

Barkley has been reinvented as a deep-lying midfielder and is thriving in the role, offering progression of the ball with forward-thinking passing and the carry and drive that have long been hallmarks of his game. Against Newcastle, he oozed quality in central areas, a continuation of the consistent class he has shown since arriving at Kenilworth Road at a career crossroads in the summer.

He was involved in the first goal and scored the second after a trademark driving run, before teeing up Elijah Adebayo for Luton’s fourth at St James’ Park. Barkley will be disappointed with his role in Newcastle’s equaliser, but this game was stamped with his quality.

Right-wing: Alejandro Garnacho – Manchester United

All-action in the second half as Manchester United took the game away from West Ham. After struggling to get into the game early on, Garnacho was rewarded for his relentless work ethic as he scored two goals after the break to seal the win.

He hustled hard against the Hammers backline and was decisive at key moments, scoring his first with a deflected strike before latching onto Scott McTominay’s through pass to stroke home a second. Ten Hag is right to be excited about his young forward line.

Left-wing: Matheus Cunha – Wolves

Wolves’ man in form continued his hot streak with a stunning hat-trick as Gary O’Neil’s team beat Chelsea at Stamford Bridge. The Brazilian became just the fourth visiting player to score a Premier League treble at Chelsea, following Kanu, Robin van Persie and Sergio Aguero in achieving the feat.

Cunha’s carry is crucial to Wolves on the counter-attack, with his dynamism in possession driving Wolves upwards. He cancelled out Cole Palmer’s equaliser with a deflected effort, before scoring a second after firing in from Pedro Neto’s cut-back. Cunha then won and converted a penalty to complete his hat-trick and has now scored or assisted 14 goals in his last 18 games in all competitions.

Forward: David Datro Fofana – Burnley

What an impact.

A home debut to remember for David Datro Fofana, who brought Burnley back into the game on his first appearance at Turf Moor. The loan arrival from Chelsea was the catalyst for the Clarets’ comeback against Fulham, scoring both goals as Burnley fought back from two goals down to earn a draw.

His introduction turned the game for Burnley, offering an energetic outlet in addition to his goals. In 26 minutes on the pitch, he led the game for goals scored, Expected Goals (xG), and tackles, and ranked second for touches inside the opposition box.

Forward: Ollie Watkins – Aston Villa


Ollie Watkins might just be the best all-round centre-forward package in the division right now, with the Aston Villa forward becoming the first player to reach 10+ goals and 10+ assists in the Premier League this season.

Watkins was at the heart of Villa’s 5-0 thumping of Sheffield United, scoring one and creating three goals as Unai Emery’s side bounced back from a midweek defeat to run riot at Bramall Lane. Always on the move and alert, the striker stretched the Blades’s backline with clever runs whenever Douglas Luiz picked up possession, with the two combining brilliantly for the opening two goals.

A real handful, and surely secured as the alternative to Harry Kane with England this summer.

Read – Tweets of the Week: Maddison vs Maupay, Wilder vs sandwich eaters

See more – Every opposing player to score a Premier League hat-trick at Chelsea

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