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Premier League Team of the Week – Matchday 25

Our Premier League Team of the Week for Matchday 25, as we compile an XI of the finest performers from the weekend action.

Goalkeeper: Caoimhin Kelleher – Liverpool

A last-minute inclusion after news of Alisson’s injury, Kelleher delivered when called upon in Liverpool’s 4-1 win at Brentford. The Ireland international made some terrific saves in west London and was unfortunate to lose his clean sheet after a brilliant stop in the build-up to Brentford’s goal.

Liverpool’s decision to keep the 25-year-old in the summer has been justified, with Kelleher having played more games this season than the last two combined. He will be full of confidence ahead of next weekend’s Carabao Cup final with Chelsea.

Centre-back: Murillo – Nottingham Forest

A standout performer in a big win for Nottingham Forest. Murillo dominated his duel with Michail Antonio against West Ham, stopping the threat of the forward including one excellent piece of defending one-against-one in a dangerous area.

The 21-year-old has performed well in his first campaign in English football, proving to be an astute signing for £11m from Corinthians. He has all the attributes to turn into a defender worth significantly more than that investment.

Centre-back: Axel Disasi – Chelsea

A mountainous magnet to balls into the box, Axel Disasi produced his best performance in a Chelsea shirt as the Blues battled to a 1-1 draw at Manchester City.

The Frenchman was outstanding at centre-back alongside Levi Colwill, leading the game for blocks (3), aerial duels won (4/4) and clearances (16). That latter total is the highest a Chelsea player has recorded in the last eight seasons and helped Mauricio Pochettino’s side continue their mini-revival at the Etihad.

A dominant defensive display from Disasi under huge pressure against the champions.

Centre-back: Levi Colwill – Chelsea

Excellent alongside Disasi, with Colwil right at home back in his favoured central position. The England international’s distribution was assured and progressive, while he made one vital second-half block to deny Erling Haaland in the second half.

He might just have cemented his place at centre-back for next weekend’s Carabao Cup final with Liverpool at Wembley.

Midfield: Joao Gomes – Wolves

Wolves’ win at Tottenham was arguably the result of the weekend as Gary O’Neil’s team upset the North Londoners in the capital. Joao Gomes was the match-winner with both goals, though the 23-year-old was superb even without that decisive contribution.

The Brazilian hounded the Spurs midfield with work ethic and combative challenges, covering every blade of grass in an endurance-sapping showing. Both goals were also taken brilliantly, as he planted a header into the far corner from a set piece, before slamming in a second on the break.

Midfield: Pascal Gross – Brighton

Given the regular raids on Brighton in recent transfer windows, it’s staggering to think no side has made a concrete effort to sign Pascal Gross. The German might have arrived in the Premier League relatively late at the age of 26, but he’s been a model of consistent creative class for the Seagulls for seven straight seasons.

Gross recorded his ninth assist of the Premier League campaign against Sheffield United, in a fixture that saw the 32-year-old afforded the freedom of Bramall Lane after Mason Holgate’s early red card for the home side.

The midfielder punished the Blades as Brighton won 5-0, creating eight chances and completing 110 passes at a completion rate of 97.3%. What a footballer.

Midfield: Martin Odegaard – Arsenal

Sublime. When Odegaard is in this mood there are few players in the Premier League as easy to watch. The Norwegian set Arsenal on route to a 5-0 win at Burnley with a magic finish, as he controlled a crisp finish into the bottom corner inside five minutes.

From there it was a clinic in creative playmaking and tone-setting work rate, with Odegaard leading the contest for distance covered (11.9km), chances created (3) and passes into the final third (37). His weight of pass and awareness in advanced areas is exceptional.

Winger: Bukayo Saka – Arsenal

Bukayo Saka can’t stop scoring right now with the winger’s red-hot start to the new year having fired Arsenal’s winning run. Saka took his total to seven goals in six games with a brace at Burnley, rolling in a penalty before a fierce finish high past James Trafford for his second.

Saka has already surpassed his goal and assist numbers from the whole of last season and is getting better and better in Mikel Arteta’s side.

Winger: Pedro Neto – Wolves

Gary O’Neil has said Wolves have no plans to lose Pedro Neto in the summer, but his side will face a fight to hold onto the winger if he maintains this level of performance over the run-in. Neto’s price tag appears to be rising with each performance and the Portugal international recorded his ninth assist of the Premier League campaign in the 2-1 win at Tottenham.

Injury issues have done little to slow the scintillating speed of the 23-year-old, whose assist for Joao Gomes was sensational, running almost the length of the pitch before checking back to pick out the midfielder’s run. His blistering pace is priceless for a Wolves team who have thrived on the counter this season.

Forward: Rasmus Hojlund – Manchester United

Rasmus Hojlund is looking more and more like a Manchester United number nine with each performance, after extending his hot streak to seven goals in his last six league appearances. It’s six consecutive appearances with a goal for the Dane, who put Luton to the sword early on.

His first showcased the speed and improving confidence of the 21-year-old, before an improvised second as he cleverly chested Alejandro Garnacho’s shot into the far corner. Full of dangerous runs and improved hold-up, he’s found his feet in the Premier League.

Forward: Ollie Watkins – Aston Villa

Ollie Watkins’ 17th and 18th goals of the campaign earned Aston Villa a 2-1 win at Fulham, a result that moved Unai Emery’s side back into the Champions League places.

Watkins took both chances clinically, spinning smartly to fire home the opener at Craven Cottage before a well-timed run for his second dispatched with the confidence of a man in career-best form. Watkins has been wonderful this season to fire Villa’s top-four challenge.

It’s now 23 league goal involvements for the season, just four short of Dwight Yorke’s club record for a single Premier League campaign.

Read – Premier League weekend: Five things we learned

See more – Premier League Awards: Awesome Odegaard, Nunez’s cheeky chip

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