As another weekend of Premier League action passes us by, it’s time to take stock and decide which players were a help or a hindrance to their sides over the weekend.
Hero – John Lundstram
The Blades are flying at the moment and their midfield lynchpin John Lundstram was yet again in impressive form as he bagged a massive brace for Chris Wilder’s men against Burnley, to lift the newly promoted side up to a dizzying sixth in the table. The former Everton player also became the first Sheffield United player since 1994 to score two in a Premier League match. Not bad at all!
John Lundstram (68 inc. bonus) has now scored more points in the 2019/20 campaign than Mohamed Salah (64) and Raheem Sterling (65).
The gift that simply keeps on giving. ⚔️ pic.twitter.com/ej5lDeUaya
— Fantasy Football Scout (@FFScout) November 2, 2019
Villain – Roberto
Having already hopelessly flapped at a cross for Newcastle’s opener the West Ham keeper was guilty of allowing a pretty straight forward shot fly past him from Jonjo Shelvey during another morale sapping defeat for the Hammers this weekend.
Shelvey, despite his reputation, had not scored a direct free kick in his previous 30 attempts and this one really should have stayed out as Roberto seemed to go down in slow motion and was beaten at his near post by the former Swansea man’s strike.
Any decent Premier League keeper should be saving those, to be honest. The fact that his side lost 2-3 will be even more galling for the home fans as they are now without a win in five league matches. It’s grim at the London Stadium at the moment.
Hero – Sadio Mane
There is nothing like a stoppage time winner to warm the cockles on a cold November night. Liverpool’s Senegalese star Sadio Mane duly obliged the desperate travelling away fans, who knew a point was simply not enough for their side’s title winning ambitions.
His glancing header in almost the last action of this tightly contested match sent the travelling supporters into raptures at Villa Park. This was the 35th time that Liverpool had scored a stoppage winner in their Premier League history and this could be prove to be a massive goal come the end of the season.
— Samantha Quek (@SamanthaQuek) November 2, 2019
Villain – Dani Ceballos
Google “ball watching” and you may well come up with a picture of Arsenal’s Dani Ceballos. The silky Spaniard may be nifty on the ball but he is clearly not too fussed about doing his bit at the back as his mind simply seemed to be elsewhere in the build-up to the Wolves equaliser on Saturday.
The on-loan Real Madrid midfielder failed to pick up João Moutinho from a throw-in, who ghosted in dangerously behind him to deliver the killer ball into Raul Jimenez, who nodded home for 1-1. With that kind of brainless defending and lazy off the ball play Ceballos is a great fit with the current crop of brain farting Arsenal players.
Hero – James Maddison
The Leicester midfielder is currently brimming with confidence as he continues to run the show for the Foxes from midfield. The former Norwich City man was a constant creative threat for Leicester during a convincing 0-2 win over Crystal Palace as he created chance after chance for his teammates at Selhurst Park.
His tally of eights big chances was the most created by any player in a Premier League match since Wayne Rooney against Cardiff City in 2013, so he’s not keeping bad company there. On current form, he looks one of the best in the division.
James Maddison’s game by numbers vs. Crystal Palace:
100% take-ons completed
97% pass accuracy
8 chances created
3 fouls suffered
3 ball recoveries
3/3 long balls
Perfect modern day attacking mid. 🎯 pic.twitter.com/XYJtCfgRXY
— Statman Dave (@StatmanDave) November 3, 2019
Villain – VAR
Sorry, you’ve probably heard everyone say everything under the sun about VAR this weekend but let’s face facts, it’s complete rubbish, isn’t it? From Roberto Firmino’s armpit hair to Dele Alli punching a ball clear from a corner, the Video Assistant Refs were at their awful, awful worst this weekend.
Three minute checks, bizarre decisions and utter confusion on the terraces; it’s not helping and is in obvious need of a rethink before any serious damage is done.
I defended #VAR at the start as I felt the process needed to be given a chance. I argued with people who were set against it, & I really wanted it to take the game forward. But we’re now talking about it more than we ever did about officials & decisions & that can’t be right. https://t.co/gyJK7nRPX6
— Jamie Carragher (@Carra23) November 3, 2019