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Premier League Weekend: Heroes and Villains

Hero: Diogo Jota

Wolverhampton on Saturday lunchtime was the place to be. A classic 4-3 match was played out between two sides who really wanted something from this one. It was Wolves who came away with it all, thanks to the show stopping heroics of Diogo Jota.  The Portuguese attacker smashed home a hat-trick against Leicester, showing wonderful composure and hunger throughout the game.

His stoppage match winner was an excellent finish, as he poked home past Kasper Schmeichal after punishing the Foxes high line. He becomes only the second Portuguese to score a Premier League hat-trick, and with Cristiano Ronaldo, he’s not in bad company is he?

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Villain: Fernando Llorente

Oh Fernando! You can’t help but feel for the veteran Spanish striker. Catching splinters all season until Harry Kane’s unfortunate knock; he was finally given a chance to get some goals and game time for Spurs.

He did get on the score sheet against Fulham, but his shinned effort from three yards was at the wrong end of the pitch and left his teammates with a bit of mountain to climb. Not a good Sunday for the former Swansea City Striker.

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Hero: Harry Winks

Just what the doctor ordered for Spurs. After the calamitous and hilariously bad start at Craven Cottage, they snatched all three points at the death, courtesy of their other Harry.

Mr Winks chose a pretty brilliant time to score his first goal since 2016. His header in the 93rd minute left Fulham devastated and cruelly deflated. It could well prove to be an enormous moment at both ends of the table.

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Villain: Mohamed Salah

Liverpool fans will not want to see their talisman start earning a reputation for the dark arts of the game. Salah is world class talent, who could down as one of the best to play in this division. It would be an awful shame if the humble, likeable forward soiled his reputation with this recent diving malarkey.

The Newcastle one on Boxing Day was soft, there was no case to answer at Brighton, despite the social media kangaroo courts, but this one against Palace was a bit naughty. The contact was minimal from Mamadou Sakho, but the Egyptian went down, albeit without too much theatrics. The reaction from the Palace players was furious and Salah must now be careful that he doesn’t get his card marked by ever watchful officials in future games.

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Hero: Fabian Schar

Newcastle United fans have endured another torrid run of form of late. Their loathed bogey man remains, and has found an ally in baseball cap merchant, Rio Ferdinand. Their club had slipped into the bottom three and their last win came against bottom side Huddersfield Town.

How they needed a performance like the one put in by Switzerland international Fabian Schar. A well taken brace from the former Deportivo La Coruna man saw his side grab control against Cardiff City, and he also threw himself into a wonderful goal saving block during the first half as the St James Park faithful rubbed their eyes in disbelief. They’ll need more quality like this, if they are to pull away from danger this season.

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Villain: Lucas Digne

There was something quite impressive about Lucas Digne’s own goal against Southampton on Saturday. In fact the France international may well want to get it patented under his name, as he managed to somehow invent a hybrid, striker’s finish/ clumsy tackle.

The French defender bore down on Danny Ings, as the on loan Liverpool man, shaped to shoot from circa 25 yards, only to see his shot snaffled away by the dangling foot of Digne. The ball then tickled home from distance; past the reach of Jordon Pickford to give The Saints a crucial 2-0 lead.

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