This weekend’s Premier League action featured some great games, including Manchester City vs. Everton and Arsenal vs. Swansea, but who were our winners and losers? Take a look!
The quality of goalkeeping was at an all-time high over the weekend with a number of commendable performances. David De Gea made a spectacular save to deny Phillippe Coutinho, Tom Heaton and Jordan Pickford kept the scoreline in their respective games respectable, but the outstanding performance goes to Everton’s Maarten Stekelenburg who stopped two fairly average penalties, but produced a number of key saves throughout the game.
Antonio Conte started the season with Chelsea’s traditional 4-2-3-1 formation, but after seeing that it doesn’t work, has changed to a 3-4-3 formation and its reaping rewards. At no point were Chelsea in danger against Leicester and the change in formation is bringing out the best in Eden Hazard as he no longer has to track back to defend.
Bournemouth pulled out one of their best ever performances in the Premier League as they beat Hull 6-1. Junior Stanislas was a constant threat and was directly involved in four of the goals, whilst Jack Wilshere’s creative play will have caught the eye.
West Ham United
The Hammers earned a much needed win to climb out of the relegation zone against an in-form Crystal Palace side. Manuel Lanzini provided the only goal of the game in what was an uninspiring match in the rain at Selhurst Park.
It’s still a bit early to get too excited about Theo Walcott, but if he continues his Arsenal form (he was useless for England) throughout the season, then it will go down as his best ever. He scored twice against Swansea, but could have left with at least 4 goals if he’d converted all of his chances.
Prior to their game against Burnley, Southampton had kept six clean sheets in a row. The Saints are going about their business in an understated manner and they’re better than their current 11th place in the table. In other Southampton news, former player Francis Benali completed his Big Race on Sunday for Cancer Research.
What an anti-climax!
Claudio Ranieri has conceded that Leicester’s focus is on the Champions League this season, but they were desperately poor against Chelsea. Defending at set pieces was non-existent and they’ll have to improve.
There were some terrible penalties this weekend. Manchester City have only converted 4 of their last 8 from the spot, with both Kevin De Bruyne and Sergio Aguero missing against Everton, but nothing was worse than Christian Benteke’s effort against West Ham. Truly awful!
Welcome to the full time role Mike Phelan. Phelan was given the managerial role on a permanent basis last week and was heavily beaten 6-1 in his first match. It’s now six games without a win for his side and their early season hope is slowly fading away.
Granit Xhaka’s cynical red card for a tackle on the halfway line was stupid at best. Many will claim that it was a yellow at best, which it was, but it was a lunge and dangerous, hence the awarding of the red. In his defence it was in a neutral part of the field, but he can’t have any complaints.
They’re in the loser column every week and it’s no different after they lost 2-0 to Stoke. It could have been four or five, had it not been for Jordan Pickford in goal. David Moyes’ post-match comments are to be admired though as he desperately tried to find positives from another underwhelming display.
Cresswell’s return from injury was such a boost for West Ham and they kept a clean sheet, but his red card was harsh and he’s set to miss next week’s game against Sunderland. He might not be missed too much though.