By Neil Leverett and Niall Clarke
- Liverpool, Everton, West Ham United and Leicester City share the spoils in Gameweek 31, with two spots apiece
- Hammers fight back from two goals down to beat Terriers, as Reds edge a nervous victory against Fulham
- Foxes plunge Burnley into deep trouble with 10-man win, whilst Everton dent Chelsea’s top four hopes
PREMIER LEAGUE, UK – It’s a four-way split this week, with a quartet of top flight sides with two names a piece. There was also room for a Premier League debutant, but who?
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Goalkeeper & Defenders
Jordan Pickford (GK) – Whether you agree with his not getting sent off last time out at St. James’ Park, Pickford was back to his best and merits his place in this weeks XI. The England number one kept a shut out against Chelsea on Sunday, and despite the Blues again losing their way in the second half, Pickford made a number of key saves throughout the game to maintain Everton’s clean sheet, making five saves.
Seamus Coleman (RB) – Alongside his ‘keeper, Coleman was instrumental in keeping the visiting west Londoners at bay at Goodison Park. The Irish full-back made two key passes, had one shot, whilst at the other end making three clearances from the Toffees’ boughs. After a tough time with injury complications after his broken leg two years ago, Coleman is approaching something close to his best form.
Wes Morgan (CB) – Since his title-winning heroics with the Foxes, Morgan has become a rather forgotten figure, but at Turf Moor underlined his importance still to Leicester. Having been reduced to ten man after Harry Maguire‘s early sending off, the Foxes fought back manfully from a goal down to snatch all three points via Morgan’s late header – having replaced Maguire – to plunge the Clarets deep into the relegation mire at the foot of the table.
Angelo Ogbonna (CB) – For large periods against the Terriers, the Hammers looked set to drop the ball – literally – in big way against a surely doomed Huddersfield side. At 3-1 down at the weekend, Ogbonna’s goal drove the hosts on to an eventual victory from adversity. Added to his goal, the former Italian international made one interception and four clearances.
Andrew Robertson (LB) – Liverpool’s left-hand side is looking set to stake an increasing note of importance as the season rolls towards its’ conclusion and this once again it was the case at Craven Cottage. Though not keeping a clean sheet or even recording an assist, the Reds’ flying Scotsman aided Mane on the left channel against the Cottagers and broke into attacking areas on multiple occasions. Having his goal-bound shot saved after running in from an angle, Robertson made two key passes with one interception in defence, and was a constant driving force in Liverpool’s vital win.
Matt Ritchie (RM) – Having seen his penalty saved last weekend against Everton, the Magpies winger had his redemption in salvaging a last-gasp point for Newcastle on the road to AFC Bournemouth.
Mark Noble (CM) – With Huddersfield Town 3-1 up at the London Stadium, it looked like the Hammers were on their way to an embarrassing home defeat. However the hosts came back to win 4-3 in a thrilling match to get the three points, and although there was no room for Javier Hernandez in our eleven, captain Noble’s spirited performance in midfield deserves a mention. He also converted the spot kick that gave West Ham United an early lead in the game.
James Maddison (CM) – The young Englishman has had a debut season to remember in the Premier League, and he was once again a big influence in a Leicester victory. Despite spending much of the match a man down, the Foxes ran out 2-1 winners at Turf Moor to continue their good start under Brendan Rodgers. Maddison earned and scored the opener after he converted a free kick that was brought on by his superb hold up play. The former Norwich midfielder has made the transition from the Championship to the top flight seamlessly and this is another performance that shows that.
Sadio Mane (LM) – It is becoming increasingly clear that Mane is going to be a key figure in Liverpool’s League and Champions League run and once again he was on fire, as Liverpool scraped past Fulham on Sunday. After helping his side get past Bayern Munich in midweek, the Senegalese opened the scoring at Craven Cottage after linking up nicely with Roberto Firmino. It was his 11th goal in as many games and with his fellow attackers struggling for form, they are needing Mane’s goals more than ever.
Joshua King (ST) – The Norweigen netted a double as Bournemouth were held to a 2-2 draw against Newcastle at the Vitality stadium. King converted a 48th-minute penalty to cancel out Salomon Rondon’s first half opener. He then linked up with Dominic Solanke who had a good game himself despite not getting on the scoresheet to give the hosts the lead and what they thought would be the victory.
Karlan Ahearne-Grant (ST) – Huddersfield’s lack of goals saw them search for a new man to lead the line and that is when Grant arrived from Charlton in January. The English striker showed his worth with a double as Huddersfield took a shock 3-1 lead against West Ham. His efforts unfortunately did not lead to a victory for his side as the Hammers came back to win the game, but it was an impressive performance nonetheless.
Do you agree with our picks? Get in touch
The Premier League returns on Saturday 30th March, as Liverpool host Tottenham Hotspur in Game of the Week
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