Premier League Team of the Week

Premier League MW9 TOTW: Mourinho masterclass, Everton back to winning ways and Liverpool smash new unbeaten home record!

MW9 in the Premier League has brought about tough competition for various positions, as players seem more fired up than ever after their return from international football. Jozef Kostecki’s provides a summary on this week’s best performers….

Premier League Matchweek 9 Results

21st November 2020 Newcastle United 0-2 Chelsea
21st November 2020 Aston Villa 1-2 Brighton & Hove Albion
21st November 2020 Tottenham 2-0 Manchester City
21st November 2020 Manchester United 1-0 West Bromwich Albion
22nd November 2020 Fulham 2-3 Everton
22nd November 2020 Sheffield United 0-1 West Ham United
22nd November 2020 Leeds United 0-0 Arsenal
22nd November 2020 Liverpool 3-0 Leicester
23rd November 2020 Burnley 1-0 Crystal Palace
23rd November 2020 Wolverhampton 1-1 Southampton

Premier League Matchweek 9 Manager of the Week – Jose Mourinho

Since the turn of the century there has been a constant in the Premier League, that is Jose Mourinho winning games. The three time title winning manager showed he’s only getting started on Saturday as he got his Tottenham team tactically spot on. Faced against Pep Guardiola’s incredible Manchester City side, Mourinho got his Spurs teams playing with a real swagger, but most importantly they played like a team.

Though Spurs have been exceptional this season, one criticism that has been fairly brought up is that at time’s they have required individuals to pick up their points. This was not the case on the weekend, instead it was a complete unit, one which never looked penetrable.

Performances like this are special when they come up against weaker teams, but the fact this happened against such fierce opposition in Manchester City is truly class. Jose seems to have found his arrogance back, something that can only be good for the Premier League. You know for sure Jose is more determined than ever to chase his fourth Premier League title, and a fired up Special One is truly something to fear.

Premier League Matchweek 9 Player of the Week – Dominic Calvert-Lewin

Since James’ arrival into Merseyside so much of Everton’s success has been attributed to him, perhaps this is unfair as this weekend like so many others Dominic Calvert-Lewin was exceptional. Picking up two goals that would end up being vital in ensuring Everton picked up their first win after four games without one, he was not only the best player on the pitch, but on any pitch this Premier League weekend.

Calvert-Lewin has really revolutionised his game under Ancelotti, he is very clearly a strikers striker now. With the quality he is showing, he has surely ensured his place in the squad come the Euros next year.


Goalkeeper: Alex McCarthy (8.3 Player Rating)

A position that had huge competition this week, it ultimately fell to someone from the very last game of the weekend to take the spot. Southampton may not have looked at the races on the attacking side without Danny Ings, but on the flip side, defensively Alex McCarthy was exceptional. Southampton’s number one was an army of one making eight saves.

He shut down any dreams Wolves fans might have had for their side to pick up three Premier League points. After such an impressive performance it is a real shame they conceded a goal at all, denying McCarthy the clean sheet he deserved.

Full Back: James Milner (8.3 Player Rating)

‘Injury worries will leave Liverpool’s title defence in tatters’, Says who? Certainly not James Milner, a stalwart of Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool team and the success they have had in both of the Premier League and Champions League. Once again he stepped up to the plate and hit a home-run.

Milner controlled the right side from the defence, stepping in where he was needed and was one of the key players in Liverpool’s destruction of Leicester. The highlight of his performance was his corner delivery. He picked up an assist from one of these for the third goal, but it was also his exceptional delivery that resulted in Johnny Evans’ own goal to get the first goal on the table.

Liverpool have been plagued with injuries, but its performances like this that have put the Champions firmly in the running to retain their title.

Centre Back: Kurt Zouma (7.5 Player Rating)

With ten game-weeks gone in the Premier League and seven summer signings, Chelsea still have not got a nailed on starting centre-back duo, but with the performances of Kurt Zouma they may well have one half locked in. The Frenchman was once again the immovable object in the defence, and his dominant performance was one Newcastle had no counter to. Full credit has to go to the way Zouma has specialised in his aerial ability, producing air time that could envy a Boeing 747 Zouma won an outstanding nine aerial duels.

There should be little doubt that moving forward Zouma will and should be Chelsea’s starting centre-back and will surely be one of the first names on the team sheet.

Centre Back: Harry Maguire (7.5 Player Rating)

The Harry Maguire that started this season was a shadow of the eighty million pound man’s best. The Harry Maguire over these last five game-weeks has been possibly the best centre-back in England right now. With a new starting full-back to his left in Alex Telles, the Manchester United captain perfectly marshalled and controlled his back four.

Since his arrival at Manchester United Maguire has only missed two games, this has not happened by accident and its performances like the one he put out against West Brom that have made this happen. It is also very welcome to see these performances being replicated in his recent showings for England, with his game against Iceland being maybe his best for the Three Lions yet. It may have taken time, but his recent consistency has 100% been that of a player of his price tag.

Full Back: Lucas Digne (8.4 Player Rating)

With an Everton team needing to get back into winning ways in the Premier League, Carlo Ancelotti turned to a five at the back formation. As a result, Lucas Digne transitioned into a left wing-back and that transition paid off. Bombing down the left, Digne had more opportunity than ever to whip in his trademark crosses, and as a result it brought in two assists for the French international.

He was unlucky to just come out with just the two though, as his performance resulted in five key passes and he directly created three big chances. This performance will give Ancelotti a banquets worth of food for thought, as Digne has shown he can more than adapt to whatever is called of him.

Midfielder: Abdoulaye Doucoure (8.0 Player Rating)

From one French Everton player to another, summer signing Doucoure had his best game for the club yet. Perhaps unfairly going under the radar, with other midfield signings Allan and James Rodriguez soaking up the attention like a sponge. Doucoure has been silently brilliant in most of his games, and against Fulham was no different.

Whilst he brought about his signature dominant style with six interceptions, his greatest contribution was getting onto the end of a Digne cross to grab Everton’s third and final goal. The goal itself was a powerful header to round off a well worked Everton move. Whilst Doucoure is not known for his goal-scoring nature, he will be hoping this is the first of a few this season.

Midfielder: Bruno Fernandes (8.9 Player Rating)

Whilst against West Brom Manchester United were still far from their sparkling best, it is very clear Bruno Fernandes is the star of the team. This has been the case from the minute he walked through the doors of Carrington, the minute he went onto the Old Trafford pitch and now as he stands as vice captain of Manchester United.

The Portuguese ace was vital in slotting home United’s goal after he retook his penalty, scoring the only goal of the game. However, there is definitely controversy over whether his penalty should have stood and even more so surrounding the penalty he gave away that was then marked off. One thing is clear: the United star will always bring excitement every time he plays.

Midfielder: Joao Moutinho (7.8 Player Rating)

When Moutinho stepped back into the dressing room at full-time there must have been one question on his mind, how on earth did he not come out of that game with an assist? By some distance the best player on the Wolves team the 34-year-old rolled back the years and put in an elite level midfield performance. Superbly well-rounded, the former Monaco man provided three key passes and won seven out of eight of his duels.

Alongside this he made three tackles without committing a single foul. It was a class performance, from a class player and Wolves fans will be hoping Moutinho isn’t quite at the end of his career yet, and that there is plenty of gas left in the tank.

Forward: Diogo Jota (8.1 Player Rating)

Many have levelled criticism at Jurgen Klopp for perhaps not making enough signings in the defensive area for Liverpool, these have been made even louder with recent injury woes. However, the opposite to this, there is none who can dispute what a brilliant attacking signing Diogo Jota has been. Against Leicester Jota was the highlight of an incredibly attacking trio, scoring a goal, but also being the provider for a series of huge chances that did not end up being capitalised on.

With all three of the trio we have seen for Liverpool over recent years approaching their thirties, and Jota at just 23 it now looks like Jota could well be the first of a new trio that will come into fruition in the future. With the consistently brilliant levels Jota has already reached at Liverpool, it can only be expected he will continue to grow in the years to come.

Forward: Danny Welbeck (7.9 Player Rating)

Brighton took a chance offering free agent Danny Welbeck a contract at the club. After a series of injuries have thrown him into the starting eleven, he was exceptional against high-flying Aston Villa. Travelling away from home it was never going to be an easy game, but the old gunslinger that is Welbeck played to the very best of his ability and scored some goal.

Placing a perfectly placed chip right over Emiliano Martinez, Welbeck has shown he has plenty he can still offer a Premier League club, and if he is to be Brighton’s striker going forward, he is not to be underestimated.

Forward: Dominic Calvert-Lewin (8.9 Player Rating)

Again another exceptional performance from Dominic Calvert-Lewin, the Premier League top goalscorer grabbed another two to place him one ahead at the top of the charts. Whilst the first was far from a brilliant goal, the second was an instinctive poacher’s finish slotting home.

A true testament to the way Calvert-Lewin has worked hard and is coming into his peak is how in the 2018-19 season he managed just six goals. Calvert-Lewin already sits on 10 goals, averaging one a game he looks the complete package as far as a striker goes. At just the age of 23 and playing this well, there is a certain level of excitement surrounding Calvert-Lewin and what’s next for him as he continues to grow as a forward.

If the worst happens again this year before the Euro’s and Harry Kane gets injured, Calvert-Lewin looks the logical choice to take his place in the starting eleven.

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Honourable Mentions for Premier League TOTW 9

Jurgen Klopp: Narrowly missed out on manager of the week. Klopp’s men were exceptional against tough opposition with a mass of injury woes.

Andy Robertson: Unfortunate to beat beaten to the left back slot by fellow Merseyside club member Lucas Digne. Robertson still produced a good showing, picking up an assist.

Sam Johnstone: Maybe the best individual performance from a goalkeeper this week. Johnstone was exceptional and would have been guaranteed a place in the starting XI if not for that loss of his clean sheet.

Harry Kane: No goal for Harry Kane, however the English striker once again proved he can contribute exceptionally well in all other areas of his role as a deep-lying forward. Dropping deep to receive the ball against Manchester City, Kane caused serious headaches for the impressive and expensive City defensive duo of Ruben Dias and Aymeric Laporte throughout the match.

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