Gameweek 26 would see another scintillating round of Premier League action, with drama at both ends of the league as we edge further towards the final run in. Manchester United were in action as they faced Fulham at Craven Cottage, before Liverpool hosted AFC Bournemouth and Manchester City battled Chelsea. At the other end Southampton would host Cardiff City in a massive clash, while Huddersfield Town hosted Arsenal in Yorkshire. The gameweek would end off with Newcastle United travelling to face Wolves. Anyway, here’s the FPL Updates gameweek review…
Hugo Lloris – Written off by so many at various stages of this campaign, Spurs have put together quite the run of late in the Premier League. This has been made even more impressive with the longer-term absences of both Dele Alli and Harry Kane. When you consider that Son Heung-Min also missed a couple of matches due to international commitments, it’s a wonder that Mauricio Pochettino’s side are even close to the summit. They turned in another strong performance at the weekend as they secured victory against Leicester City.
Willy Boly – Wolverhampton Wanderers have been in excellent form of late in the league and were looking to break their club-record for consecutive top-flight wins as they welcomed Newcastle United. However, they wouldn’t have it all their own way, and found themselves a goal down when Isaac Hayden broke the deadlock for the away side. In what was a tight contest the North-East side looked to be holding on for a big three points until Willy Boly beat keeper Martin Dubravka to a high ball late to salvage a point for Nuno Santo’s side.
Phil Jones – Manchester United are in their best form since Sir Alex Ferguson’s days at the club under new boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and welcomed the challenge of facing strugglers Fulham at Craven Cottage on Saturday. They ran out comfortable winners in the end, and their focuses will turn to Europe and the challenge faced by French side Paris Saint-Germain. Solskjaer, who scored a Champions League final winning goal for the Red Devils, will be looking to continue their current form on the continent.
Jack Stephens – There was a big clash at the bottom on Saturday afternoon when Cardiff City made the trip to Hampshire to face Southampton. In a tight game it was the away side who broke the deadlock when Sol Bamba stabbed home at the back post. Saints thought they had snatched a point at the death when Jack Stephens converted from close range in injury time. However, as the seconds ticked away the Bluebirds mustered one chance with Kenneth Zohore poking the ball in off the post to spark wild scenes of celebration in the away end.
Raheem Sterling – Manchester City have taken massive steps in the past couple of weeks to stay within touching distance of Liverpool at the top of the Premier League, with many now considering them favourites to secure consecutive titles despite Liverpool’s three-point advantage. They were expecting a test as Chelsea arrived at the Etihad, however it became more of a training exercise as City dispatched the Londoners in style, hitting Mauricio Sarri’s side for six, with Raheem Sterling turning in a superb performance.
Paul Pogba & Anthony Martial – Two players who have come on leaps and bound under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer are French international duo Anthony Martial and Paul Pogba. The latter opened the scoring against Fulham, hammering the ball into the roof of the net from a tight angle. Martial doubled the advantage shortly after, powering through the Fulham defence before slotting in in front of the travelling fans. When Juan Mata was felled in the area, Pogba then stepped up to net his side’s third and his second to kill the game off as a contest.
Christian Eriksen – Spurs turned in a fine performance against Leicester City at Wembley on Sunday afternoon. Danish international Christian Eriksen crossed for Davinson Sanchez to open the scoring after half an hour, before turning scorer when he finished brilliantly from the edge of the penalty box to double the ‘home’ side’s advantage. Jamie Vardy pulled a goal back as the Foxes piled on the pressure, however the game was over when Heung-Min Son finished in injury time to secure a big three points as Spurs aim to keep pace with the top two.
Georginio Wijnaldum – Liverpool started nervously against AFC Bournemouth on Saturday and could have found themselves behind early. However, they grew into the contest and took the lead when Sadio Mané headed home past Artur Boruc. They doubled the lead shortly after when Georginio Wijnaldum lobbed the ball brilliantly into the back of the net from a standing position. The game was well and truly over when Mo Salah got in on the act shortly into the second half. Honestly, it could have been a lot more for Jurgen Klopp’s Reds.
Sergio Aguero – Argentine forward Sergio Aguero equalled the record for Premier League hat-tricks on Sunday against Chelsea, as he equalled Alan Shearer’s tally. He started poorly against Chelsea though, putting wide from four yards early. However, he soon found the net, curling home from twenty-five yards. His second came when Ross Barkley headed the ball back towards his own goal, only for Aguero to sweep beyond Kepa. His third came from the penalty spot on a brilliant day for City, who really sent a message to those doubting their title credentials.
Chris Wood – Burnley secured a massive victory away at Brighton and Hove Albion on Saturday to see Sean Dyche’s men climb away from the drop zone. They took the lead when a slip from Lewis Dunk saw Chris Wood in behind, and he slotted the ball high into the net past Mat Ryan. They doubled the advantage when Wood curled in from a Dwight McNeil Pass. The game was all but over when Ashley Barnes converted from the spot against his former club. A Shane Duffy goal just two minutes later proved little consolation as the Seagulls look over their shoulders nervously.
Written by Ryan Nevin (@RNevin7)