Gameweek 11 would see Premier League sides looking to take some kind of form in this weekend’s international break. Many Premier League stars would have been all too aware of the world cup qualification play-offs that take place over the next fortnight. That didn’t mean they’d be taking it easy in the league however, as we were presented with some mouth-watering prospects, especially on Sunday as we saw Arsenal travel to the Eithad to face Manchester City, while Chelsea would host Manchester United. Anyway, here’s the FPL Updates Gameweek 11 FPL Review…
Asmir Begovic – Having signed for AFC Bournemouth from Champions Chelsea in the summer, there were high hopes for the Bosnian international among Cherries fans. Having yet to hit stride this season, Begovic was questioned after he let Eden Hazard’s shot in at his near post last Saturday night, which proved to be the Blues’ winner. The former Stoke City man will undoubtedly be disappointed that his international side won’t be competing for a spot in Russia this summer, but it didn’t stop him turning in a superb performance as Bournemouth travelled to Newcastle.
Steve Cook – The trip from Bournemouth to Newcastle won’t have been an enjoyable one for the Cherries faithful, however their side made sure that their efforts were not in vein. Having started the season poorly, Eddie Howe’s side picked up a big win at Stoke a fortnight ago, before losing narrowly at home to Chelsea. They bounced back in dramatic fashion, as a bullet header from Steve Cook two minutes into second half stoppage time gave his side all three points in a tight affair. The win pulls Bournemouth out of the relegation zone for now.
Scott Malone – Having started the season superbly, things had somewhat stalled for David Wagner’s newly-promoted Huddersfield Town side, however they scored a wonder goal to claim a priceless three points at the John Smith’s Stadium as they upstaged Tony Pulis’ West Bromwich Albion side. Having put the pressure on early on, the home side made the breakthrough just before the half time whistle as Rajiv Van la Parra curled home from thirty yards brilliantly. It was then a case of holding on, especially after Christopher Schindler picked up a second yellow before the hour. The result pulls Town up to tenth in the Premier League.
Leighton Baines – Watford and Everton played out a thriller at Goodison Park as David Unsworth staked his claim for the job on a permanent basis. After a terrible start to the season, the Toffees found themselves in the bottom three, about to host one of the seasons surprise packages in Marco Silva’s Watford. What followed was a superb display of attacking football from both sides. Watford took the lead when Richarlison slotted home at the near post just after the break. Christian Kabasele then headed home to double the Hornets’ advantage with less than half an hour remaining, leaving the Toffees with an uphill battle…
Cesar Azpilicueta – Chelsea performed magnificently to record a superb 1-0 win as they hosted Jose Mourinho’s title-chasing Manchester United on Sunday. With United knowing they would need a win to retain their five-point deficit next to neighbours Manchester City, they started the game looking to attack, and it made for an enthralling first half. The game turned when Cesar Azpilicueta drove forward from centre-back before delivering an inch-perfect cross for Alvaro Morata, who rose to guide a stunning header into the corner, leaving David De Gea helpless. Antonio Conte’s side held firm to see the match out a take an important three points.
Joel Matip – Liverpool were at their counter-attacking best as they were comfortable winners at the Olympic Stadium, beating a sorry West Ham side 4-1 on Saturday evening. Goals from Joel Matip and Mo Salah gave the Reds a two-goal lead, before a Manuel Lanzini effort halved the deficit. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s first goal for Liverpool would restore the two-goal margin, before Salah netted a second to put the match beyond doubt. The result saw West Ham dismiss manager Slaven Bilic, and turn to former Manchester United and Everton boss David Moyes, who will look to steady the ship until the end of the season.
Mo Salah & Sadio Mane – If you had to select the two best Liverpool players so far this season, you would look no further than their rapid wide-men in Mo Salah and Sadio Mane. Having been so impressive last campaign, Mane was a massive miss. However, Mo Salah really stepped up to the plate in the Senegalese’s absence this term, chipping in with goals and assists galore. Reds fans will be excited to see what they can do together this season. There isn’t a full back in the league that will look forward to facing these two, and it remains to be seen if they can yet again secure a Champions League place.
Xherdan Shaqiri – Stoke City and Leicester played out a 2-2 draw for the third consecutive time at the Bet365 Stadium, as Peter Crouch’s record-breaking header levelled late. Leicester City, now under Claude Puel, took the lead when summer signing Vicente Iborra hammered home on the volley after a scramble in the Stoke area. Despite having chances to double their lead, they were stunned when Swiss international Xherdan Shaqiri curled home an equaliser past Kasper Schmeichel. Leicester retook the lead when Riyad Mahrez cut in and drilled home brilliantly. However, Peter Crouch rose highest to meet Shaqiri’s corner, and levelled the record for most goals off the bench in the Premier League, Shola Ameobi having been the previous holder.
Heung-Min Son – Spurs narrowly edged past Crystal Palace at Wembley on Sunday, as South Korean international Heung -Min Son struck from the edge of the box on the hour to secure a vital three points. Man of the match on the day was debutant Paulo Gazzaniga, whose last start in England came when he played against Spurs for Southampton in 2013, keeping a clean sheet and being awarded man of the match on that day. He made some top saves to keep out Roy Hodgson’s Palace side, who remain bottom of the table, now six points from safety. There were positives for the Eagles, who on another day may well have taken something.
Oumar Niasse – At two goals down, it was Everton’s forgotten man who pulled a goal back, as Oumar Niasse’s effort squirmed in past Karnezis, who came on in place of the injured Heurelho Gomes. With their tails up, Dominic Calvert-Lewin would level for the Toffees, when he headed home from a corner. With Goodison rocking, Everton had a penalty a minute into injury time, which Leighton Baines duly converted. However, there was a late twist, as Watford would have a chance from the spot ten minutes into injury time, when Jordan Pickford brought down Richarlison. Former Everton man Tom Cleverley stepped up, but his spot kick was dragged wide, to the delight of Goodison. It was a much needed win for Everton and caretaker boss David Unsworth.
Written by Ryan Nevin (@RNevin7)