So with what seemed like years waiting for the start of the season, game week 1 is over in a flash and what a start to the season it was. There was no lack of controversy, goals or upsets, which left the dream team looking like this:
Allan McGregor is the top scoring goalkeeper for game week 1, which is mainly due to the penalty save he made against QPR which gave him an extra 5 points. His performance through the game was generally good, making 5 saves and keeping a clean sheet, which he will hope to replicate again in game-week 2, with Hull playing Stoke at home. A key figure to point out is that out of all of McGregor’s distribution attempts (35), only 12 made it to a Hull player.
Firstly, Hull City’s James Chester managed to rack up a total of 15 points, seeing him bag the winner at QPR, and keep a clean sheet. He is definitely classed as an unlikely scorer after only completing 2 successful touches all game in the opposition half (a chance created and the goal). However, he put in a reliable defensive performance, with 100% pass success rate in his own half (31). Last season Chester was one of the must have cheap defenders, managing to bag a league goal against Manchester United and the unlikely initial goal in the FA Cup final against Arsenal. Maybe he will replicate that form this season too.
Secondly we have Tottenham’s Eric Dier who had what was a dream debut at Upton Park, scoring the winner in the 93rd minute along with keeping a clean sheet. He had an 89% pass completion rate, completing 39 of his attempted 44 passes. Only 10 of these passes were backwards which means he has real intent to move the ball up the pitch. He will definitely be one to watch this season, as he is seen as a bright prospect.
The third player in the 5 man defence is Laurent Koscielny, who was a doubt to play in the match against Crystal Palace. However, he managed to play a full 90 minutes and also grabbed the opening goal, giving him a total of 10 points. The Arsenal centre-back managed to win all of his tackles (2) and successfully intercept the ball with every attempt (4). He was instrumental to Arsenal’s build up play, completing a massive 60 of his 62 attempted passes, 3 of those into the opposition box.
Nathaniel Clyne is the penultimate player in the back 5, after grabbing what was the equalizer in Southampton’s 1-2 loss to Liverpool at Anfield. Clyne managed to complete 22 of his 26 passes and only failed to win the ball with 1 of his 6 tackles, which shows great promise for the future game-weeks.
Finally, we have Branislav Ivanovic who managed to bag a goal in Chelsea’s 1-3 win at Burnley, helping himself to 2 bonus points. The Serbian defender failed on all 3 of his crossing attempts but managed to keep a 83% pass completion rate. His failed passes only came in the middle third, meaning 100% success rate in the final and defensive thirds.
Raheem Sterling is the first part of a 4 man midfield, after scoring and creating a goal in Liverpool’s 2-1 win over Southampton, giving him 13 points. He managed to create 2 chances for his team and succeeded with 36 of his 44 passing attempts. The youngster managed to have 4 shots, 3 of which were on target (1 goal). There was clear room for improvement, but the youngster was well out in the lead for the 3 bonus points (43 BPS – Skrtel & Clyne were 2nd closest with 25) and he picked up man of the match.
Gylfi Sigurdsson makes the dreamteam in midfield after what was an impressive appearance against Manchester United with 1 goal and 1 assist. However, although he managed a total of 13 points he did fail 4 of his 6 tackle attempts and he also failed with 5 of his 21 pass attempts.
We then have Cesc Fabregas who in his return to the Premier League has managed to get himself two assists and looked very impressive in Chelsea’s 1-3 win over Burnley. The Spaniard managed to create 3 goalscoring opportunities (2 were taken) and also managed to maintain a 86% passing accuracy.
Aaron Ramsey is the final piece of the midfield puzzle, with a total of 10 points, playing an instrumental part across the field. The Welsh wizard managed 4 attempts on goal (2 blocked, 1 saved, 1 goal). He also managed to complete a massive 92 passes out of 106, with 10 of those failed 14 unfortunately being in the attacking third. His defensive stats are just as impressive, successfully winning every tackle (5).
Our sole striker is Saido Berahino who managed to tally up a massive 13 points for his 2 goals against Sunderland. This also gave him those crucial 3 bonus points. The Baggies forward managed 4 attempts on goal in the game, resulting in 2 goals, 1 being saved and 1 off target. However, Berahino failed all of his 5 crossing attempts, but did however complete 23 out of his 28 passing attempts.
Other players worth a mention:
Cabella – Newcastle’s new signing showed a lot of ambition and flair, with a significant presence all over the pitch with 39 successful passes out of 46, 2 of those creating Newcastle chances. He managed 3 shots (1 blocked and 2 off-target), but he failed all 6 of his crossing attempts. When given little room (along the side-line) he failed with all 3 take-ons. However, when he had more space, he successfully completed all of his other 4 take-ons.
Ward-Prowse – Was a bit of a fringe player last season, but has shown a lot of promise in the first game of the season, with 3 shots (2 saved and 1 blocked), completing 29 of 37 pass attempts, and creating 1 Southampton chance in the process (Davis). However all 7 of his crossing attempts failed, which includes the 4 corners he took.
Tadic – Southampton’s new signing showed lots of promise in his first Premier League game, with 25 successful passes out of 32 attempts, assisting 1 goal. However, he did attempt a massive 13 crosses and only succeeded with 1 of those (which was a short one), also failing with both of his corner attempts.
Colback – Colback looked calm under pressure and a key man to Newcastle’s build up play against City. The player managed 37 successful passes out of 41, 1 of which created a Newcastle chance. Although he had no attempts on goal, his main purpose was provider and he did his best to achieve this by succeeding to find a Newcastle player with 5 of his 7 free-kicks, setting up 2 chances in the process. He was also successful in every interception (4) and tackle (3) attempt.
Lovren – The Croatian’s first game at Anfield saw him complete 66 passes out of 69, attempting 6 long passes, 5 of which were successful. His defensive statistics were also impressive, being; 4 successful interception attempts, 11 successful clearances and he also won 6 of his 11 aerial battles.
Sanchez – In his Premier League debut, Alexis managed 3 shots (2 off-target and 1 saved), along with 47 successful passes out of 59 attempts, of which 1 notably assisted Koscielny’s goal. However, he failed all 10 of his crossing attempts and was only successful with 3 of his 10 take-on attempts clearly showing room for improvement.