Gameweek 14 would see a full round of Premier League fixtures as we headed into December, and the festive season, a time enjoyed by football fans across the country. It kicked off with Manchester City travelling to face Newcastle United, before Watford faced Southampton, Chelsea battled West Ham United and Liverpool took on Brighton and Hove Albion. Sunday would see clashes between Norwich City and Arsenal, Manchester United and Aston Villa and Leicester and Everton. Anyway, here’s the FPL Updates gameweek review…
David Martin – Saturday afternoon would see a Premier League debut for summer signing David Martin for West Ham. Having signed on a free from rivals Millwall in summer, Martin’s debut would come at Stamford Bridge. His father Alvin, who is a Hammers legend from yester-year, was in the crowd to watch his son claim a clean sheet on the way to a win for Manuel Pellegrini’s side. It all seemed a bit much for David, though, as he fought back tears on the full-time whistle, with the away faithful chanting his name.
Virgil van Dijk & Trent Alexander-Arnold – Liverpool hosted Brighton and Hove Albion in a match the home side were very much expected to win. The Reds have been practically unstoppable this season and went in front when Virgil van Dijk got on the end of a Trent Alexander-Arnold delivery to open the scoring. The same would happen again shortly after, with the Dutchman notching a brace, a feat which achieved last season. A late freekick from Lewis Dunk pulled a goal back for the Seagulls, but it proved to be merely consolation.
Aaron Cresswell – Most would have expected a Chelsea side who’ve started the season so well to dispatch a West Ham side who have seen the pressure mount on their manager as of late. However, the home side were shell-shocked when Aaron Cresswell cut inside to fire home with his weaker right foot. The Blues, who were struggling to create clear-cut chances, were left frustrated as the Hammers clung on to secure what is a priceless three points. Manuel Pellegrini may well have bought himself some time with this one.
Matt Doherty – Wolves faced off against Sheffield United in a clash between two sides who few would have expected to find themselves so high in the Premier League table. Nonetheless, they put on an entertaining display. The Blades hit the front instantly, with the in-form Lys Mousset firing the Yorkshire side in front. They looked for a second but were unable to finish their chances. They would live to regret it when a ball to the back post picked out Matt Doherty to head home low past Dean Henderson. Both sides will have to settle for a point.
Dele Alli & Heung-Min Son – Spurs look a different side under José Mourinho to the underperformers that saw their previous boss sacked. Filled with confidence from a mid-week Champions League comeback they wasted no time against Bournemouth and found themselves three goals to the good against the Cherries courtesy of goals from Dele Alli and Moussa Sissoko. They will be pleased to find the net so often at the start of Mourinho’s reign, something they’ve struggled with so far this season, especially in the Premier League.
Harry Wilson – AFC Bournemouth seem to have done well to secure the services of Harry Wilson on loan from Liverpool for the season. The Wales international really seems to be making his mark in the Premier League at the moment and scored a brace to pile the pressure on Spurs late on as the Cherries fell to a 3-2 defeat. Never the types to roll over, Eddie Howe’s side kept going against a side filled with confidence since a change of management. Howe may lament his side’s defending and wonder what might have been.
Wilfried Zaha – Crystal Palace travelled to Turf Moor on Saturday in a spell of poor form. Their opposition on the other hand were flying, meaning few gave the Eagles a chance on the day. They, however, stunned the home crowd, with Wilfried Zaha showcasing his quality at the end of the first half to put Roy Hodgson’s side in front at the break. As the Clarets pushed for an equaliser in the second period, they were left exposed, and Jeff Schlupp killed off the game late on when he found the net with ten minutes remaining.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang – Arsenal travelled to Norwich City under the management of club legend Freddie Ljungberg, who was placed in charge while the club appoints a replacement for Unai Emery, who was sacked last week. Arsenal, however, found themselves behind courtesy of Teemu Pukki’s strike. They levelled the game when Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang equalised from the spot. Todd Cantwell’s strike sparked groans among the Gunners faithful, before Aubameyang found the net again to salvage a point.
Kelechi Iheanacho – Leicester City have been brilliant this season but found themselves a goal down to strugglers Everton when Richarlison headed the Toffees in front after twenty minutes. However, in the second period former Manchester City forward Kelechi Iheanacho was introduced, and it wasn’t long before he squared the ball to Jamie Vary to slide home an equaliser. They weren’t done there, and deep into injury time Iheanacho chopped past his man and drilled home a brilliant winner for the Foxes, who celebrated after a VAR check.
Written by Ryan Nevin (@RNevin7)