Garth Crooks’ staff of the week: Foster, Soyuncu, Walker, Mane, Abraham

Two unlikely goalscorers helped title contenders Liverpool and Manchester Metropolis out of scrapes within the Premier League this weekend.

A Leicester defender set his staff on the way in which to a 2-0 win at Crystal Palace and third place, whereas a Newcastle midfielder joined him in my XI after his good strike and good show within the 3-2 win at West Ham.


Here is my staff of the week – have a learn and choose your individual under.

Goalkeeper – Ben Foster (Watford)

Foster: I do not assume I’ve seen something prefer it. Ben Foster was virtually as spectacular within the opposition’s penalty space as he was in his personal. The previous England worldwide was in inspiring type and stored Watford within the sport in opposition to a rampant Chelsea within the 2-1 defeat. His saves from Tammy Abraham and Christian Pulisic have been excellent and the way Foster obtained his hand to Mason Mount’s power-drive I’ll by no means know. Nevertheless, it was Foster’s jaunt up entrance within the final minute of the match that deserved extra. His header produced essentially the most spectacular save from reverse quantity Kepa Arrizabalaga within the Chelsea aim. Had Foster scored he would have had each proper to retire.

Do you know? Foster made extra saves (eight) than every other Premier League goalkeeper this weekend.


Defenders – Andrew Robertson (Liverpool), Steve Prepare dinner (Bournemouth), Caglar Soyuncu (Leicester), Kyle Walker (Manchester Metropolis)

Robertson: It is trying ominous now. Liverpool’s last-minute victory, arrange by Andy Robertson’s good header, is what titles are made from. I keep in mind this membership dominating the scene throughout my very own enjoying days – they did it then by carrying the opposition down and offering the killer contact within the dying seconds, and they’re doing the identical factor once more 25 years later. For Robertson to seek out himself so excessive up the pitch at that stage within the sport, solely to be discovered by essentially the most beautiful ball from Sadio Mane, says all of it. Liverpool imply enterprise.

Do you know? Robertson has scored two objectives in his final six video games for Liverpool in all competitions – yet another than in his first 88 appearances for the membership.

Prepare dinner: Steve Prepare dinner was unfortunate to not make my TOTW final week after his header in opposition to Watford hit the bar. The Bournemouth captain marshalled his troops magnificently in opposition to what was a fairly insipid Manchester United efficiency, matched solely by their characterless away shirts. Is it me or have United gone from a membership that takes delight in having a few of the greatest footballers on the planet enjoying repeatedly for the membership, to turning into an auditions’ company for promising children?


Do you know? Prepare dinner made extra clearances (9) and performed extra passes (41) than every other Bournemouth participant of their 1-Zero victory.

Soyuncu: This lad can play. He made my TOTW earlier within the season simply after Harry Maguire left for Manchester United. He regarded good then, however away at Crystal Palace he regarded even higher. Soyuncu is beginning to appeal to appreciable consideration and the type that supervisor Brendan Rogers and Leicester may do with out. The Turkey worldwide didn’t give Crystal Palace ahead Jordan Ayew a kick on Sunday and winger Wilfried Zaha was lacking in motion.

Do you know? Soyuncu grew to become the second Turkish participant to attain within the Premier League for Leicester Metropolis, after Muzzy Izzet (33 objectives between 1996 and 2004).


Walker: Liverpool’s Trent Alexander-Arnold would, below regular circumstances, have made my TOTW forward of Kyle Walker. The Liverpool full-back was excellent in opposition to Aston Villa, however so was Walker in opposition to a Southampton facet who have been at occasions fairly good. Alexander-Arnold demonstrated his extraordinary two-footedness and why he’s such a critical menace to Walker’s worldwide future. Walker, then again, appears to be like like he is ready to tackle Alexander-Arnold’s problem. The previous Tottenham defender offered the help and scored Metropolis’s winner, which can maintain Alexander-Arnold and the Reds from getting their palms on that elusive title. I do not assume Walker is able to utterly relinquish his England place simply but both.

Do you know? Walker each scored and assisted in a Premier League sport for the primary time in his profession (272 appearances).

Midfielders – John Lundstram (Sheffield United), Jonjo Shelvey (Newcastle), Jorginho (Chelsea)

Lundstram: This was a powerful efficiency by Sheffield United. The Blades appeared to chop via Burnley like a knife via butter. Whereas it was the efficiency of John Lundstram that stood out, I may have chosen any variety of United gamers on this efficiency. I do not know if actor Sean Bean nonetheless will get time to go and watch his cherished United, but when he does he should be loving this.


Do you know? That is simply the ninth event a Sheffield United participant has scored two-plus objectives in a Premier League sport, with Lundstram the primary to take action since Nathan Blake in opposition to Newcastle in April 1994.

Shelvey: This participant will look again on his profession and genuinely surprise why he by no means gained extra caps for England. On his day he may be nearly as good as any midfield participant within the nation, however his health ranges have at all times been a trigger for concern together with the potential to trigger mischief. Towards West Ham, Shelvey demonstrated simply how efficient he may be on the ball. The dilemma for Magpies supervisor Steve Bruce is: does he keep on with Shelvey or return to those that can repeatedly present the grit and the endeavour? If Bruce desires the credit score Rafa Bentitez acquired from the Newcastle followers, he might want to get these selections proper first.

Do you know? Shelvey netted his first direct free-kick aim within the Premier League together with his 31st try.


Jorginho: The ball from Jorginho for Tammy Abraham to attain in opposition to Watford was out of this world. It was a transfer that does not simply occur accidentally; this was part of play that has been labored on and orchestrated by the teaching workers and gamers, and it was great to observe. Final week it was Mateo Kovacic who made my TOTW on the expense of Jorginho, however the Italian made such an impression in opposition to the Hornets that I felt compelled to pick out him above Kovacic and fellow midfielder Willian, such was his efficiency.

Do you know? Jorginho has been immediately concerned in three objectives in his 11 Premier League video games this season (one aim, two assists) – greater than he managed in his 37 appearances final season (two objectives, no assists).

Forwards – Joshua King (Bournemouth), Tammy Abraham (Chelsea), Sadio Mane (Liverpool)

King: It is usually Callum Wilson who will get the plaudits at Bournemouth, however on this event the centre-forward should give strategy to Joshua King. Supervisor Eddie Howe doesn’t should depend on Wilson to provide the products on a regular basis for the Cherries and may often depend on King, as was the case in opposition to United. It will seem, nonetheless, that there appears an over-reliance creating by supervisor Ole Gunnar Solskjaer on Marcus Rashford. Solskjaer must be reminded that Rashford is simply 22 and Manchester United one of many greatest golf equipment on the planet. To ask such a younger man to hold a lot duty, typically on his personal, is bordering on carelessness. Luckily, King does not want to fret about such issues at Bournemouth.


Do you know? King’s aim ended a run of 358 minutes, three video games and 50 photographs with out discovering the web within the Premier League for Bournemouth.

Abraham: This lad is trying extra like a Premier League centre-forward the extra I see him. The attention and motion from Abraham for Jorginho’s move, which resulted in Chelsea’s opening aim, was excellent. Abraham clearly has means, however he’s additionally courageous and never afraid to go in the place it hurts. An important high quality for any striker. He is additionally a staff participant. The help for Pulisic was completely unselfish.

Do you know? Abraham each scored and assisted in a Premier League sport for the primary time in his profession (44 appearances).


Mane: I mentioned final week that Sadio Mane was carrying Liverpool and his efficiency in opposition to a cussed Aston Villa proved it. The Senegal worldwide was all over the place. If he wasn’t defending set-plays, he was offering defence-splitting passes for his team-mates to reap the benefits of – and so they did. The ball for Roberto Firmino to transform was very good and the move for Robertson to attain was even higher. The choice by VAR to rule out Firmino’s aim for offside was a joke. I assumed the expertise was there to spotlight clear and apparent errors, not destroy great passages of play. If that is the very best VAR can do they need to throw the expertise within the bin.

Do you know? Mane scored the 35th 90th-minute profitable aim by Liverpool within the Premier League, 10 greater than every other facet within the competitors’s historical past. 5 of these have come because the begin of final season, greater than every other staff.

Now it is your flip

You have seen my alternatives this season. However who would you go for?


Crooks of the Matter

Any skilled footballer who has suffered critical damage of their profession will really feel for Andre Gomes. The Everton midfielder left the sector of play in opposition to Spurs after what gave the impression to be an innocuous problem, however with what could also be a career-threatening damage.

Each participant who performs the sport understands the dangers concerned. Soccer is a contact sport and accidents happen. Not too long ago I chosen Gomes in my TOTW for an excellent efficiency in opposition to West Ham after the Portugal worldwide had just lately come again from a long-term damage.

To see Tottenham’s Son Heung-min inconsolable concerning the incident spoke volumes about simply how distressing gamers discover these incidents. To ship Son off was, in my opinion, a travesty. The South Korean ahead did nothing improper.


In view of Son’s response to the incident, it was clear the participant couldn’t proceed. In such circumstances the respectable factor was for referee Martin Atkinson to ask Tottenham supervisor Mauricio Pochettino to substitute the participant.

To ship a participant off when a sort out is reckless or uncontrolled is one factor, however to take action solely to compensate for a critical damage isn’t the place the sport must be heading.