Premier League

Premier League Top Five, Round 17: Kevin De Bruyne guns down Arsenal

Mohamed Salah also earns a place after his superb double for Liverpool.

 
8:00am on Tuesday 17th December 2019
By
Martin Macdonald
Kevin De Bruyne
M (C) - Man City - 28 yrs
MAN OF THE MATCH
90'
9.4
Dec 15, 2019

It was a masterclass from Kevin De Bruyne against Arsenal on Sunday as he was, by some distance, the best player on the pitch and indeed the best player in the Premier League this weekend. Ater Arsenal's good start lasted around 60 seconds, he sent the home fans back into their seats with a stunning half-volleyed finish into the roof of the net to make it 1-0 before turning provider with a low cross to Raheem Sterling to make it two. The Belgian then earned his second and City's third with a gorgeous display of shooting technique to curl a finish into the bottom left corner from the edge of the box with his 'weaker' foot. He had 70 touches during the match, most of which oozed class.

Mohamed Salah
W (R), S (C) - Liverpool - 27 yrs
MAN OF THE MATCH
90'
8.8
Dec 14, 2019

Mohamed Salah scored two goals for Liverpool in the first game of the weekend on Saturday as the Reds beat Watford 2-0, with both strikes wonderfully summing up his best attributes. It took the hosts a little while to get going, but the deadlock was eventually broken by the Egyptian as he ran through on goal at pace after the pass from Sadio Mane. Just when it appeared he had taken one-too-many touches, he managed to dig out an unconventional, curled strike into the top corner. His second to make it 2-0 Liverpool was pure cheek, as he opportunistically took advantage of a loose ball heading out of play to flick a backheel through the legs of the defender over the line.

Vicente Guaita
GK - Crystal Palace - 32 yrs
MAN OF THE MATCH
90'
8.8
Dec 16, 2019

Brighton dominated much of the proceedings in Monday night's game against Crystal Palace, but were forced to settle for a point after a late comeback from the hosts, who have Vicente Guaita to thank as the Spaniard kept the score low before the equaliser by making no less than nine saves. He also made an outstanding 16 ball recoveries to take the pressure off the Palace defence.

John Fleck
DM, M (C) - Sheffield Utd - 28 yrs
MAN OF THE MATCH
90'
8.7
Dec 14, 2019

John Fleck, and Sheffield United as a whole, have emerged as two of the success stories of the Premier League so far, with the Scot scoring two goals in a 2-0 win over Aston Villa on this occasion. Both goals displayed his prowess of making late runs into the box, with his first being expertly diverted into the right corner with his left foot after a cross from the right wing. For his second, he has David McGoldrick to thank after a clever assist over the Villa defence, while his finish across the keeper was emphatic. He also won the majority of his duels, and made five ball recoveries.

Kurt Zouma
D (C) - Chelsea - 25 yrs
MAN OF THE MATCH
90'
8.5
Dec 14, 2019

Chelsea may have suffered a surprise defeat at home to Bournemouth, but Kurt Zouma was one player who didn't deserve to be on the losing side after his solid performance at the back for the hosts. He won 13/17 duels, the majority of aeriel duels, and made seven ball recoveries and seven interceptions. In terms of playing out from the back, he completed more passes than anyone else in the league this weekend with 97.

HONOURABLE MENTION

Another player on the losing side despite playing very well was Adama Traore (8.3), who terrorised Spurs down the right-hand side for Wolves with his extreme pace and power. He completed five dribbles and sent nine crosses into the box, and it would have been a lot more than that if the Spurs players didn't target him with constant, blatant fouls, with Toby Alderweireld, Jan Vertonghen, and Harry Kane all being booked for tackles on him. He got his own back, slightly, with a blistering strike into the top corner from 20 yards but unfortunately for him, the visitors would have the last laugh with the last-minute winner.

ROUND TO FORGET

Calum Chambers (5.1) looked desperately out of his depth against Manchester City in Arsenal's 3-0 loss. He won zero tackles, 1/5 aeriel duels, gave away one massive chance, and lost possession no less than 15 times.

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