Premier League action returned following the international break and there was goals galore in matchday 13. Top sides met bottom sides as Liverpool faced Sunderland and Burnley met Manchester City. Chelsea also faced a crucial game against Tottenham.
We look at the top performers from match day 13.
Goalkeeper – Darren Randolph (West Ham)
West Ham earned a point against Manchester United at Old Trafford and had their goalkeeper to thank for keeping the Red Devils at bay. Randolph was excellent throughout, picking up the man of the match award for his efforts. He could do little to stop Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s equaliser but made nine saves, more than any other keeper this weekend. His performance could see the Irish keeper keep his place over Adrian who was dropped after a string of poor performances.
Defender – Joel Matip (Liverpool)
Liverpool kept the pressure on Chelsea at the top of the table as they battled to a 2-0 win over Sunderland at Anfield. Although The Black Cats were extremely defensive, Joel Matip was exceptional at the back for the Reds. He was dominant in the air and nullified the threat that Jermain Defoe posed. Matip completed 92% of his passes, and the free transfer is already looking like one of the signings of the season
Defender – Virgil van Dijk (Southampton)
It must only be a matter of time before Southampton’s Virgil van Dijk joins a top European club after the Dutchman delivered another outstanding performance against Everton. The ex-Celtic defender helped the Saints recover from their midweek European disappointment by beating the Toffees and has arguably been the best defender in the league this season. Van Dijk kept Romelu Lukaku quiet making five interceptions, three clearances and won 67% of his aerial duels.
Defender – Nathan Ake (Bournemouth)
Although Bournemouth lost to Arsenal, on-loan Chelsea defender, Nathan Ake, was extremely impressive at the back for the Cherries. He was lucky to escape punishment for a trip on Alexis Sanchez but was composed throughout to repel the Gunners attack. The Dutch defender made 14 clearances and two crucial blocks which prevented the home side from adding to the scoreline. His impressive performances on the South Coast will give Antonio Conte food for thought in the upcoming transfer window.
Defender – Victor Moses (Chelsea)
Chelsea’s Victor Moses continued his fantastic form since being transformed into a right wing-back by Conte. His winning goal helped the Blues overcome Tottenham and sealed their sixth straight win to leapfrog Liverpool to the top of the table. Moses has been a crucial part of the Italian’s 3-5-2 system after three loan spells away from the club, and his performances have reportedly attracted the attention of Barcelona, who are looking for right back options in January.
Midfielder – Leroy Fer (Swansea)
Swansea beat Crystal Palace 5-4 in a thrilling game at the Liberty Stadium which handed Bob Bradley his first win as Swans boss. Gylfi Sigurdsson was magnificent, but it was Leroy Fer who showed his goal scoring touch again by bagging a brace. His goals against the Eagles takes his tally to six for the season. The Dutchman has impressed in a more advanced role after a failed spell in the Premier League with QPR.
Midfielder – Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal)
Arsenal finally returned to winning ways against Bournemouth with star man Alexis Sanchez bagging another brace. Sanchez’s form has kept Olivier Giroud on the bench, and the Chilean impressed yet again. He capitalised on Steve Cook’s mistake early in the first half to give the Gunners the lead and hit the crossbar before completing the scoring in the dying stages. It took his goal tally to eight for the season, and only Diego Costa has played a part in more Premier League goals this season, highlighting Sanchez’s importance to Arsene Wenger.
Midfielder – Fernandinho (Manchester City)
Manchester City kept pace with the league leaders with a 2-1 win over Burnley at Turf Moor. It wasn’t Yaya Toure who impressed against the Clarets as Fernandinho put in a performance of the highest order. The Brazilian was a machine in the middle, helping his team in attack and defence. He created three chances for his team-mates, including an assist for City’s winner, but also two interceptions, three clearances, and one block.
Striker – Sergio Aguero (Manchester City)
Fernandinho impressed for the Citizens, but it was Sergio Aguero’s goals which gave Pep Guardiola all three points. Burnley keeper, Paul Robinson, denied the Argentine with a fine save in the first-half but it was only a matter of time before he opened the scoring, poking home for City’s equaliser. The ex-Atletico forward wrapped up the points by tapping home Fernandinho’s cross for his 10th goal of the season.
Striker – Fernando Llorente (Swansea)
Swansea had substitute hero, Fernando Llorente, to thank for their incredible comeback against Crystal Palace. The Spanish forward replaced Wayne Routledge and created a goal from his first touch of the game – Fer scoring after Llorente flicked on a corner. With the score 4-3 to Palace, Llorente was in the right place at the right time to rebound home Sigurdsson’s shot in injury time. He added his second just two minutes later to give Swansea their first win of the season since the opening day.
Striker – Negredo (Middlesbrough)
Another forward who ended their goal drought was Middlesbrough’s Alvaro Negredo. The Spaniard had failed to find the net since matchday one but netted a brace in ‘Boro’s 2-2 draw with champions Leicester. He swept home Gaston Ramirez’s pass on 13 minutes before volleying past Ron-Robert Zieler in superb fashion with his left foot. The former Manchester City striker answered his critics with a fine performance which Boro fans will be hoping can continue as the season draws on.
Who was YOUR player of the week in matchday 13? Comment below!