Premier League Team of the Week

Manchester United were the big winners in the Barclays Premier League over the weekend and our Team of the Week reflects this.

Football News: Robin van Persie.
Marcus Chhan

By Marcus Chhan

Sir Alex Ferguson's side beat Arsenal 2-1 to move top of the table after 10 rounds as Chelsea dropped points against Swansea.

Like the Blues, defending champions Manchester City also struggled as they were held to a goalless draw by West Ham while Tottenham slumped to a 1-0 defeat against Wigan.

Liverpool earned a 1-1 draw with Newcastle at Anfield thanks to a fine bit of skill from their star striker Luis Suarez.

This week we've gone 4-3-3 again.

GK: Alex McCarthy (Reading)

Reading's Alex McCarthy did his growing reputation as a promising goalkeeper no harm on Sunday with a priceless performance in their 1-1 draw with fellow relegation candidates QPR.

The 22-year-old made not one but two stunning saves to deny QPR - the first came when he tipped an Esteban Granero free-kick onto the crossbar while his second was an even better save on Adel Taarabt's effort later in the game.

RB: Steven Whittaker (Norwich)

Debuts are never easy, especially if you are a defender trying to adjust to the pace and power of the Barclays Premier League. In this respect, Norwich full-back Steven Whittaker deserves the plaudits for his assured start against a physical Stoke side. Whittaker's crossing was his most attractive asset as an individual but he also helped form a solid backline for the Canaries as they got the clean sheet and the 1-0 win over Stoke.

LB: Patrice Evra (Manchester United)

Manchester United left-back Patrice Evra has had to cop a lot of criticism recently but it was all-smiles for the Frenchman during Saturday's 2-1 win over Arsenal. The defender was rarely troubled by the Gunners who just did not have the pace to catch out the nimble defender. Evra also arrived on cue to head in what proved to be the winning goal for United against old rivals Arsenal.

CB: Ciaran Clark (Aston Villa)

Aston Villa defender Ciaran Clark provided the defensive foundation for his side to build an important 1-0 win over Sunderland on Saturday. On the one-occasion when Clark was stretched defensively, the centre-back recovered excellently to block Sunderland's Stephane Sessegnon from scoring an almost certain goal.

CB: Winston Reid (West Ham)

Not many people would have felt West Ham were capable of keeping a clean sheet against English champions Manchester City - but they did and Winston Reid shone in the heart of defence for the newly-promoted side. The New Zealand international marshalled his defence brilliantly against quality opposition with City opting to start the game with Mario Balotelli, Carlos Tevez and Edin Dzeko.

CM: Shaun Maloney (Wigan)

Wigan's Shaun Maloney is one of the more under-rated players in the Barclays Premier League. The attacker's ability to run at defenders and pick out team-mates with a pass was on full-display in Wigan's shock 1-0 win over Tottenham on Saturday.

CM: Pablo Hernandez (Swansea)

In what was generally a poor weekend for the ‘Big Four' Barclays Premier League clubs, Swansea did their part by holding Chelsea to a 1-1 draw. The Welsh side more than held their own against the reigning European champions - especially in the first half - led by the intelligent movement and passing of midfielder Pablo Hernandez. It was fitting then to see the Spaniard cap-off his performance with the equalising goal in the 87th minute which by the way was a very good finish low and beyond Petr Cech from outside the box.

CM: Marouane Fellaini (Everton)

This could be a real break-out season for Everton's Marouane Fellaini. This man-mountain of a midfielder has impressed before in previous seasons but also struggled with consistency and his disciplinary record has not been good either. However, this season the Belgium international has managed to put all the pieces of his game together and what we're left with is a player who terrorised Fulham for two goals on Saturday.

ST: Luis Suarez (Liverpool)

Unplayable. That was the word used by Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers to describe Luis Suarez during his side's 1-1 draw with Newcastle on Sunday. He wasn't wrong making that statement. The Uruguayan tormented Newcastle defender Fabricio Coloccini till breaking point - the Argentinean eventually had a meltdown in the 83rd minute with a late tackle on Suarez which earned him a straight red - and Suarez managed to score a quality goal as well.

Suarez's goal in itself is worth his entry into the Team of the Week. After controlling a long ball from Jose Enrique with his shoulder, he took the ball down on his chest and then dribbled around the advancing goalkeeper Tim Krul. All this while running at almost full speed too.

ST: Robin van Persie (Manchester United)

Manchester United striker Robin van Persie needs no introduction to readers of our Team of the Week. He's been a regular feature in this list this season and last season for that matter as well. Why does he deserve yet another mention here? Let's see, he was the main focus of attention in the biggest game in England over the weekend with the visit of his old side Arsenal to Old Trafford and he duly delivered for Manchester United to send them top of the table.

Still not convinced? Maybe you should go ask Arsenal left-back Andre Santos. He was so star struck by Van Persie that he was ready to swap shirts at half-time!

ST: Peter Odemwingie (West Brom)

West Brom's two-goal hero from Monday's 2-0 win over Southampton was Peter Odemwingie and he rightly takes up the final place in our Team of the Week. The Baggies are now flying high in the Barclays Premier League in fifth place.

You can follow Marcus on his Twitter account @MarcusChhan for more insights from the world of sport.



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