After an intriguing round of Premier League fixtures, Manchester City continue to head the table with six wins in as many games. Elsewhere, Manchester United and Arsenal recorded convincing victories over Leicester City and Chelsea respectively.
TheHardTackle’s Team of the Week: Tom Heaton; Hector Bellerin, Michael Keane, Virgil van Dijk, James Milner; Son Heung-min, Philippe Coutinho, Mesut Ozil, Adam Lallana; Jermaine Defoe, Alexis Sanchez.
Tom Heaton (Burnley)
Burnley No.1 Tom Heaton was in sublime form as the Clarets pulled off a convincing 2-0 victory over Watford in the Premier League. With strikers such as Troy Deeney and Odion Ighalo at their disposal, the Hornets failed to find the back of the net due to Heaton’s exploits in goal.
He marshalled his back line with proficiency and seemed to have a phenomenal understanding with the central defenders. In the instances Heaton was called into action, he rose to the occasion and managed to maintain a clean sheet for Burnley.
Hector Bellerin (Arsenal)
Arsenal’s flying full-back Hector Bellerin was in top form when the Gunners hosted a Chelsea side looking to regain their winning mentality. The young Spanish defender worked tirelessly down the right flank, keeping Eden Hazard in check while also contributing to his team’s attack. His last-ditch challenge on Chelsea winger Pedro was undoubtedly the highlight of his game.
Going forward too, Bellerin looked impressive. He kept making surging runs, looked for movement around him and linked up exceptionally well with Alexis Sanchez. The 21-year-old has proven to be a real asset for Arsene Wenger and could be key if Arsenal are to challenge for the title this season.
Michael Keane (Burnley)
On Monday, against a confident and high-flying Watford side, defender Michael Keane scored his first goal in England’s top flight. The former Manchester United centre-back found himself on the end of a cross played by Steven Defour and calmly slotted it home to hand his side the initiative.
Defensively too, he looked solid and was constantly on the toes of Deeney. Seldom was the Watford attacker given any room to link up with strike partner Ighalo. Keane was pivotal in guiding his side to three points and manager Sean Dyche will be hoping to see more of the same from the youngster in the coming matches.
Virgil van Dijk (Southampton)
Southampton centre-half Virgil van Dijk has made an incredible start to the season. Once again, during the match against West Ham, the Holland international put up a scintillating defensive display away from home.
The Hammers lacked the attacking verve to find a way back into the game, but any attempts they made were stifled by the Saints defence led by Van Dijk, who imposed his physical presence ahead of Fraser Forster in goal.
James Milner (Liverpool)
Milner features in our Team of the Week yet again as he his continuing to impress in the left-back position for Liverpool. Signed as a central midfielder, the Englishman has adapted perfectly to the new role he has been handed by manager Jurgen Klopp.
On Saturday, Milner was in top form against a Hull City side who were coming off the back of a disappointing 4-1 defeat at the hands of Arsenal. There was worse in store for them when they took on Liverpool, as the Reds raced to a 5-1 victory at Anfield.
Left-back Milner was infallible in defence and he continued to contribute in the offensive third as well, chipping in with a brace from the penalty spot.
Son Heung-min (Tottenham Hotspur)
The Korean winger looks a complete different player this season compared to his first term at White Hart Lane. He seems to be more of a complete player and the confidence is palpable every time he has the ball at his feet.
In the weekend’s game against Middlesbrough, Son scored both of Spurs’ goals as they defeated the hosts by a slender 2-1 scoreline. The 24-year-old opened the scoring with some dazzling footwork that saw him beat two defenders before coolly hitting the ball past Valdes with his left foot. His second was the pick of the bunch, as he curled the ball into the top corner beyond Valdes from just inside the 18-yard-area while being surrounded by Middlesbrough defenders.
Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool)
Coutinho, along with the entire Liverpool team, was an absolute joy to watch over the weekend. The industrious Brazilian midfielder kept things ticking at a good tempo as Jurgen Klopp’s men raced to a 5-1 victory over a hapless Hull City outfit.
He played on the left side of an attacking trio and wreaked havoc inside the Tigers’ penalty area. He was accurate with his passes, skillful with his dribbles and by far the best player on the field of play. Coutinho played a direct role in three of his side’s goals as he assisted twice and scored once.
Mesut Ozil (Arsenal)
Ozil was in top form as Arsenal handed a footballing lesson to Chelsea at the Emirates Stadium. They were the better team from the outset and looked threatening every time they had the ball in the final third.
Most of it was due to their dexterous number 10 Mesut Ozil. The German playmaker was accurate with his distribution, completing 90 percent of his passes and creating three goal scoring chances. He also grabbed a goal for himself to cap off a superb display.
Adam Lallana (Liverpool)
Alongside Coutinho and Sadio Mane, Adam Lallana has also enjoyed a stellar beginning to the Premier League season. After being constantly criticised for his mediocre performances in 2015/16, the English attacking midfielder appears to have turned over a new leaf this term.
Against Hull, the 28-year-old scored an impressive goal and provided another two assists to help his side scored five goals on the day. He kept feeding the ball to Coutinho and Roberto Firmino in the attacking third and their chemistry on the day was a sight to behold.
Jermaine Defoe (Sunderland)
Despite all his goal scoring exploits, there aren’t too many quality players in the Sunderland ranks to keep up Jermaine Defoe. At times, it seems like Defoe is the only Black Cats player who has an urgency to make things happen.
The 33-year-old was once against among the goals for David Moyes’ side, but still ended up losing the game 3-2. Out of three shots on goal, Defoe managed to find the back of the net with two of them. He looked sharp with and without the ball and despite being on the wrong side of thirty, he looked tireless on the day.
Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal)
Sanchez once again lined up as the focal point of the Gunners attack and continued to deliver for Arsene Wenger. The Chilean capitalised on Chelsea’s defensive frailties and punished them every time they gave away possession.
The former Barcelona attacker was fed the ball time and again by Ozil and he kept pestering the Chelsea back line with his constant movement in and around the 18-yard-area. He scored one and assisted another and was arguably the best player of the match.