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EPL 2016-17: Team of the Week - Gameweek 21

Tina Kaviraj
ANALYST
Feature
1.35K   //    16 Jan 2017, 14:47 IST
LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - JANUARY 15:  Josep Guardiola, Manager of Manchester City looks on during the Premier League match between Everton and Manchester City at Goodison Park on January 15, 2017 in Liverpool, England.  (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)
Pep Guardiola suffered the biggest league defeat of his career against Everton

Manchester City’s downfall at the hands of Evertonian teenagers might have never happened if this weekend’s fixtures had been postponed due to weather conditions in the United Kingdom. Gameweek 21, however, played itself out on schedule as Tottenham Hotspur kicked things off with a convincing victory over West Bromwich Albion. Arsenal and Chelsea stayed on track with wins of their own but the real contest of the week was the match between bitter rivals Manchester United and Liverpool. 

West Ham United pulled off a big win against London rivals Crystal Palace in the absence of Dmitri Payet as Hull City, Stoke and Burnley won their games quite unexpectedly. With the action of yet another week at an end, here’s a look at Sportskeeda’s Premier League Team of the Week:

Goalkeeper

Victor Valdes
WATFORD, ENGLAND - JANUARY 14: Troy Deeney of Watford (R) shoots and Victor Valdes of Middlesbrough (L) attempts to save during the Premier League match between Watford and Middlesbrough at Vicarage Road on January 14, 2017 in Watford, England.  (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)
Victor Valdes (left) saves Etienne Capoue’s shot 

Victor Valdes was undoubtedly the hero of the night for Middlesbrough as the Spaniard kept Watford at bay for 90 minutes despite their numerous chances. The former Barcelona keeper made two saves within the first half hour of the game denying Abdoulaye Doucoure and Stefano Okaka. Valdez was called into action once again soon after the start of the second half but kept Okaka out successfully yet again. His final save of the night was a crucial one as he kept out Etienne Capoue’s shot in the final minutes of the game. 

Defenders

Seamus Coleman

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - JANUARY 02:  Leighton Baines of Everton is mobbed by team mates including Seamus Coleman (top) after scoring his team's second goal during the Premier League match between Everton and Southampton at Goodison Park on January 2, 2017 in Liverpool, England.  (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Seamus Coleman (far right) celebrates with his teammates

The Everton right-back had a glorious time at Goodison Park on a rain-lashed night as his team downed Manchester City by four goals. Not only was he highly effective at keeping Guardiola’s men out, but ensured they were disorganised and sub-par in their final third machinations. Coleman wrapped up his night with an assist for Everton debutant Ademola Lookman as John Stones failed to deal with his pass to the new signing. Playing in a 3-6-1 formation, the Irish defender was a real threat going forward against City. 

Laurent Koscielny

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SWANSEA, WALES - JANUARY 14: Fernando Llorente of Swansea City heads the ball while Laurent Koscielny of Arsenal (R) attempts to tackle him during the Premier League match between Swansea City and Arsenal at Liberty Stadium on January 14, 2017 in Swansea, Wales.  (Photo by Tony Marshall/Getty Images)
Fernando Llorente (left) was no match for Laurent Koscielny (right)

Arsenal centre-back Laurent Koscielny had a comfortable game against Swansea who failed to test the Frenchman in spite of a change in management at the club. Establishing command in and around his penalty area, the 31-year-old was able to make up for a couple of Shkodran Mustafi’s mistakes as he himself dealt with Fernando Llorente with much ease. He was also strong in the air as he gave the Swans very little leverage. 

Winston Reid

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 14: Winston Reid of West Ham United (L) tackles Chung-yong Lee of Crystal Palace (R) during the Premier League match between West Ham United and Crystal Palace at London Stadium on January 14, 2017 in London, England.  (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
Winston Reid (left) tackles Chung-Yung Lee (right)

West Ham centre-back Winston Reid managed a clean sheet against London rivals Crystal Palace. In a game of two halves, the New Zealand defender had his work cut out for him as the Eagles proved to be a threatening force during the first 45 minutes. His work was made easier as his side quickly gained the upper hand in the second half. Cutting off Palace attacks, the 28-year-old was strong in the air as he headed away any imminent danger.

Marcos Alonso

LEICESTER, ENGLAND - JANUARY 14:  Marcos Alonso of Chelsea celebrates his second goal alongside Victor Moses (L) and Gary Cahill (R) during the Premier League match between Leicester City and Chelsea at The King Power Stadium on January 14, 2017 in Leicester, England.  (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
Marcos Alonso (centre) celebrates his second goal with teammates

Marcos Alonso was Chelsea’s unlikely hero in the absence of striker Diego Costa. The Spaniard took everyone by surprise after his brace more or less clinched a victory for the Blues against defending champions Leicester City. His first goal came from open play as he finished off the move with a strike with his weaker right foot.His second came from a set piece as he beat Schmeichel in the second half. The 26-year-old’s night was only bettered by yet another clean sheet as he blocked any kind of Leicester attack originating on the left flank.


Midfielders

Michail Antonio 

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 14: Michail Antonio of West Ham United (C) takes the ball past Wayne Hennessey of Crystal Palace (R) during the Premier League match between West Ham United and Crystal Palace at London Stadium on January 14, 2017 in London, England.  (Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images)
Michail Antonio (centre) goes past Wayne Hennessey to set up West Ham’s first goal

With Dmitri Payet on strike, it was up to the lesser stars of West Ham United to hand their side a much-needed three points from their clash against Crystal Palace. England international Michail Antonio revealed himself to be the provider as he set up all three goals for Slaven Bilic’s side. The 26-year-old ran past Wayne Hennessey to cut it back across goal Sofiane Fegouli for the first.

The second goal was a result of some acrobatic deftness from Andy Carroll as the striker rose to meet Antonio’s cross and the third was an assist for Manuel Lanzini.

Mousa Dembele 

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 14:  Mousa Dembele of Tottenham Hotspur in action during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and West Bromwich Albion at White Hart Lane on January 14, 2017 in London, England.  (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
Mousa Dembele in action against West Bromwich Albion

Mousa Dembele has really come into form this season forming a marvellous partnership with Victor Wanyama in the middle of the park. Considering West Brom’s recent form, the Belgian put in immense hard work in midfield to ensure the Baggies had very few chances. His passing was accurate with an attention to detail as very few of his deliveries went astray. The 29-year-old was a formidable presence as he stared down the opposition with successful take-ons and recoveries. 

Tom Davies 

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - JANUARY 15:  Tom Davies of Everton is challenged by Raheem Sterling of Manchester City during the Premier League match between Everton and Manchester City at Goodison Park on January 15, 2017 in Liverpool, England.  (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
Tom Davies (right) is challenged by Raheem Sterling (left)

What a night Tom Davies had against Manchester City! The 18-year-old academy graduate had the night of his life as he turned out to be one of the driving forces of Everton’s victory against Guardiola’s side. Not only was his performance in midfield outstanding but the youngster sealed off an already great game with a goal of his own 11 minutes before the final whistle.

After picking up the ball in his own half, Davies skipped past two City defenders to set up his own goal. The fact that he had the audacity to put in between Claudio Bravo’s legs shows the confidence that was oozing through his veins. 

Marko Arnautovic 

SUNDERLAND, ENGLAND - JANUARY 14: Marko Arnautovic of Stoke City celebrates scoring his sides second goal during the Premier League match between Sunderland and Stoke City at Stadium of Light on January 14, 2017 in Sunderland, England.  (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)
Marko Arnautovic celebrates his brace against Sunderland

Austrian midfielder Marko Arnautovic was not having a good season until they travelled to the Stadium of Light for their match against Sunderland. His brace sent the Black Cats to 19th as the Potters rose to the top half of the table.

The 27-year-old scored in the 15th minute after he escaped the notice of a Sunderland defender. Even though his first attempt on goal was blocked, he made sure his shot on the rebound found the back of the net. His second was a result of some fine one-two play between him, Xherdan Shaqiri and Peter Crouch as he fired high to beat Vito Mannone. 

Forwards

Harry Kane

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 14:  Harry Kane of Tottenham Hotspur shows appreciation to the fans as he walks off while being subbed during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and West Bromwich Albion at White Hart Lane on January 14, 2017 in London, England.  (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
Harry Kane bagged a hat-trick against West Bromwich Albion

Harry Kane kicked off the weekend with a hat-trick for his side as Tottenham Hotspur laid waste to a usually decent West Bromwich Albion. He converted Christian Eriksen’s piercing pass into the top left corner of the net within 12 minutes of the first half. His second came much later in the game as he met Kyle Walker’s bouncing pass and fired it past Ben Forster. He wrapped up their victory with a third after a one-two with Dele Alli as his tally of goals for the season rose to 13.

Abel Hernandez

HULL, ENGLAND - JANUARY 14:  Abel Hernandez of Hull City celebrates scoring his sides second goal during the Premier League match between Hull City and AFC Bournemouth at KCOM Stadium on January 14, 2017 in Hull, England.  (Photo by Nigel Roddis/Getty Images)
Abel Hernandez returned after a two-month absence to score a brace against Bournemouth

Hull City pulled off a surprising win against Bournemouth after they kept Liverpool at bay in the EFL Cup during midweek. Abel Hernandez gave the Tigers some room to breathe as they rose to 18th position after their 3-1 victory. The 26-year-old equalised for Hull after Junior Stanislas gave the Cherries an early lead. After his two-month absence, the Uruguayan striker headed in a deep cross from Andy Robertson. Hernandez then gave his side the lead in the second half as he cut inside two defenders and executed a low finish past Artur Boruc. 


Manager 

Ronald Koeman

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - JANUARY 15:  Ronald Koeman, Manager of Everton  looks on during the Premier League match between Everton and Manchester City at Goodison Park on January 15, 2017 in Liverpool, England.  (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
Ronald Koeman outsmarted his former Barcelona teammate Pep Guardiola

Everton manager Ronald Koeman may have 99 problems but getting the best of Pep Guardiola and his multi-million euro side isn’t one. Deploying a 3-6-1 formation against the Citizens, Koeman’s men quickly established the upper hand going forward even though City controlled most of the possession. All kinds of credit are due to the Dutch manager for entrusting youngsters like Tom Davies and Ademola Lookman to see his side through against an intimidating opposition. 

Guardiola’s men had no fitting response to the 53-year-old’s tactics as they looked disorganised and flustered at the back. Everton’s outstanding performance was a treat to the eyes as the Manchester side lost their second league game in three weeks. 

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