Not Garth Crooks’ team of the week

Not Garth Crooks

Below are eleven players who did very well in the eighth gameweek of the premiership, most of whom were not in the BBC’s Garth Crooks’ team (who also picks a team of the week if you’re completely bemused by this article’s title and theme).

Nothing much more to it than that.

Disclaimer: some of these players may indeed also be in Garth Crooks’ team of the week but not many! Therefore keeping the credibility of the article’s title at least somewhat intact.


Kepa Arrizabalaga

After breaking the world transfer record while simultaneously being unknown to many fans surrounding the Premiership there was a lot of pressure on the new Chelsea stopper to perform after replacing Thibaut Courtois in the summer. And it’s so far so good for the Spanish goalkeeper who makes his way into the team with two clean sheets in three days including six saves versus Southampton at St Mary’s.


Hector Bellerin

Much critcised by the Arsenal faithful over the past couple of seasons, Bellerin, like many others under Unai Emery’s guidance, seems to have gotten his mojo back providing an assist and being involved in a brilliant team move that culminated Aaron Ramsey’s superb goal against Fulham. If he can continue to get to the bar line to whip crosses in like he did on Sunday afternoon, then he will be a key player in an ever improving Arsenal side.

Matt Doherty

An extremely well taken goal and a clean sheet meant it was impossible to keep the Wolves right wing-back out of this week’s team. Many clearly agree with my inclusion in this eleven as Doherty was handed the Fans’ PFA player of the month award for September. An unexpected winner that serves as a microcosm for the surprise package that Wolves have been far this season.

Virgil Van Dijk

A controversial addition after sloppily giving away a late penalty that, luckily for him, Riyad Mahrez placed perfectly into the River Mersey. However, other than that error in judgement, Van Dijk was typically excellent versus the reigning champions and is clearly one the best centre backs in the world at present. Liverpool, perhaps even more than they need to with some of their attacking players, will have to keep the Dutchman wrapped in cotton wool if they are to sustain the title challenge that many tip them for.


Eden Hazard

A lazy inclusion as most teams of the week will have him yet another round of fixtures meant another goal (and assist) for the Belgium star who now has seven goals in six starts this season. If he continues this kind of form he could become close to unplayable and with his old boss Jose Mourinho up next, the stage is set for Hazard to dazzle the world once more.


After coming on and providing the assist for Everton’s third goal versus Fulham last week, Bernard was given a starting role on the wing this week with Richarlison being  put up top. The Brazilian took advantage of his place in the starting eleven by providing an excellent assist for his countryman Richarlison and looked dangerous throughout. With Everton’s strikers generally misfiring, regularly slotting Bernard into a left wing role in this new system could be a viable option for Marco Silva going forward.

David Brooks

Brooks, who spent the majority of his youth career at Man City before switching to Sheffield United and then heading to the south coast in an 11.5 million move in the summer, was very impressive against Watford at Vicarage Road. Being in the right place at the right time to earn his second premiership goal in five days. And if he continues to support Bournemouth’s attack as well as he did on Saturday afternoon the figure they paid for him in July will prove to be a bargain.

Paul Pogba

A debatable inclusion after Manchester United’s woeful first half performance versus Newcastle on Saturday yet it’s common knowledge that French World Cup winner is one of those in the United squad that could help pull them from their current predicament if given the breathing space to do so. A lovely flicked assist for Anthony Martial’s equaliser and a generally dynamic approach to the dire situation that United found themselves in on Saturday night earns Pogba a place in this weeks’ team.


Alexandre Lacazette 

The second Arsenal player to make it into my team (and Garth’s) this week is their number nine who is clearly settling into that very role rather nicely. Two more clinical finishes at the weekend means it four goals in five league starts for the Frenchman who now seems to be a mainstay in the Unai Emery’s first eleven. And the fact that Lacazette is curiously out of favour with French boss Didier Deschamps also means that The Gunners can keep one of their key men on ice during the international break.

Callum Wilson

Could have easily put Josh King in this slot after his two goals versus Watford however I’ll go for his Bournemouth strike partner Wilson even though I foolishly took him out of my fantasy team. With two horrible spells out through injury Wilson has built on a solid season last year to become an integral part of Bournemouth’s flying start this time out. If we can keep himself fit you could easily see him and King racking up more than enough  goals to keep Eddie Howe’s side in the top half of the table.

Raul Jimenez

Another contentious pick due to the fact the Mexican international did not add to his two goals for the season versus Crystal Palace on a Saturday. Nevertheless, he did provide an assist for Matt Doherty’s goal and his overall performance versus Palace was typical of what he provides Wolves boss Nuno Santo. Despite not having a prolific goal scoring record over his career, he has settled to the premiership quicker than most do after his loan switch from Benfica and will no doubt continue to lead the line for what looks like one of the best promoted teams the premiership has ever seen.


If you enjoyed this blog post please share/RT/like or mention it to a friend or family member to fill an increasingly awkward silence.





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