Norwich – The Canaries have not won since gameweek five against Man City but finally got back to winning ways away at Everton. Too be honest with the way Everton are right now you could have seen this result coming. Norwich looked bright in attack and it was a throwback to the start of the season in their opening goal. Teemu Pukki (remember him?) set up Todd Cantwell for a goal if it was in September would have caused pandemonium in FPL. This time though it just caused “Oh shit Cantwell is on my bench.” This may or may not be a direct quote from myself…. The return of Christoph Zimmermann at the back for Norwich will be of relief for Daniel Farke who has spent most of the season without his first choice back four, leading to Norwich conceding an alarming 28 goals so far. Somehow though they still have more clean sheets than Spurs. With the rudderless Arsenal up next I would not be surprised if they take another big scalp.
Joao Moutinho – The Portuguese magician just seems to keep producing high class performances and being the most vital cog in a well-oiled machine. The 33-year-old produced a man of the match performance away at Bournemouth to earn Wolves back to back wins and keep an eight-game unbeaten streak in the league up taking them to fifth. It has been over a year since his last goal for Wolves, but he saves them up for special strikes. His free kick left Aaron Ramsdale with no chance, setting the stage for a very dominant first half display. Moutinho produced a passing accuracy of 92.8% and made four key passes, without him in the side Wolves would lack the guile and class to dominate games. He maybe older but his ability is still world class and his fitness show no signs of diminishing it is surprising how he is not playing for an elite club. To top his day off he signed a new contract to keep him at the club until 2022 which felt like an early Christmas present for me. He is without a doubt the best player I have ever seen in a Wolves shirt and even older generations who have seen some of the greats out Moutinho up there with them and even above them in some instances, which should tell just how good this guy is. So, as we chant “Oh Joao Moutinho he loves the vino, he came from Monaco to Wanderers he’s five foot seven of football heaven so please don’t take Moutinho away.”
Jamie Vardy owners – The top scoring player in the game was on fire yet again against Brighton this week bagging another goal and assist and the plus three bonus. The Leicester strikers haul did not come as straightforward as you would expect though. His assist was already in the bag when the Foxes were given a penalty, up stepped Vardy to have his penalty saved by Matthew Ryan causing owners like myself to scream nooooo especially when my opponent in my head to head league had Ryan in goal. Thanks to the ever so helpful VAR (Sarcasm) it spotted that encroachment had taken place when Vardy took his spot kick, so he had the chance to redeem himself, which he duly did. No penalty miss points and no penalty save points for Ryan but gutting for Maddison owners no goal as he scored the rebound. It is Everton at home up next for Leicester and with how awful they are away from home combined with Vardy’s form I think he is the strongest captaincy option for next week.
West Ham – Yet again the Hammers end up on the losers’ pile, a strong start to the season has soon faded away and another season of strops and frustration is well under way. Manuel Pellegrini somehow survived the international break after losing 3-0 to Burnley but he must be close to the exit door given this derby display. The score line of 3-2 to Spurs does not tell the story of the performance as the West Ham players looked like they could not give a monkeys about the game. Spurs in the first half just continually got at them with ease and were lucky that Spurs were not more ruthless. The money spent by West Ham dictates that expectations are naturally higher so if Pellegrini cannot even get effort from the players it is time to go. The injury to Fabianski has not helped but Pellegrini keeps putting his faith in Roberto who every time he plays makes a mistake leading to goals and creating anxiety within the crowd and players. The West Ham board need to do something and do it fast.
Newcastle’s front three – What does around 76M of forward talent get you? Newcastle’s front three. This could end up one of the least lethal front threes of all time. 40M Joelinton, Miguel Almirion 20M and Allan Saint- Maximan 16M have scored between them this season one goal…. Against Villa on Monday all three of them showed nothing of promise to make you think it will eventually click. Joelinton is isolated a lot but shows little to no ability when he gets the ball or chances to shoot, Maximan looks good up to the point of shooting or crossing and Almirion who has been in the league since January just runs around like a headless chicken. Almirion has not even managed an assist since he joined Newcastle. Steve Bruce needs to do something different soon, Newcastle’s top scorers this season are defenders and you cannot rely on them to score the goals to keep you up. Andy Carroll is now back and should start the style will be simple but effective and he could even be paired with Dwight Gayle to feed on the second balls. The bottom line is something needs to change.
Watford – It seems to be a case of one step forward and two back for the Hornets who before the break beat Norwich 2-0 in an important game, so should have gone into the home game against Burnley with confidence. Well that was crushed, and they lost 3-0. They seem a very soft team to play against, so when a strong team like Burnley comes along you need to be ready for a fight which very clearly Watford wasn’t. They have conceded the most goals in the league and do not have the firepower to try and counter this. It is another important game next for Watford as they play Southampton away another game in the battle against the drop.
Everton – What on earth do clubs see in Marco Silva?
Arsenal – Was lucky to not concede at least five at home to Southampton and just about a draw… Time to go.