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Coral’s Heroes & Villains from Premier League week 17

Ho ho ho everyone! It’s our last Heroes and Villains here at Coral before Christmas, as we review some tasty Premier League from clashes last time out, as QPR move out of the relegation zone and now have an odds-on price of 4/11 with Coral to stay up. Read on to find out who made our list.

Heroes
Adam Johnson
What a moment for the former Newcastle United youth product and ball boy, who was turned away at the age of 12. He netted a dramatic 90th minute winner at St James’ Park, his third in as many Tyne-Wear derby visits, in a wonderful smash and grab. Starting the move and finishing it on the counter-attack, he sent Sunderland fans into raptures and sent them back home with the best Christmas present.

Charlie Austin
A superb all-round performance from the former Burnley striker, who hit a hat-trick as QPR recorded a 3-2 win over West Bromwich Albion to climb out of the Premier League relegation zone. He is now just three off the pace in the top scorer charts, with Sergio Aguero out in front on 14 goals. The ex-brickie is laying the foundations to for Harry Redknapp’s survival campaign at the Hoops, and they need to keep him in January.

Manuel Pellegrini
It was a brave decision from the Chilean to utilise James Milner as a ‘false nine’, though it paid off. His direct running created space for the likes of David Silva and Yaya Toure, with all of Pellegrini’s first-choice strikers injured, as Manchester City beat Crystal Palace 3-0 at the Etihad.

Villains:
Fabio Borini
Two extremely needless yellow cards for the temperamental Italian striker, who came on as a second half substitute in Liverpool’s 2-2 draw with Arsenal. His second was border-line assault as he put studs into Santi Cazorla’s midriff and, with the Reds already low on attacking options, Brendan Rodgers will miss him over the congested festive period, but may ultimately move Borini on in January.

Roberto Martinez
Didn’t make one substitute in his side’s 3-0 defeat to Southampton. With a busy Christmas schedule as well, this could count against him, though Everton usually have enough to turn things around, and should at the very least secure a top half finish, despite being 11th in the Premier League.

Alan Pardew
A controversial choice. Recently, he hasn’t put a foot wrong, though Newcastle haven’t won any of their last five derby games against Sunderland, and his decision not to start top scorer Papiss Cisse could have been a factor in their latest loss.