Coral’s Premier League matchweek 31 XI: Gomis, Hazard and Herrera hot
We’re approaching the run-in with so much still to play for in the Premier League. On a weekend of spectacular goals, Coral’s football experts have shown no sentiment towards stunning strikes.
Instead, we’ve selected our team of this round of matches based on overall performances, so those expecting to see Charlie Adam, Jermain Defoe and Bobby Zamora need to look beyond respective moments of magic.
Adam may have lobbed Thibaut Courtois off his line from his own half at Stamford Bridge, but Chelsea would have been out of sight long before that were it not for Bosnia and Stoke City custodian Begovic. He pulled off nine saves, including a stunning double stop from Juan Cuadrado at point blank range.
Defence: Phil Jagielka
A winning goal against Southampton with a clean sheet to accompany it show Everton captain Jagielka has carried his fine form from international duty back to his club. This is exactly the sort of result Roberto Martinez’s men would have missed out on earlier in the season, but are now 7/4 to finish in the top half.
Defence: Michael Duff
Veteran Burnley defender Duff kept man of the moment Harry Kane very quiet at Turf Moor, as Sean Dyche’s side shut Spurs out. The Clarets are 6/5 to stay up now.
Defence: Daley Blind
Wayne Rooney also misses out despite scoring in sensational fashion, but there are two other Manchester United players picked in our XI. Versatile Dutch international Blind is one of them after assisting the opener against Aston Villa.
Defensive midfield: Esteban Cambiasso
Ageing ex-Argentina international Cambiasso oozed class anchoring Leicester City’s midfield, grabbing the first goal in their 2-1 win over West Ham which might spark a late Foxes rally in the fight to avoid relegation.
Central midfield: Aaron Ramsey
Wales wonder Ramsey set up two of Arsenal’s four against Liverpool, and the Gunners now hold odds of 25/1 in the title race.
Sticking with Arsene Wenger’s men, Chile star Sanchez scored the third before teeing up Olivier Giroud to round off a handsome home win over Brendan Rodgers’ Reds.
Attacking midfield: Ander Herrera
It’s easy to say Man Utd always beat Villa, but Tim Sherwood has certainly revived them with three wins in four prior to this Old Trafford trip. Basque box-to-box midfielder Herrera proved the difference for the Red Devils, though, bagging a brace. Louis van Gaal is now 1/10 to deliver a top four finish.
Left wing: Eden Hazard
Belgian sensation Hazard thwarted Begovic from 12 yards and later unselfishly set up Loic Remy’s winner against the Potters. Blues boss Jose Mourinho has a real Player of the Season candidate on his hands here.
Striker: Charlie Austin
Zamora may have scored the pick of QPR’s four at West Bromwich Albion, but the biggest contribution by far to this famous win for Chris Ramsey came from leading marksman Austin. A goal and two assists from him has given the Hoops renewed hope of staying up at 3/1.
Former France target man Gomis has taken plenty of stick since coming to the Premier League, but a brace against Hull is an indicator he may be starting to settle at Swansea. One of these was an acrobatic effort.