Top 6 Shake-Up: Matchday 4 Team of the Week

Image by Tim Goode

Does the international break really have to be here? Clubs outside the 6 are salivating for a push toward the top of the table with Leicester City and Crystal Palace cruising into the Top 4 as the Premier League catches its breath for a week.

With Everton and West Ham not far behind the Foxes and the Eagles, we pause to appreciate the player who go into the break with their boots on fire. Let’s jump in so we can enjoy our brief holiday.

Three Outside the 6 Stars of the Week

3. Arthur Masuaku, Leftback — West Ham United

Yes, Sébastien Haller has been dripping with goals. Yes, Felipe Anderson may be the most skilled winger outside the 6. Yes, Manuel Lanzini is ripping through stumbling defenses with cutting passes and daring runs. And yes, West Ham seem to be knocking on the door in the race for seventh with all this attacking talent.

Yet, one of the stars of the season has been left back Arthur Masuaka. The 26-year-old has been a tackling machine for the Hammer 4 games through the season. His +4 tackles per match have kick-started attacks, mainly down the left side with a bombing Anderson.

Masuaka had his biggest attacking contribution this week against Norwich. He continuously carried the ball into the Canaries’ half and looked dangerous with his pass placement. His final ball to Haller was a thing a beauty as the new arrival put away his first home goal of the season.

2. Richarlison, Midfielder/Winger — Everton

Richarlison’s performance against Wolves was like an early 20th century poet delicately tying a piece of literary art together while strapped to a raft crashing down Level 5 rapids. The Brazilian never makes his work look smooth, but he attacks with such tenacity that after his goals hit the back of the net, all you can do is pause and stare in wonder.

Wolves didn’t have an answer for Richarlison on Sunday. The winger crashed into the attacking half with Alex Iwobi and Moise Kean closely behind. With all 3 of these threats clicking at the same time, Everton could be pelting opposing clubs for the rest of the season.

1. Jamie Vardy, Striker — Leicester City

Bull in a China shop transformed into a trained, nimble assassin.

Jamie Vardy forever.

Outside the 6 Team of the Week: Matchday 4

Goalkeeper

Vicente Guaita — Crystal Palace

  • Clean sheet
  • 2 saves

Center Back

Jannik Vestergaard — Southampton

  • 1 goal
  • 5 interceptions, 4 clearances and 2 shots blocked

Left Back

Arthur Masuaku — West Ham

  • 1 assist on two key passes
  • 48 accurate passes with a 92% success rate
  • 6/6 in tackles with 2 interceptions
  • 2 successful dribbles and 2 clearances

Right Back

Ricardo Pereira — Leicester City

  • 14/18 in attacking third passes
  • 1 key pass and an 84% total pass success rate
  • 9 ball recoveries, 6 interceptions and 3 tackles

Midfielders

Declan Rice — West Ham

  • 29 accurate passes with a 88% success rate
  • 5 tackles and 3 interceptions
  • 7 ball recoveries and 3 clearances

Youri Tielemans — Leicester City

  • 1 goal on 4 total shots
  • 1 assist on 2 key passes
  • 24/32 in attacking third passes with an 80% total pass success rate

Manuel Lanzini — West Ham

  • 4 total shots and 4 key passes
  • 14/18 on attacking third passes and an 88% total pass success rate
  • 5 successful dribbles

Felipe Anderson — West Ham

  • 7% total possession and 3 total shots
  • 3 key passes in 58 total accurate passes
  • 24/29 in attacking third passes
  • 7 successful dribbles and 9 ball recoveries
  • 3 tackles, an interception and a clearance

Richarlison — Everton

  • 2 goals on 3 shots on target
  • 2 successful dribbles and 1 key pass
  • 8 ball recoveries and 5 fouls suffered

Forwards

Jamie Vardy — Leicester City

  • 2 goals on 3 shots on target
  • 1 assist

Sébastien Haller — West Ham

  • 1 goal on 4 total shots
  • 2 successful dribbles and 3 tackles
  • 7/12 in attacking aerial duels

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