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Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Team of the Week and Weekend Wonders: Week 15

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It was a winning weekend for Arsenal, Aston Villa, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester United, Sunderland, Stoke, Swansea City, Wigan and Norwich and there were many great performances from the cream of the crop in the Premier League. But who has made it into this week's Team of the Week? Mitch Waddon reveals all.

I must say, it feels good to be back! Many thanks to Colin for filling in last week as I found myself situated in the treatment room, but once again you, the good readers of Squarefootball, find yourselves stuck with me as we declare our picks for the team of the week and the weekend wonders.

We decided to delay this regular Monday column this week as we felt we just couldn't possibly miss out Chelsea v Manchester City. So we have been dealt a full-hand of Premier League talent to make our choices from. With the season really beginning to take shape, let's see who has been selected this time around.


Goalkeeper: Michel Vorm (Swansea City)

I've said it before and I'll say it again about this lad; he is the signing of the season. Swansea have definitely pulled off a major coup, getting a goalkeeper of such class. Once again Vorm was in top-notch form, saving a fine penalty to ensure the Swans defeated Fulham 2-0. I must also make special mention of QPR's Radek Cerny, who was in fine form against Liverpool this weekend.

Right Back: Glen Johnson (Liverpool)

I'm really starting to be impressed by Johnson. At the start of the season he lacked something but now he's fighting tooth and nail for his place on the plane to the Euro 2012 tournament, and if he keeps playing like this he will get it. He played with confidence and ensured his side kept the all important clean sheet.

Centre Back: Ryan Shawcross (Stoke City)

Ok, yes, ok! Ignore the controversy for a second and just pay attention to Shawcross's performance. Adebayor and Van Der Vaart struggled against a physical and powerful Stoke defence on Sunday, which was superbly led by this young man. A fine performance by the Englishman.

Centre Back: Daniel Agger (Liverpool)

Any player that can keep Jamie Carragher out of team must be playing well and Agger is definitely doing that. Not to mention the guy's current form, he looks simply unbeatable in defence this year. His hard work meant QPR barely had a whiff of goal this weekend.

Left Back: Thomas Vermaelen (Arsenal)

I've chosen Vermaelen for left-back this week, something I normally would've been opposed to doing. However, the Belgium international has been playing there since Santos' injury and he has been doing it quite well! Vermaelen was able to keep Everton's Coleman quiet this weekend and give the Gunners an impressive clean sheet and three points.

Right Midfield: Nani (Manchester United)

Stunning and brilliant. Two words made to sum up Nani. The Portuguese international looked unplayable against Wolves, running down both flanks and through the middle, causing all sorts of problems for the Wanderers' defence. Two brilliant goals guarenteed his place in our team of the week.

Centre Midfield: Ramires (Chelsea)

A very impressive game gives Ramires a place in the Team of the Week starting XI. The Brazilian's pace and the ability to get his head down and run at defenders left Manchester City in all sorts of bother on Monday evening. I think the more this boy plays the better he will become.

Centre Midfield: Phil Jones (Manchester United)

Where is this lad's best position? Apparently 'wherever you play him' is the answer. The way the young Englishman drives at the opposition is just incredible; it genuinely appears he can do anything! He can defend, he can attack, he can tackle, he can press! I'd like to see him try out in goal! I personally think Jones is a dead cert for the Euros next year, but where to play him?! Hmm...

Left Midfield: Victor Moses (Wigan)

Forty-six shots, one goal. Gotta be worth including just for that incredible statistic! To be fair to Moses, it's not his first time in our team of the week. He's lovely curling goal against West Brom, along with his sublime performance, earns the former Crystal Palace player a second call up to the Squarefootball ranks.

Centre Forward: Grant Holt (Norwich)

Many a Canary fan will be thrilled to finally see their skipper in our team of the week and to be fair to the lad he has been knocking at the door for some time. His inspirational leadership and two strong goals against a falling Newcastle meant that Norwich got a brilliant 4-2 win and that Holt finally joins our squad.

Centre Forward: Wayne Rooney (Manchester United)

He's back! Wayne Rooney caps a rollercoaster week with two brilliant goals against Wolves to help the Red Devils to three points. If Rooney is in that sort of form against Ukraine next summer, then the tournament better beware!

Weekend Wonders

Goal of the Weekend: Robin Van Persie (Arsenal)

There were some spectacular contenders this week! We had Steven Reid's fantastic freekick for West Brom against Wigan, then we had Sunderland with David Vaughan's wonderful piledriver against Blackburn before Seb Larsson gained the win with a curling freekick. However, Van Persie edges it again. His inch-perfect and pure class volley gave Arsenal the victory over Everton this weekend after a fine lob pass from Alex Song. Genius.

Manager of the Weekend: Andre Villas Boas (Chelsea)

He orchestrated the demise of City's unbeaten run, thus earning him the grand prize of Manager of the Weekend. Yes, AVB did what Fergie, Wenger and Redknapp couldn't, leading his Chelsea team to a well earned 2-1 victory on Monday night. Special mention must also go to Martin O'Neill (welcome back) for his first victory in charge of Sunderland and to Stoke's Tony Pulis for ending Tottenham's unbeaten run.

Sub of the Weekend: Frank Lampard (Chelsea)

I felt a sub of the weekend was deserved this week! After much controversy surrounding his career at Chelsea, it was in the script for Lampard to score the winner against City. After coming off the bench, the Blue's midfielder smashed in from the penalty spot. Superb.

Howler of the weekend: Clint Dempsey (Fulham)

I must admit, I struggled with this one a bit this week. With usual culprit Fernando Torres not even getting any game time, I don't feel many sides were let down by individual players. So we'll run with Dempsey's own goal to give Swansea the lead over the Cottagers. Sinclair's shot would have likely been saved had the American midfielder not caught the ball, sending it into the net. Shocking, Clint! Absolutely Shocking!

Controversy of the Weekend: Chris Foy (Or is that Hoy?)

Whereas the Controversy of the Weekened was relatively easy to decide. With the game between Stoke and Tottenham delicately positioned at 2-1, a handball on the line from Potter Ryan Shawcross was missed by the referee Chris Foy. All referees make mistakes, fair one. However, mere seconds later, Foy would then rule Adebayor offside as he scored a critical goal, only for the Togo striker to be a good three yards behind the last defender. Maddening! My favourite bit? Well seeing as you asked, it would be Olympic Cyclist Chris Hoy tweeting on Monday, telling Spurs fans to stop giving him abuse, as they had mixed him up with the official! Brilliant!

Mitch's Moment: The return of Martin O'Neill

It was a sad day when O'Neill left Premier League management, yet it was a fantastic one when his return was announced by Sunderland. I do not believe there was a better unemployed manager out there than that could do a decent job with the Black Cats. I fully expect them to finish in the top 10 now. No, I'm being serious! What's the catch? Ok, I believe (and am informed) that O'Neil is going to try and buy Emile Heskey for Sunderland from Aston Villa. Hey, every silver lining has a cloud!

Do you agree with Mitch's team of the week? How about the weekend wonders? Is he spot on or off his head? Whatever your opinions, we'd love to hear from you!

Don't forget to follow Mitch on Twitter for up to date football news, opinions and information. @MitchWaddon

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Squarefootball's Team of the Week - Week 10

Squarefootball Team of the Week Nine - October 22

Squarefootball's Team of the Week - October 17

Squarefootball's Team of the Week - October 3

Squarefootball's Team of the Week - Sept 26

Squarefootball's Team of the Week - Sept 19

Squarefootball's Team of the Week - Sept 12

Squarefootball's Team of the Week - Aug 29

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Mitch Waddon



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