As we come to the end of a third full round of Premier League matches in the space of just over a week, the drama certainly isn’t beginning to wear thin.
The big story was written by the time the final whistle sounded in the first game of the Matchweek, when West Ham achieved a spectacular late win over London rivals Chelsea, scoring three times when the Blues hadn’t conceded more than once in a league match all season. It certainly set the tone for the weekend, with three stoppage time goals arriving for Brighton and Hove Albion, Leeds United, and Everton respectively.
In a round of vintage mid-season Premier League drama, here are the five individuals we’ve chosen for the Matchweek 15 of Stars of the Week.
Stars of the Week in Matchweek 15
Goalkeeper: Robert Sanchez (Brighton and Hove Albion)
A South Coast battle between Southampton and Brighton on Saturday saw the spoils shared, as the Saints’ wayward finishing allowed the visitors to snatch a 98th-minute equaliser.
Whilst the goal was classic Neal Maupay, Brighton’s lesser noticed hero of the day was goalkeeper Robert Sanchez, who set the foundation from which the Seagulls were able to claim a point. The Spaniard made three saves from four shots on target, including two excellent saves with the feet from Southampton’s Armando Broja in the first half.
In the end, it will be Southampton’s poor finishing that will be largely the focus of attention, but Sanchez still played an important role in keeping his side in the game.
Defender: Ezri Konsa (Aston Villa)
After a bit of a dampener against Manchester City in midweek, Aston Villa’s fantastic start to life under Steven Gerrard resumed in midweek, as the Villans claimed an impressive 2-1 victory over fellow midlanders Leicester City on Sunday evening.
Rather surprisingly, it was defender Ezri Konsa who emerged as the hero for Villa, scoring both goals in the 2-1 triumph. Although there was nothing he could do to get in the way of Harvey Barnes’ perfectly placed opener, he soon pulled his side level by getting the faintest of faint touches on Emiliano Buendia’s effort at goal.
In the second half, Konsa became the latest player to take advantage of Leicester’s shocking set-piece defending by heading home a corner at the back post to complete the turnaround.
Beyond this, he helped his side hold firm against the likes of Patson Daka and Jamie Vardy, as Villa steadily crossed the finish line.
Midfielder: Bernardo Silva (Manchester City)
Another game, another display of magic from Manchester City’s mercurial Bernardo Silva, who can simply do no wrong at the moment.
Once again, the Portuguese maestro ran the show for the Citizens, and got on the scoresheet for the fourth time in five league matches during his side’s 3-1 victory over Watford, finishing from a tight angle after Ilkay Gundogan’s effort was saved.
In the second half, Silva found himself one-on-one with Watford fullback Danny Rose, and effortlessly shimmied past him before curling an outstanding strike into the top corner to seal another victory for City.
In this kind of form, he really is an astonishing footballer, and it’s no surprise to see him win Manchester City’s player of the month award for the third month in a row – a product of his incredible consistency that only seems to be improving further.
Forward: Richarlison (Everton)
If at first, you don’t succeed, try, try again. Few clichés could be more fitting for Richarlison during Everton’s desperately needed 2-1 win over Arsenal on Monday night, who finally got his goal after a nightmarish 75 minutes.
The Brazilian had a header from a set-piece situation chalked off in the first half for a narrow offside and had another offside call go against him with an even closer margin after thinking that he’d equalised early in the second period.
It was third time lucky for the forward though, who looped a header over Aaron Ramsdale with 10 minutes to go to finally claim his goal. It was a priceless one for Everton as well, who then nicked a win in stoppage time – a win driven by the perseverance of Richarlison in what must’ve been an extremely frustrating match for him.
Manager: David Moyes (West Ham United)
Close to a month ago now, we highlighted David Moyes as the Manager of the Week after his West Ham side achieved a stunning 3-2 victory over Liverpool. Now, following the slight wobble of a three-game winless run, he’s pulled it out of the bag once again with a stunning victory against Chelsea, by the exact same scoreline as well.
Moyes and the Hammers were certainly brave in going toe to toe with the league leaders and didn’t let their heads drop despite going behind twice. The home side forced their illustrious visitors into several errors and went into the final stages of the game level at 2-2 – becoming the first side to score twice against Chelsea in a league game this season in the process.
West Ham’s winning goal, a mis-hit cross by fullback Arthur Masuaku, was certainly fortuitous, but one that their brave play and desire to win arguably deserved. The Hammers now maintain their place in the top four as their dream start to the season continues.
Manchester City and England fan. Writer of opinion and features on all things Premier League and beyond.