There are plenty of surprise appearances in the latest edition of the team of the week.
Wojciech Szczesny (7 points): just to highlight how painful it is to pick goalies and defenders, there was only a clean sheet this week, which arrived in an unpredictable spot and only because the Pole parried away a penalty by Gonzalo Higuain.
Alex Sandro (7 points): the Brazilian fullback deservedly gets the token spot for the whole Juventus back-line, which could have crowded the XI since Giorgio Chiellini and Joao Cancelo hauled in five points. Sandro topped them because he sent in a pinpoint cross to assist the first goal.
Gianluca Mancini (4 points): there were not many clean sheets, but there were more goals than usual by defenders in this round. Unsurprisingly, Atalanta was a big protagonist there thanks to Gian Piero Gasperini’s impeccable schemes on set pieces, which led to both Mancini and Berat Djimisiti burying headers, while Hans Hateboer poked a square ball home on open play.
Juan Jesus (4 points): he filled in for Federico Fazio on Sunday and contributed to stymieing Sampdoria. On top of that, he opened the score by attacking the far post on a corner kick and tucking in a header by Bryan Cristante.
Fabian Ruiz (4 points): he changed the course of the game by coming in at half time versus Genoa, finding the equalizer in the mud with a clinical strike on a one-on-one. He is becoming a real weapon for Carlo Ancelotti.
Manuel Lazzari (4 points): the SPAL dynamo was due for a breakout performance and he did just that on Saturday, assisting both of his team’s goals with precise assists after scampering down the right flank. He might be the best crosser in the League.
Riccardo Orsolini (4 points): the attacker scored another heavy goal after coming off the bench, coordinating beautifully on a cross for a very accurate header to tie the Bologna match.
Josip Ilicic (4 points): he could have had a way bigger day if he was more clutch in front on the goal, but he still came away from the Inter drubbing with a good haul because he had two assists on free kicks.
Stephan El Shaarawy (8 points): he was the highest earner this week as he was the only one to bag a brace. The first one was easy, in the empty net after a through ball by Edin Dzeko was only deflected by the Emil Audero. The second was magnificent, as he curled it home after a turn, perfectly sensing the position of the goal without looking at it.
Francesco Caputo (6 points): he came through for the new coach with a goal and an assist to best Udinese. He link up with Miha Zajc in the box for the first goal of the evening, then he found the tiniest of angles to score a header on the far post after a flick-on by a teammate.
Riccardo Meggiorini (5 points): a surprising resurgence for the veteran striker, who had not put his name in the scoresheets in ages in Serie A, also because he simply did not play a lot. He had a goal and an assist in the Bologna game, where he converted a penalty and involuntarily set up Joel Obi by whiffing on a bicycle kick.
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