The Best 11 Players in the Premier League 2020/21 so far

With the Premier League taking an extended break because of the international fixtures this is an opportunity to look at your fantasy football team and see who is doing the best and grabbing those all important points in the early stages of the Premier League campaign.

In a 4-4-2 formation we will look at the players who are performing the very best so far.

Goalkeeper: Edouard Mendy- Chelsea 21pts

The injury to Kepa has given Edouard Mendy a life line at Chelsea and he has reacted in the best way possible with a terrific start to the campaign. Mendy has 21 points so far the most of any goalkeeper in the Premier League and has kept 3 clean sheets so far.

Defender: Ben Chilwell- Chelsea 24pts

Considering this is his first season with the Blues Ben Chilwell has been more than terrific and has stood out as one of Chelsea’s most important players so far this season. He has helped the club to 3 clean sheets so far but isn’t afraid to get involved in the action and has scored 2 goals and assisted in a further 2. His value is 6.5m.

Defender: Kurt Zouma- Chelsea 24pts

Kurt Zouma could well be having his best season as a player. At one point it felt that he could lose his place within the Chelsea team, so to come back and start the season the way he has has been impressive. Whilst forming a great partnership with Chilwell he has also scored 3 goals, again impressive for a defender.

Defender: Jannick Vestergaard- Southampton 24pts

Southampton have been a major surprise team in the Premier League this season and currently have the best form. Jannick Vestergaard has helped the Saints in keeping 4 clean sheets is valued at 6m and has also scored 2 goals already for the club this season.

Defender: Tyrone Mings- Aston Villa 22pts

Tyrone Mings has really turned his form around since last season. He has been the best overall defender at Aston Villa keeping 4 clean sheets and has also been tidy up front scoring goals too. He can be bought for just 4.5m.

Midfielder: Mohamed Salah- Liverpool 36pts

Like the last few seasons it’s been a terrific season so far for Mohamed Salah who again continues to light up the Premier League. Whilst it hasn’t been the greatest start for Liverpool they are still well within the mix and Salah has contributed by scoring 8 goals already.

Midfielder: Jack Grealish- Aston Villa 33pts

There is no doubt about it Jack Grealish is having his best season as a football player. He has been involved in 9 Aston Villa goals scoring 4 and assisting in 5 as the club have started well for this season and his value is incredible at just 3.5m.

Midfielder: Bruno Fernandes- Manchester United 24pts

Bruno Fernandes is arguably Manchester United’s best signing in a decade, since Cristiano Ronado. He has scored 5 goals and made 3 assists in what has been a troubling start for the club, but Fernandes has been one of the best players in the Premier League.

Midfielder: Wilfried Zaha- Crystal Palace 24pts

Could this be Wilfried Zaha’s best season yet and a turning point in his career? Often a player who is touted at moving from Palace to one of the big six clubs in England he is certainly proving his credentials this season. Zaha has been Crystal Palace’s most effective player and has scored 5 goals and assisted in another two. His value is 8.5m.

Striker: Harry Kane- Tottenham 44pts

Harry Kane has been outstanding and Tottenham have been solid climbing into the top 2 clubs in the league. Kane already has 44 points and has scored 7 goals and assisted in another 8, he has been involved incredibly in 80% of Tottenham’s league goals this season. There is a reason then that his value is up at 14.5m.

Striker: Heung- Min Son- Tottenham 38pts

The fact that the two best striker positions in the league go to Tottenham players tells you everything you need to know about how the club have started the season. Heung-Min Son has scored one goal more than Kane with 8 and has assisted in another 2 goals. On his day there isn’t a better striker currently playing in Europe. Kane and Son must be amongst the most deadliest strike pair in European football.

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Why Southampton could be the next Leicester under Hasenhuttl

One team of the last decade that has really made huge improvements on a limited budget has been Premier League side Southampton.

It’s interesting to go back 10 years and note that Southampton were playing in League One, the third tier of English football and have progressively recovered to become a staple side in the top flight. Since 2012 they have been a regular fixture in the Premier League and one senses that the club went through 3 stages; the first one was celebrating if they were to finish 17th, poor season, but survival. The second to become a mid table team and the third to challenge for honours and European places. This current season could be the one to define the club.

The Saints as they are known by their nickname have hired some very good managers. They were the ones that brought Mauricio Pochettino to England when they hired him from Espanyol and he guided the club to 8th place before joining Tottenham. They have also hired Ronald Koeman in that time who pulled off some terrific results. Koeman guided the club to seventh then 6th place finishes each time qualifying for the Europa League- no mean feat for a club who six years prior were playing in League One.

It was only in 2017 that Chinese company Lander Sports Investment decided to buy a stake in the club and now the overall stake owner is Gaio Jisheng, and he has invested a lot of funds within the club to bring in real quality. But with the team struggling to keep solid managers that had a proven track record they needed to nail down someone else that would commit more seasons to them. It seems that in Ralph Hasenhutl they have found their man.

Hasenhuttl came from RB Lepizig and spent the majority of his playing career in Austria though towards the end of his playing time he also played in Germany.

Hasenhuttl joined the Saints in the middle of the 2018/19 season where the club were residing in 18th place with Mark Hughes freshly sacked and he was able to guide the club to 16th and safety. Small steps but steps that were needed. At this time it felt like Southampton were going backwards from the beginning of the decade because they were not able to keep hold of quality managers and also were selling players. Virgil van Dijk and Sadio Mane who both went to Liverpool being prime examples.

In his next season the Saints finished 11th and 18 points from the relegation zone and finished the season so strong that he was awarded the manager of the month. In this current season the club are one of the best in form sides in the league and are in 4th place just 2 points shy of the top spot.

There are a few players, stand out ones, that have really contributed to Southampton’s start. Danny Ings really burst on the scene last season for the club scoring 22 goals meaning he finished joint 2nd in the top goalscorers list for the Premier League. He has started this season off well too netting 4 goals in just 5 games. After selling van Dijk and Mane to Liverpool it only seems fair that in the end Southampton would get some quality back, and Ings was brought in from the Reds initially on loan and then a permanent transfer.

Jannick Vestergaard at the back has been another astute signing. The centre back has made mistakes but he has also remained solid after his transfer from Borussia Monchengladbach 2 years ago and has worked closely under Hasenhutl. He also pops up for the odd goal too and has already made himself quite a name this season.

There is a lot of quality in this Southampton side to the point that on any given week when everything clicks they can absolutely beat any team in the league. And their figure point is James Ward-Prowse, the current captain of the club.

Ward-Prowse has been with Southampton since the beginning of the 2010s when they were playing in the Championship, he is the Jamie Vardy of Southampton, a one man club for so long, though in Ward-Prowse’s case he really is a one man club. They will likely build a statue of him when he leaves, and fans will be hoping that the 26 year old will stay at the club for many more years yet.

His form has been brilliant and of course that could well attract some of the bigger players in the game. He is the pivotal reason Southampton have started the season so well and when he is on form the club as a whole are.

Could Southampton go a huge step forward then and win the league? It doesn’t seem likely but then again look at Leicester and what they achieved with a decent manager and a few good players.

Of course the objective this season for Southampton isn’t so much to win the league but to be a force within it and try and finish in their highest ever position. At this current time without doubt they are one of the best this season and that in itself is an incredible feat given this time last year they were reeling from a 9-0 home defeat by one…. Leicester City, in which many comparisons can be made.

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Premier League Game of the Week: Aston Villa 3-4 Southampton

Aston Villa do love being involved in high scoring games and following their 7-2 win over Liverpool and a 3-0 defeat at home to Leeds United they followed that up with a 4-3 loss at home against Southampton.

It was an incredible match given that by the hour mark Southampton were 4-0 up at Villa Park and effectively the game was over. Though the Saints would go on to win the encounter they would have to endure a fright first- so has been this very unpredictable Premier League season.

Southampton believed that they had taken the lead as early as the 3rd minute through an Ezri Konsa own goal but in the build up VAR had found the play to be offside. Konsa’s blushes were saved but Villa would soon pay the price anyway.

Jannick Vestergaard and James Ward-Prowse are proving to be a superb partnership, they ruined Everton’s unbeaten start to the season a few weekends ago and this one gone they paired up to beat Aston Villa. Vestergaard latched onto Ward-Prowse’s free kick with his head to give the Saints the lead just after 20 minutes.

The second goal came 15 minutes later when Ward-Prowse was rewarded another free kick this time he scored directly from it and it was a stunning strike. And it would be a game of free kicks as just before half time it was Ward-Prowse again, and again it was  superb goal. Villa had been outdone by creating too many fouls on the edge of the box and Ward-Prowse is proving to be one of the deadliest free kick takers in the Premier League. The first half ended 3-0.

Though Villa had shown some promise in the first 45 minutes it was telling that Dean Smith’s side had conjured up no shots on target in that time. At 3-0 by half time the game looked dead and buried and one could only believe that a total collapse was going to let Villa back into the game but in the 58th minute it was 4-0. This time it was Danny Ings with a beautiful shot from the edge of the area.

Ten minutes later Jack Grealish set up Tyrone Mings and he headed in from close range to give Villa a consolation goal. Ings with fire in his belly thought he had scored a 2nd goal just six minutes later but it was flagged for offside. As the game went on Southampton  were happy to defend deep as Villa tried to create a miracle comeback. But as the 90th minute rolled on this game was surely over. Not quite.

In the 92nd minute the Saints Ibrahima Diallo gave away a penalty. Ollie Watkins the hero against Liverpool at this very stadium converted it for 2-4. And still there would be drama as the game went into an extended injury time. In the 97th minute Jack Grealish latched onto a loose ball and smashed the ball home for 3-4. Could there be an incredible comeback? Well the answer was no when the referee blew the whistle 60 seconds later.

Though Villa had lost their 2nd game in a row after starting the season so well they could end up taking something from the way they fought back and they had clearly unnerved Southampton. At the same time being 4 goals down at home isn’t acceptable and Villa have now conceded seven goals in their last two games something manager Smith will have to work at. Aston Villa drop down to 8th place and are now 4 points behind current league leaders Liverpool.

Southampton are the form team of the moment in the Premier League and the Saints have picked up 13 points from their past 15 available. They have climbed up to 5th place after a slow start and now have 13 points the same as Everton. Southampton will be at home to Newcastle next weekend and Aston Villa will play Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium.

Jack Grealish was the best performing player in the fantasy points for Aston Villa where he earned 6 points from this game.

For Southampton the best performing player was James Ward-Prowse who earned 9 points.

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