Team of the Week and Weekend Wonders: Week 25
Wins for Arsenal, Spurs, Everton, Manchester United, Manchester City, West Brom, Fulham, Blackburn, Wigan and Norwich ensured there wasn't a single draw in the top flight this weekend and there has been plenty of action at the top and bottom of the table.
The top flight recorded an impressive 37 goals, a set of remarkable results and more controversy than former Manchester United skipper Roy Keane could dream of. Yes it's Team of the Week time and revealing his Weekend Wonders this week it's Mitch Waddon.
It's getting closer, isn't it? The impeding doom that surrounds the end of the season. We are almost three quarters of the way through the Premier League and it's already getting me down to think about my weekends without it. However, I suppose we will have England's Euro campaign to keep us company. Maybe not the same hopeful longing, but a nice break from club level football nonetheless.
Aside from my whining, there was actually some football this weekend. All 20 teams in England's top flight were in battle, with an astounding 37 goals being scored between them! Such a high number means an exciting week at the top, but who made our team of the week?
Goalkeeper: Ali Al-Habsi (Wigan Athletic)
An impressive performance from the Oman international allowed Wigan to claim their first win of 2012 at Bolton. Al-Habsi kept the game in the Latic's favour with fine saves to almost completely deny Bolton any goals, only being beaten by a worldy, but we'll come to that later.
Right Back: Phil Bardsley (Sunderland)
Even though the Black Cats lost this weekend, Bardsley put in a good shift at full back, containing the lightening quick duo of Theo Walcott and Alex Oxlade- Chamberlain for large portions of the game.
Centre Back: Sylvain Distin (Everton)
The experienced centre back was the foundation for a very impressive Everton win over Chelsea, ensuring that the off-the-boil Chelsea were unable to find a way through the Toffees' defence.
Centre Back: Jolean Lescott (Manchester City)
Lescott was equally on form against Aston Villa on Sunday, as well as scoring the all important goal to give City a 1-0 victory and maintain their two point lead at the top of the table. If he continues this run of form we may see Jolean at the Euros with England come the summer.
Left Back: Beniot Assou-Ekotto (Tottenham Hotspur)
Assou-Ekotto was a vital clog in the Spurs machine that has taken a grip of the Premier League. The defender gave Tottenham the lead in the opening minutes and was up and down the left flank like a yo-yo. A very determined and committed performance.
Centre Midfield: Steven N'Zonzi (Blackburn Rovers)
N'Zonzi dominated the centre of the park for Blackburn in their 3-2 victory over QPR, scoring the second goal to give Rovers control of the game. N'Zonzi's calm nature in midfield helped Rovers contain a resurgent Rangers in the second half.
Centre Midfield: Gareth Barry (Manchester City)
Here's another piece of the Manchester City puzzle that has made it into our Team of the Week. Barry was powerful and generally fantastic against his old club, Aston Villa, as well as providing the assist for Lescott's goal, winning the Blues the match.
Centre Midfield: Antony Pilkington (Norwich)
Quite possibly the best signing I made for my fantasy football team, Pilkington once again delivered for Norwich on the pitch, this time against Swansea. The lad has built his way up from the lower ranks to Premier League playing, and to be fair to the guy, he appears to love every minute of it, sharing the enthusiasm of Norwich supporters everywhere.
Centre Forward: Peter Odemwingie: (West Brom)
It's very difficult to get a hat-trick and not get into the Team of the Week and we're not going to make an exception for Odemwingie. The Nigerian striker bagged himself three goals in the Black Country derby on the way to a 5-1 win over Wolves.
Centre Forward: Emmanual Adebayor (Tottenham Hotspur)
The player of the week, by a mile. Adebayor is not famous for his link up play, yet the Togo international was involved in every one of Spurs' five goals against Newcastle. The former Arsenal and City striker set up Saha, Kranjcar and Assou-Ekotto as well as bagging a goal for himself.
Centre Forward: Grant Holt (Norwich)
Two goals for the Canaries at Swansea allows Holt to join his team-mate Pilkington in our illustrious XI. Holt was the man man against the Swans and his brace means that Norwich are the only team to score three goals at the Liberty Stadium this season.
Manager of the Week: Harry Redknapp (Tottenham Hotspur)
What a week for Harry! The worst day must've been drawing at Liverpool on Monday, yet in a short seven days he has been cleared of all charges against him and been touted as the favourite for the England job. Then on top of that his side destroy Newcastle. What more can the guy ask for? Special mention must also go to Paul Lambert of Norwich for leading his side to a thrilling win at Swansea.
Goal of the Week: Mark Davies (Bolton)
Remember that wonder goal I told you about earlier? Well props to Mark Davies of Bolton for his brilliant swerving half-volley against Wigan from distance. Al-Habsi had no chance of keeping this bullet out, which dragged Wanderers back into the game for a short period. Mention must also be made of Mackie's second goal for QPR against Blackburn, and Yakubu's goal for Blackburn against QPR.
Howler of the Weekend: Per Mertesacker (Arsenal)
Not so much of a howler, but more of an unfortunate incident for Arsenal's German defender. Mertesacker appeared to have full control of the ball but would then slip, allowing McClean through to give the Black Cats the lead. Yet it would seem that Mertesacker's fall was the result of ligament damage after getting his studs caught in the ground.
Controversy of the Weekend: Manchester United-Liverpool
Do you really need me to explain this one? Okay . . . we all know the deal. Luis Suarez was found guilty of racially abusing Patrice Evra, resulting in an eight-match ban for the striker. Suarez and Evra would then meet in the reverse fixture, only for Suarez to refuse to shake Evra's hand. All very childish, yes? Thank you, can we move on now? The lad's apologised through the club website, and United have accepted. Let's have something different to talk about now.
Mitch's Moment: Always a Hero, Henry.
Tottenham and Sunderland fans, look away now. The legend that is Thierry Henry is leaving Arsenal for the second time, having completed a loan spell back at the club, and what a parting gift from the Frenchman, a lovely goal to give the Gunners the win over Sunderland. When Thierry left for Barcelona I did wonder how Arsenal fans would react, but it is so great to see this club legend getting the respect and recognition he deserves. And after scoring the winner on his second debut with the club against Leeds United in the FA Cup, how great was it to see him scoring the winner against Sunderland on his last appearance in the Premier League. What a player.
Do you agree with our Weekend Wonders? We'd love to hear from you!
Don't forget to check out Mitch's website, for other posts and blogs at mitchwaddon.wordpress.com