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Premier League Team of the Week - Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford, Jordan Pickford

Sports Mole selects its Premier League team of the week for gameweek 25, including Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford and Jordan Pickford.

Liverpool's alarming and dramatic downturn in form continued with the most painful defeat yet in one of many standout fixtures in gameweek 25, with the champions falling to their first home Merseyside derby loss since 1999 at the hands of Everton.

The Reds were not alone in feeling the despair of derby defeat, though, with Tottenham Hotspur losing at West Ham United and Brighton & Hove Albion somehow succumbing to Crystal Palace on Monday night.

Manchester City's title charge was strengthened with an 18th successive win across all competitions as Arsenal became their latest victims, but their lead at the top remains 10 points after both Manchester United and Leicester City also won.

West Ham now join those three in the Champions League places after Chelsea were held by out-of-form Southampton, while Wolverhampton Wanderers were victorious against Leeds United.

At the bottom, Fulham picked up a priceless victory over Sheffield United to move to within three points of safety, while Burnley hung on for a goalless stalemate with 10-man West Bromwich Albion.

Here, Sports Mole selects its Premier League team of the week for gameweek 25.



PL TOTW GW25

Goalkeeper was perhaps the most competitive position in this week's team, with Rui Patricio desperately unfortunate not to get the nod having made seven saves en route to a clean sheet against Leeds, and Nick Pope also deserving a mention.

Everton's Jordan Pickford beats both of them to the gloves, though. Having been the villain of the piece in the reverse derby, Pickford was Everton's hero this time around with six saves, including particularly impressive ones to deny Jordan Henderson and Mohamed Salah.

The England number one is joined in this XI by two of his clubmates too, with Michael Keane and Mason Holgate also playing a huge role in stifling the Liverpool attack on an historic derby day for the Toffees.

Keane made a number of crucial interventions and cleared the ball a whopping 13 times in the match, while Holgate dominated Sadio Mane throughout to the extent that the Liverpool winger only got a glimmer of joy when he moved away from the Everton defender.

Ruben Dias and Kyle Bartley also deserve mentions at centre-back, but James Tarkowski completes what is a back three this week following his crucial goalline clearance to earn Burnley a point against West Brom in a game which they were very fortunate not to lose, despite having a man advantage.

Matthew Lowton is also worthy of being considered from that game, while on the opposite flank Lucas Digne was in contention, but there was a lack of competition for full-back roles this week and so we have drafted some more attacking players in at wing-back.

One of those is Raphinha who, despite being on the losing side for Leeds against Wolves, was again a standout performer in a game Leeds will feel they should have got something from.

On the left, Harvey Barnes drops into a slightly deeper role having further strengthened his international case with a goal and an assist in Leicester's impressive win at Aston Villa.

James Maddison scored from Barnes's assist and is another name in that England picture, and he was in contention for a central midfield spot in this team along with Declan Rice and Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa.

They all narrowly miss out to Tomas Soucek, who alongside Rice played a huge part in West Ham's memorable victory over Spurs, and Bruno Fernandes, whose overall performance was not his best but who still produced a goal and assist to make the difference against Newcastle.

Marcus Rashford is another player who made a difference in that game without being on the very top of his game, and his selection as the centre-forward in this week's XI is as much down to a lack of other options as his individual display.

Raheem Sterling and Lucas Moura, both of whom were on the scoresheet in their respective games, were the other names in contention for the forward roles, but they miss out to Jesse Lingard and Ademola Lookman.

Lingard continued his fine start to life at West Ham by tucking away what proved to be the winning goal against Spurs, while Lookman's strike against Sheffield United could prove to be even more valuable as Fulham gave their survival hopes a major boost.

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Arsenal's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang celebrates with the match ball after scoring a hat-trick on February 14, 2021
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City26195252163662
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd25147453322149
3Leicester CityLeicester25154644271749
4West Ham UnitedWest Ham2613674031945
5Chelsea25127641251643
6Liverpool25117745341140
7Everton2412483733440
8Aston Villa24123938261239
9Tottenham HotspurSpurs24106837271036
10Leeds UnitedLeeds26112134344-135
11Arsenal25104113126534
12Wolverhampton WanderersWolves2697102733-634
13Crystal Palace2595112943-1432
14Southampton2586113143-1230
15Burnley2577111830-1228
16Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton26511102633-726
17Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2675142744-1726
18Fulham25410112132-1122
19West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom2638152055-3517
20Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd2532201541-2611

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