Ozil and Eriksen shine on debut to make team of the week
New arrivals light up the Premier League, as Rooney rolls back the years for Man United
IT WAS a weekend of high-profile debuts in the Premier League as new arrivals took their bow in the first round of games since the transfer window closed.
Some new boys, Mesut Ozil and Christian Eriksen for example, announced themselves in impressive fashion while others, including Samuel Eto'o and Marouane Fellaini, made less of an impact for their new clubs.
At the end of the weekend there was a familiar look to the top of the table, with the top six comprising Arsenal, Spurs, Liverpool, Man City, Man United and Chelsea. It would be a surprise if the same clubs were not at the top come May. The only question is what order they finish in.
As for the Premier League's best performers this weekend, here's the pick of the experts' picks:
Goalkeeper: Jussi Jaaskelainen (West Ham). The Hammers stopper single-handedly kept his side in the match against Southampton on Sunday with a series of fine saves. Joe Hart of Man City had a strong claim, but Jaaskelainen's clean sheet and Fantasy Premier League tally of nine points earn him the place.
Defence: Sebastien Bassong (Norwich), Rio Ferdinand (Manchester United), Gareth McAuley (West Brom), Danny Rose (Spurs). Norwich may have lost 2-0 to Spurs on Saturday but without the "monstrous" Bassong at the back it could have been a rout says Bleacher Report. Ferdinand gets the nod thanks to his nine fantasy points as United kept a clean sheet against Crystal Palace. McAuley scored West Brom's first goal of the season and earned his side a point against Fulham. "It could be the strike that ignites their season," says ESPN. And Spurs defender Rose caught the eye of BBC pundit Garth Crooks.
Aaron Ramsey, Mesut Ozil (Arsenal), Christian Eriksen (Spurs), Hatem Ben Arfa (Newcastle), Gareth Barry (Everton). There were some outstanding performances in the middle of the park this week, and debutants earned the biggest plaudits. New Gunner Ozil tore Sunderland apart on debut says Crooks and looked like he had been playing for Arsenal "all his life", while his team-mate Ramsey earns a place not just because of his two goals but also his "superb movement and awareness" according to Give Me Sport. Over at White Hart Lane Eriksen crowned a "most impressive" debut with an "exquisite" pass to set up Spurs' first goal says Crooks. Barry had an "immaculate" first outing for Everton as they beat Chelsea, says ESPN, while The Guardian says Ben Arfa "illuminated" Newcastle's 2-1 win over Aston Villa.
Attack: Wayne Rooney (Man United). With a five-man midfield featuring the attacking talents of Ozil, Eriksen and Ben Arfa there is only room for one striker in this week's XI, and despite the claims of Olivier Giroud the place goes to Manchester United forward Rooney. He was "everywhere" at Old Trafford says the Daily Telegraph, dictating play and winning challenges. ·