Football fans enjoyed another exciting weekend of Premier League football over the past few days, with not quite as many surprises as the opening set of fixtures.
Chelsea lead the way with three players included in Garth Crooks’ team of the week following their comfortable 2-0 win over Arsenal on Sunday afternoon.
Arsenal have had their worst start to a season in their history with two defeats and no goals in their opening two fixtures and Chelsea were able to take advantage of their struggles at the Emirates Stadium.
Romelu Lukaku made his second debut for the Blues after sealing a return to Stamford Bridge earlier this month and it only took him 15 minutes to score the opener and grab his first goal for the club.
The striker was a handful for Arsenal’s defence all afternoon and could have had a second if it wasn’t for a brilliant save from Bernd Leno in the second half.
Lukaku was rewarded for his performance with a place in Crooks’ team – the first of many, no doubt.
César Azpilicueta and Reece James were also two of the defenders named on Crooks’ starting XI – with the latter providing the assist for Lukaku’s goal, as well as scoring their second 20 minutes later.
The pair helped Chelsea claim their second clean sheet in as many games this season and it will be a game to remember for James, who found himself on the bench for their clash with Crystal Palace on the opening weekend.
Meanwhile, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Jordan Henderson were both in the team after a convincing 2-0 win over Burnley on Saturday.
The Liverpool defender picked up an assist for Sadio Mane’s goal in the second half, while Henderson impressed in the middle on his return to the matchday squad.
Crooks admitted he considered Southampton’s Tino Livramento for the right-back spot, but he “really had little choice” after witnessing TAA’s superb performance at Anfield.
Despite a exceptional 5-0 victory over Norwich City, Manchester City’s only feature in the starting XI is Gabriel Jesus.
The Brazilian has had to prove himself in recent weeks due to City’s continued interest in Harry Kane, but Jesus definitely impressed over the weekend, picking up two assists.
Despite a stellar performance from the striker, Crooks said: “I cannot accept a coach, however good he might be, playing a world-class striker on the right of a three-man attack providing assists when he is perfectly capable of scoring goals himself.”
Meanwhile, Brighton & Hove Albion pair Shane Duffy and Yves Bissouma were a rare addition to the team of the week.
Duffy scored the Seagulls’ opener in their 2-0 win over Watford. It looks like the defender has quickly found his feet once again after returning to the south coast following his disappointing loan spell with Celtic – a positive sign for Brighton fans after Ben White’s departure.
Bissouma’s inclusion is less of a surprise given how fantastic he was been for Graham Potter’s side for a while now.
The midfielder has been linked with a move away from and it is clear to see why.
Alongside Bissouma and Henderson in midfield is Dele Alli and Demarai Gray, who both scored for their respective teams over the weekend.
Alli tucked away a penalty in Spurs’ 1-0 win over Wolves as he looks to make a dramatic return to Premier League football following a difficult spell under Jose Mourinho, while Gray’s goal was his first in an Everton shirt as the Toffees took a point from Elland Road.
Rafa Benitez brought Gray in for less than £2 million this summer – a real coup for a player that Crooks described as “electric” and a “real talent”.
Finally, Brentford’s David Raya is in net for Garth Crooks for yet another clean sheet.
The Bees played out a 0-0 stalemate with Crystal Palace in their second game of the season, with the goalkeeper yet to concede a goal in the Premier League.