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Premier League – Stars of the Week: Matchweek 33

Shortening the match week? That should mean the return of the FA Cup.

But while the semi-finals of one of football’s oldest cup competitions meant we were reduced to just six games, instead of the usual ten, there was plenty of entertainment outside Wembley as the Premier League continued its pace.

Matchweek 33 headlines emerged once again from a consistently chaotic top-four race, with both Arsenal and Tottenham suffering shock defeats at the hands of south coast clubs Southampton and Brighton. At Old Trafford, Manchester United pulled off a slim victory over Norwich City to keep their top four hopes alive, and both Newcastle and Brentford scored thrilling wins of late to maintain their impressive levels, with both teams now safe and able to enjoy. the rest of their season.

Six matches, five standout matches – here are our latest Stars of the Week.

Stars of the Week: Match of the Week 33

Goalkeeper: Fraser Forster (Southampton)

Things are suddenly getting brighter again in Southampton. Having been on a horrific run from an all-time low after the 6-0 home defeat to Chelsea last week, this narrow and tough win over Arsenal was just what the doctor ordered.

It was a win that would not have been possible without the exceptional contribution of goalkeeper Fraser Forster. The Saints’ goalkeeper made six saves throughout the match, including a superb stop to deny Bukayo Saka in the first half. With his side in front, Forster later blocked Emile Smith Rowe, Granit Xhaka and another attempt by Saka to help Southampton press the finish line and achieve a much-needed win.

With a goalkeeper position seemingly still up in the air at Southampton, it was the clearest indication yet that Forster is ready to reassert himself as the undisputed number one.

Defender: Jan Bednarek (Southampton)

Jean Bednarek

From zero to champion.

We’ve mentioned Fraser-Forster’s contribution to Southampton’s impressive win over Arsenal at the weekend, but St Mary’s defender Jan Bednarek will walk away from St Mary’s with similar applause after a solid display.

Bednarik was as guilty as anyone in last week’s apocalyptic surrender against Chelsea, Bednarik was one of the few players to hold his place in the back line, brilliantly making amends on the left side of three defence. Aside from his match-winning goal, which was hit brilliantly on his left foot, Bednarek seemed more confident in defense as well, with the Poland international making one save, five interceptions and seven passes to successfully fend off wave after wave of Arsenal attacks. .

Sometimes it’s more difficult for defenders to answer their critics than it is to attacking players, but this was a great example of how to do it from Bednarek.

Midfield: Bruno Guimarães (Newcastle United)

Bruno Guimarães (Newcastle United)

The second half of the season appears to be getting better for Newcastle, a trend that continued in style on Sunday when the Magpies snatched victory over Leicester City with a dramatic late win.

In a heated match, it was Newcastle’s January signing Bruno Guimarães who made a decisive contribution, scoring both goals for his team. The midfielder took advantage of some weak set-pieces defending Leicester to slip the ball off Kasper Schmeichel’s legs and drag his side’s level, a goal that was quickly confirmed legitimate by the VAR.

In the fifth minute of second-half injury time, Guimarães blasted forward again on a counterattack and managed to get the end of Joe Willock’s skewed pass, heading into the net to send St James Park into ecstasy.

It looks like Newcastle has a new Brazilian champion.

Attacker: Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United)

Ronaldo Manchester United

Who else could it be for Manchester United?

In a shaky display at home to bottom-ranked Norwich City, of course it will be Cristiano Ronaldo who pulls his side out of a hole. The Portuguese star put his team ahead early with a simple flick after a foul from Norwich at the back, and later jumped massively to catch a glimpse of the net with a header to double the Red Devils’ lead. Despite this, the hosts quickly let go, but Ronaldo had the final say with a superb late free kick that passed the post through Tim Kroll’s gloves to give United the win.

This is his second hat-trick in 2022 already – where would United be without his goals?

Director: Graham Potter (Brighton & Hove Albion)

Graham Potter is the new director of Brighton & Hove Albion

What a difference a week makes.

After being in dire straits for several weeks, Graham Potter’s Brighton side secured back-to-back wins in north London after victories over Arsenal and now Tottenham, with Potter earning a well-deserved Star Manager award for the second time in a row.

This victory was arguably more impressive than last week’s, as The Seagulls edged out Tottenham Hotspur with a three-forward streak that had been in brilliance in several matches. Brighton had to pull off a defensive piece occasionally, but generally remained unfazed by Spurs throughout the match, gradually developing into the competition and snatching a late win through a Leandro Trossard goal.

Brighton’s brilliant display was another indication of Potter’s tactical acumen, in what is developing into a stellar season for the South Coast side. Could the first half be on the cards?