MFF October Premier League Team of the Month
With October ending, it is time for another MFF team of the month. October’s team takes on a 3-5-2 formation. As previously stated, unlike in former seasons, the team now coincides with the positions of players in the ‘Official Fantasy Premier League’.
Alisson Becker (Liverpool)
There were some great performances by Premier League goalkeepers in October, but Alisson just gets the nods for his contributions to the points Liverpool gained. With the Reds’ defence faltering, and an evident lack of protection from the midfield, Alisson has been busier than ever between the sticks. The Brazilian stopper already had to make 39 saves this campaign, which is the fourth highest amongst the league’s keepers, whilst he is also now joint-fourth in clean sheets with four. 23 of Alisson’s saves came in October. Liverpool began the month with a 3-3 draw with Brighton and without Alisson it would have been a defeat. Alisson had two shutouts in the month; he made six saves in Liverpool’s crucial win over Manchester City, a game in which he also assisted the winning goal by Mo Salah with a great long pass. Liverpool beat West Ham next up, and Alisson was again to thank, as he saved a first half penalty from Jarrod Bowen, as Jurgen Klopp’s men again won 1-0.
Timothy Castagne (Leicester City)
Castagne and Danny Ward have grown as the season has gone on for Brendan Rodgers’ men. The Foxes had not won a game or kept a clean sheet before October, and now they have three wins and have kept four clean sheets, easing the pressure on Rodgers for the time being at least. Castagne leads Leicester’s defenders in tackles with 22, which is joint-eight overall amongst defenders in the premier League. The Belgian international has been Leicester’s most consistent defender, and with new signing Wout Faes adapting quickly, things have improved at the King Power Stadium. Castagne, has not only done well defensively, but he also assisted Jamie Vardy in Leicester’s 4-0 away win at Wolves. Castagne marauds up the flanks make the full back a goal threat too, expect a goal sooner rather than later from him.
Diogo Dalot (Manchester United)
There were question marks over Dalot’s defensive capabilities, but thus far he is doing a very good job for Erik ten Hag. Going forward he gives the team great width, but as said he is currently doing well in his primary role. The Red Devils had a tough start to the month being torn apart by Manchester City 6-3, however they won at Everton next, and then drew with Newcastle. Dalot was arguably the best player on the pitch against the Magpies with his competitiveness shown throughout the 90 minutes. United, held on for a 1-0 win against West Ham in their last game of the month, and Dalot was surprisingly a defensive juggernaut. He repeatedly made last ditch headed clearances to deny the Hammers what would have been a deserved point. With Dalot’s form it is increasingly likely that Aaron wan Bissaka may have to find a new club in January, even if it is a just a loan deal.
Kieran Trippier (Newcastle United)
Since returning to the Premier League from a spell at Atletico Madrid, Trippier has come back a much-improved player. Now in his first full season at St James’ Park, after arriving last season in the winter transfer window, he is a key a component of Eddie Howe’s team. His great delivery from set pieces means he is always an assist threat, and he is now better defensively after working with Diego Simeone. In Newcastle’s 5-1 home win over Brentford, Trippier’s corner was headed in by Bruno Guimaraes for the opening goal. Newcastle then got a massive 2-1 away win at Tottenham, Trippier’s old club. The England international was assisting again in another home game, this time in a 4-0 triumph over Aston Villa as Callum Wilson scored a header. The Magpies have the best defence in the league, keeping the most clean sheets with six.
Thomas Partey (Arsenal)
Partey, just gets in ahead of his teammate Granit Xhaka this month. The Ghanaian admitted himself, that his start to life in the Premier League had been poor, but now in his third season, he is finally consistently showing his worth. His positioning, passing and reading of the game has given Mikel Arteta’s men the balance they needed in the midfield. It has also allowed Xhaka to flourish, and both midfielders scored twice in the month. Arsenal’s October opened with a 3-1 win over Tottenham in the Derby. Partey, was the man to give them the lead with a finely placed long range effort that went in off the post, giving Hugo Lloris no chance. Partey, was on the scoresheet again as the Gunners remained top of the table, thumping Nottingham Forest 5-0 at the Emirates Stadium. Partey, again struck from outside the penalty area with a curled shot into the top corner.
Miguel Almiron (Newcastle United)
Almiron is currently having the time of his live. He is not just scoring for fun; he is scoring of the highest level. Newcastle could surprise many this season with the points they are accumulating, and recently Almiron is the surprise talisman. The Paraguayan’s first wonder strike came in the 4-1 win at Fulham. His audacious volley nestled into the top corner; the technical ability was evident. Almiron was at it again, as he scored the fourth goal in the 5-1 home bruising of Brentford. He then got the winning goal with a superlative strike against Everton, hitting the ball first time from Bruno Guimaraes’ lay-off. He got the all-important second goal in 2-1 win at Tottenham, as held off Ryan Sessegnon and then skipped past Clement Lenglet for an outstanding individual goal. He was not finished yet; as in the convincing 4-0 beating of Aston Villa, he curled home a lovely goal. His confidence is at its zenith.
Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City)
De Bruyne is indispensable to Manchester City, especially after David Silva departed a few seasons ago. His creativity was always known, but his goalscoring threat is now more evident than ever, making him somehow even more daunting to come up against. In City 6-3 win over local rivals Manchester United, De Bruyne assisted two of Erling Haaland’s goals. One of them was a delicious pass that Haaland stretched and put in from close range, an aesthetically pleasing goal to say the least. De Bruyne, assisted Phil Foden in the 4-0 home despatching of Southampton. In the 3-1 home win over Brighton, the Belgian smashed the ball into the top corner from long range for the last goal of the game. He was to his goal against Brighton however, with a sublime free-kick that went in off the woodwork to give Pep Guardiola’s men all three points at Leicester to close October two points behind leaders Arsenal.
Leandro Trossard (Brighton & Hove Albion)
Trossard, again showed his huge value to Brighton with some goals in big games. The Belgian international scored a hat-trick at Anfield of all places, as the Seagulls surprised Liverpool in a 3-3 draw. It was a match they could have got all three points from if it was not for Alisson’s heroics. Brighton, then did not find the net for their next three games under new Manager Roberto De Zerbi, but when they did get on the scoresheet, it was Trossard who got them a consolation goal. Brighton were beaten 3-1 by Manchester City, and Trossard scored a powerful strike on Ederson’s near post. Former Brighton Manager Graham Potter then made the trip to the Amex Stadium with his new side Chelsea, but they were beaten 4-1 by his old side. Trossard, opened the scoring, showing great footwork, balance and composure before firing in from close range.
Bukayo Saka (Arsenal)
As Arsenal players queued up for this months’ team, Saka fought off his teammate Gabriel Martinelli for a place, he just shaded it with the importance of his goals in October. In their second game, Arsenal edged past Liverpool 3-2 at the Emirates Stadium for a massive three points. Saka, scored twice, the first a crucial goal just before half-time when Liverpool were on top in the game territorially. The second goal was a clutch penalty, to get the Gunners over the line. Saka, got a savagely important winning goal, as Mikel Arteta’s men came away from a tough game at Leeds with a 1-0 victory. Saka finished with great aplomb on his weaker right foot into the roof of the net from a tight angle. The England international ended the month with an assist, as his enticing cross was headed in by Martinelli to give Arsenal the lead in their 5-0 romp of Nottingham Forest.
Erling Haaland (Manchester City)
Already it may have come to the point where we just pencil in Haaland for each team of the month before a ball has even been kicked. The Norwegian now already has 17 league goals. Considering Mo Salah and Heung-min Son shared the Golden Boot last season with 23 goals, what Haaland is doing is startling. October opened with him netting his third hat-trick in-a-row at home as City put away their neighbours United 6-3 in impressive fashion. Not only was he amongst the goals here, but he also assisted two of Phil Foden’s goals, as Foden also helped himself to a hat-trick. In their next home game, it looked like he was going to draw a rare blank, but he got the fourth goal in a 4-0 victory over Southampton. Liverpool got the better of City at Anfield but. Haaland still went close on a few occasions. He bagged a brace in the 3-1 home win over Brighton, before missing the last match against Leicester due to injury.
Callum Wilson (Newcastle United)
When he is fully fit, there is not much doubt that Wilson is one of the better finishers in the Premier League. After returning from injury in October, he helped Newcastle into the Champions League places. His movement and sheer presence help bring his teammates into play, and the Magpies are not yet missing having new signing Alexander Isak out injured. Newcastle’s October started with a 4-1 away win at 10-man Fulham, here Wilson opened the scoring. In the 5-1 crushing of Brentford, Wilson could have gone for goal himself but wisely setup Jacob Murphy for the second goal. Wilson, beat Hugo Lloris to the ball before his brilliant, lofted shot, put Eddie Howe’s men ahead at Tottenham in a statement 2-1 triumph. His month concluded with a brace in the 4-0 home bashing of Aston Villa. He could have had a hat-trick but hit the bar with a header late on. He also assisted Miguel Almiron’s goal.