Garth Crooks’ team of the week: Sterling, Martial, Pope, Antonio, McGoldrick

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Garth Crooks’ team of the week: Sterling, Martial, Pope, Antonio, McGoldrick


Champions Liverpool were held by an in-form Burnley in the latest round of Premier League fixtures.

Manchester City had another big winas they beat Brighton 5-0,while Norwich were relegated afterlosing 4-0 to West Ham.

Sheffield Unitedstunned Chelsea 3-0to keep alive their hopes of playing European football next season, while Tottenham came out on top in the North London derby bybeating Arsenal 2-1.

In the final game of the weekend, Manchester United missed the chance to go third as they wereheld 2-2 by Southampton.

Have a look at my team of week and then choose your own below.

Goalkeeper – Nick Pope (Burnley)

Pope:He’s a candidate for the golden gloves award and after his performance against Liverpool I’m not surprised.

Nick Pope had probably wished he could have avoided the Premier League champions at this late stage of the season. Nevertheless the Burnley keeper was in brilliant form against Liverpool. He may not have kept a clean sheet but the game would have been well out of Burnley’s reach had it not been for the England international.

Questions are now being posed about whether Pope should be England’s number one goalkeeper. Based on his performance against Liverpool there is no question about it. The answer is yes.

Did you know?Pope made eight saves against Liverpool, his most in a single Premier League match this season.

Defenders – Andy Robertson (Liverpool), Eric Garcia (Manchester City), Toby Alderweireld (Tottenham)

Robertson:They had only played 30 minutes of football and Nick Pope had made two outstanding saves from Mo Salah. The first save he practically clawed it out of the back of the net. It was clear that Liverpool were going to have to do something quite special to beat the Burnley keeper.

Andy Robertson’s header was that special.

The Liverpool full-back then produced a mouth-watering cross for Sadio Mane, who couldn’t apply the finishing touch. Robertson is back to his best after a shaky period following the restart.

Did you know?Robertson had more touches (111) and made more passes in the opposition half (51) than any other Liverpool player against Burnley.

Garcia:I’m not surprised Barcelona have shown some interested in this lad. He’s only 19 and appears as steady as a rock. In fact he reminds me of the Italian legend Fabio Cannavaro and displayed the same composure against a totally outclassed Brighton.

For the first time I’m beginning to think that Pep Guardiola is paying as much attention to his back five as he is to his midfield and attacking front three. He has a world class keeper, two competent full-backs in Kyle Walker and an in-form Benjamin Mendy, and Eric Garcia, who looks like he might be the perfect replacement for John Stones, alongside Aymeric Laporte, at centre-back.

Did you know?Garcia completed 97% of his passes against Brighton, more than any other starting player in the match (76/78).

Alderweireld:Spurs have had a torrid time lately. The draw at Bournemouth was just an awful performance and I think most Tottenham fans would have settled for a draw against Arsenal especially having gone 1-0 down.

It’s been an odd time for Alderweireld too. His future at Spurs was in doubt. He then signed a new contract but wasn’t picked. He is then picked and scores the winner in the north London derby. You couldn’t make it up.

His 81st-minute header will soften the blow for Spurs fans with the club now looking likely to finish outside the top four. It’s an indication of just how much importance is placed on this fixture.

Did you know?As well as his winning goal, Alderweireld made seven clearances against Arsenal, more than any other player.

Midfielders – Raheem Sterling (Manchester City), Mark Noble (West Ham), Ruben Neves (Wolves), Son Heung-min (Tottenham)

Sterling:Just when you think Raheem Sterling can’t get any better he comes up with the goals and a performance that says to Real Madrid and Barcelona ‘come and get me’. Both former champions of the coveted European title are capable of prizing Sterling away, especially if City don’t win the Champions League this season.

If City do win the Champions League, Sterling has an even bigger decision to make. This is no longer about money but glory. The England striker was unplayable against Brighton, demonstrated by a superbly taken hat-trick. With Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi’s domination of the Ballon d’Or coming to an end Sterling can, providing he makes the right decision, replace them but he needs a Champions League under his belt. Then it’s about trust: is it Pep Guardiola or Zinedine Zidane he trusts with the rest of his future?

Did you know?Sterling scored his third hat-trick of the season in all competitions, with his three goals against Brighton coming from just four shots on target.

Noble:He’s had to sit a few games out for West Ham recently, leaving Declan Rice to fill in the gap. Nevertheless club captain Mark Noble was back to his leadership best against Norwich, who were relegated before a second-half ball was kicked and were totally hammered by the end of the match.

All credit to Norwich’s skipper Alex Tettey, who faced the cameras after the game and put his team’s season into perspective: you can’t expect to survive in the Premier League unless you’re prepared to invest in players who cost £40/50m. I have some sympathy with his point.

Did you know?Noble created eight chances against Norwich, his highest ever tally in a Premier League game.

Neves:The ball from Ruben Neves for Diogo Jota to score Wolves third goal and put the game way beyond a poor Everton was quite brilliant.

Wolves did well after the restart but their form then suffered from some poor performances. However they seem to have recovered and there is more good news. Neves not only looks like he’s got his form back but was also a cut above the rest. This lad should really be playing Champions League football.

In the meantime what’s happened to Everton? They were looking great when Carlo Ancelotti took over and now they look like a fabulous new car, ditched on the pavement after its engine has just blown up, with an owner not knowing what to do.

Did you know?Neves created more chances (thr

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