Week 15 of the Premier League was easily one of the most exciting of the season. Leicester City remained at the top of the table with a 3-0 victory over Swansea. Chelsea on the other hand, dropped a very important three points against newly promoted Bournemouth. Newcastle won a 2-0 stunner against Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool. Manchester City dropped one against Stoke City, Tottenham and United managed draws, and virtually no one can even venture to guess who will secure a top-four spot at the end of the season.
As always, the stars of the Premier League shone through, and here’s three of the best from Week 15.
Georginio Wijnaldum, Midfielder, Newcastle United
With Steve McClaren’s job on the line, his Newcastle team finally came through with a much-needed win behind solid combination play and some incredible teamwork. However, the most important player of the season was McClaren’s big money signing of the summer, Dutch midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum.
Wijnaldum has come under a great deal of scrutiny over the past few weeks for what can only be described as some very uninspired play, but against Liverpool he was simply fantastic. The Dutchman scored his first goal in the 69th minute, when he deflected a shot off Liverpool center back Martin Skrtel and over goalkeeper Simon Mignolet for the Magpies goal. His second strike of the day came four minutes into stoppage time to secure the victory for McClaren’s men.
While Newcastle have looked like a relegation candidate for most of the year, their play against Liverpool was their best performance in years, and could be a sign of good things to come for the Magpies. If Wijnaldum can keep scoring, look for Newcastle to keep winning.
Riyad Mahrez, Winger, Leicester City
You were looking for Jamie Vardy? While the Foxes’ young English striker ended his streak of consecutive games with a goal in the Premier league, his teammate, Riyad Mahrez, certainly picked up the slack. He netted a hat trick against Swansea City in Leicester’s 3-0 victory, the first for an Algerian international in the Premier League
Vardy has been the story of the season for the underdog Foxes, but Mahrez has very much been part of the equation. With his hat trick on Saturday, Mahrez moved into the double-digit club, just four behind league leader Vardy. Additionally, Mahrez has six assists, while Vardy has just one. Leicester fans will certainly be happy that they have not one, but both attacking stories of the season in the Premier League on the table-topping club. If Mahrez can continue his current pace, he can expect a big money move this summer.
Mesuit Ozil, Midfielder, Arsenal
If Arsenal win, Mesuit Ozil deserves a spot amongst the three stars. The German international has been an absolute wizard in midfield for the Gunners this season, especially considering the incredible amount of midfield injuries Arsenal have suffered over the past few months.
Ozil has 12 assists for Arsenal this season in the Premier League. Second place is a four-way tie between Riyad Mahrez, Kevin De Bruyne, David Silva and Gerard Deloufeu, who each have six apiece. The mere thought that Ozil is twice as effective at completing the final pass for a goal as world-class midfielders like De Bruyne and Silva speaks to the absolutely incredible season the Gunners’ midfielder is having.
Arsenal still has a very legitimate shot at winning the title this season, and if they do, Mesuit Ozil should be the man lifting the trophy on the final day.