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#TalentRadar | A regular feature on our website is the Talent Radar Team of the Week with the best young players compiled into an XI from across Europe’s top six leagues. You can read this for details on what is Talent Radar and what we have planned in it for the 2014-15 season.
The second Talent Radar Team of the Week still misses the La Liga, Bundesliga & Serie A which is yet to kick-off but the Premier League made it’s debut, a fact reflected in the team this week, alongwith the French Ligue 1 & Dutch Eredivisie. Note that some positions have been adjusted slightly to suit a proper functioning XI.
Mouez Hassen | Nice | France | Goalkeeper | 19: Young keeper Hassen may well be given opportunities now that David Ospina has left the club, and the first such opportunity of the season presented itself in Nice’s second game against Lorient. He kept a cleansheet and made a couple of saves (two important ones) helping his side to a decent 0-0 draw, and thus a first ever appearance in our Team of the Week.
Eric Dier | Tottenham Hotspur | England | Centre-Back | 20: He started for his new club in the centre of defence, but ended up spending stoppage time rounding of the keeper and scoring a winner. Besides winning the hearts of Spurs’ faithful with that goal against rivals West Ham, Dier had an overall assured game in defence and was surprisingly not as busy as you’d image with the side playing 40 odd minutes with 10 men. // He has featured in our list of 100 Best Young Players to Watch-out for in 2014
Javier Manquillo | Liverpool | Spain | Right-Back | 20: Another defender making his debut this week was Liverpool’s surprise recruit, Javier Manquillo. The man on loan from Atletico Madrid came into the starting XI against Southampton with multiple injuries in defence. He leaves with a solid debut, more so defensively than in attack. 6 tackles and 4 interceptions were well above the rest of his team-mates as his mature performance impressed many.
Andrew Robertson | Hull City | Scotland | Left-Back | 20: Our defensive trio is complete with another Premier League debutant, Andrew Robertson. The man signed from Dundee United helped his side to a 1-0 win over QPR and as he did in Scotland, he spent most of his debut running down the flank in the opposition half but crucially also made the most tackles for his side (4).
Marco Verratti | PSG | France | Defensive Midfield | 21: The lone defensive cover for our back three this week, Marco Verratti was the standout player in PSG’s 2-0 win over Bastia. The Italian was solid with his defensive contribution making 5 tackles as he played in a three man central midfield. He also created chances regularly, the most significant one being a quick free-kick to release Edinson Cavani for PSG’s 2nd goal. // Detailed Scout Report on Marco Verratti
Diego Rolan | Bordeaux | Uruguay | Right Midfield | 21: Continuing in the side away from his favoured striker role (he isn’t good enough to take that position yet), he played on the right side of midfield but scored two pure striker’s goals as he helped his Bordeaux side to a 4-1 win piling more pressure on Monaco’s new boss Leonardo Jardim. Though his second was from an offside position, the scoreline reflected a deserved result and Rolan has already equaled his tally from the previous season.
Zakaria Labyad | Vitesse | Morocco | Left Midfield | 21: The man on loan from Sporting had a superb game against Cambuur creating an incredible 5 clear-cut chances, but significantly scoring two goals that helped his side to a 2-2 draw. The first saw him as the beneficiary of a quick team passing move which ended up with him taking a shot from outside the box as a deflection took it past the keeper. The second was a perfectly slotted penalty into the corner of the goal.
Raheem Sterling | Liverpool | England | Attacking Midfield | 19: Liverpool were made to work hard in their win over Southampton but both the goals in the 2-1 victory involved Sterling’s contribution. First he got on the end of a perfect Henderson pass, scoring with a cool one touch slot past the keeper. The winner came from Sturridge after the tiny Sterling won a header inside the box, sending it the striker’s way for an easy tap in. He took more shots and created more chances than any other player on the pitch. // Detailed Scout Report on Raheem Sterling // He featured in our list of 100 Best Young Players to Watch-out for in 2014 // He also featured in our inaugural Talent Radar Young Players Awards last season and Premier League Team of the Season.
Saido Berahino | West Bromwich Albion | England | Striker | 21: Berahino too took the most shots, created the most chances and made more successful tackles than any of his team-mates as West Brom drew 2-2 with Sunderland. The first was from the spot but the second was a typical striker’s goal, making a run on the far post and volleying in a perfect cross in the open net. // He featured in our list of 100 Best Young Players to Watch-out for in 2014.
Memphis Depay | PSV Eindhoven | Netherlands | Striker | 20: Depay makes his second successive Team of the Week appearance (the only player to do so) and thus has a 100% record this season after two issues. His performance in PSV’s 6-1 win over Breda will be hard to beat. He first set-up Wijnaldum with a beautiful through ball in the first half, opening up the defence. He added a third to PSV’s tally with a sweet long range free-kick before adding the 6th in almost identical fashion. PSV’s young guns are coming good for a title challenge, and Depay is the man leading them that way. // Detailed Scout Report on Memphis Depay // He too featured in our 100 Best Young Players to Watch-out for in 2014 list (link above with Sterling)
Paul-Georges Ntep | Rennes | France | Striker | 22: In another complete rout, Ntep came on midway through the second half in Rennes’ 6-2 win over Evian. His first goal, in the second half with the game pretty much won, was a neat solo run taking on the Evian defenders (though one should question the latter than purely praise the former) and cooly slotting for the opener. His second was a case of right place at the right time as he received an acute pass in the centre of the box and smashed it into the roof of the net. The two goals were his only shots all game.
Written by Sami Faizullah. Chief Editor of this website. All our Talent Radar Team of the Week pieces can be found here.