After taking a bit of a punt on Lionel Messi featuring in the Team of the Week last week (given a few of his recent snubs), there is little doubt that he will be included in this week’s. Perhaps the best player in football history left no doubt as to worthiness with a stoppage-time defying game-winner in El Clásico Sunday.
Now the only real question is whether he’ll get a Purple Hero cards for his heroics and his 500 career goals with Barca or just an ordinary run-of-the-mill CAM in-form?
Shifting gears from Spain to the best Italy has to offer, Juventus stalwart Leo Bonucci, on the heels of a dominant Champions League performance against Messi’s Barcelona in Spain, capped his week with a great solo run and a goal in a 4-0 Juve win over Genoa. Though European competitions don’t count towards TOTW, the centerback was the only other player in the same stratosphere as Leo Messi this past week.
An incredible six-minute-hat trick was the story of Lazio’s win over Palermo. Keita Baldé Diao continued a great run of form since his return from the African Cup of Nations in the 6-2 thrashing, and from the striker position no less. Matías Vecino had a TOTW worthy performance in his own right with two goals and an assist in his Fiorentina side’s 5-4 thrilling win over Inter Milan.
Further west in France, a mix of midweek excellence and weekend strong play helped PSG’s Blaise Matuidi make a strong case for an in-form. The center defensive midfielder had two goals in a 3-2 win over Metz and an assist in PSG’s weekend 2-0 defeat of Montpellier. Former Serie A standout Kamil Glik had a big assist in Monaco’s critical 2-1 victory over Olympique Lyonnais. With the win, Monaco keeps a slender lead at the top of the Ligue 1 table while Lyon drop out of European qualification with just four fixtures to go. Lorient’s versatile winger Jimmy Cabot added two assist to go along with two goals in a 5-1 win over Metz.
In the aptly named Premier League, Christian Benteke turned heads in Crystal Palace’s 2-1 win over his former club Liverpool. Benteke scored both goals in the affair. While sure to be much debated, rumored to be wantaway Manchester United attacker Anthony Martial gave skipper Jose Mourinho something to think about as he scored a goal and added an assist in a 2-0 win over Burnley on Sunday.
Finally, in the Bundesliga, Max Kruse had another performance for the ages for Werder Bremen helping lead them to a 4-2 win over lowly Ingolstadt almost singlehandedly. Kruse scored all four of Bremen’s goals in the contest. Mexican international Marco Fabían had one of his defining performances of the 2016-17 campaign, providing a pair of goals in a 3-1 comeback win over Augsburg. And while it didn’t draw the eyeballs Germany native keeper Marc Andre Ter Stegen’s performance against Real Madrid did, Hertha’s Rune Jarstein laid claim to a gold inform with a strong two-save clean sheet outing against Wolfsburg.
Below, you can see our prediction in full, brought to you on the Futhead Squad Builder. To see it in more detail, click here, and make sure you follow me on Twitter for more updates about the TOTW and FIFA Mobile.
TOTW 32 Predictions
|GK||Rune Jarstein||Hertha Berlin||Norway||80 > 83 > 85|
|CB||Leonardo Bonucci||Juventus||Italy||87 > 88 > 89|
|CB||Kamil Glik||Monaco||Poland||84 > 86 > 87|
|CB||Raúl Silva||Maritimo||Brazil||75 > 81|
|LM||Naranjo||Genk||Spain||75 > 81|
|CDM > CM||Blaise Matuidi||Paris Saint-Germain||France||86 > 87|
|RW > CAM||Lionel Messi||Barcelona||Argentina||93 > 94 > 95 > 96|
|CAM||Ganso||Sevilla||Brazil||81 > 84|
|ST||Christian Benteke||Crystal Palace||Belgium||81 > 84 > 86 > 87 > 88|
|LM > ST||Anthony Martial||Manchester United||France||82 > 84 > 86|
|LW > ST||Keita Baldé Diao||Lazio||Senegal||80 > 83 > 85|
|GK||Igor Akinfeev||CSKA Moscow||Russia||80 > 83|
|LB||Alberto de la Bella||Olympiakos||Spain||75 > 81|
|LM||Caio Alves||Grasshopper Zurich||Brazil||75 > 81|
|CM||Matías Vecino||Fiorentina||Uruguay||75 > 81|
|CAM||Marco Fabián||Eintracht Frankfurt||Mexico||80 > 83|
|CF > ST||Sebastian Giovinco||Toronto FC||Italy||83 > 85 > 86|
|CF > ST||Max Kruse||Werder Bremen||Germany||80 > 83|
|RM > RB||Tony McMahon||Bradford City||England||60 > 64|
|CM||Luke O'Nien||Wycombe Wanderers||England||58 > 64|
|LM > RM||Jimmy Cabot||Lorient||France||73 > 74|
|CM > CAM||Angelo Fulgini||Valenciennes||France||66 > 72|
|ST||Richard Sukuta-Pasu||SV Sandhausen||Germany||67 > 72|