It was a rotten weekend for centre-backs, with one of Liverpool’s rating among the worst of the lot, while Aaron Ramsdale takes the gloves.
Here’s the worst XI from the Premier League weekend, according to WhoScored’s ratings…
GK: Aaron Ramsdale – 5.71
The Arsenal stopper was made to look daft in the opening minute after Bukayo Saka’s initial mistake. Ramsdale turned to scurry back towards his line expecting the dink but Andreas Pereira instead slid the ball inside the near post, almost behind the keeper’s back. Was that Pereira’s intention? You decide. Ramsdale is probably also being punished for his lack of activity in the 89 subsequent minutes because he stood little chance with Fulham’s late leveller.
RB: Connor Roberts – 5.83
The Burnley right-back just pips Brighton’s James Milner to the spot after earning the Clarets’ second-lowest score in the defeat to Villa. In truth, we can’t explain why. Roberts wasn’t directly or indirectly at fault – certainly no more than anyone else – for any of Villa’s goals and it was his cross after switching to left-back in the second half that led to Burnley’s goal back. Algorithms, eh?
CB: Virgil van Dijk – 4.87
It was a stinker of a weekend for centre-backs. Nine earned sub-six scores with Van Dijk on of two coming in below five. The Liverpool defender wasn’t the worst in Jurgen Klopp’s backline during his 28 minutes on the pitch – Trent Alexander-Arnold finished with 6.07 – but red cards are the common theme among the three central defenders selected here.
CB: Joe Worrall – 5.05
Worrall also saw red after bringing down Bruno Fernandes as the Manchester United skipper threatened to burst through on Nottingham Forest’s goal. He looked nervy before being dismissed with 20 minutes left to play and United chasing a winner.
LB: Calvin Bassey – 4.70
In the absence of any left-backs stinking out the weekend, we can shift Bassey from the centre where he played 83 minutes against Arsenal before being dismissed for two cautions. The first, received for time-wasting, came with 40 minutes still left on the clock. While he was on the pitch, Bassey pumped all of his nine long passes straight to an opponent, losing possession 16 times overall.
CM: Sander Berge – 5.67
The Burnley new boy was on the periphery for the first half against Villa and though he was more involved in an advanced role after the break, Berge was still hooked half way through the second half. The Belgian competed in eight duels in midfield and won only one.
LM: Ross Barkley – 5.89
Going back to his former club was always going to be a tricky Luton debut for Barkley, with the Hatters unable to get their new signing into the game before he was given a breather with the result settled. Defensively, he did reasonably well, winning all four duels. But that wasn’t what he was signed for. Barkley and Luton will have better days.
RM: Matheus Cunha – 5.97
Goodison was a tough place for attackers on Saturday afternoon as Everton and Wolves slugged it out. Cunha struggled to get into the game as Fabio Silva’s main supporting act, mainly from the right channel, while the Brazilian spent his final 11 minutes as a lone forward before being replaced with six minutes to go. Prior to that, he lost all but two of his 10 duels, though we think it was just a coincidence that Wolves scored within moments of Cunha being withdrawn.
RF: Antoine Semenyo – 5.97
The Bournemouth winger had a frustrating afternoon against Spurs and was for the most part pocketed by Destiny Udogie. Semenyo failed to provide a cross or key pass and he failed with all of his three attempted dribbles. The Ghanian lost 12 of 17 duels and almost one in three touches resulted in a turnover.
CF: Benie Traore – 5.76
Coming up against the Man City machine was never going to be easy for Sheffield United’s rookie strikeforce. Traore lost possession 14 times from 25 touches in 90 minutes while winning only one of 12 duels. The 20-year-old, signed from BK Hacken, attempted three dribbles and lost the ball each time.
LF: Will Osula – 5.63
It was a similar story for the other 20-year-old in the Blades’ attack. Osula gave the ball away 13 times from 21 touches, winning only one of nine duels. Paul Heckingbottom needs some experience in his forward line before Friday night.
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