We’re keeping a close eye on the data of the Premier League season 2018–19, and in this post, we put together a dream team of Most Valuable Players (MVPs) based on the last four rounds of matches. We see some really surprising inclusions in there as some of the less-prominent clubs exceed expectations and hit a rich vein of form.
Last month, we looked at the opening four rounds of Premier League action, and what a difference a month makes! Chelsea’s Jorginho is still by far the most prolific passer in the division with 436 passes with a 90% pass conversion rate, but he fails to make our dream team for rounds five to eight—as does Manchester United’s Paul Pogba, who has had a busy month, though none of his 16 shots have resulted in a goal.
It’s all-change this month, as Wolves, Bournemouth, and 2015–16 champions Leicester City hit their stride. Reverting to a 4-3-3, here is our data-led dream team from rounds five to eight:
- Rui Patricio (Wolverhampton Wanderers): The Portuguese international goalkeeper has kept three clean sheets in his last four games making 18 saves. He was only breached once in that time, during the Wolves’ dogged 1-1 draw with Manchester United at Old Trafford.
- Aymeric Laporte (Manchester City): The sole survivor from the first month’s MVP XI, reigning champions City did not concede a single goal in the last four rounds of Premier League matches. Laporte is the top pass-maker at the back with 372 passes at 91% accuracy.
- Matt Doherty (Wolverhampton Wanderers): The versatile Irish wing-back has been a revelation this season, setting up two goals and scoring one himself, while helping Rui Patricio keep those three clean sheets.
- Granat Xhaka (Arsenal): Arsenal’s midfield dynamo was ever-present in the Gunners’ recent winning streak, scoring once and contributing 367 passes.
- Nicolás Otamendi (Manchester City): Argentine centre-half Otamendi was a key part of City’s month-long shut-out in the Premier League and contributed 342 passes at 94% accuracy.
- Harry Maguire (Leicester City): City had a mixed month, but Maguire was an ever-present threat with eight attempts at goal, with one scored. He also made 273 passes.
- James Maddison (Leicester City): Maddison scored two goals and set up another for the Foxes, and his early season form has been rewarded with a call-up to the England senior squad to face Croatia and Spain this month.
- Eden Hazard (Chelsea): No doubt about the player of the month as the Belgian playmaker scored an impressive five goals and set up two more for the Blues, helping the West London club to second in the table. Stats put Hazard at the top of the performance charts for the whole season so far.
- Alexandre Lacazette (Arsenal): The French striker doesn’t just score goals (three in his last four games). He also sets them up, with two assists as Arsenal extended their winning run to five games to rise to fourth place.
- Gylfi Sigurdsson (Everton): The Icelander notched four goals as Everton recovered from a stuttering start with back-to-back wins.
- Ryan Fraser (AFC Bournemouth): The Scotland international left-winger has been pivotal in Bournemouth’s surprise early season form. In the last four rounds he has scored twice and set up two more goals for the Cherries, as they fought to sixth place in the table.
We’ll be back next month with an assessment of the next four rounds of games. Stay tuned!