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3 defenders that are worth taking note of in the EPL

26 March 2020 | Premier League | Opinion
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3 defenders that are worth taking note of in the EPL

Next up in our season review to date for the Premier League is a look at three defenders who have helped shore up things at the back for their respective clubs.

These are the unsung heroes that often undertake the less glamorous tasks of keeping the opposition out, but nevertheless, their role is a crucial one for each and every side in the top flight.

The following three players have been chosen from clubs that are not considered to be from the ‘big 6’ but their efforts have nonetheless made a mark at their respective sides.

First on the list is James Tarkowski (Burnley) who has played every match so far this season for The Clarets and has been instrumental behind Burnley's recent resurgence in form under manager, Sean Dyche, as the Lancashire club are unbeaten in their last 6 matches in the Premier League.

More importantly, Burnley have conceded just 2 goals in this period and Tarkowski has been the glue holding it all together at the back, dominating in the air with no fewer than 5 aerial duels won on average per match, 1.3 shots blocked and 5.1 clearances under his belt.

Next up is Dan Burns (Brighton) and he has taken a somewhat circuitous route to the glitz and glamour of the Premier League, starting from humble beginnings at Darlington, Yeovil Town, Birmingham City, Fulham and Wigan Athletic before being snapped up by The Seagulls at the start of last season.

Burns is something of an anomaly as the 6ft 5in defender has often been employed at left-back for the south coast club but his ability prevent crosses from out wide along with his aerial presence (winning 4.1 headers out of an average of 5.4 per game) has helped Brighton keep themselves at arms length from the relegation battle below them.

A defender’s life is much tougher when playing for a team down near the bottom of a division, and our third defender under the microscope, Steve Cook (Bournemouth) is no exception as The Cherries currently find themselves embroiled in a relegation battle near the foot of the Premier League.

Along with possessing a successful pass percentage of 80.2%, Cook has made 1.5 interceptions on average per game, 0.7 tackles and has made a total on average of 6.3 clearances per match too.

Predictions for Premier League

Home team - Away team Forebet
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WatfordLeicester City
14/03/2020 13:30
2
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BournemouthCrystal Palace
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2
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BrightonArsenal
14/03/2020 16:00
X
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Manchester CityBurnley
14/03/2020 16:00
1

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OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Liverpool 82 29 27 1 1 66 21 45
2. Manchester City 57 28 18 3 7 68 31 37
3. Leicester City 53 29 16 5 8 58 28 30
4. Chelsea 48 29 14 6 9 51 39 12
5. Manchester United 45 29 12 9 8 44 30 14
6. Wolverhampton 43 29 10 13 6 41 34 7
7. Sheffield United 43 28 11 10 7 30 25 5
8. Tottenham 41 29 11 8 10 47 40 7
9. Arsenal 40 28 9 13 6 40 36 4
10. Burnley 39 29 11 6 12 34 40 -6
11. Crystal Palace 39 29 10 9 10 26 32 -6
12. Everton 37 29 10 7 12 37 46 -9
13. Newcastle United 35 29 9 8 12 25 41 -16
14. Southampton 34 29 10 4 15 35 52 -17
15. Brighton 29 29 6 11 12 32 40 -8
16. West Ham 27 29 7 6 16 35 50 -15
17. Watford 27 29 6 9 14 27 44 -17
18. Bournemouth 27 29 7 6 16 29 47 -18
19. Aston Villa 25 28 7 4 17 34 56 -22
20. Norwich City 21 29 5 6 18 25 52 -27

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