Bundesliga Team of the Week: Matchday 14
Arturo Vidal and Kingsley Coman earned their place in the Official Fantasy Team of the Week after helping Bayern Munich return to winning ways against Hannover, but who else made it into Matchday 14’s all-star XI?
Koen Casteels (Wolfsburg, 16 points)
Wolfsburg’s 3-0 win over Borussia Mönchengladbach may ostensibly have looked like a quiet day at the office for goalkeeper Casteels, but it was far from it. The Belgian was called upon to make a number of impressive saves at the Volkswagen Arena and was more than deserving of his clean sheet bonus.
Kevin Akpoguma (Hoffenheim, 13 points)
Any number of Hoffenheim players would have scored you points this week as they dispatched Leipzig 4-0. Akpoguma did so by virtue of a clean sheet, an assist and a generally excellent display. The 22-year-old has cemented his place in the Sinsheimers’ starting line-up in recent weeks, playing the full 90 minutes in five of their last six league matches. In Akpoguma, Julian Nagelsmann might just have found a long-term replacement for Niklas Süle.
Mergim Mavraj (Hamburg, 13 points)
Friday’s game between Hamburg and Freiburg looked like it could be a game of few chances, and so the smart ones in the class would have done well to pick defenders from these two sides this week. Mavraj was the pick of the two teams’ rearguards at the Schwarzwaldstadion, winning nine points from challenges won and picking up a clean sheet.
Jetro Willems (Eintracht Frankfurt, 15 points)
Frankfurt’s Dutch ace Willems was an inspired pick this weekend. He assisted Marius Wolf for the Eagles’ equaliser in their win at Hertha Berlin, while he also scored nine points from challenges won. Without that second-half yellow card, he’d have scored even higher.
Fin Bartels (Werder Bremen, 15 points)
This guy… he’s 30 years of age and spent most of his career in the second tier, but what an effective player Bartels is! Always good for a goal or an assist, he laid on the winner in Bremen’s crucial 1-0 win against Stuttgart – his third assist in as many league appearances for the Green-Whites.
Arturo Vidal (Bayern Munich, 14 points)
Vidal is a reliable points-scorer because he’s such a good competitor, but the Chilean international also found the net in Bayern’s 3-1 victory over Hannover at the Allianz Arena. The 30-year-old has now scored in three consecutive league appearances – the first time he has done so in his career. The competition for places in Bayern’s midfield is fiercer than ever this season, but it’s clear to see why Vidal remains one of the first names on Jupp Heynckes’ team sheet.
Watch: Vidal gives his thoughts on beating Hannover
Yunus Malli (Wolfsburg, 16 points)
When Malli is on song, there are few better players in the Bundesliga to watch. He scored Wolfsburg’s first against Gladbach after an outrageous nutmeg on Matthias Ginter, and then pitch-wedged a delightful pass into the box for team-mate Daniel Didavi to net a second. With Malli back to his best, the only way is up for Martin Schmidt’s Wolves.
Amine Harit (Schalke, 15 points)
After no goals in his first 11 league appearances, Harit now has two in his last two games. A bag of tricks in Schalke’s attack, he probably deserved to finish on the winning side in the 2-2 draw with Cologne. Harit has represented France at every level from the Under-18s to the Under-21s. On this evidence, a maiden call-cup to the full national team might not be far away…
Sehrou Guirassy (Cologne, 16 points)
Cologne may have taken just three points all season, but their display in the 2-2 draw at Schalke showed there is plenty of fight left in the Billy Goats this term. That defiant spirit was typified by Guirassy, who deserved his two goals in Gelsenkirchen. The French striker will hope to help Stefan Ruthenbeck, who replaced Peter Stöger as head coach on Sunday, make a winning start to his RheinEnergieSTADION tenure against fellow strugglers Freiburg next weekend.
Alfred Finnbogason (Augsburg, 14 points)
Augsburg’s iceman just gets it done, doesn’t he? No messing about, no frills – just holding the ball up, winning free-kicks, putting himself about and nicking the odd goal. The Finn now has eight goals in 13 matches this term after his brace at Mainz. Fantastic stuff.
Watch: Hear what Finnbogason made of Augsburg’s victory over Mainz
Kingsley Coman (Bayern Munich, 17 points)
The first touch that preceded Coman’s goal against Hannover could be enough for 17 points alone! As it was, the Frenchman raked in the points this week by other means. “If he puts his foot on the gas – and he has incredible horsepower – every opponent has a tough time against him,” said Thomas Müller following Saturday’s win. “He worked the left flank well. He’s always been fleet-footed. If he can now add chances that lead to goals then he’s pure gold to us.”