The festive fixtures have come and gone and we are past the half-way point of the season. But who have been the standout performers in the Premier League so far?
GiveMeSport Academy member Charles Prisk picks an old-school 4-4-2 formation and - taking into account injuries and suspensions - names his best XI of the 2014/15 campaign.
GK: David De Gea
The Spaniard has been Manchester United’s best player this season and without him the club would almost certainly not be in the top four at this present time.
Without him United almost certainly would have lost away to Arsenal, at home to Everton and dropped points at home to Stoke. That makes the Spaniard worth at least 7 points to the club. Without him they would be languishing in 8th.
RB: Nathaniel Clyne
Despite all the summer turmoil at Southampton, under Ronald Koeman, they have performed arguably better than they did last season. Clyne has this season made his England debut and been an impressive attacking force at right back, scoring 3 times this season for the Saints.
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CB: Winston Reid
The New Zealand captain has been the star man at the back for West Ham United this season. He is one of the reasons they are only four points off the Champions League places and has been reportedly linked with moves to Arsenal and Manchester United this January.
CB: Jose Fonte
The Portuguese footballer has been part of a Southampton back line, who along with Clyne have conceded the least amount of goals in the league.
It is the major reason that pressure is so high on Arsene Wenger at the moment as Southampton occupy fourth spot in the league and show no signs of fading in a similar manner to last season.
LB: Aaron Cresswell
Fonte, Reid and Clyne are joined at the back by West Ham’s Cresswell who has perhaps left many Premier League clubs reviewing their scouting teams.
Signed from Championship side Ipswich Town in the summer by West Ham, the young Englishman who hails from Liverpool has been a revelation this season for the Hammers.
RM: Alexis Sanchez
Sanchez has been undoubtedly Arsenal’s star player this season and signed after an impressive World Cup.
The Chilean has taken the Premier League by storm and has scored ten league goals for the Gunners. While others have not hit last season’s heights, such as Ramsey and Mertesacker, Sanchez has kept Wenger’s side in contention for the top four places.
CM: Cesc Fabregas
No surprises to see Fabregas on the list who leads the assists charts in the Premier League this season with 14.
Signed from Barcelona in the summer the Spaniard has excelled at Chelsea and is one of the major reasons why they are top at the half way point.
CM: Gylfi Sigurdsson
The Icelandic footballer has been a persistent goal threat for Garry Monk’s Swansea City. He has scored 4 and assisted 8 times from deep this season and perhaps leaves Tottenham fans scratching their heads over why he was allowed to leave.
LM: Eden Hazard
Perhaps the player of the year so far this season. The Belgian has found another level this season and has perhaps reached the ‘best of the rest’ level, slightly below Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.
However, in terms of his current performance levels he is right up there with Gareth Bale, Neymar and Luis Suarez.
ST: Charlie Austin
The former bricklayer is the major reason Queens Park Rangers aren’t in the bottom three at the moment. He has scored 12 league goals this season, including a stunning hat-trick to claim all three points for the West London club against West Brom in December.
His recent form has been fantastic and surely if he carries on at this level an England call up is not too far away.
ST: Diego Costa
The striker who has played for both Brazil and Spain has been brilliant in his debut season at Stamford Bridge. Whilst he under-performed in the World Cup, the striker has been ruthless so far.
Costa, who has been as prolific this season as he was under Diego Simeone at Atletico Madrid in the 2013/14 campaign must maintain this form if Chelsea are to finish ahead of Man City in the league this season.
Thibaut Courtois, Michael Carrick, Nacer Chadli, Wayne Routledge, Stewart Downing, Christian Eriksen, Diafra Sakho, Harry Kane, Graziano Pelle, Sergio Aguero, Wayne Rooney.