Midfielders are the heart of any side and they play a key role in victories and gritty draws, which become more important over the second half of the season.
There were some notable midfield performances over the weekend from Charlie Adam as Stoke City defeated Manchester United and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain as Arsenal kept the pressure up on their rivals at the top of the league.
Here are the best midfield performers across five areas.
Attempts on Target
|Player||Club||Pos||Ontarget Scoring Att||Apps||Mins|
|Kevin Nolan||West Ham||MF||2||1||87|
Adam was a constant threat for Stoke against Manchester United. His passing ability equipped with his accuracy in terms of shooting meant he was always a danger for United and someone they struggled to keep quiet.
|Player||Club||Pos||Accurate Corners Intobox||Apps||Mins|
|Stewart Downing||West Ham||MF||3||1||90|
|Hatem Ben Arfa||Newcastle||MF||2||1||90|
|Chris Brunt||West Brom||MF||2||1||90|
Southampton aren’t a contemporary dead ball side. However, Davis’ ability to deliver accurate corners in the game against Fulham meant there was no let up in pressure, which helped fatigue the Fulham defence.
|Chris Brunt||West Brom||MF||4||1||90|
|Stewart Downing||West Ham||MF||4||1||90|
Brunt deserves a mention for his performance against Liverpool. It would have been tempting for him to move inside with Liverpool overcrowding central midfield, but he resisted and allowed the Baggies to maintain their natural width.
|Youssuf Mulumbu||West Brom||MF||9||1||90|
Mulumbu made it very difficult for Liverpool to gain any momentum through the middle of the pitch. He cut the ball off before it reached a dangerous player and broke up the play well.
All about Arsenal. The Gunners made it difficult for Crystal Palace to get on the ball, retaining and using possession well which eventually created two goals for the Ox.
image: © wonker