European Team of the Week: Giroud Grabs Glory, Henderson Makes His Midfield Mark

WhoScored@@WhoScoredFeatured ColumnistFebruary 25, 2014

LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 22:  Olivier Giroud of Arsenal celebrates after scoring a goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Arsenal and Sunderland at Emirates Stadium on February 22, 2014 in London, England.  (Photo by Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)
Jamie McDonald/Getty Images

Olivier Giroud is’s player of the week following a blistering return to action in Arsenal’s 4-1 drubbing of Sunderland.

The Frenchman was dropped for the cup-ties with Liverpool and Bayern Munich, but was on hand to bag a brace and provide the assist for Tomas Rosicky’s goal as he obtained a rating of 9.6.

Hull City striker Nikica Jelavic partners Giroud up front after the Croat’s double-goal salvo in an impressive 4-0 win at Cardiff City.

The 28-year-old has now scored three in his last three Premier League appearances to lift the Tigers away from the relegation zone.

CARDIFF, WALES - FEBRUARY 22:  Nikica Jelavic (R) of Hull City shoots as Juan Cala (L) of Cardiff City looks on during the Barclays Premier League match between Cardiff City and Hull City at the Cardiff City Stadium on February 22, 2014 in Cardiff, Wales.
Michael Steele/Getty Images

However, Hull team-mate Liam Rosenior bettered Jelavic’s rating, with the full-back providing an assist in the victory.

Rosenior made a match-high eight tackles in the fixture to deny the Cardiff attack, with the Welsh side often testing the 29-year-old with 39 percent of their offensive moves coming down their right wing.

Hamburg ended a run of seven successive losses against Borussia Dortmund on Saturday, with Slobodan Rajkovic in particular impressing in Mirko Slomka’s first game in charge.

The 25-year-old, making his first Bundesliga start of the season, was able to guarantee his side a clean sheet with 13 clearances, more than any other player in the win.

Bayern Munich duo Javi Martinez and Rafinha complete the back line as Pep Guardiola's team moved 19 points clear of the chasing pack.

The league leaders have now gone 421 minutes without conceding in Germany’s top tier, with Martinez exhibiting his fantastic reading of the game with 14 clearances, while Rafinha grabbed two assists in the 4-0 win over Hannover.

Frank Augstein/Associated Press

Raphael Schafer became the first goalkeeper in Europe’s top five leagues to save two penalties in a single match this season as Nurnberg beat Braunschweig 2-1.

The 35-year-old made a total of five saves in the encounter as the hosts held on, despite going down to 10 men on the half-hour mark.

Osasuna secured an unexpected 3-0 win over title-chasing Atletico Madrid on Sunday, with Emiliano Armenteros crucial in the victory.

The Argentine provided the assist for Alvaro Cejudo’s opener, before turning goal scorer midway through the first half. He was regularly on hand to press the Atletico back line, with 52 percent of their attacks coming down his side of the pitch.

La Liga counterpart Asier Illarramendi joins Armenteros in the midfield after the young Spaniard scored 10 minutes before half-time for Real Madrid in their win over Elche.

The victory, coupled with defeats for Barcelona and Atletico, saw Los Blancos end the weekend top of the table, with Illarramendi key to this having made four tackles, three interceptions and finding a teammate with 89 percent of his passes.

Liverpool pairing Daniel Sturridge and Jordan Henderson complete the XI after both netted twice in the pulsating 4-3 win over Swansea.

Sturridge opened the scoring for his side after just three minutes, meaning the striker has now scored in 16 of his 19 Premier League appearances this season.

Henderson put in his best league performance of the season judging from’s unique rating system, with the midfielder on hand to make four tackles and three interceptions to regularly stifle the influence of the Swansea attack.


All statistics courtesy of, where you can find yet more stats, including live in-game data and unique player and team ratings.