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Team of the Week

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Thomas Sorensen

Ryan Nelsen  
Rio Ferdinand  Nuno Valente 
Kevin Nolan Edgar Davids
David Thompson
Marcus Bent
Liam Lawrence
  Chris Sutton     James Beattie
Steve Bruce

Here are our stand-out performances from this weekend's Premiership action.

Thomas Sorensen had a dream of a game in goal for Aston Villa, away at Tottenham Hotspur. The giant Dane made at least four excellent saves to keep the scores level and to help win his side a point.

Ryan Nelsen and Nuno Valente win places in the ESPN Soccernet Team of the Week for sound defensive showings for Blackburn Rovers and Everton respectively.

But the real defensive star of the weekend was Manchester United's Rio Ferdinand , who capped a composed, determined display against Liverpool with the winning goal.

Ferdinand's goal, a thumping header from a Ryan Giggs free-kick, was his third in eight matches for the club, and prompted this reaction from his manager: 'He is 6ft 4in, has a big head and great spring, so there is no reason why he shouldn't get more goals.'

Ferdinand? A big head?

Bolton captain Kevin Nolan is the first member of a bustling, all-action midfield after scoring one goal and creating another in his side's defeat of Manchester City at The Reebok Stadium.

A fellow Scouser, David Thompson , earns his spot after scoring on his debut in Wigan's defeat of Middlesbrough.

Thompson only joined the Latics on Thursday after signing a short-term deal until the end of the season following his release from Lancashire rivals Blackburn.

Meanwhile, Edgar Davids dominated in the Spurs midfield as they were held by Villa, breaking up possession and launching counter-attacks in an industrious display.

And Liam Lawrence is selected for being Sunderland's most dangerous and proficient player as the Black Cats recorded only their second win of the season with a 1-0 triumph against West Brom at The Hawthorns.

Up front, Chris Sutton is chosen for the second successive week after a superb display in Birmingham's stunning 5-0 thrashing of a dreadful Portsmouth side.

Charlton's Marcus Bent became the third debutant scorer of the weekend when he came off the bench to stun Champions and runaway leaders Chelsea with a well-taken equaliser in the draw at Stamford Bridge.

Bent moved to south London from Everton earlier this week, with the Addicks becoming his ninth league club after spells at Brentford, Crystal Palace, Port Vale, Sheffield United, (deep breath), Blackburn, Ipswich Town and Leicester City.

And Bent's former strike partner James Beattie completes the Team of the Week after capping a fine individual display by bursting past Sol Campbell to score Everton's winner against Arsenal at Goodison Park on Saturday lunch-time.

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