With the majority of Europe’s top leagues on a winter break at the moment, only players in England featured over Boxing Day.
Here’s a brief round-up:
Calum Chambers played the full 90 minutes during Middlesbrough’s disappointing 1-0 defeat at the hands of Burnley. Andre Gray’s winner nine minutes from time means Aitor Karanka’s side are sitting uncomfortably in 15th place, just a few points away from the relegation zone.
Despite this though, the 21-year-old defender was excellent and didn’t deserve to be on the losing side upon reflection. He won five aerial duels for possession, made six interceptions and seven clearances throughout; a deserving recipient for the Man of the Match award.
Meanwhile, Jack Wilshere was Bournemouth’s best player despite a 3-0 away defeat at the hands of Premier League leaders Chelsea. The creative midfielder was given more freedom to roam forward than usual at Stamford Bridge and despite an early booking, tried his utmost to help the Cherries come away with an unlikely result.
Completing five dribbles, maintaining a pass accuracy percentage of 85.5% as well as being fouled on four separate occasions, it’s clear to see that Jack was a constant nuisance in possession and was unfortunate to come away with nothing as a reward for his efforts.
ELSEWHERE: Eastleigh entertain Boreham Wood in a 7.45pm (GMT) kick-off this evening, and young goalkeeper Ryan Huddart will be hoping to make another starting appearance with his side struggling for consistent form in mid-table.
When does everyone else return to action?
- Julio Pleguezuelo (Mallorca) vs Mirandes, January 6
- Jon Toral (Granada) vs Real Madrid, January 7
- Wojciech Szczesny (Roma) vs Genoa, January 8
- Joel Campbell (Sporting) vs Feirense, January 8
- Kelechi Nwakali and Stefan O’Connor (MVV Maastricht) vs Helmond Sport, January 13
- Daniel Crowley (Go Ahead Eagles) vs AZ Alkmaar, January 13
- Tafari Moore (Utrecht’s second team) vs NAC Breda, January 16
- Takuma Asano (VfB Stuttgart) vs St. Pauli, January 29