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The 5 Most Surprising Stats From The Weekend's Premier League Action

The 5 Most Surprising Stats From The Weekend's Premier League Action
By Gavan Casey Updated

After a rather average weekend of Premier League action as a whole, the table is shaping up nicely with Tottenham picking up a much-needed three points to stay in the hunt, and Man City overcoming some jitters at Selhurst Park thanks to the evergreen Yaya Touré.

Arsenal narrowly avoided pulling an Arsenal, Man United remain iffy while slowly improving, and Shane Long has named his newborn son 'Jax'. None of these facts, however, make it into our most interesting stats from the weekend's action. Here are five to throw about the office during the week:

Jermain Defoe for England

Sunderland marksman and all-conquering master of the 'snapshot' Jermain Defoe has scored more Premier League goals than any other English player this calendar year.

Defoe has notched 18 times in 2016, more than both Jamie Vardy and Harry Kane. Not bad for a bloke who had seemingly semi-retired in Canada just two seasons ago. Not bad, either, for a bloke who's 34 years of age.

His goal against Hull was his 150th in the Premier League.

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Liverpool, Chelsea and economy of scale

Liverpool are currently in second place in the Premier League. Jürgen Klopp has used just 17 players in his various starting XIs this season - the second-fewest number of players used by a club in the top seven.

Only Chelsea, who currently sit atop the table, have used fewer (16).

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'Team chemistry' isn't just relevant to FIFA Ultimate Team; last season, Leicester City used fewer players than any other club en route to winning the Premier League. Lacking European football, both Chelsea and Liverpool might well be able to do similar.

For more on this stat, read this fascinating take by Sean Ingle in The Guardian.

Victor Anichebe is the ultimate Moyes boy

He's still just 28, but Sunderland's injury-blighted Victor Anichebe registered his first Premier League brace since 2006 during their victory over Hull.

A decade ago, a teenage Anichebe scored twice for David Moyes' Everton vs Newcastle. Forgotten about for large spells in between both braces, the Nigerian striker may become a crucial component in Sunderland's battle for survival should he stay fit this season.

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Thibaut Courtois lives

When Alvaro Negredo shot goalward 78 minutes into 'Boro's defeat to Chelsea, one might have forgiven Thibaut Courtois if he'd stuck a note on the net saying 'Gone for chips'.

The big Belgian's save to his left was his first in four hours and 48 minutes of football - Chelsea hadn't conceded a shot on target in the intervening period.

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That's 3.2 full games without an opponent threatening the Chelsea 'keeper. Antonio Conte's man have conceded no goals in their last six fixtures, compared to nine in their first six. It's looking ominous for the rest of the Premier League.

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Everton are the tortoise of the Premier League

Featured in our Premier League Bets Of The Weekend, it was 8/11 with Ladbrokes that Everton and Swansea would be level after half an hour at Goodison. In the end, they trailed.

Everton have scored just two goals during the first half hour of their 14 games in all competitions this season, fast becoming the Premier League's slow-starters, a fact perpetuated against even a Swansea outfit who shipped three early goals against a misfiring Manchester United.

They're a solid bet to be level or behind after 30 minutes at St. Mary's next weekend.

SEE ALSO: William Gallas Claims That Samir Nasri Planned To Have Him Tasered

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