Dimitar Berbatov has picked Luke Shaw as England’s best left-back after a string of impressive displays by the defence ace.
And the Manchester United star’s transformation under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer proves he’s finally grown as a player.
Berbatov told Betfair: “I thought Luke was man of the match (against City). He was great in that game. He was going into tackles, working hard, passing well and playing in a no-nonsense manner. His transformation under Ole shows that he has grown into the position.
“I saw a meme saying that since United signed Alex Telles, Shaw has turned into the best defender in Europe. If we put the joke aside, this is what competition can do for you sometimes. You feel comfortable, then the team buy someone in your position and you realise that you need to prove how good you are.
“This then brings the best out of you. Competition is certainly one of the factors that has helped him develop and improve. It also comes down to personal motivation, you don’t know about his private life and whether he feels comfortable. He was great on Sunday, as was the whole team.
“There are lots of good players in both the left and right-back positions for England. Gareth Southgate has decisions to make and he is now the best left-back in my opinion. He now just needs to back it up. He just needs to stick to his trends, keep it simple and he’ll be an even better player.”
Chelsea’s players must ‘look at themselves’ after shining for Thomas Tuchel but not Frank Lampard, says former Blues defender Glen Johnson.
Tuchel is unbeaten in 11 games since succeeding axed Lampard on January 26, taking Chelsea from ninth to fourth.
But Lampard’s ex-club and country team-mate Johnson, 36, questioned why such a star-studded squad spluttered so badly towards the end of his 18-month reign.
Johnson told CheltenhamGuides.com: “When Tuchel first came in, Chelsea were beating teams that they should have been beating. But now they’ve shown they can beat Tottenham, Everton and got a good result against Manchester United.
“I think that Lampard could have done a similar job, it’s just a shame and a problem for the players. How can they perform like this for the new manager but they couldn’t for Lampard?
“So the players have to look at themselves. But that said, right now the appointment looks good because they’re absolutely flying.”
Fulham are confident of convincing all their loan stars to stay — if they beat the drop.
The Cottagers, who are in the relegation zone on goal difference, have SEVEN borrowed players playing regularly for boss Scott Parker.
According to The Sun, there is a growing belief all of them can re-sign next season IF they stay in the Premier League. They have options to buy four loanees at the end of the season.
These include Paris Saint-Germain goalkeeper Alphonse Areola, Torino defender Ola Aina, Bordeaux striker Josh Maja and Southampton midfielder Mario Lemina.
All four have contributed significantly this term with Areola and Aina helping Fulham to a 1-0 win at Liverpool, where Lemina got the winner. And striker Maja, who scored both goals in last month’s win at Everton, could stay regardless of whether Fulham retain their top-flight status.
The other three loan players who do not have options in their deals are Lyon defender Joachim Andersen, RB Leipzig winger Ademola Lookman and Chelsea midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek.