MADRID, SPAIN - FEBRUARY 26: Victor Valdes (R) of Barcelona gets to the ball ahead of Courtois of Atletico Madrid during the La Liga match between Atletico Madrid and Barcelona at Vicente Calderon Stadium on February 26, 2012 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)
Sorry this week's roundup is a little late, it was a pretty busy weekend with work and I'm just now getting back to some semblance of normality. It's taken me a bit to watch all of the archived games, but now that I've seen all that I can I'll get you up to date on what's been going on. So on to the good stuff...
Thibaut Courtois - Courtois had himself an excellent week. First up was Lazio in the Europa League, and Courtois was excellent as Atletico kept a clean sheet and advanced to the round of 16. They'll now face Turkish club Besiktas. He was then tasked with Barcelona over the weekend, and he was generally very composed as Atletico lost 2-1. Thibaut did an excellent job cutting out crosses and corners, limiting the Barca attack as much as was possible from his position. It was an excellent week all around for Courtois, and he was rewarded with another callup to the Belgian national squad.
Sam Walker - Walker had a decent game over the weekend against Carlisle before a mental error cost his club a point in stoppage time. Walker got caught out of position, allowing the Carlisle attacker to nick in an easy goal. These things happen I suppose.
Rhys Taylor - Taylor had an excellent game midweek, recording a fairly impressive clean sheet against Gillingham, but he injured his arm in that contest and missed the weekend loss. Luckily for Taylor, his backup was less than impressive in his stead.
Matej Delac - Delac seems to have settled in nicely in the Czech republic as the new backup for his club. Unfortunately that means opportunities will be few and far between to showcase his skills, but it's at least a good sign that he's been steadily climbing the depth chart.
Patrick van Aanholt - PvA had the weekend off as he was an unused substitute for Vitesse. Hopefully this was just a week off as opposed to the start of another spell on the bench for Patrick.
Tomas Kalas - Kalas again played the full 90 in the center of the defense, and unlike the last few weeks he was very good again. Nice to see a strong showing from Kalas even if Vitesse was unable to take any points.
Ben Gordon - Gordon got in 180 minutes in a pair of Killie losses this week. He's yet to have a bad game since he returned to Scotland, but he's yet to have a very good game either. All in all this loan spell has done very little to convince me that he's got any sort of future in the Premier League, but fullbacks don't traditionally have all that much impact on their own.
Jeffrey Bruma - Bruma was healthy enough to sit the bench as HSV earned an excellent draw with Gladbach. While he didn't make an appearance, he's expected to return to the starting 11 this coming weekend.
Milan Lalkovic - We mentioned it earlier, but Milan is currently hurt. He's set to return to training at the end of this week.
Kenneth Omeruo - Omeruo is still dealing with work permit issues. Oh well, hopefully this all gets cleared up soon.
Josh McEachran - Little Josh started the game on the bench, and he came on with just 20 minutes to play with Swansea already convincingly down. His passing looked good in his cameo, but it was hard to read much into his defensive work as Stoke was just sitting back and packing the box.
Kevin De Bruyne - De Bruyne called out his teammates a few weeks ago for several extremely lackluster performances, and since then he's been absolutely phenominal. After a man of the match type performance a week ago, De Bruyne was again probably the most influential player on the pitch as Genk defeated Club Brugge 3-0. De Bruyne had an assist in the victory and was generally a nightmare for the Brugge defense all afternoon. Well done Kevin, keep up the great work.
Gael Kakuta - Like De Bruyne, Kakuta was coming off of a fantastic week for our previous report. He again got the start, but this was a bit of a quieter game for Kakuta. He again played as a left attacking midfielder, but this week Ajaccio seemed to focus on taking away the left flank. The results were a far quieter game than normal for the Frenchman, although his passing numbers did look good due to having less opportunity to force the issue. Games like these will be a real test for Gael as he'll really have to learn to impact the game in spurts when defenses play like this.
Ulises Davila - While we're talking attackers, we may as well touch on the young Mexican. Davila was excellent for the Vitesse reserves midweek, scoring their first and assisting on a pair. He was again left off of the senior bench though as he was released to national team duty early.
Quite a few of to these guys are in action again midweek, so I'll try to get an international recap up prior to the weekend's game. Enjoy the break, this weekend should be another fun one.