Ilkay Gundogan and James Maddison enter the top 10 after standout displays but Declan Rice slips after West Ham defeat… but which Liverpool star was the highest climber? Our Premier League POWER RANKINGS after thrilling weekend
- Sportsmail brings you the top 10 hottest Premier League players each week
- Liverpool thrashed Southampton on Saturday afternoon as Diogo Jota starred
- Manchester City won too, as the pair closed the gap to league leaders Chelsea
- There was a six-goal thriller at the King Power, as Leicester City beat Watford
- But who tops our Power Rankings this week, and who has made the list?
Another weekend, another spate of standout performances in the Premier League.
Things at the top could not be tighter, as both Liverpool and Manchester City capitalised on Chelsea’s draw at home to Manchester United to close the gap at the top.
Jurgen Klopp’s men made light work of Southampton at Anfield, thrashing the Saints 4-0, while City produced a professional display to beat high-flying West Ham 2-1.
Jorginho’s error at Stamford Bridge helped Manchester United pick up a point on Sunday
THE TOP 10 LAST TIME
10. Jarrod Bowen
9. Conor Gallagher
8. Diogo Jota
7. Aaron Ramsdale
6. Wilfried Zaha
5. Emile Smith Rowe
4. Joao Cancelo
3. Reece James
2. Declan Rice
1. Mohamed Salah
Arsenal picked themselves up and dusted themselves off after last weekend’s heavy Liverpool loss to beat Newcastle 2-0 and move level on points with the Hammers, while Leicester City also produced a solid display to beat Watford 4-2.
Steven Gerrard’s fine start to life with Aston Villa continued as they won away at Crystal Palace to move within touching distance of the top half of the table.
Brentford returned to winning ways against Everton, but goals dried up elsewhere, as Wolves and Norwich and Leeds and Brighton both played out goalless stalemates.
Burnley and Tottenham saw their clash called off, as the weather claimed their 2pm kick-off on Sunday lunchtime.
Every week, Sportsmail will be bringing you a Power Rankings table, listing the top 10 players in the Premier League after each weekend’s action is completed.
As the season continues to unwind, the rankings will provide a form guide with players moving in and out of the top 10 depending on both their performances in the previous fixture and also in recent weeks.
So, with all of that taken into account, how have Sportsmail’s latest batch of Power Rankings taken shape?
10. Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace, down four)
Crystal Palace’s form dropped on Saturday, and so to with it does Wilfried Zaha’s spot in our rankings.
The winger had been in fine form for Patrick Vieira’s men in recent weeks, starring in their victories over Manchester City and Wolves, before proving himself a handful in the pulsating 3-3 draw at Burnley.
But the Eagles were brought crashing down to earth on Saturday afternoon, as Steven Gerrard’s Aston Villa came to Selhurst Park and left with all three points.
It was Palace’s first defeat in eight league outings, and Zaha was hooked off after 72 minutes with the score still 1-0 to Villa.
He also picked up his third booking of the season, and his second in as many games.
Both Zaha and Palace will be hoping to get back on track when they visit a struggling Leeds side on Tuesday evening.
Wilfried Zaha’s recent form deserted himself and Palace as they were beaten by Aston Villa
9. Declan Rice (West Ham, down seven)
Declan Rice had no reason to be ashamed of his performance against Manchester City at the weekend.
Billed by some as a possible audition to replace the aging Fernandinho, the England international barely put a foot wrong in the middle of the park for David Moyes’ side.
Despite his presence though, he could not get the Hammers going, as their fine run of form was ended by a 2-1 defeat at the Etihad Stadium.
His fall of seven places is steep, but with others in the division having a defining say on their fixtures this weekend, it was tough to keep his place.
He will be hoping to return to winning ways, along with West Ham, on Wednesday when they host Brighton.
Declan Rice barely put a foot wrong against Manchester City, but couldn’t help prevent defeat
8. Ilkay Gundogan (Manchester City, new entry)
That Rice couldn’t make the difference on Sunday was largely down to one man in light blue pulling the strings.
In the absence of Kevin De Bruyne, Ilkay Gundogan was the man to step up to the plate to dictate the game at the Etihad Stadium.
He provided the cross for Aymeric Laporte to rattle the crossbar with a header early on, before opening the scoring himself from close range.
He was then an intrinsic part of the move that led to the second, involved in the build-up play down the left flank before inadvertently touching the ball into the path of Fernandinho to slam home.
Pep Guardiola has entrusted the German with the captain’s armband for much of this season and his importance for the reigning champions is becoming clearer with every passing display.
Ilkay Gundogan has been leading by example this season with the captain’s armband at City
7. James Maddison (Leicester City, new entry)
While Gundogan was leading Manchester City to their success, another virtuoso display at the King Power Stadium helped Leicester City to victory.
James Maddison is making up for lost time under Brendan Rodgers, looking to rediscover the form that had at one stage seen him in contention for a spot in Gareth Southgate’s Euro 2020 squad last summer.
The 25-year-old appears to finally be finding himself again, and following a pivotal display in the Europa League against Legia Warsaw on Thursday, the former Norwich City star repeated the trick against Watford.
He capitalised on a dreadful defensive error to put the Foxes ahead early on, before providing the assists for both of Jamie Vardy’s strikes in the 4-2 win.
James Maddison scored and assisted twice as Leicester City beat Watford at the King Power
6. Aaron Ramsdale (Arsenal, up one)
There is no denying the impact Aaron Ramsdale has had since being installed as Arsenal’s No 1 this season.
The Gunners had looked far more assured at the back with the England international in net, that was until last weekend’s Anfield capitulation.
That was quickly put behind Ramsdale and Arsenal as they returned to winning ways in some ease on Saturday lunchtime, swatting aside Newcastle in a 2-0 victory.
While Mikel Arteta’s side looked in control, their goalkeeper still needed to be on his toes to produce an impressive stop to deny Jonjo Shelvey with the score still level.
His presence has helped Arsenal move up into fifth – level on points now with West Ham in that final Champions League spot.
A huge tests awaits them on Thursday however, when they visit Manchester United for Ralf Rangnick’s first match as interim head coach.
Aaron Ramsdale claimed yet another cleansheet as Arsenal returned to winning ways
5. Emile Smith Rowe (Arsenal, non mover)
While he may not have played any direct part in the goals that won the game for Arsenal on Saturday, Emile Smith Rowe was still a key performer.
The 21-year-old was part of a midfield that ran the show, holding an iron-like grip on possession throughout.
Arsenal came away with a whopping 66 per cent possession, and Smith Rowe was key in that, with 71 touches and created one big chance for the Gunners as they bossed proceedings.
Things will be a little trickier on Thursday, but the 21-year-old will be relishing his first appearance at Old Trafford given his current vein of form.
Emile Smith Rowe ran the show in the midfield for Arsenal as they swept aside Newcastle
4. Reece James (Chelsea, down one)
By his own exceptionally high standards, Reece James’s afternoon on Sunday was a disappointing one at Stamford Bridge.
The full-back showed his versatility by switching between flanks as Chelsea looked to get at Manchester United.
Outside of Chelsea’s back three, no player on the pitch had more touches than the 21-year-old, but he was unable to create to the same level he has in recent matches.
Next up is a trip to Watford, and a chance to get on the frontfoot once more against a side that has been regularly involved in high-scoring encounters this term.
Reece James couldn’t match his own usual high standards as Chelsea were held by Man United
3. Joao Cancelo (Manchester City, up one)
Another assured display from Joao Cancelo sees him move up the Sportsmail rankings after his role in Manchester City’s victory over West Ham.
Cancelo’s beautiful raking ball found Riyad Mahrez unmarked on the right-hand side of the West Ham penalty area, before the Algerian centred for Gundogan to give Pep Guardiola’s men the lead.
He continued to threaten throughout, and was involved in the initial move down the left that eventually led to the all-important second goal.
The lack of an assist ended a run of two straight Premier League games with a hand in a goal, though his pass for the opening goal on Sunday was as good as.
He continues to lead the charge of attacking full-backs in the top flight, alongside James, and will be looking to have an impact when City take on Aston Villa on Wednesday.
Joao Cancelo once again provided the inspiration as Manchester city saw off West Ham
2. Diogo Jota (Liverpool, up six)
The fact that Diogo Jota was rested for Liverpool’s dead rubber in the Champions League against Porto tells you all you need to know about his rise to prominence in Jurgen Klopp’s side.
The extra recovery time appeared to do the Portugal star wonders as he looked as sharp as ever against Southampton on Saturday.
The forward got the ball rolling early doors when he slid home Andy Robertson’s cross to open the scoring, before slotting home from two yards out from Mohamed Salah’s cross.
The 24-year-old is in a rich vein of form, and now has seven Premier League strikes in just 12 appearances this season. Only Jamie Vardy and team-mate Mohamed Salah have more.
Jota will be hoping to fill his boots once more on Wednesday when Liverpool come against Everton in the Merseyside derby.
Rafa Benitez’s men are struggling for form and rapidly falling down the table and the clash with their rivals could not come at a worse time for the Toffees… or a better time for Jurgen Klopp’s men.
Diogo Jota was once again in the thick of things as Southampton were thrashed at Anfield
1. Mohamed Salah (Liverpool, non mover)
He may not have found the net at Anfield on Saturday, but Mohamed Salah’s influence on his side is still unmatched.
His wonderful exchange of passes with Jordan Henderson provided the space to deliver Jota’s second goal on a plate on Saturday afternoon as he showed his game is not purely about goals.
He was also involved in the third – his long diagonal wasn’t properly dealt with by the Saints backline as Thiago Alcantara seized on the loose ball to dribble into the box and fire in the third.
The assist was his seventh in the league this season, bringing his total goal involvements to 18 in just 13 outings.
To put that into context, the next best combined involvements is 10, held by both Jamie Vardy and Watford’s Emmanuel Dennis.
He will be desperate to be among the goals on Wednesday as he looks to improve his personal record against Liverpool’s rivals Everton.
Salah has only experienced victory once against the Toffees – a 1-0 victory in December 2018.
While not on the scoresheet, there was no denying Mohamed Salah’s influence on Saturday
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