Bruno Fernandes still leads the way for Manchester United, Mohamed Salah shows Liverpool commitment but Harry Kane reflects Tottenham’s slide down the table… after another round of Premier League action, who tops our POWER RANKINGS?
- Liverpool stars benefit in the rankings after their 7-0 demolition of Crystal Palace
- Manchester United’s 6-2 thrashing of Leeds also saw many impressive displays
- Key men for Everton and Manchester City shine in their sides’ narrow victories
- But Tottenham Hotspur’s loss to Leicester City has reflected badly on their stars
- Chelsea and Aston Villa have new entries after excellent weekend performances
Each week throughout the 2020-21 season, Sportsmail brings you a Power Rankings table, listing the top-10 hottest players in the Premier League.
As the stories of the season unravel, 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 fixtures and also in recent weeks.
The weekend’s action saw Liverpool flex their muscles having found the top of the table mid-week after ripping apart Crystal Palace with a 7-0 win.
Table toppers Liverpool sent a daunting message to the rest of the Premier League after hammering Crystal Palace 7-0 at Selhurst Park on Saturday
Their chief challengers have emerged in Leicester City at four points behind having won 2-0 at a Tottenham Hotspur side who have started to slide down the table following a poor run of results.
But the Foxes have a trailing pack hot on their tail, including Manchester United, Chelsea, Everton, Manchester City and even Aston Villa who all triumphed over the last few days.
With all of that in mind, how do Sportsmail’s latest batch of Power Rankings look?
10. Jack Harrison
9. Kevin De Bruyne
8. Theo Walcott
7. Marcus Rashford
6. Jamie Vardy
5. Son Heung-min
4. Mohamed Salah
3. Dominic Calvert-Lewin
2. Harry Kane
1. Bruno Fernandes
Click here to read the mid-week power rankings
10. Tammy Abraham (new entry)
Second season syndrome may not be a scientifically proven phenomenon in sport but Tammy Abraham certainly had much more pressure heading into this campaign than the previous term.
Last season he bagged a tidy 18 goals for Chelsea and earned himself a spot in the England side, but that didn’t deter Frank Lampard from spending £53million on Timo Werner.
But while the German is now on a goal drought of nine games in all competitions, Abraham is starting to outshine the summer arrival having seen off a challenge from Olivier Giroud as second choice forward.
HIs double against West Ham United on Monday means he now has seven goal contributions from as many Premier League starts this term.
Only against Tottenham Hotspur has he failed to provide a goal or an assist when starting.
When given the chance he is delivering.
Tammy Abraham grabbed two goals for Chelsea in their comfortable 3-0 win over West Ham
The striker has proven a considerable asset to the Blues when starting games this season
9. Jack Grealish (new entry)
Aston Villa’s talisman continues to keep Dean Smith’s side ticking over in the Premier League with another Man of the Match performance in the West Midlands derby victory at West Bromwich Albion.
The England midfielder may not be among the goals as much as he was at the start of the season but he is integral to everything Villa do in an attacking sense and was crucial to their 3-0 win at The Hawthorns.
It was his pass to Bertrand Traore for the killer second goal in a 3-0 win with six minutes to play, and he was then fouled for the penalty four minutes later to allow Anwar El Ghazi to put a deserved gloss on the scoreline.
Villa are ninth in the Premier League table but with two games in hand on many of their rivals could climb to as high as second if they took full advantage of them.
A title fight might be beyond them but with Grealish in their side, a team that was battling relegation last season could very easily become involved in a battle for the top four.
Jack Grealish (left) put in another Man of the Match display for Aston Villa at rivals West Brom
8. Marcus Rashford (down one)
No goals this weekend for Rashford but a BBC Sports Personality Prize and an important role in a resounding 6-2 win over Leeds United will ‘just’ have to do for the Manchester United forward.
Admittedly, Leeds’ cavalier attacking approach, although entertaining, leaves players like Rashford licking their lips at the prospect of probing the types of defensive gaps this leaves.
He had the Leeds defence in knots throughout the game, whether they stood off him or tried to press him. HIs close ball control and skill helped him run rings around them in an attacking masterclass.
It is strange how even in a game where United scored six goals he wasn’t involved directly in any of them – yet it was his sharp feet inside the box that beat three Leeds defenders to eventually earn the hosts a penalty for their sixth goal.
Marcus Rashford (right) skips past Leeds defender Stuart Dallas during a terrific attacking display for Manchester United as they ran out 6-2 winners at Old Trafford
7. Kevin De Bruyne (up two)
Pep Guardiola admitted recently that his team cannot afford to lose Kevin De Bruyne by stating that he intended to start the playmaker throughout the packed festive schedule of Premier League fixtures.
This does not come as too much of a surprise given how toothless City can look when the Belgian is not part of their starting XI.
City have looked a shadow of the swashbuckling displays from previous seasons this term but even as Guardiola goes for a more pragmatic approach, De Bruyne is still crucial.
It was his cut-back in the 16th minute that allowed Raheem Sterling to grab the winning goal in a tricky test at high flying Southampton and it might prove the impetus to get City back on track in a title race that in recent weeks had been slipping away from them.
Kevin De Bruyne was once again pivotal for Manchester City in their win at Southampton
6. Roberto Firmino (new entry)
This time last week, Firmino had only scored two goals across all competitions in the entire season and his form was patchy enough to leave questions over whether Diogo Jota should be starting ahead of him at Liverpool.
Jota’s injury soon made that question redundant but Firmino’s season may just be up and running now, having scored three goals in his last two games.
Following the crucial last-minute winner against Tottenham midweek, he was arguably chief destroyer at Crystal Palace by bagging a brace as Jurgen Klopp’s side ran out 7-0 winners.
Time will tell if it is just a small return to his best in what has been a difficult season so far. But with Liverpool now four points clear at the top, the prospect of Sadio Mane, Salah and Firmino all back on form is a frightening prospect for the rest of the top flight.
Roberto Firmino looks to have rediscovered his best form after scoring a brace for Liverpool
5. Harry Kane (down three)
An awful week for Tottenham Hotspur as they followed up a mid-week loss at Liverpool with one of their worst performances of the season in a 2-0 home defeat by Leicester City.
The once flourishing goals partnership between Harry Kane and Son Heung-min is drying up and it’s not just because they are struggling to get into the game.
Kane has fluffed his lines in front of goal in the last couple of matches and Spurs’ early season fixture congestion, which has seen them play twice every week (and three times on one occasion), could be starting to catch up with them.
With a League Cup quarter-final at Stoke on Wednesday, that run of matches is not going to end anytime soon and if fatigue is a problem for Kane and his team-mates then it could quickly develop into a long winter for Tottenham supporters.
Harry Kane has started to slide down the rankings, with his Tottenham Hotspur side hitting a poor run of form following their latest defeat in a 2-0 home loss at the hands of Leicester City
4. Jamie Vardy (up two)
It was not all doom and gloom at White Hart Lane though… well not for Leicester City anyway as their key attacking stars were on song for the crucial victory in their bid to secure a Champions League spot.
Jamie Vardy is 34 in January yet when the Foxes get it right he still looks just as dangerous as he was in the title-winning team five seasons ago, as well as last season when he rattled in 23 goals to finish the division’s top scorer.
His penalty kick at the end of the first half was his 11th goal of the campaign and he is on course to even eclipse last season’s tally – with only Mohamed Salah scoring more so far with 13.
He played a big role in Leicester’s second goal too, his header from a Marc Albrighton cross deflected in off Toby Alderweireld to cap yet another excellent performance from a striker seemingly getting better with age.
Jamie Vardy’s penalty on the stroke of half-time gave Leicester the lead at Tottenham
The striker put in another classy display to help the Foxes rise up to second in the table
3. Dominic Calvert-Lewin (non-mover)
Everton’s lead marksman continues to show just how valuable he is to Carlo Ancelotti’s side almost on a weekly basis following the 2-1 victory over Arsenal.
Calvert-Lewin may not have got on the scoresheet at Goodison Park but his aerial threat continues to cause headaches to defenders as it was his flick on that forced Rob Holding to divert the ball into his own goal to open the scoring for the Toffees on Saturday.
Just calling the 23-year-old a target man is doing him a disservice though. He has been just as dangerous with the ball at his feet and his 11 goals keeps him in the hunt for finishing top scorer which looked unthinkable before the season started.
It’s not just an impressive start to the season anymore for Dominic Calvert-Lewin, it may be his breakout campaign as one of the best strikers in the Premier League.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin (left) continues to lead Everton’s attacking line with distinction
2. Mohamed Salah (up two)
Questions were raised over just how committed Salah was to Liverpool after quotes emerged before their clash with Crystal Palace that saw him refuse to rule out a move to Real Madrid or Barcelona.
What he did say in the same interview was that his main focus was on Liverpool and he backed up his words on Saturday, despite being on the bench for nearly an hour in the 7-0 victory at Selhurst Park.
The Egyptian replaced Mane around the hour mark and in little over ten minutes had played the assist for Firmino to add the fifth, before getting on the goal scoring act near the end with a brace.
What could have been a rocky end to the week for Salah ended with him as the Premier League’s outright top scorer with 13 goals and showing he is still putting full effort in for the Reds whether he fancies a move to Spain or not.
Mohamed Salah came off the bench to score twice for Liverpool in the 7-0 win at Palace
Despite being unclear over his future, Salah is still showing manager Jurgen Klopp (left) that he is fully committed to Liverpool when called upon
1. Bruno Fernandes (non-mover)
Manchester United’s 6-2 win over Leeds wasn’t quite the ‘where would they be without Bruno Fernandes’ game we have seen often in recent times.
The result at Old Trafford featured many outstanding displays – it just so happens that once again the Portuguese maestro in midfield was among them.
He netted a brace on Sunday, including his fifth Premier League penalty of the season and yet he was also a creative force in setting up the opener for Scott McTominay inside two minutes.
Fernandes was the Premier League’s official player of the month for the third time this year in November. The way he is going he could quite easily ensure 2020 ends with a fourth award.
Bruno Fernandes retains his place at the top of the rankings following another strong display
The Manchester United star scored two goals and created another in a 6-2 win over Leeds
Share this article
Source: Read Full Article