Another entertaining weekend of Premier League action saw an anti-climatic London derby, as Jose Mourinho and Tottenham frustrated former side Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.
Wolves inflicted yet more misery on Arsenal who have now endured their worst ever start to a Premier League season, whilst a Manchester United super sub inspired a captivating comeback at Southampton to extend the Red Devils winning run away from home.
Elsewhere there were wins for the likes of Manchester City, Leeds and Newcastle, though Sheffield United are now the division’s only winless side after losing an early season ‘six-pointer’ at West Brom.
Following the weekend’s action we’ve decided to look at some of the Premier League’s best performers, here are eight players who shone brightly in gameweek 10:
Manchester City’s recent struggles in front of goal were ended in emphatic fashion as Pep Guardiola’s side thrashed Burnley 5-0 at the Etihad, returning to their scintillating best in an encouraging attacking performance.
Riyad Mahrez was the architect behind their success with a first ever hat-trick for the club, the Algerian in fine form as a free-flowing City made light work of the Premier League strugglers.
Mahrez opened the scoring after just six minutes, collecting Kevin De Bruyne’s pass before finishing confidently to put the hosts ahead, before curling home a second as Burnley switched off from a quickly-taken throw-in.
The 29-year-old was at his brilliant best and sparkled throughout, his frankly ridiculous first touch at the forefront of a delightful display from the winger.
Mahrez completed his hat-trick with a rare header after the break to take his tally to seven goals in his past four appearances against Burnley, with the star having netted more goals against the Clarets than any other opponent.
🇩🇿 Riyad Mahrez 🆚 Burnley
🥅 Goals – 3
🏹 Shots – 5
🔐 Key Passes – 6
🤤 Dribbles – 1
💪 Tackles – 1
👥 Aerial Duels Won – 2
📈 Rating – 10
⚽️ Matchballs for his collection – 1 pic.twitter.com/mhstXmZNgH
— WhoScored.com (@WhoScored) November 28, 2020
Mahrez is yet to produce these performances on a consistent basis for City and his tendency to hold on to possession can be at odds with the slick passing play Guardiola desires, but this showing was a timely reminder he has the ability to torment opposition full-backs if regularly provided with opportunities to do so.
James Ward-Prowse may have ended up on the losing side this weekend and perhaps found himself overran in the second half against Manchester United, but the Southampton star’s incredible set-piece ability deserves honouring here.
One again the England international showed himself as the best set-piece taker in the division, first whipping a dangerous corner kick onto the head of Jan Bednarek for the game’s opening goal, before taking centre stage from just outside the penalty area.
Ward-Prowse’s fabulous free-kick gave Southampton a two-goal lead they would ultimately surrender, though it was another demonstration of his world-class quality from such situations.
The 26-year-old has now scored three free-kicks from just six efforts on goal so far this season, a remarkable rate of success with no player in the Premier League having scored more than his nine free-kicks since his debut in the league.
It’s a potent weapon in the attacking armoury of Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side and one they continue to take advantage from, Ward-Prowse’s pace, bend and accuracy moving him into joint-ninth amongst the Premier League’s most prolific free-kick scorers of all-time.
There will have been few predicting to ever see the name of Joelinton in this column given the forward’s toils since moving to the Premier League, the most expensive signing in Newcastle’s history having so far proven to be a major misfit at St James’ Park.
The Brazilian managed a paltry two league goals during his debut season after a record-breaking £40m move to the North East, whilst his fortunes have failed to improve during the opening weeks of the new season.
However, Joelinton produced a much-improved performance against Crystal Palace this weekend after being deployed in a two-man partnership with Callum Wilson in attack, as Newcastle left it late to snatch all three points at Selhurst Park.
The 24-year-old made his presence felt throughout and was rewarded for his work rate with his first goal of the season, just moments after assisting Wilson for the game’s opening goal with a clever pass into his strike partner.
Few will be getting carried away given Joelinton’s struggles so far, though there will be faint hopes an encouraging performance can lead to an upturn in fortunes.
West Brom moved out of the Premier League’s bottom three following a long-awaited first win of the season this weekend, securing a hard-fought 1-0 win over winless Sheffield United to leapfrog both Fulham and Burnley.
Conor Gallagher’s goal secured all three points at The Hawthorns, though it was the performance of goalkeeper Sam Johnstone that left many impressed following a commanding display.
Johnstone was in fine form during a narrow defeat to former club Manchester United last time out and repeated his heroics again this weekend, making a series of strong saves to deny a Sheffield United side who had 21 efforts on goal.
The 27-year-old denied both Oliver Burke and Oli McBurnie to frustrate the visitors, whilst he dominated his penalty area at set-piece situations to relieve the pressure on Slaven Bilic’s side.
Johnstone has spoken of his ambitions to force his way into England contention with uncertainty remaining over Gareth Southgate’s goalkeeping options, his status as one of the Premier League’s busiest goalkeepers providing him with the perfect platform to showcase his talent.
On the subject of Gareth Southgate, the England manager will no doubt have been pleased with the viewing on offer at Goodison Park this weekend with Kalvin Phillips stating his case to be a starter during Leeds’ 1-0 win at Everton.
Southgate was in attendance as Phillips produced an all-action performance at the heart of the Leeds side, covering the pitch superbly and passing and pressing with purpose.
The 24-year-old has underwhelmed during his initial performances at international level, though showed on Merseyside he has the talent and style to thrive for the national side.
Phillips had more touches than any other Leeds player and completed 79 of his 84 passes, acting as the deep-lying fulcrum of the midfield, taking possession and progressing Leeds further forward.
His defensive work was diligent as he regularly provided cover for the club’s attacking full-backs, Phillips’ 10 recoveries of possession the highest of any teammate against Everton.
Kalvin Phillips for Leeds vs. Everton:
100% take-ons completed
100% aerials won
96 touches (most)
84 passes attempted
79 passes completed
10 ball recoveries (most)
2 shots attempted
1 foul won
1 chance created
1 shot on target
Misplaced just five passes. 😳 pic.twitter.com/nIJbFqGJ4u
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) November 28, 2020
Southgate has struggled to find the balance in his midfield of late but in Phillips he possesses a player who can seemingly offer protection and creativity to the side, there are few of a Leeds persuasion who are unconvinced by his ability to thrive at the very highest level.
Diogo Jota has quickly gone from reliable back-up option to Liverpool’s go to man, continuing his brilliant goalscoring record since moving to Merseyside with his ninth of the season in the 1-1 draw at Brighton.
Jota’s goal was evidence of a forward playing with supreme confidence at present, linking superbly with Mohamed Salah on the edge of the penalty area before working the space to fire home a clinical finish.
It was the Portugal international’s fifth goal in just eight Premier League appearances for the Reds, equalling Robbie Fowler as the player to reach five goals in the fewest number of appearances.
The 23-year-old is dangerous in possession and works tirelessly without it, the quintessential Jurgen Klopp attacker and a player rapidly growing in stature at Anfield.
9th goal of the season.
Diogo Jota delivers for Liverpool again! 💥 pic.twitter.com/dNFtLfAoHm
— B/R Football (@brfootball) November 28, 2020
Few would have questioned the status of Liverpool’s established front three just a matter of months ago, but their summer signing is simply undroppable given his current form.
There are many who ridiculed Edinson Cavani’s deadline day move to Manchester United as little more than a desperate attempt to compensate for a poor window of recruitment at Old Trafford.
Cavani has been one of the continent’s leading marksman for over a decade but is entering the twilight of a prolific career, whilst he scored just four league goals last season in an injury-hit campaign before leaving Paris Saint-Germain.
However, the Uruguayan international rolled back the years with an inspirational super sub performance for the Red Devils at Southampton this weekend, coming off the bench at half-time with his side trailing by two goals to inspire a memorable comeback at St Mary’s.
Cavani provided the cross for Bruno Fernandes to pull one back for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side, before a pair of predatory headed efforts – the latter coming in stoppage-time – snatched three points for the visitors and continued their recent winning run on the road.
HT: Southampton 2-0 Manchester United
FT: Southampton 2-3 Manchester United
The Edinson Cavani effect.pic.twitter.com/u2BLF25uui
— Goal (@goal) November 29, 2020
It was a masterful display of finishing from the 33-year-old who must now be given his chance from the start, his presence in the penalty area unnerving defenders well aware of his opportunistic finishing ability.
He may not be able to feature week in, week out given his ageing legs, but the signing of a proven winner can undoubtedly have an impact on United’s chances of success this season.
Wolves maintained their impressive away record at the Premier League’s ‘top six’ with victory at Arsenal this weekend, with Nuno Espirito Santo’s side quietly moving themselves up to sixth in the Premier League.
There are few sides better organised or more difficult to beat than Wolves, who remain one of the division’s most impressive outfits since returning to the Premier League two years ago.
Their success has been built on quality recruitment and in the likes of Pedro Neto and Daniel Podence they have the flair and talent to unlock defences, each scoring during the 2-1 win at the Emirates as Wolves recovered from the loss of Raul Jimenez to a sickening injury to secure three points.
The club’s fleet-footed attackers caused havoc throughout alongside the pace and power of Adama Traore, with Podence earning his place amongst our star turns courtesy of a moment of magic.
Daniel Podence game by numbers vs. Arsenal:
7 duels won
5 ball recoveries
4 take-ons (Most)
4 touches in opp. box
2 aerial duels won
Another good performance. pic.twitter.com/zwIIbQrC2c
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) November 29, 2020
Gabriel Magalhaes has won admirers since moving to Arsenal and lunged himself as the diminutive Belgian after a loose ball broke to Podence inside the penalty area, only for the forward to nonchalantly scoop the ball over the defender’s challenge before firing past Bernd Leno.
It was a fabulous piece of skill from a player whose classy creativity has impressed at Molineux, Wolves possessing the quality to trouble the Premier League’s best again this season.