There were goals aplenty in the latest round of Premier League action, as Manchester City, Chelsea, Tottenham and Liverpool all scored three goals or more.
Brighton saw off Newcastle in the battle of the promoted clubs, Huddersfield kept yet another clean sheet at Burnley, and Watford’s strong away form continued with a late win at Swansea.
But who stood out from the latest round of Premier League action?
Alvaro Morata. The pressure was on for Morata to hit the ground running, as most of Chelsea’s goalscoring hopes were pinned on the £58m signing from Real Madrid almost immediately. A hat-trick against Stoke on Saturday, making it six goals in as many games for his new club, has put any lingering doubts to bed now, surely. The Spanish international is set to have a big season at Stamford Bridge.
Marco Silva. Some Sky Sports pundits might continue to question how Marco Silva keeps getting jobs in England, but his record in the Premier League deserves more respect than that. Three away wins out of three at new club Watford has already equaled their total from last year, and at this rate the Hornets might not carry out their end-of-season tradition of firing the manager.
Oumar Niasse. From being unceremoniously banished by Ronald Koeman last year to saving the manager’s bacon on Saturday, it’s been quite the turnaround for Niasse. He very nearly joined Crystal Palace on deadline day and looked set for another year in the reserves before being handed an unlikely lifeline. Two late goals against Bournemouth has surely seen him play his way into Koeman’s place at last.
Jurgen Klopp. A badly-needed win, whatever the circumstances. Liverpool’s blistering attack and nervy defence were both on show at the King Power, and while the manager is going to have to find some way to mesh the two togeher, for now he can just enjoy a first away win at Leicester in his fourth attempt.
Simon Mignolet. Five penalties saved from his last eight faced. Mignolet has a few flaws in his game, but his ability to save penalties is a major strength (glossing over the fact that he gave that last one away in the first place…).
Manchester City. Another week, another comprehensive victory; this time it was Crystal Palace’s turn to feel their wrath. Just the sixteen goals now in their last three Premier League games, and it’s hard not to look at them as title favourites in this sort of form.
Huddersfield’s defence. Four clean sheets in six games now for David Wagner’s newly-promoted side after Saturday’s goalless draw at Turf Moor.
Slaven Bilic. Victory against Huddersfield afforded the beleaguered West Ham manager some respite, but a 3-2 defeat to Tottenham on Saturday seems to have piled the pressure back on him. Unless results improve quickly, it does appear to be a case of when, rather than if, a new manager will be placed in the London Stadium dugout in the near future.
Jose Mourinho. Regardless of the severity of his punishment for encroachment (and regardless of whether or not Antonio Conte or Jurgen Klopp would have been sent off for the same offence, because that argument has become boring), the fact remains that Mourinho has now brought another Premier League sanction upon himself. It’s a distraction that Man United could really have done without given their strong start to the new campaign.
Crystal Palace. The first team in English football league history to lose their first six games without scoring a goal, and with upcoming games against Manchester United and Chelsea, this is going to get a whole lot worse for Roy Hodgson and the Eagles before it get better.
Southampton. Three home goals scored in the league since April (all of which came in the same match against West Ham in August), Mauricio Pellegrino’s side patently have a problem when playing in front of their own fans. It has them in midtable now but it could be a problem going forward.