Salah turns up heat on Solskjaer and Hornets sting Everton – 5 things we learned

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Mohamed Salah was the star man as Liverpool ran riot at Manchester United to increase the pressure on Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, while there were also eye-catching performances across the weekend from Manchester City’s Phil Foden and Watford’s Joshua King.

Here, the PA news agency looks at five things we learned from the latest round of Premier League action.

More heat for Solskjaer

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's United were 4-0 down to Liverpool at half-time (Martin Rickett/PA).
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s United were 4-0 down to Liverpool at half-time (Martin Rickett/PA)

United boss Solskjaer was already under considerable scrutiny heading into Sunday’s clash with Liverpool – and that was cranked up several notches after the Red Devils found themselves on the end of a remarkable 5-0 thrashing against their arch-rivals, with four of the goals coming before half-time. It was a third defeat in a four-game winless streak for United, who had Paul Pogba sent off around the hour mark and are now seventh in the table, eight points behind leaders Chelsea.

Sensational Salah

Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool are a point off the top in second following a victory in which Salah once again – and with perhaps the clearest indication yet – showed he is in a simply magical vein of form at the moment. The Egyptian forward teed up the opener for Naby Keita before scoring a hat-trick to take him to 15 goals in 12 appearances in all competitions this season. It seems hard to argue with talk that he is currently the best player in the world.

Foden getting back in the groove

Phil Foden (right) shone in Manchester City's 4-1 win at Brighton (Gareth Fuller/PA).
Phil Foden, right, shone in Manchester City’s 4-1 win at Brighton (Gareth Fuller/PA)

Having not make his first appearance of the season until mid-September due to injury, Foden now looks like he is starting to really get up to speed in 2021-22. The 21-year-old England forward scored two goals and set up another as City won 4-1 at Brighton, after which Pep Guardiola’s champions are third in the table, two behind Chelsea, who thumped rock-bottom Norwich 7-0 at Stamford Bridge earlier on Saturday.

Hammers in the hunt again

West Ham’s Declan Rice celebrates after the victory over Tottenham
West Ham’s Declan Rice celebrates after the victory over Tottenham (Tim Goode/PA)

West Ham’s impressive 2020-21 saw them fall just short of the Champions League places, finishing two points off fourth – and David Moyes’ men look set to make a strong push again this term. Sunday’s 1-0 home win over Tottenham, sealed by Michail Antonio’s late goal, was a third victory in four outings and saw the Hammers move up to fourth in the table.

Ranieri and King have still got it

After Watford’s first match under Claudio Ranieri saw them lose 5-0 at home to Liverpool last weekend, Saturday’s 5-2 victory at Everton provided a punchy response to any who have been questioning whether the Italian can still cut it in the Premier League. The same could also be said with regard to King, who failed to score while on loan at Everton from Bournemouth for the second half of last season – the Norwegian, previously goalless since joining the Hornets over the summer, netted three times in the contest at Goodison Park.

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