Premier League: Bukayo Saka and Kevin De Bruyne shine in this week's POWER RANKINGS


The Premier League was hit by three more Covid postponements this week but that didn’t stop the Boxing Day fixtures from packing an almighty punch.

Liverpool vs Leeds, Wolves vs Watford and Burnley vs Everton were all called off due to outbreaks from at least one side involved in those games, leaving seven other games to be played in the following days after Christmas.

And Boxing Day did not disappoint with fans treated to 26 goals across the six games, including a nine-goal thriller at the Etihad as well as a topsy-turvy game at the London Stadium.

Manchester City came out on top in a nine-goal thriller with Leicester City on Boxing Day

Manchester City came out on top in a nine-goal thriller with Leicester City on Boxing Day


1. Bernardo Silva (Manchester City)

2. Mohamed Salah (Liverpool)

3. Mason Mount (Chelsea)

4. Joao Cancelo (Manchester City)

5. Gabriel Martinelli (Arsenal)

6. Conor Gallagher (Crystal Palace)

7. Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool) 

8. Diogo Jota (Liverpool)

9. Bukayo Saka (Arsenal)

10. Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City)

Manchester City managed to survive a second-half fightback from Leicester to walk away with all three points, winning the encounter 6-3.

While City consolidated their position at the top of the table, West Ham lost their spot in the top four after Southampton beat them 3-2 in an action-packed game in Stratford.

North London rivals Arsenal and Tottenham continued their good form with comprehensive wins over Norwich and Crystal Palace respectively.

Mikel Arteta’s side thrashed the Canaries 5-0 in their own backyard while Spurs got their revenge on 10-man Palace, with Antonio Conte’s men recording a 3-0 win at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

Meanwhile, Romelu Lukaku’s cameo with Aston Villa was marked with a goal in a 3-1 win for Chelsea, while Brighton got the better of Brentford at the Amex Stadium. 

Manchester United managed to save a point in Monday’s clash with Newcastle at St James’ Park, with Edinson Cavani popping up with a second-half equaliser. 

Each week throughout the 2021-22 season, Sportsmail will bring you a Power Rankings table, which lists the top 10 hottest players in the Premier League.

As the stories of the campaign 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.

So, with all of that in mind, how do Sportsmail‘s latest batch of Power Rankings look? 

10. Allan Saint-Maximin (Newcastle, new entry)

Newcastle may be in a relegation battle but Eddie Howe’s men showed they’ve still got plenty of fight as we enter the second half of the season.

A quick start from the Magpies saw Allan Saint-Maximin break the deadlock against United inside seven minutes, with the tricky Frenchman curling a brilliant shot past a flat-footed David de Gea in goal.

Saint-Maximin was a complete livewire against Ralf Rangnick’s side, pressing from the front, chasing lost causes while creating chance after chance in a game Newcastle should have probably won.

Newcastle may have only walked away with a point but there are plenty of positives to take from the Red Devils’ visit to Tyneside. 

Allan Saint-Maximin (left) almost guided Newcastle to victory over Man United on Monday

Allan Saint-Maximin (left) almost guided Newcastle to victory over Man United on Monday

9. Martin Odegaard (Arsenal, new entry)

Emile Smith Rowe has rightly stolen the headlines at the Emirates this season, with positions in the starting XI coming at a premium for Mikel Arteta’s players. 

But Martin Odegaard has shown throughout the month of December that he is relishing the competition with Smith Rowe to become Arsenal’s go-to playmaker.

Having scored three goals earlier in the month and then recording an assist last week against Leeds, the Norwegian attacker notched another two assists in the first half against Norwich.

Odegaard is enjoying a solid run of form at the moment and he will be itching to get back at it when Arsenal welcome Manchester City to the Emirates on New Year’s Day.

Martin Odegaard (right) got two assists in Arsenal's emphatic 5-0 win over Norwich City

Martin Odegaard (right) got two assists in Arsenal’s emphatic 5-0 win over Norwich City

8. James Maddison (Leicester, new entry)

James Maddison and Leicester may have tasted defeat on Boxing Day but they played their part in a stunning game against Man City that almost saw them walk away with something for their valiant effort.

After an abject first half that saw them concede four goals, the Foxes hauled themselves back into the contest with three goals in 10 minutes and threatened to make a game of it, before City eventually pulled out of sight again.

Maddison played a pivotal role in all three goals, scoring Leicester’s first with a composed finish, before being involved in the lead-up to his side’s second and third goal.

The England international has rediscovered his best form in recent weeks and is now looking to round off superb individual performances with points for his team.

James Maddison (right) was the driving force behind Leicester's fightback at the Etihad

James Maddison (right) was the driving force behind Leicester’s fightback at the Etihad

7. Lucas Moura (Tottenham, new entry)

Antonio Conte has worked wonders since taking over Tottenham boss last month.

Spurs are currently unbeaten in the Premier League under the Italian and he’s got his players performing after a woeful start under his predecessor Nuno Espirito Santo.

While Harry Kane is beginning to find his feet again, Lucas Moura continues to be one of Spurs’ standout players under Conte and is managing to shine brighter than the England captain and Son Heung-min.

The Brazilian did so again on Boxing Day as he set up Kane and Son to score in their 3-0 win over Palace before grabbing a goal himself, showing great determination to leap over Joachim Andersen and thump his header past a helpless Jack Butland. 

Lucas Moura (No 27) scored a flying header and set up Spurs' two other goals against Palace

Lucas Moura (No 27) scored a flying header and set up Spurs’ two other goals against Palace

6. Joao Cancelo (Manchester City, down two)

It feels harsh demoting Joao Cancelo two places since last week’s Power Rankings because he put in another solid performance in against Leicester at the Etihad.

However, with others had much better weeks and Leicester enjoying a second-half resurgence where they scored three times, Cancelo paid the price and has dropped down to sixth this week.

But with all things considered, Cancelo remains as one of the campaign’s most in-form players and looks to be a key player as Pep Guardiola hunts down another Premier League title.

Can the versatile full back climb back up our rankings? We don’t have to wait long to find out… 

Joao Cancelo (left) has been one of City's best players but has dropped down the rankings

Joao Cancelo (left) has been one of City’s best players but has dropped down the rankings

5. Mason Mount (Chelsea, down two)

Romelu Lukaku’s return to the scoresheet saw him steal the headlines as Chelsea got back to winning ways in the Premier League.

Callum Hudson-Odoi also played a pivotal part in the Blues’ 3-1 win over Aston Villa, after having a hand in two of the goals.

However, while Mason Mount has enjoyed a brilliant run of form in recent weeks, he struggled to impress at Villa Park. 

With Chelsea leading 2-1, Mount had the chance to extend the lead but missed a sitter after rounding goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez. Overall, it wasn’t an bad display from the England international at Villa Park but he didn’t exactly light things up either.

Mason Mount reacts after missing a sitter in Chelsea's 3-1 win over Aston Villa on Boxing Day

Mason Mount reacts after missing a sitter in Chelsea’s 3-1 win over Aston Villa on Boxing Day

4. Bukayo Saka (Arsenal, up five) 

It was a Boxing Day to remember for Bukayo Saka, who grabbed himself a brilliant brace against the Canaries.

The Arsenal youngster got the show at Carrow Road underway inside the first six minutes after cutting onto his left foot and calmly finishing under pressure. 

Norwich struggled to contain the 20-year-old, who was once again allowed to cut on his left foot to smash in Arsenal’s third goal from outside the box.

A very impressive display from the youngster, who now has five goal contributions in his last four Premier League games for the club.  

Bukayo Saka grabbed a brace for Arsenal as they brushed aside Norwich at Carrow Road

Bukayo Saka grabbed a brace for Arsenal as they brushed aside Norwich at Carrow Road

3. Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City, up seven)  

It’s taken a little while for Kevin De Bruyne to get going this season but he’s starting to show some consistency in one of the toughest periods of the season.

After grabbing a brace in his last home game against Leeds, De Bruyne got himself back on the scoresheet against Leicester, taking just five minutes to open the scoring this time out.

The Belgian superbly brought down a lofted through ball from Fernandinho in the box, before showing composure to work some space near the penalty spot before firing the ball past Kasper Schmeichel. 

He’d continue to pull the strings throughout the thrilling encounter, ensuring City stay top of the tree until at least the new year.  

Kevin De Bruyne (centre right) opened the scoring for City in their 6-3 win over Leicester

Kevin De Bruyne (centre right) opened the scoring for City in their 6-3 win over Leicester

2. Mohamed Salah (Liverpool, non-mover)

Mohamed Salah manages to keep hold of second in this edition of our Power Rankings despite not being able to kick a ball after Liverpool’s Boxing Day clash with Leeds got postponed due to a Covid outbreak in Marcelo Bielsa’s camp.

The Egyptian saw his incredible streak of scoring or assisting in 15 consecutive Premier League games come to an end against Spurs earlier in the month, and is now being made to wait before he can make another impact for the Reds.

He won’t be made to wait long though, with Jurgen Klopp’s men back in action against Leicester on Tuesday.

Should he get back to his goalscoring ways, we could see him reclaim top spot in the next edition of our Power Rankings.  

Mohamed Salah didn't get the chance to kick a ball after Liverpool vs Leeds was postponed

Mohamed Salah didn’t get the chance to kick a ball after Liverpool vs Leeds was postponed

1. Bernardo Silva (Manchester City, non-mover)

Last time City faced Leicester Bernardo Silva was the difference, scoring the game’s only goal back in September.

This time round, the Portuguese playmaker didn’t make a direct impact in any of City’s six goals on Boxing Day but still caused plenty of problems for the Foxes.

Silva was posing serious problems for the visitors in the first half as he slalomed in and around defenders, with City romping to a 4-0 lead.

However, his levels dropped off after the break but still managed to guide City to a 6-3 win, seeing him keep top spot in this week’s Power Rankings.

However, with Salah returning to action, Silva may need to get himself back among the goals if he wants to keep top spot next time out. 

Bernardo Silva (centre) keeps a hold of top spot in this edition of Sportsmail's Power Rankings

Bernardo Silva (centre) keeps a hold of top spot in this edition of Sportsmail’s Power Rankings


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