Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe called Egyptian Mohamed Salah “one of the best (footballers) in the world” after he scored a hat-trick for Liverpool against his club at the weekend.
Salah was once again the outstanding African performer in the major European leagues with his treble helping Liverpool triumph 4-0 and replace Manchester City at the top of the table.
Salah is joint leading scorer in the Premier League on 10 goals with another African, Gabon sharpshooter Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang of Arsenal.
MOHAMED SALAH (Liverpool): Fears over Salah’s demise as a goalscorer in the Premier League have been put firmly to bed. The Egyptian, 26, scored his second Premier League hat-trick for the club in the 4-0 rout of Bournemouth, taking his league tally to 10 this season.
ANDRE-FRANK ZAMBO ANGUISSA (Fulham): Claudio Ranieri likened his team’s performance in the first half of a 4-1 defeat at Manchester United to lambs against wolves. Cameroon midfielder Anguissa, 23, showed some fight in the second half but received a second yellow card followed by a red just a minute after Fulham had pulled a goal back to make it 3-1.
WILFRIED ZAHA (Crystal Palace): Zaha’s creative talent and goals were integral to Palace escaping the drop last season but he has not scored since mid-September. The club — with just one win in 11 Premier League games after Saturday’s loss at West Ham — are only two points above the relegation zone. They need the 26-year-old Ivory Coast international to fire.
JEFFREY SCHLUPP (Crystal Palace): Ghana defender Schlupp, 25, scored his second goal of the season for Palace in the 3-2 defeat at West Ham. The 76th-minute header gave Roy Hodgson’s team hopes of a comeback from 3-1 down but they could not find an equaliser.
ALFRED DUNCAN/KHOUMA BABACAR (Sassuolo)/ALBAN LAFONT (Fiorentina): Sassuolo went two goals up just after the hour mark when Ghanaian Duncan broke through after pouncing on a poor clearance from Fiorentina’s Burkina Faso-born goalkeeper Lafont. Duncan then provided a pin-perfect assist for Senegalese striker Babacar to slot in from close range five minutes later. But the hosts threw away their two-goal advantage with Fiorentina scoring twice in the final minutes to snatch a 3-3 draw.
ADAM OUNAS (Napoli): Algerian international Ounas claimed the second goal for Napoli with a stunning strike from distance five minutes before the break as Carlo Ancelotti’s side consolidated second place eight points behind Juventus with a 4-0 rout of Frosinone. It was the second goal in three days for the 22-year-old France-born forward in his second season with the Italian club.
ISHAK BELFODIL (Hoffenheim): The Algeria midfielder opened the scoring with a superb goal as Hoffenheim drew 2-2 against Wolfsburg. Belfodil met an Andrej Kramaric cross with a sweetly struck volley to rifle the ball into the bottom corner after just four minutes.
AMINE HARIT (Schalke): The Moroccan international won a penalty for his side in a 2-1 derby defeat to arch rivals Borussia Dortmund. After Harit was fouled, Daniel Caligiuri converted from 12 yards to equalise before a late Jadon Sancho goal won it for Bundesliga leaders Dortmund.
HAMZA MENDYL (Schalke): Fellow Moroccan Mendyl prompted a few raised eyebrows when he came on for injured striker Guido Burgstaller in the 36th minute against Dortmund. A left-back, Mendyl was forced to moonlight as a forward in the derby and cut a lonely figure.
ANTHONY UJAH (Mainz): The Nigerian forward made Mainz ecstatic when he appeared to score a stoppage-time winner against Hanover, but the celebrations were cut short as the goal was ruled offside by VAR and the match finished 1-1.
LEBO MOTHIBA (Strasbourg): South African Mothiba scored his eighth Ligue 1 goal of the season to give eighth-place Strasbourg the lead for the second time in a 2-2 home draw with lowly Caen.
FAYCAL FAJR/SAIF-EDDINE KHAOUI (Caen): Both Caen equalisers in Strasbourg came from north Africans with Moroccan Fajr claiming the first and Tunisian Khaoui the second, 10 minutes from time.
NICOLAS PEPE (Lille): France-born Ivory Coast international Pepe salvaged a 1-1 home draw for second-place Lille against Reims with a 95th-minute goal, his 11th of the league campaign.