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.

Liverpool’s Egyptian midfielder Mohamed Salah (R) takes the ball around Bournemouth’s Bosnian-Herzegovinian goalkeeper Asmir Begovic (L0 in the build-up to scoring his third goal, Liverpool’s fourth during the English Premier League football match between Bournemouth and Liverpool at the Vitality Stadium in Bournemouth, southern England on December 8, 2018. (Photo by Glyn KIRK / AFP)

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.

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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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


Both Caen equalisers in Strasbourg came from north Africans with Moroccan Fajr claiming the first and Tunisian Khaoui the second, 10 minutes from time.


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.

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