Midweek's top five Premier League performers

Sports Mole selects five players that have made an impact over the past two evenings.

Postponements due to a number of teams progressing in the FA Cup and Capital One Cup respectively resulted in five Premier League fixtures taking place over the past two evenings.

Manchester City comprehensively defeated local rivals United to move closer to surpassing Chelsea at the top of the Premier League standings, before Liverpool reclaimed second position with a narrow 2-1 success over Sunderland at Anfield.

After Arsenal could only draw with Swansea City, Everton moved closer to the Gunners with a 3-0 victory at Newcastle United, while there was also success for West Ham United, who edged past Hull City with a 2-1 win.

Below, Sports Mole takes a look at five players who were able to make an impact in their respective fixtures.


Ross Barkley of Everton celebrates scoring the pening goal with team mates during the Barclays Premier League match between Newcastle United and Everton at St James' Park on March 25, 2014© Getty Images
1. Ross Barkley

Everton midfielder Ross Barkley is in contention to earn a place in England's World Cup squad in the summer, but he could require a strong end to the campaign to seal his spot on the plane.

The 20-year-old took a huge step in trying to convince Roy Hodgson of his capabilities on Tuesday night with a memorable goal to give the Toffees the lead at St James' Park as they closed the gap on Arsenal in fourth place.

Barkley took control of the ball on the halfway line and after driving towards the penalty area, he cut inside past several Newcastle defenders before hitting a left-footed shot into the roof of the net from 12 yards.


Edin Dzeko of Manchester City celebrates scoring the second goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester United and Manchester City at Old Trafford on March 25, 2014© Getty Images
2. Edin Dzeko

Edin Dzeko has often been forced to watch from the sidelines this season, with Sergio Aguero and Alvaro Negredo taking the plaudits in attack for Manuel Pellegrini's team.

However, with Aguero injured and Negredo out of form, Dzeko was handed a start at Old Trafford on Tuesday evening, and he didn't let his manager down as he struck twice in the opening 56 minutes.

His first was a routine conversion from inside the six-yard area, but his second came when he met a corner at the near post to volley the ball into the roof of the net past David de Gea.


David Silva of Manchester City celebrates after he scores the first goal of the game for his side during the Barclays Premier League match between Hull City and Manchester City at the KC Stadium on March 15, 2014© Getty Images
3. David Silva

Despite only netting six times in 30 appearances for City this season, David Silva continues to be his team's chief tormentor, and that carried on against Manchester United.

The Spaniard played a pivotal role in City's first goal against their local rivals by breaking into the penalty area through a cluster of players to begin the mayhem in the United defence.

His influence never subsided in a one-sided encounter at the Theatre of Dreams and if Silva cannot be prevented from pulling the strings for the Citizens, it will be hard for anyone to stop Manchester City securing their second Premier League title.


Leon Britton of Swansea in action during the UEFA Europa League third round qualifying first leg match between Swansea City and Malmo at the Liberty Stadium on August 1, 2013© Getty Images
4. Leon Britton

Swansea travelled to the Emirates Stadium to face Arsenal on the back of a torrid run of form, and after Arsenal had succumbed heavily to Chelsea three days earlier, the Welsh outfit were expected to be on the end of a Gunners' backlash.

However, a strong performance from Arsenal never materialised as Swansea stunned their hosts, with much of their work going through Leon Britton in the centre of midfield.

The 31-year-old applied himself magnificently against Arsene Wenger's team before playing a crucial part in Swansea's equaliser in the final stages as Mathieu Flamini put through his own net.


Liverpool's English midfielder Steven Gerrard celebrates scoring the opening goal from a freekick with Liverpool's Uruguayan striker Luis Suarez during the English Premier League football match between Liverpool and Sunderland at Anfield in Liverpool, nor© Getty Images
5. Steven Gerrard

Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge have dominated the scoring charts for Liverpool this season, but club captain Steven Gerrard continues to have a huge impact at Anfield as his team look to win their first league title since 1990.

The England skipper popped up with his 11th Premier League goal of the campaign against Sunderland on Wednesday evening, sending a 20-yard free kick into the top corner to earn the advantage for his team.

Sunderland struck back in the final stages as Liverpool struggled to seal the three points, but Gerrard's influence eventually helped the Reds get over the line to move one point behind leaders Chelsea.


Edin Dzeko of Manchester City celebrates scoring the second goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester United and Manchester City at Old Trafford on March 25, 2014
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City23202167175062
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd23155348163250
3Liverpool23138254282647
4Chelsea23145441162547
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs23135546212544
6Arsenal23116641301139
7Burnley239771920-134
8Leicester CityLeicester238783432231
9Everton2376102538-1327
10Watford2375113342-926
11West Ham UnitedWest Ham2367102941-1225
12Crystal Palace2367102133-1225
13Bournemouth2366112435-1124
14Huddersfield TownHuddersfield2366111939-2024
15Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2365122131-1023
16Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2358101729-1223
17Southampton2349102334-1121
18Stoke CityStoke2355132350-2720
19West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom23310101830-1219
20Swansea CitySwansea2345141435-2117
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