Premier League Winners & Losers: 9th & 10th December 2017

In a gameweek headlined by two colossal local derbies, it was always likely that Super Sunday would create a hero or two as well as the odd pantomime villain.

And so it proved, with both Liverpool vs Everton and Manchesters United vs City not short of flashpoints.

If they could fight their way through the snow, there were plenty for Everton and Manchester City fans to celebrate, while those who favour the teams in red could be forgiven for feeling particularly unfestive on Monday.

So who enjoyed the perfect weekend, and who had one they will be desperate to forget?

Loser: Dejan Lovren

In these intense local derbies there has to be a hero and or a villain; it’s just the nature of the game.

It’s harsh, but after costing his Liverpool teammates the three points we have to say that Dejan Lovren was the Merseyside derby’s big loser.

We can argue about whether it was a penalty until we’re blue in the face, but the fact remains that Lovren should not have had his hands anywhere Dominic Calvert-Lewin given that the Everton frontman was running away from goal with little support.

It’s not the first time that the Croat has shown similar levels of blockheadedness this term, and you wonder if it might just be a lonely Christmas for the defender in the confines of Liverpool’s Under 23s squad.

Winner: Sam Allardyce

After guiding the beleaguered Toffees to three wins in as many games, the old halo was starting to shine above Big Sam Allardyce’s head. This morning, it will be glowing brighter than the lights on his Christmas tree.

A point at Anfield, from a team in the depths of despair just a month ago, is an incredible achievement, and the fact his side only conceded once against this free-scoring Liverpool outfit is testament to Allardyce’s powers of organisation and attention to detail.

Okay, so the context of the game is that he parked the bus, and was lucky to get a point given the rash nature of Lovren’s handling of Calvert-Lewin.

But the bottom line is that he handed Everton’s fans an early Chrimbo present by allowing them some bragging rights in the office on Monday morning, and it really is a case of onwards and upwards from here for the blue half of Merseyside.

Loser: Jose Mourinho

There are a lot of people in English football that have never quite taken to Jose Mourinho, and the artist formerly known as the Special One once again showed his hypocritical side on Sunday.

Let’s face it: his side were deservedly beaten by their Mancunian rivals City, and Mourinho’s righteous indignation at the failure to award his side a penalty when Ander Herrera went down under the challenge of Nicolas Otamendi only papers over the cracks.

It would have been a fortuitous award had his side been handed that spot kick, and the truth is that his team deserved nothing from the game.

But Mourinho had to take the moral high ground, as ever, in a display that confirmed his status as a bad loser.

The Portuguese’s manager’s mood will have been helped no end by allegedly being peppered with milk and empty water bottles following a 20-man melee in the changing rooms after the game.

Winner: David Silva

There’s that old saying in life that ‘we don’t know what we’ve got ‘til it’s gone’, and if any Manchester City fans were unaware of the irreplaceable brilliance of David Silva then Sunday was the perfect reminder.

The diminutive Spaniard once again popped up with the winning goal, as he had against West Ham a week earlier, but more than that it was his outstanding all-round contribution that really caught the eye.

No longer the support act, Silva has been handed the ringleader’s role by Pep Guardiola this season and he is thriving: as cutting as ever in attack, the 31-year-old put in a fantastic shift defensively as well by covering huge swathes of Old Trafford.

Silva has just penned a new deal at the club until 2020, and that’s one of the best signings that City may ever make.

Loser: Mark Hughes

The problem with being the manager of a perennial mid-table side is that it only takes a bad run of form to see you being dragged into a relegation battle.

After three defeats in four Stoke are now just three points clear of the relegation zone, and perhaps most worryingly for the Potteries outfit is that they boast the worst defensive record in the Premier League after losing 5-1 at Tottenham on Saturday.

It’s a result which has witnessed Mark Hughes’ odds of being the next Premier League manager to lose his post sliced to just 2/1 from 11/2. With a hectic winter schedule ahead, his side will need to improve dramatically, and pronto.