We're heading into a huge week in the Premier League.
Manchester City are already 11 points clear of Chelsea and the Blues face London rivals Arsenal in an absolutely massive encounter. Jose Mourinho's team have to win, anything less and their title challenge looks doomed.
City themselves have the team no one wants to face at home, West Ham, with the Hammers already scoring impressive victories at Anfield and the Emirates so far this season.
Claudion Ranieri and Leicester are still the feel-good story of the season, with their comeback win against Aston Villa the most entertaining match we've seen in 2015-16.
It's still doom and gloom in the North East, with Necastle and Sunderland two of the three teams without a win.
We all know who the best players are but defining those with the power to shape events in the Premier League is not so simple - so we've created The Independent's Premier League Power Rankings.
Ahead of every round of fixtures in the top-flight our team of experts get together to define the 17 players who hold the power.
Rather than being based on who the best or most talented footballers are, it's defined by current form, league position, next fixture and any other factors which could influence events.
Players move up and down the rankings, battling to be number one. Some will drop out and new entries will emerge. You might not agree (in which case let us know why) - but that's half the fun.
Three weeks into the season there are already some trends developing and we've seen some major changes in the players picked.
These are the 17 most important players in the Premier League right now...
Premier League Power Rankings - Game Week 6
Premier League Power Rankings - Game Week 6
1/17 17) Moussa Sissoko (Newcastle) - re-entry
Steve McClaren has not got off to a pretty start in Tyneside. No wins, just two points, new signings faltering and the longest injury list in the division. Watford should be a very winnable game for the Toon, and Sissoko, though not performing like he did last season, is still the man that makes the team tick. Last fixture: L - 0-2 - West Ham Next fixture: Watford (h)
2/17 16) Dusan Tadic (Southampton) - up 1
Didn't set The Hawthorns on fire last week after a two-goal performance against Norwich, but was a decisive performer the last time Southampton met Man United, scoring the winner after coming on as a sub at Old Trafford. Last fixture: D - 0-0 - West Brom Next fixture: Man United (h)
3/17 15) Bafetimbi Gomis (Swansea) - up 1
Wilfried who? Jefferson Montero and Andre Ayew have taken much credit for the Swans' brilliant start but the powerful Gomis just keeps scoring. Nine goals in his last 11 Premier League matches stretching back to last season, although he went scoreless in the disappointing defeat at Watford. Last fixture: L - 0-1 - Watford Next fixture: Everton (h)
4/17 14) Wes Hoolahan (Norwich City) - new entry
An absolutely superb individual performance by the Irishman bought a goal and an assist - the Cherries just couldn't handle him at all at Carrow Road. Now seems as good a time as ever to face a struggling Liverpool side. If Hoolahan is at his best he'll cause all sorts of trouble for the Reds leaky defence. Last fixture: W - 3-1 - Bournemouth Next fixture: Liverpool (a)
5/17 13) Callum Wilson (Bournemouth) - non-mover
The rapid striker barely got a sniff at Carrow Road but in his budding top flight career has proved he is cut out for life in the Premier League with four goals already this season. Sunderland are relegation favourites and one of the team's Bournemouth absolutely must beat if they are to stay in the division. Last fixture: L - 1-3 - Norwich Next fixture: Sunderland (h)
6/17 12) Jermain Defoe (Sunderland) - down 7
The veteran striker had his big moment against his former club... and completely blew it, making a poor connection and dragging his shot onto the post. Sunderland are already looking desperate and can't really afford to have their main man missing those kinds of chances if they are to stay up. Last fixture: L - 0-1 - Spurs Next fixture: Bournemouth (a)
7/17 11) Petr Cech (Arsenal) - re-entry
The big goalkeeper returns to the ground where he set numerous records and won numerous titles Last fixture: W - 2- 0 - Stoke Next fixture: Chelsea (a)
8/17 10) Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur) - up 1
The goals are still not coming for the England striker and neither are the chances. He seems to be playing too deep these days, trying to get involved in areas of the pitch where, frankly, he's not yet good enough to be. Should worry about being on the end of crosses and through balls rather than providing them. Son should help. Last fixture: W - 1- 0 - Sunderland Next fixture: Crystal Palace (h)
9/17 9) David De Gea (Manchester United) - new-entry
Back in the team and just about back in his place as the best stopper in the Premier League. Didn't have masses to do against Liverpool but did what he needed very well. United are a million times better with him between the sticks. Last fixture: W - 3-1 0 - Liverpool Next fixture: Southampton (a)
10/17 8) Sergio Aguero (Manchester City) - down 2
It'll be interesting to see how fit Aguero actually is for an interesting clash against West Ham, who have already beaten Arsenal and Liverpool on the road this season. Managed only seven minutes against Juventus and was a massive miss, with Wilfried Bony bullied by the Italians. Last fixture: W - 1-0 - Crystal Palace Next fixture: West Ham (h)
11/17 7) Christian Benteke (Liverpool) - down 4
An absolute belter of a goal doesn't mask the fact that Benteke was pretty much a passenger at Old Trafford. His Liverpool team-mates were unable to find him when he did make runs but at other times he stuck to Chris Smalling rather than try and out-muscle the physically inferior Daley Blind, strange. Last fixture: L - 3-1 - Man United Next fixture: Norwich (h)
12/17 6) Riyad Mahrez (Leicester City) - up 2
What a brilliant comeback and what a brilliant season the Algerian is having. The Foxes will surely get some phonecalls as to his availability if he keeps playing anything close to the level he is currently operating. The most in-form winger in the division has already been responsible for six goals this season (four goals, two assists) more than any other player. Last fixture: W - 3-2 Aston Villa (a) Next fixture: Stoke (a)
13/17 5) John Stones (Everton) - up 2
His stock just doesn't stop rising. Up against the team who chased him all summer John Stones played like a demon, keeping Diego Costa in his pocket, breaking forward to start attacks and looking inspirational and like a future England captain. He'll be worth £50m by the time January comes around. Last fixture: W - 3-1 - Chelsea (a) Next fixture: Swansea (a)
14/17 4) Dmitri Payet (West Ham) - new entry
The signing of the summer so far, we apologise for not having him on the list sooner. Not only are his goals impressive, Payet sets the tone for the Hammers with his high enery, hard working style that inspires others around him. Possesses immense quality and an eye for the spectacular. Last fixture: W - 2-0 - Newcastle Next fixture: Man City (a)
15/17 3) Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal) - up 1
Yet to score this season - only a tremendous Jack Butland save got in the way of that - Sanchez should be relishing his trip to Stamford Bridge. Chelsea's defence has been in disarray this season and he will either be facing Branislav Ivanovic, probably the worst player in the division this season, or Cesar Azpilicueta, a man who has spent the last 18 months playing on the opposite flank. Last fixture: W - 2-0 - Stoke Next fixture: Chelsea (a)
16/17 2) David Silva (Manchester City) - non-mover
Had a hard time of it against Juventus but remains, with Sergio Aguero less than 100 per cent, the most talented player in the league's most talented side. Everything revolves around him. Last fixture: W - 1-0 - Crystal Palace Next fixture: West Ham (h)
17/17 1) Eden Hazard (Chelsea) - up 8
It's the last chance saloon for Hazard, it has to be. A dreadful individual season for the Player of the Year got even worse when he absolutely skied his penalty against Maccabi in midweek. From there he only slightly improved against a third-rate team that any Chelsea XI would have comfortably beat. If he doesn't perform against Arsenal then Jose Mourinho will surely have no choice but to give his biggest star a spell on the sidelines. Last fixture: L - 3-1 - Everton Next fixture: Arsenal (h)
Let us know your thoughts in the comments box below.
- More about:
- Aston Villa
- Chelsea F.c.
- Crystal Palace FC
- Leicester City
- Liverpool FC
- Manchester City
- Manchester United
- Newcastle United
- Norwich City
- Southampton Fc
- Stoke City
- Swansea City
- Tottenham Hotspur
- Watford Fc
- West Bromwich Albion
- West Ham United