Manchester City broke back into the Barclays Premier League top four as they maintained their 100% home record with a 4-2 win over a spirited Bolton.
City went ahead after just four minutes as Rolando Bianchi instinctively prodded home from six yards after Darius Vassell's effort had been weakly palmed away by Jussi Jaaskelainen.
But Bolton are a different proposition under the guidance of Gary Megson and instead of crumbling they ground out an equaliser after 31 minutes.
El-Hadji Diouf fed Kevin Davies on the right wing and the striker's tame shot was met by the marauding Senegal forward who curled a right-footed shot into the roof of the net.
And they found the second goal their enterprising play deserved five minutes before the break as Kevin Nolan steered home from 15 yards with the outside of his boot.
City pulled level just after the break, though, as Dietmar Hamann's long-range drive took a wicked deflection of Lubomir Michalik to wrong foot the unfortunate Jaaskelainen.
City's renewed vigour in the second period paid off as Vassell and Kelvin Etuhu scored to ensure their side made it nine wins from nine at the City of Manchester Stadium.
Marcus Bent's first hat-trick for seven years helped Wigan record a pulsating 5-3 victory over Blackburn at the JJB Stadium.
The Latics blitzed their opponents in the early stages and were two up within 12 minutes.
Firstly, Danny Landzaat latched on to Emile Heskey's pass to slot past the onrushing Brad Friedel after 10 minutes.
And just two minutes later Bent took full advantage of some sloppy defending from Ryan Nelsen to fire across the helpless Friedel into the bottom corner.
Benni McCarthy's penalty was tipped around the post by the sprawling Chris Kirkland as Blackburn wasted a golden opportunity to claw themselves back into the game.
And they were made to pay for their profligacy as Paul Scharner thundered home a header from close range.
However, Rovers did give themselves a lifeline as Roque Santa Cruz pulled one back with a glorious volley from 20 yards in first-half stoppage time before he netted a second just after the break.
Rovers' hopes appeared to be dealt a fatal blow when Brett Emerton was dismissed for a second bookable offence, but Santa Cruz claimed his hat-trick to miraculously draw his side level just after the hour mark.
There was to be a final sting in the tail, though, as Bent netted twice in the final 25 minutes to wrap up an emphatic win.
Dimitar Berbatov's solitary goal handed Tottenham a slender 1-0 win over Portsmouth at Fratton Park.
In a game bereft of quality the Bulgarian popped up at the back post to steer home Aaron Lennon's lofted cross to dent Pompey's ambitions of breaking into the top four.
Ayegbeni Yakubu's seventh goal in five games helped Everton on their way to a second win over West Ham this week.
Yakubu netted the decisive goal for the Toffees in Wednesday's Carling Cup victory, and the Nigerian again came to his side's rescue as his header at the end of the first before Andy Johnson wrapped up the three points in stoppage time.
Alex McLeish's first game at St Andrews ended in a 1-1 draw against Reading.
Birmingham went ahead after just four minutes as Mikael Forssell scrambled home at the back post after Fabrice Muamba had cleverly flicked on Gary McSheffrey's inswinging corner.
Reading secured a share of the spoils five minutes after the break through Stephen Hunt's penalty after the Irishman had been hauled down by Maik Taylor.
Shaun Maloney's stunning free-kick salvaged a point for Aston Villa as they drew 1-1 with Sunderland at the Stadium of Light.
The hosts started brightly and were rewarded for their early endeavour after nine minutes as Danny Higginbotham rose highest to glance Ross Wallace's teasing corner past Scott Carson.
But Villa threatened for large periods in the second half and levelled after 73 minutes as Maloney whipped home a free-kick which left Black Cats' goalkeeper Darren Ward rooted to the spot.
Danny Collins had a stoppage-time header ruled out by referee Steve Bennett as Roy Keane's side threatened to enjoy yet another late show.
A sensational goal from Tuncay Sanli gave Middlesbrough their second consecutive win as they eased past rock-bottom Derby.
Stewart Downing burst free down the left flank and his cross was met by Tuncay, who fired a majestic first-time volley past Stephen Bywater.
Joey Barton's 90th-minute penalty gave Newcastle a last-gasp win at Fulham and kept the home side in the Premier League drop zone.
Referee Howard Webb ruined Cottagers defender Elliot Omuzusi's 19th birthday when he awarded the fateful spot-kick for a challenge on Alan Smith.