While Manchester City rediscovered their old swagger with Riyad Mahrez scoring a hat-trick in their 5-0 demolition of Burnley, Premier League champions Liverpool were frustrated by conceding a hugely debatable stoppage-time penalty in a 1-1 draw at Brighton.
Later, Leeds United claimed their first win over Everton since 1990 after their Brazilian forward Raphinha scored his first goal for the club in the 78th minute for a 1-0 win at Goodison.
Already angered by fixture timings in a congested schedule and hindered by a long injury list in his squad, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp was given another reason to be unhappy following the latest contentious incident involving VAR.
The 93rd minute spot kick was only awarded following an intervention by the video assistant referee, who had earlier ruled out two Liverpool goals at Amex Stadium for offside -- one of which couldn't have been tighter against Mohamed Salah.
"You cannot imagine how many things are hard to take (at) the moment," said Klopp, whose side still moved one point clear at the top despite his list of gripes getting longer by the day.
Liverpool's coach made clear his frustration by sarcastically applauding the assistant referee after Pascal Gross converted Brighton's equaliser.
He spoke to the match officials as they walked off the field after the final whistle.
Klopp wasn't finished there, continuing his complaints post-match about a schedule that has seen Liverpool forced to play on Wednesday night in the Champions League and then Saturday lunchtime in the Premier League.
"The only thing we have to do is deal with it, recover, prepare again and go," he said.
Salah, who recently returned to action after contracting the coronavirus, was substituted around the hour mark -- just like he was on Wednesday in the 2-0 loss to Atalanta in the Champions League -- and didn't hide his unhappiness.
Klopp made it clear he was trying to protect his star attacker, who set up Liverpool's goal scored by Diogo Jota.
"We have to be careful (with Salah)," Klopp said. "He doesn't like that, but that's it."
Already missing Virgil van Dijk, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Joe Gomez and Thiago Alcantara because of injury, Liverpool have another issue to contend with after the versatile James Milner hobbled off with a hamstring problem.
Likely adding to Liverpool's frustration was the sight of arguably their biggest threat to the title, Manchester City, regaining their scoring touch a few hours later to close the gap to the champions.
They beat luckless Burnley 5-0 for the fourth straight time at home in all competitions, with Benjamin Mendy and Ferran Torres, with his first Premier League goal, also netting.
At Goodison, Everton's Richarlison had his header just before halftime ruled out for offside and Leeds striker Patrick Bamford was also denied a goal by the linesman's flag.
Raphinha's winner, though, meant Carlo Ancelotti's Everton missed the chance to go third and leaves them sixth on 16 points, while Leeds moved up to 11th with 14.
Australian Associated Press