Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers hailed the "remarkable" Luis Suarez after his hat-trick underpinned a spectacular triumph against Cardiff City.
Suarez's treble helped Liverpool on the way to a 6-3 victory in south Wales.
It was their sixth league win on the bounce and keeps them four points behind leaders Chelsea with a game in hand. The Uruguayan has now scored 28 goals this season and Rodgers said: "He is a remarkable player.
"His determination, his desire, his will is at such a big level. He is a world-class player who is enjoying his football, and long may it continue."
Martin Skrtel, meanwhile, helped himself to a double and the outstanding Daniel Sturridge also scored, but it needed a second-half masterclass from Liverpool after they twice found themselves behind and were being held 2-2 midway through a pulsating encounter.
Goals by Jordan Mutch and Fraizer Campbell raised the possibly of Cardiff causing a stunning upset, but it was not to be, and they remain firmly in the relegation zone with seven games left.
Wayne Rooney produced his own David Beckham moment to put Manchester United on course for an impressive victory at West Ham, firing home one of the most memorable goals of the season from 58 yards.
Returning to league action after progressing to the Champions League quarter-finals with a fine victory against Olympiacos, the England international netted twice as David Moyes' men proved Wednesday's result was no flash in the pan. Rooney's second saw him move on to 212 goals and overtake Jack Rowley as the third highest goalscorer in United's history, but it was his first just eight minutes into the 2-0 victory that will live long in the memory.
The 28-year-old produced a moment of magic, sending the ball sailing over Adrian in a goal similar to Beckham's wonder strike at Wimbledon in 1996. Rather aptly, the former United midfielder was at Upton Park and will have been impressed by the way Moyes' side held on to condemn West Ham to a third successive defeat.
Manchester City chalked up a 5-0 win over last-placed Fulham on the back of a Yaya Toure hat-trick.
The Ivory Coast midfielder scored a penalty in each half, the second after Fernando Amorebieta saw red, before bending in a long-range strike on 65 minutes. Fernandinho and Martin Demichelis added goals late on for City.
It was a bad afternoon for the teams in the bottom three as Sunderland were beaten 2-0 at Norwich. The Black Cats had no answer to first-half goals from Robert Snodgrass and Alex Tettey. Gus Poyet's side remain three points from safety, however, as the teams above them failed to take advantage.
West Brom did not take anything from their trip to Hull, losing 2-0 to goals from Liam Rosenior and Shane Long, while Crystal Palace were undone by a Papiss Cisse injury-time winner to lose 1-0 at Newcastle.
Swansea lost 3-2 at Everton. Wilfried Bony had cancelled out a Leyton Baines penalty, but goals from Romelu Lukaku and Ross Barkley secured a win that lifts Everton above Tottenham and into fifth. Ashley Williams headed an injury-time corner but it was too late for the Swans.