It was a weekend of big scorelines in the Championship, with 42 goals spread across the weekend’s fixtures– 15 of them coming in just two games. Following a fortnight of international football, teams continued to jostle for early positioning in the table. For some, the fear of being relegation favourites was further compounded, while others continued their unbeaten runs.
Of all the results, the most eye-catching win goes to Blackburn Rovers, whose newest recruit Jordan Rhodes scored two as they thrashed Bristol City 5-3 at Ashton Gate. City had taken the lead just a minute into the match when Albert Adomah shot from close range, but Rhodes soon pulled Rovers level with a similar effort on 27 minutes. Nuno Gomes scored the second goal for Blackburn ten minutes into the second half, only for City to equalise to make it 2-2.
If you ever needed an example of how the Championship can entertain, this was it, as Rovers then went on to take the lead once more with ten minutes remaining only for City to score another equaliser. The final two goals arrived in stoppage time, however, with Blackburn scoring both, defender Scott Dann scoring a ferocious fourth and Rhodes a composed fifth. Blackburn, undefeated in the league, now lead the Championship on 11 points.
In one of the weekend’s Friday fixtures, Brighton & Hove Albion trounced Sheffield Wednesday, with a 3-0 scoreline that sent Brighton top for a night and confined Wednesday to their second defeat in a row. Wednesday hadn’t lost a game in 19 fixtures prior to their defeat at Crystal Palace a fortnight ago and probably didn’t expect to concede three at Brighton’s American Express Stadium. Loan signing Wayne Bridge’s deflected free-kick put the Seagulls a goal up midway through the first half, and goals from Craig Mackail-Smith – the striker’s fifth of the season – and Will Buckley secured the win.
Hull City have continued their impressive start to the season, thumping four goals past Millwall to win 4-1. The young Tigers side took the lead through a long-range effort from Slovenian international Robert Koren, Jay Simpson and Abdoulaye Faye scored the second and third, while recent recruit Sone Aluko rounded off the scoreline with the fourth. Darius Henderson scored Millwall’s consolation midway through the second half.
Another high-scoring result came at the foot of the table as Burnley thrashed hapless Peterborough 5-2. The Posh are languishing in 24th place with zero points, and despite having the lead at one point, they didn’t look like a side capable of winning. Burnley equalised with an own goal from Michael Bostwick five minutes from half-time, and the Clarets pushed on to score a further three goals, two of which came from striker Charlie Austin.
Promotion hopefuls Blackpool were held to a 1-1 draw at Barnsley, Craig Davies putting the Tykes ahead early in the first half, only for the talented youngster Tom Ince to score an equaliser.
The league’s only other draw came as Nottingham Forest secured what looked like an unlikely point against Midlands rivals Birmingham City, scoring two late goals to take a share of the spoils. City had taken the lead with goals from Hayden Mullins and Marlon King, only for Forest’s substitute Simon Cox to start the fight back with some excellent control and composure for his goal 17 minutes from the end. The equaliser came with just four minutes remaining as a Dan Harding arrived at the far post to place a shot past goalkeeper Jack Butland. Forest are another side continuing an unbeaten start to the season.
Craig Bellamy and Peter Whittingham secured all three points for Cardiff City as they defeated Leeds United. Bellamy’s was the pick of the bunch – a spectacular free-kick minutes after coming on as a substitute – while Whittingham’s goal came from the penalty spot. Leeds’ Rodolph Austin scored their only goal with a 30-yard free-kick.
Sitting just outside the play-off spots are Huddersfield Town and Middlesbrough, both of whom won difficult ties this weekend. Huddersfield defeated Derby County with a solitary goal coming from Daniel Ward early in the game, while Middlesbrough scored two against Ipswich Town. Luke Williams scored the first in the first half, while Mustapha Carayol netted the second in stoppage time to secure the win.
One team unprepared for a difficult start to the season were relegated Bolton Wanderers, who were sitting just above the relegation zone on four points at the start of the day. Their opponents Watford have had an indifferent start to the season following an opening day win, and this indifference continued as they fell to a 2-1 defeat to Wanderers at the Reebok Stadium. Matt Mills put Bolton ahead just three minutes into the game and Kevin Davies scored the second shortly before half-time. Watford’s Lloyd Doyley scored a goal with 30 minutes remaining, but Watford couldn’t push on.
Newly promoted Charlton Athletic fell to their second defeat in a row with a home capitulation to rivals Crystal Palace. South African international Kagisho Dikgacoi scored the only goal of the game with a thunderous volley ten minutes into the second half. Palace’s wing duo of Wilfried Zaha and Yannick Bolasie impressed for the Eagles, tormenting the Addick’s defence for much of the game.
Sunday’s game saw Leicester City succumb to their third away defeat of the season as they fell to two Wolverhampton Wanderers goals in the first half. Sylvan Ebanks-Blake continued his rich vein of form by scoring the first, his third goal of the season, and Richard Stearman extended their lead by another a few minutes later. Leicester made a late fight-back attempt following a goal from Paul Konchesky in the 70th minute, but it wasn’t enough and it leaves Leicester manager Nigel Pearson fearing for his job in light of his side’s poor start to the season.
Tags: Blackburn Rovers, Championship, Craig Bellamy, Goals, Jordan Rhodes