In the fourth round of Championship games there were outstanding goals, controversial dismissals and a surprise at the top.
Here are four talking points from Saturday’s games:
Blackpool reign supreme
No one will be getting ahead of themselves at Blackpool, not least their manager Paul Ince, but the club have started the new campaign in fine form, and currently sit at the top of the Championship with 10 points from their first four games.
Saturday’s 1-0 win over a hotly-tipped Reading is the latest impressive result for a side punching above their weight and reeling from a spate of injuries.
The home side’s goal came from substitute Tom Barkhuizen, after a lazy cross-field pass from Reading’s Royston Drenthe and some poor control from Wayne Bridge – two players with more than enough experience to know better.
Blackpool have many challenges ahead should they wish to remain in the promotion chase, but for an opening to a campaign, they couldn’t have hoped for much more.
Charlton rain supreme
A defeat for Charlton against Doncaster yesterday would have seen the Addicks’ worst start to a league campaign for 17 years, and 3-0 down after 23 minutes things looked bleak. But not as bleak as the South London sky, as torrential rain and a sodden pitch forced referee Lee Collins to delay the match while the conditions were assessed.
When the teams returned, it was to something of a Charlton revival, with a goal from Simon Church and the dismissal of Doncaster’s Paul Keegan giving the home side hope.
But much to the annoyance of everyone involved with the visiting team, Collins finally called time on the match after 45 minutes of entertaining if at times comical play.
Extraordinary goals in abundance
Blackburn finally kick-started their season with a display of outstanding finishing at Ewood Park, but not before going behind to an impressive strike from Barnsley’s Chris Dagnall. From that point on Rovers displayed some breath-taking finishing, first through Tom Cairney’s free-kick and later by Jordan Rhodes and Todd Kane.
It was Rhodes' second that spoke of a player who has rediscovered his scoring touch – a deft lob over the onrushing Luke Steele. But his first was equally important, a towering header that may have just kick-started his season.
Welcome back James Vaughan
The former Everton striker was blighted by injury for much of his early career, to such an extent that the promising youngster played only 49 times in seven years at Goodison Park. But his form so far this season for Huddersfield suggests he is ready to make up for lost time.
Still only 25, Vaughan scored a hat-trick against Bournemouth that took his season’s tally to seven. And on this form Huddersfield could prove a tricky opponent for practically everyone.
The striker’s goals were effective rather than dazzling, with a close range header followed by a neatly taken second and a thumping penalty to complete his hat-trick. The pick of the Terriers’ strikes came in the form of their fifth and final goal in their 5-2 win – a left-foot curler from the outstanding Adam Clayton.
image: © joncandy