What can be learnt from matchday six of Championship action?
Relaid pitch is reason for Charlton’s early success
The Addicks have stormed their way into play-off contention after six games this season, having yet to lose, and recording victories in all three of their home games.
Saturday’s 1-0 victory over Watford, during which the Hornets dominated play but failed to come away with a result, was the kind of performance that is commonly seen as making champions. It is the games when you fail to play well but still grab a result that are the most beneficial, and head coach Bob Peeters has claimed that the pitch at The Valley, which was relaid over the summer, has been instrumental in Charlton starting the season so well.
He said: “[At] Charlton last season there were places where the ball was not even rolling.
"It was not a pitch, it was just mud. The way we want to play, it is important we have a good pitch and no one could play football on the pitch last season."
Forest top the Championship table after six games, remaining unbeaten and with four wins from six. Their 1-1 draw with Derby on Sunday was the first time they faced a team with similar promotion dreams as them, and having claimed a point, there must be thoughts of remaining unbeaten for as long as possible.
Forest face bottom club Fulham on Wednesday, before Millwall, Brighton and Wigan all face the league leaders in September. All four games are realistically winnable for Stuart Pearce’s men, meaning they could extend their unbeaten run until the end of the month - a ten game haul.
Adryan’s bench role was best for Leeds United
Prior to Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Birmingham, Adryan was touted as the saviour of football at Elland Road. Having featured in just one developmental squad fixture, fans were clamouring to see their new star in action, and, despite injury fears and a lack of match fitness, many were annoyed when he could only claim a spot on the bench for the visit to St Andrews.
However, the Whites played well, coming back from one-goal down to claim a point - without the Brazilian even coming off the bench. His failure to appear was the best decision for the club, with a tough run of fixtures coming up, starting with a trip to Bournemouth tonight, and then three more games this month. Having a fully fit Adryan for just two of those games will be better than rushing him into match action and potentially curtailing his season before it has even begun.
Fulham are losing, but Magath looks no closer to the exit
A first point of the season for the Cottagers prior to the international break showed a number of improvements, hinting that Fulham’s season may finally be on the up. However, a 3-0 defeat at Reading, capped by Matt Smith’s dismissal inside 20 minutes, returned the Cottagers to their early season performances - and extended their win-less start to the season.
Despite Leeds and Watford both dismissing mangers with better records than Felix Magath, the German coach looks to be safe in his job for the foreseeable future - with no rumours of dismissal or replacements emanating from the club. Why this is remains to be seen, but if Fulham continue to lose, Magath will have some serious questions to answer about the future of the club.
Are Brentford dark horses for promotion
The Bees snuck into the final play-off place on Saturday, with their 3-2 win over Brighton moving them onto 11 points - having lost just one of their six fixtures.
The recently promoted League One runners-up have started the season in scintillating form, and, along with Wolves - who sit in third place - have bridged the gap between League One and the Championship. It appears as if they are still flying high on the confidence associated with their promotion, and it will be interesting to see whether the club can continue their run if hit with a bad spell of form.