Welcome back to EFL Round-Up by Last Word on Football. This column delves deep into the world of the Football League, looking at the key games from each of the three divisions as well as providing a brief overview of every result from the Championship, League One and League Two.
This week, we delve deeper into Aston Villa, Sunderland’s League One resurgence and the last minute Lincoln exploits that saw them overcome MK Dons in League Two.
EFL Round-Up – Gameweek 9
John McGinn’s Wondergoal Not Enough For Villa
Aston Villa’s league struggles continued despite John McGinn’s wondergoal; a spectacular volley from the edge of the penalty area.
The visitors, Sheffield Wednesday, took the lead soon after the break through Marco Matias’ goal. The ball broke to the Portuguese on the edge of the area and he fired cleanly into the bottom corner.
The hosts, on Steve Bruce’s 100th game in charge, equalised in astonishing fashion soon after their setback. Wednesday managed to clear a succession of Villa crosses and the ball looped to John McGinn, who swivelled and struck a magnificent side volley off the underside of the crossbar.
The moment of magic failed to inspire the Villa side, though, and they fell behind again only 13 minutes after becoming level. Steven Fletcher headed in from Joel Pelupessy’s cross and Wednesday held on for the three points.
Sunderland Finding Their Rhythm in League One
After a slower-than-expected start to life in England’s third tier, Sunderland are beginning to find their rhythm in League One. The Black Cats were 4-1 winners at the weekend as they brushed aside Rochdale.
Josh Maja scored the first of three first-half goals as he headed in from Chris Maguire’s cross, which was soon added to by Lynden Gooch’s penalty after he was fouled by Oliver Rathbone. Maja then scored his seventh of the season just before the break.
It got even better for the hosts after half-time as Gooch drove in his second and Sunderland’s fourth, and there was a consolation for the visitors when substitute Matt Done converted Jordan Williams’ cross.
Last Minute Lincoln Exploits Against MK Dons
The feature game in League Two saw Lincoln City mount a second-half comeback after going behind at home to MK Dons.
It was a goalless first half at Sincil Bank with both Josh Vickers and Lee Nicholls having to make some important saves for their respective teams. It was the Dons, though, that managed to break the deadlock midway through the second period.
Substitute Rhys Healey raced onto Ouss Cisse’s ball forward and, with a bit of luck from the bounce of the ball, he volleyed between the legs of Vickers and into the far corner.
It only took eight minutes for the hosts to respond. John Akinde, who had been causing the Dons defence all manner of problems, nodded down a free-kick and Shay McCartan lashed home on the bounce to draw level.
Deep into injury time, Lincoln found their winners as Jason Shackell outjumped Jordan Moore-Taylor and headed in to keep the Imps at the top of the table, while MK Dons drop to 14th but with a game in hand.
Preston came close to earning a precious point when they scored twice in two minutes to draw level away at Sheffield United, but a late goal from David McGoldrick ensured three points for the Blades. Stoke, also, scored two late goals but it wasn’t enough after Blackburn had already raced into a three-goal lead at the bet365 Stadium.
Leeds United produced the shock of the day as two Che Adams goals for Birmingham gave them a 2-1 victory at Elland Road while Norwich City upset the resurgence of QPR as Teemu Pukki scored the only goal in that game.
West Brom piled more pressure onto Millwall with a 2-0 victory at The Hawthorns and Reading were also home victors with a 3-0 win over Hull.
Nottingham Forest needed just a single goal to beat Rotherham, who continued their wretched away form in the Championship, and there were 0-0 draws between Ipswich and Bolton and Middlesbrough and Swansea.
There was one postponed game in League One after a medical emergency required the air ambulance to land on the pitch at Barnsley; their game against Burton was put on hold and then called off due to the incident.
Peterborough continued their strong start to the season with a four-goal haul away at Gillingham, while second-place Portsmouth were held to a 2-2 draw at home to Wycombe.
Accrington were 2-1 winners at home to AFC Wimbledon and it was the same scoreline at Charlton and at Doncaster, who beat Plymouth and Bradford respectively. Walsall also won 2-1 on their trip to Oxford.
Bristol Rovers went one better and secured a 3-1 victory when they played host to Coventry, there were 1-0 home wins for Scunthorpe and Southend against Shrewsbury and Fleetwood and, finally, Blackpool were held to a goalless draw at home by Luton.
Two goals in the final five minutes saw Oldham rescue a 3-3 draw at home to Colchester. The visitors had gone ahead twice in the game.
Exeter and Swindon also produced big wins. The Grecians were successful with a 3-1 home win against Cheltenham, while Swindon scored three times in the second half to record a victory over Yeovil.
There were away wins for Carlisle, Port Vale and Newport, all 1-0, beating Bury, Crewe and Tranmere respectively, while Stevenage won by the same score in a home fixture against Grimsby, as did Forest Green against Crawley.
Morecambe got just their second win of the season as they defeated bottom side Macclesfield, Cambridge were held to a 1-1 draw against Mansfield and, lastly, Northampton and Notts County played out a 0-0 draw at Sixfields.