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Five things: What to look out for this weekend

17 August 2017

The Sky Bet Championship and Checkatrade Trophy provided the entertainment in midweek, but it's back to a full schedule across all three divisions this weekend

We've picked out a few storylines to look out for...

At the treble

Hat-tricks can be a rare occurrence in football, but that's not been the case in the early stages of the 2017/18 campaign.

After two trebles on the first Saturday of the new season, scored by Luton Town's James Collins and Coventry City's Jodi Jones, the next weekend went one better.

Kieffer Moore hit a first-half hat-trick for Rotherham United, and he was joined by Hull City's Abel Hernandez and Peterborough United's Jack Marriott. Who will be next to claim an EFL match ball?

Team of the Week: Click here to see who joined the trio in the latest selection

Derby day

There are a couple of derbies up north this weekend, with the first taking place in South Yorkshire, and it pits Sheffield United up against Barnsley at Bramall Lane.

The game is a 12:15pm kick-off and gets the Saturday action up and running, and it's a welcome return home for the Blades after suffering back-to-back defeats on the road, without scoring.

At 3pm, it's Latics versus Latics, with Oldham Athletic hosting Wigan Athletic in an all-Greater Manchester clash. Wigan brushed aside neighbours Bury last week, will Paul Cook's men repeat the feat?

Scoring in style

With 24 clubs per division, there's always going to be plenty of goals on a matchday and, if you're lucky, there'll be some truly special ones along the way.

That usually leads to a hotly contested EFL Goal of the Weekend but, so far, only one club is getting a look in when it comes to the Sky Bet Championship.

Nottingham Forest are two from two and, after Andreas Bouchalakis' stunning brace last weekend, technically they've achieved the honour with three of their strikes.

In last week's 'five things,' we warned Birmingham City about Bristol City's fast starters, and the Robins netted inside the first minute. So Middlesbrough, take note!

No way past

After two matchdays in Sky Bet Leagues One and Two, there are four sides who are yet to be breached by the opposition attack.

Oxford United and Coventry City top their respective divisions, both scoring five without reply. Behind the U's in League One are Fleetwood Town and Shrewsbury Town, who are both at home this weekend as they look for a third consecutive clean sheet.

That's a feat already achieved by Sky Bet Championship leaders Cardiff City, who have taken nine points from nine, and are still yet to concede following a midweek win over Sheffield United.

And that leads us on to...

No way through

Northampton Town are one of three Sky Bet League One sides yet to find the back of the net, having drawn blanks in 1-0 defeats to Shrewsbury and Fleetwood. They were on the receiving end of that scoreline in the Carabao Cup too, narrowly edged out by Queens Park Rangers.

The other two are Milton Keynes Dons and Gillingham, and the pair meet at Stadium MK where they'll be hoping to give their fans something to shout about.

Ady Pennock's Gills do have a point, however, picked up following their goalless draw at Doncaster Rovers on the opening day of the campaign.

Preview: Click here for a complete look at this weekend's EFL action


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