The Sky Bet Championship took centre stage this weekend as League One and Two were preoccupied were FA Cup action, and a staggering 42 goals were scored across three days, beginning with Fulham’s 2-1 win at Swansea City on Friday night.
Here are a few of the stories you may have missed...
1. Seventh heaven for Brentford
Whatever Thomas Frank said in the dressing room before Brentford’s game with Luton Town on Saturday clearly worked wonders, as the Bees comprehensively beat the Hatters at Griffin Park. Seven goals in 90 minutes handed his side three points, and in turn sent them to within one of the final Play-Off spot in the Championship. A hat-trick from Josh Dasilva was the highlight, as Brentford scored seven goals in a Football League game for the first time in 25 years, when they beat Plymouth Argyle back in December 1994.
2. Puscas rescues Reading with a sub-five-minute hat-trick
Three points looked like they would be staying at the DW Stadium with Wigan Athletic in their game against Reading on Saturday, but Royals forward Geroge Puscas had other ideas. Latics’ Joe Garner opened the scoring in the first period but, with just over ten minutes of the second half remaining, Puscas took the game by the scruff of the neck and turned on the style, netting three times in just four minutes and 58 seconds. In doing so, the 23-year-old became the first player to score a league hat-trick for Reading since Orlando Sá against Ipswich Town back in September 2015.
3. Tykes end torrid 17-game winless run
Gerhard Struber was chosen as Daniel Stendel’s successor in late November, but Barnsley fans had to wait to see their new manager at Oakwell, and that day finally came on Saturday as Hull City visited South Yorkshire. The Tykes had not tasted victory in the Sky Bet Championship since the opening day of the season, when Luke Thomas’ 13th-minute strike saw off Fulham. Luckily, the new manager bounce finally kicked in for Barnsley, as they ran out 3-1 winners against the Tigers, with goals from Alex Mowatt, Mike Bahre and Conor Chaplin relieving a slight bit of pressure for the new man in charge.
4. Wayne Rooney begins player/coach role at Derby County
Former England captain Wayne Rooney was introduced to the Pride Park faithful ahead of their game on Saturday afternoon against Queens Park Rangers, though the striker won't take to the pitch in a playing capacity until January. The game itself saw the Rams take the lead through a stunning Martyn Waghorn free-kick in the 23rd minute, but the R’s hit back just before the break through a Eberechi Eze spot kick. Derby are yet to match the form they found last season, and find themselves in 14th position after 19 games.
5. West Bromwich Albion return top of the table with last-gasp winner
With Leeds United’s win over Middlesbrough on Saturday afternoon, Marcelo Bielsa’s men sat top of the Sky Bet Championship once again as they look to return to the Premier League after a 15-year absence. The league standings would change again on Monday night though, as West Bromwich Albion leapfrogged Leeds after Charlie Austin converted a last-minute penalty against Preston North End at Deepdale. The two Clubs have been playing cat and mouse all season, and have left behind the chasing pack.