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The EFL weekend review

20 December 2021

The Sky Bet Championship, Sky Bet League One and Sky Bet League Two produced a Christmas cracker this weekend.

We take a look back at some of the key headlines from across the three divisions…


Five wins on the spin, including Blackburn Rovers’ latest 4-0 trouncing of Birmingham City, surely puts Tony Mowbray’s rampant Rovers side in contention for a top two berth. The Lancashire side moved to just a point off second-placed AFC Bournemouth, with Blackburn making light work of the Blues on Saturday.

The Cherries, on the other hand, are now six games without a win, slipping to a narrow 1-0 defeat to Middlesbrough at the weekend. The Teessiders resigned Scott Parker’s side to back-to-back defeats, with Andraz Sporar’s penalty kick the difference.

Nottingham Forest have their sights set firmly on the top six, with a 2-1 victory over Hull City putting Steve Cooper’s men within sniffing distance of the Play-Off places, hot on the heels of Stoke City and Queens Park Rangers, level on 35 points.

There were pre-Christmas wins to set the festive mood for Huddersfield Town and Blackpool, who saw off Bristol City and Peterborough United respectively. The Terriers came from behind to secure maximum points for their first away win since September. Meanwhile, for the Tangerines, the 3-1 triumph marked the end of a seven-game winless streak, with Neil Critchley’s side occupying 12th-place heading into the Boxing Day schedule.


Wigan Athletic emerged victorious against promotion rivals Oxford United, as James McClean popped up with a late winner to take all three points back to Greater Manchester from the Kassam Stadium. Karl Robinson’s side made up a 2-0 deficit, only for McClean to strike in the 86th minute and claim the victory.

Elsewhere, table toppers Rotherham United extended their unbeaten League streak to 16, completing the double over Cambridge United to sit top of the tree at Christmas. Match-winner Dan Barlaser was the hero, notching his fifth of the season, making it four goals in three League outings.

Top six sides Plymouth Argyle and Sunderland added points to the board this weekend, as the Pilgrims returned to winning ways with a 1-0 win over Charlton Athletic. Meanwhile, the Black Cats shared the spoils with Ipswich Town to make it seven unbeaten in the League, whilst the Tractor Boys’ new boss Kieran McKenna observed from the stands.

And Shrewsbury Town returned to winning ways against Cheltenham Town, whilst Morecambe and Fleetwood Town were forced to share the spoils in the goalless Lancashire derby.


Sutton United moved inside the League Two automatic promotion spots with a 1-0 win over Harrogate Town, signifying a statement of intent from Sutton. Donovan Wilson’s first-half strike was enough to seal the victory and join Forest Green Rovers and Northampton Town in the top three.

In-form Tranmere Rovers climbed to fifth place with a 1-0 victory against Leyton Orient, extending their five-game unbeaten streak and making it four wins on the spin. Orient, meanwhile, slipped to back-to-back defeats.

Elsewhere, Rochdale recorded a big win over promotion hopefuls Newport County. Jake Beesley bagged two goals and an assist, setting up Liam Kelly who put the icing on the cake for Dale, in a 3-0 win.

And Salford City managed a 1-0 triumph over Stevenage, courtesy of Jordan Turnbull, with Boro now dangling three points above the drop zone in League Two.

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