In this week’s instalment of the Loan Report, a ten-goal thriller at Chesterfield for Rhys Taylor takes centre stage as we check up on Chelsea’s young loanees.
Crewe’s Welsh goalkeeper has been in fine form so far this season and has been one of the reasons for the club’s impressive unbeaten run, which continued on Saturday despite dropping a three-goal lead to end up drawing 5-5 in what was an astounding match at the B2Net Stadium.
Earlier in the week Taylor was the main reason for a point earned against Macclesfield, with Ajay Leitch-Smith’s late equaliser coming only after a barrage of visiting attacks were repelled by the 20 year-old, but he was helpless on Saturday as his team-mates imploded in the closing stages.
Holding a 3-0 advantage after just 13 minutes, Crewe had allowed the Spireites back to 2-4, but appeared to have put the game to bed with a fifth goal ten minutes from time. However, in conceding two penalties, they facilitated the most unlikely of comebacks, with Rhys unable to do anything to prevent it.
Elsewhere in England there was another full slate of action, starting at the top where Michael Mancienne returned to the Wolves starting eleven and completed the ninety minutes away to Wigan in a 2-0 defeat.
His presence in midfield was made even more important after Karl Henry’s early dismissal, and whilst opinion on his performance ranged from superb to terrible, he was up against it throughout the match. With Henry now suspended, expect to see more from Michael in the Wolves midfield in the coming weeks.
In The Championship, it appears that Jack Cork has forced his way into the Burnley team and is impressing to boot. A 4-0 mauling of Hull at Turf Moor on Tuesday night was followed by a hard-earned point away to Millwall on Saturday, with the Under-21 international playing every second of both fixtures.
He has forced veteran Graham Alexander onto the bench and whilst it’s a bold move from Brian Laws, it’s certainly being justified by Cork thus far, and long may it continue.
Ryan Bertrand, of course, is a regular at Nottingham Forest, but the results are still not coming for Billy Davies’ team. A pair of 1-1 draws this week takes their record to seven stalemates from their first ten fixtures, and whilst only one defeat is impressive, they have dropped a fair number of points already this fledgling season.
It was Bertrand’s cross which provided Tuesday night’s equaliser for Paul McKenna against Sheffield United, and he went on to force Steve Simonson into a sprawling save when searching for a winner. A yellow card was the only notable event from his outing at Doncaster yesterday.
Ben Gordon was perhaps surprisingly an unused substitute for Kilmarnock’s home defeat to Dundee United as the defender had been an ever-present so far this year and by all accounts one of the team’s standout performers. Veteran Garry Hay replaced him in a decision which was not affected by injury or discipline, so we’ll have to wait and see how this plays out.
In Holland, Nemanja Matic and Slobodan Rajkovic are contributing to a strong campaign thus far from Vitesse, but the club’s defensive security has meant that Matej Delac is having to bide his time on the sidelines.
Another clean sheet for Eloy Room in Friday night’s 0-0 draw will keep the incumbent in the starting role for now, but the Serbian duo have quickly become key pieces of the puzzle.
Matic has been named in a pair of league ‘team of the week’ lists, whilst Rajkovic has impressed enough to earn a long-awaited recall to the Serbian national team setup for next week’s international slate.
Tomas Kalas’ week saw a 3-0 defeat for Sigma B away to Opava, but his performance was one of the few bright spots in the defeat, and he hit the crossbar in the second half.