The past seven days have been amongst the most productive so far this season for Chelsea’s young loanees, with two players scoring their first goals of the season. Let’s delve in.
With another week of double-header action, Jack Cork and Ben Gordon both used the extra match to find the back of the net, the latter for the first time as a professional.
The left-back had come close to opening his account in creating an own goal last weekend, but was on the scoresheet proper on Wednesday night for Kilmarnock at home to Hamilton.
Gordon opened the scoring in the 34th minute and it came in some style, stepping inside his man on the edge of the area before curling a beauty of an effort into the top corner.
Cork, meanwhile, had opened his account for the season the night before with the equaliser for Burnley in a 1-1 draw at home to Doncaster.
The England Under-21 midfielder had been unfortunate to play a part in the visitors’ goal, deflecting a cross onto his own post before the rebound was tapped in, but he made amends midway through the second half with a close range header.
You can see highlights of the match on the BBC Sport Website.
Both had an entirely less remarkable weekend, Gordon playing the full 90 minutes in a 1-1 draw away to Dundee United, and Cork featuring throughout in an up and down 3-2 victory at home to Watford.
In Premier League action, Michael Mancienne started in midfield at home to Arsenal and was part of an impressive team performance at home to Arsenal.
Goals in the first and last minutes from Marouane Chamakh meant Mick McCarthy’s side lost but the hosts were in the game for a long time and on another day may have won. Michael was withdrawn ten minutes from time as Sylvan Ebanks-Blake was introduced in hope of forcing an equaliser.
He was dropped to the bench on Saturday and remained there, however, as Wolves fell to a second straight defeat. This time they were less impressive in going three goals behind to Bolton, and despite a late rally, they lost 3-2.
Ryan Bertrand started twice for Nottingham Forest this week, in a midweek 2-1 win at home to Coventry City before holding QPR to a draw and a clean sheet on Saturday.
After a brief sojourn on the sidelines, he is firmly back in contention at the City Ground, and with six weeks left in his spell at the club, his aim must be to push on and earn a step up to the top flight for the second half of the season.
For Conor Clifford meanwhile, the aim will be to extend his stay at Plymouth beyond this week (as his deal expires in a matter of days), and the Irishman has certainly impressed so far.
Argyle lost 1-0 away to Tranmere this weekend, but Clifford was one who came out of the match with credit, going close to a goal early on. Some supporters are pessimistic that they can hold onto him in the face of competition from better teams, whilst Peter Reid remains non-committal on the chances.
Whilst Conor’s short-term future is up for debate, Rhys Taylor’s isn’t. Despite Steve Phillips now being fit and ready to play, the Welshman remains Dario Gradi’s number one at Crewe.
The Railwaymen exited the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy on Wednesday away to Carlisle, but picked up their league form four days later with an excellent 3-1 win at Gillingham.
After a rare shaky performance at Brunton Park, there were calls from some supporters for Rhys to be dropped, but he fought back well and made a number of important saves away to the Gills to help secure the three points.
In Holland, Vitesse may be settling into life under new manager Albert Ferrer, but Matej Delac disappointly remains on the bench, playing second fiddle to Eloy Room.
Ferrer picked up his first league win in management on Sunday with a superb 5-1 win away to VVV Venlo after a 3-0 Dutch Cup victory over Rijnsburgse Boys on Wednesday.
Captain Slobodan Rajkovic was the only one of the Chelsea trio to play in the KNVB-beker victory, whilst Nemanja Matic joined him for the goal glut at Venlo. Neither were involved in a goal but are clear regulars in the team as they embark upon the Chapi era.
Tomas Kalas was not involved for Sigma Olomouc at any level this week.
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