It proved to be an especially productive return to club football for Chelsea’s young loanees after the international break, with no fewer than five individuals finding the back of the net. They all share the headlines this week, with a pair of Vitesse Arnhem starlets leading the way.
Lucas Piazon and Patrick van Aanholt have been the most successful of the six Chelsea loanees assigned to Vitesse, and they were both integral to a sensational turnaround away to Heerenveen on Saturday night. Finding themselves 2-0 down, the Gelderlanders hauled themselves back into the game when Piazon turned home with a low left-footed shot from close range, and then equalised when the Brazilian swung a free kick into the box and saw it elude everyone. He was officially awarded the goal despite claims of Mike Havenaar getting a touch.
The best was yet to come though, as Piazon turned provider in stoppage time, trapping a long ball and laying it off for Van Aanholt to steam onto and steer a gorgeous shot into the top corner from the edge of the area to seal the comeback and claim a 3-2 win.
Christian Atsu made his first start for the club and completed 90 minutes, playing well for the most part, whilst Gael Kakuta was an unused substitute. Sam Hutchinson and Cristian Cuevas still lack the match fitness to feature in the first team and are building up their levels of readiness for the club’s Under-21 side.
Back in England, Patrick Bamford added a 12th goal of the season for Milton Keynes Dons, and George Saville scored the first goal of his professional career for Brentford in a 3-1 win over Colchester United.
Midfielder Saville had been sidelined for the best part of a month through injury but was restored to Uwe Rosler’s starting line-up for the visit of Colchester, for whom Sam Walker was once again in goal (Daniel Pappoe was not named in the matchday squad). Saville would come out the winner in the battle of the loanees, eventually finding the net after missing from close range and heading against the crossbar earlier in the game. The goal, when it came, was a glorious 25-yard effort which left Walker helpless as it crashed in off the goalpost.
It was new and rare territory for Saville, but for Bamford, it was business as usual as his reputation continues to grow with each passing week. He clinched all three points for MK Dons against Rotherham with a last-minute winner, a strike right out of the top drawer, arrowing a first-time effort into the top corner from the edge of the area, leaving the goalkeeper rooted to the spot.
With so many high-profile headline-grabbers, it would have been easy to overlook the regular contributions of Thorgan Hazard, but on a day where his older brother scored twice against Cardiff, he struck for the eighth time in 13 games courtesy of a penalty kick in a 1-1 draw away to Cercle Bruges.
Romelu Lukaku played 68 minutes of Everton’s 2-1 win over Hull City, but after a stupendous run of form in his last three or four appearances, he was considerably quieter on this occasion.
Victor Moses played 90 minutes for Liverpool in a 2-2 draw away to Newcastle and has already seemingly become a regular and appreciated part of Brendan Rodgers’ plans.
In The Championship, Josh McEachran completed his first 90 minutes as a Watford player in their 3-2 home defeat against Derby County. He was involved in the move for Fernando Forestieri’s goal, but was also involved in some uncertain play at the other end which allowed Jamie Ward to score the second of his goals for the visitors.
Todd Kane played 90 minutes for Blackburn in a 1-0 defeat to Charlton, picking up another yellow card, whilst Nathaniel Chalobah was suspended for Nottingham Forest’s draw with Bournemouth having been sent off against Brighton last time out.
Milan Lalkovic is the sole League One player yet to be covered, and after a week away with Slovakia’s Under-21s, he was eased back into domestic duty with a couple of minutes as a substitute in Walsall’s 2-1 win against Stevenage.
With Vitesse covered in the headlines, it leaves just Stipe Perica to catch up on. He got 20 minutes off the bench – he is yet to start for NAC Breda – in a 4-2 defeat at FC Utrecht.
Wallace was on the bench for Inter in a dramatic match away to Torino but did get on for the last ten minutes of the eventual 3-3 draw.
The normally reliable and excellent Thibaut Courtois had something of a hiccup this weekend as he was credited with an own goal in Atlético Madrid’s trip to Espanyol. It was an unfortunate manner in which to concede, and certainly will go down as a ‘fluke’, but it was the only goal of the game as Atlético lost their 100% start to the season.
Oriol Romeu was an unused substitute for Valencia against Real Sociedad, and Marko Marin is out injured for Sevilla and is not expected back until mid-November.
In La Segunda, Uli Dávila was afforded a first start for Córdoba, and it came against Sabadell, where he spent the entire 2012-13 season on loan. He had a decent game, completing 69 minutes in a 1-0 win. In Segunda B, Jhon Pírez played the last thirteen minutes of Leganés’ 1-0 defeat to Huesca.
There was a first defeat of the league season for Matej Delac and FK Vojvodina on Saturday as they lost 2-1 to Sloboda Uzice. Nonetheless, it’s been a surprisingly good start for them, and they find themselves fourth after nine games, just four points from the top of the table.