The Loan Report returns from the last international break of 2016 and brings three more goals with it, as we tick into the second half century of goals this season. Strikes 51, 52, and 53 are below…
Goal number 51 belongs to Nathan Aké, who marked his first AFC Bournemouth start in style by scoring the only goal of the game away to Stoke and helping his side to an important 1-0 win. He was entrusted with an even rarer start at centre-back – Watford used him mainly as a left-back last season and Eddie Howe had previously intimated he would be used in midfield at Bournemouth – but played well, and his goal will have helped his longer-term cause no end.
Later on Saturday, Lewis Baker kept the good times rolling with another superb strike for Vitesse. Having notched in each of England Under-21s’ games over the past fortnight, he returned to Eredivisie action in style with this latest effort taking him to 8 goals in 15 games for the Arnhem club.
LEWIS BAKER! https://t.co/nOPEes1zDU
— Off The Post News (@offthepostnews) November 19, 2016
His performance was otherwise unremarkable and he was certainly quiet at times, but his knack of contributing in the most meaningful way is growing and cannot be ignored. He also fared better than either of his Chelsea colleagues on the day, with Nathan playing just 35 minutes before being substituted, and Matt Miazga relegated to the bench to halt a run of starts.
Sticking with the Dutch League, Bertrand Traore has found some form of late too and grabbed his fifth of the season for Ajax on Sunday in a very comfortable 5-0 win over NEC.
Aké’s antics were a pleasant distraction from another otherwise disappointing weekend in the Premier League; Watford still won’t pick Kenedy, Loic Remy isn’t quite fit enough to play for Crystal Palace yet, and Patrick Bamford’s Burnley play on Monday night at West Bromwich Albion.
In the Championship, Tomas Kalas played the full match and Lucas Piazon got 55 minutes for Fulham in a 1-1 draw at home to Sheffield Wednesday, but Kasey Palmer did weigh in with an assist for Tommy Smith during Huddersfield’s 3-2 defeat at Cardiff.
Tammy Abraham played the entirety of Bristol City’s 1-0 defeat at Birmingham, whilst Izzy Brown played half an hour from the bench as Rotherham lost 3-0 at Derby. Christian Atsu, however, was an unused substitute for Newcastle in their 2-0 win at Leeds on Sunday.
In League One, Charlie Colkett and Jake Clarke-Salter both missed out on involvement in Bristol Rovers’ FA Cup replay but both were restored to the starting line-up for Saturday’s goalless draw against managerless MK Dons. Clarke-Salter played the full match whilst Colkett was taken off in the second half.
Crawley’s Alex Davey did play against Rovers in that FA Cup replay, losing 4-2 after extra time, and was then on the bench at Mansfield on Saturday only to be called upon after 35 minutes due to an injury to Mark Connolly. Mitchell Beeney played no part in either match.
Alex Kiwomya was another on the losing side in an FA Cup replay for Crewe and also picked up an injury which ruled him out of their 0-0 draw at Barnet on Saturday. Jordan Houghton however – who leads all loanees in minutes played so far – got another full ninety as Doncaster edged Hartlepool 2-1.
Jamal Blackman helped Wycombe to a 2-1 win at Cambridge.
Dion Conroy played 69 minutes for Aldershot against Macclesfield, with Nathan Baxter in goal again for the Metropolitan Police as they beat Grays 3-1.
There was very good news this week as Andreas Christensen returned from a gluteal injury ahead of schedule, but he was unable to drive Borussia Mönchengladbach to victory, instead being on the wrong end of a 2-1 defeat to Köln.
Baba Rahman played a handful of stoppage time moments as Schalke beat Wolfburg but they were more than Michael Hector got; the Jamaican remained an unused substitute for Eintracht Frankfurt at Werder Bremen.
All three Blues loanees in La Liga now have new managers as Gustavo Poyet was given his marching orders at Betis last week. New manager Víctor Sánchez only gave Charly Musonda thirteen minutes as a sub in Friday’s win over Las Palmas, but will hopefully be more amenable to including the Belgian playmaker than Poyet was.
Jeremie Boga STARTED and got a full match for Granada in a well-earned 1-1 draw at Valencia, which bodes very well for him going forward, but Victorien Angban was an unused substitute.
Juan Cuadrado was pressed into unexpected duty for Juventus on Saturday as he replaced Stephane Lichtsteiner just 25 minutes into their 3-0 win over Pescara, but Mario Pašalić only played the final two minutes of the Milan derby.
Danilo Pantic was an unused substitute for Excelsior.
Matej Delač continued in goal as Mouscron were beaten 2-0 at home by Gent; Islam Feruz got five minutes late on as a sub. Cristian Cuevas did get 90 minutes for STVV but they too were beaten on their own turf, this time 1-0 by Club Brugge.
Kenneth Omeruo missed Alanyaspor’s defeat at Osmanlispor having picked up an injury on Nigeria duty.
Joao Rodriguez didn’t play for Santa Fe again, as if anyone expected him to.
Wallace was an unused substitute as Gremio drew 1-1 at Sao Paolo.