Wigan Athletic failed to win at the JJB Stadium for the second successive Saturday, after a late strike by
In front of the Latic’s highest league crowd of the season (10, 546), Paul Jewell’s outfit started well and took the lead courtesy of Liddell’s 13th goal of the season. However, profligate finishing by the home side later in the half, most notably by Nathan Ellington, kept Steve McMahon’s side in the hunt, and in the second half the play-off chasing Tangerines upped their tempo.
The visitors came close soon after the interval when Richard Walker’s header was brilliantly tipped around the post by the hosts’ goalkeeper, John Filan, but the warning went unheeded, and five minutes from time
In-form Blackpool are now unbeaten in nine league games, and Wigan Athletic, whilst they remain top, saw their lead cut to nine points by Crewe Alexandra. The pair meet at
Meanwhile, Crewe Alexandra cut the leaders lead at the summit, thanks to a spirited comeback against ten men Brentford at
The Railwaymen made their numerical advantage count in the second period as first Kenny Lunt, following good work by the impressive Steve Jones on the right, took aim and finished clinically with a fierce shot that whistled past Bees’ keeper Paul Smith’s outstretched left hand and into the bottom right hand corner of the net. The Alex then nosed in front after the home side’s Scott Marshall had harshly been adjudged to have brought down Lunt in the penalty area. The busy Lunt dusted himself down and confidently swept the resultant penalty past the hapless Smith.
The Bees did respond and were perhaps unfortunate not to grab a point.
Following a goalless first half, the lowly visitors were awarded a penalty seven minutes after the interval when home midfielder, Jason Bowen, was penalised for hand ball. Bruce Dyer duly converted the spot kick to put the Tykes into the lead. But caretaker manager, Glyn Hodges’ battlers were denied the league double over Lennie Lawrence’s promotion chasing outfit right at the death, Gordon stabbing home from close range after a cross from Alan Mahon. Cardiff remain third, but the Welshmen have now only won two of their last six games, while Barnsley drop into the bottom three due to results elsewhere.
Promotion chasing Oldham Athletic lost ground at the top as came unstuck for the sixth time at home this season when they lost 1-0 to Paul Sturrock’s Plymouth Argyle at
Another leading side to suffer a shock home reversal were Danny Wilson’s
Craig Fagan, the Robins on loan forward from Birmingham, restored parity for the home side, with a 51st minute strike following a cross from Scott Murray, but the relegation threatened U’s were not to be denied, and eight minutes from time, Thomas Pinault, with a tremendous thirty yard effort, deceived home keeper Steve Phillips, and the ball crept into the back of the net.
Queens Park Rangers continued their impressive recent run when they came from behind to share the spoils with Terry Fenwick’s lowly
The Cobblers, beaten in their last five league games at the Sixfields Stadium, started brightly and took the lead just after the quarter hour mark with a wonderful volley from Brent Rahim. Ian Holloway’s side exerted more pressure after the break and deservedly drew level when Paul Furlong netted on the hour. Both sides had chances to secure the win after that, but had to settle for a point apiece.
After a poor first half, when the only incident of note was an effort from the home side’s Steve McGhee that come back off the crossbar, the Hatters took the lead soon after the interval, when Tony Thorpe netted. Joe Kinnear’s side doubled their advantage with a Kevin Nicholls’ penalty, and although Mark Boyd reduced the arrears for Vale with three minutes remaining, it was a case of too little too late.
Luton Town are up to seventh, three points behind Queens Park Rangers, who occupy the last play-off spot, but they do have two games in hand over their West London rivals.
In a game involving two sides on the fringes of the play-off race, Tranmere Rovers and
Meanwhile at the bottom,
In an exciting East Midlands derby, in front of the highest crowd at Field Mill this season (8, 134), ex- Mansfield Town manager Billy Dearden saw his current charges Notts County succumb by the odd goal in five, in their relegation six-pointer with fast improving Mansfield Town.
After the first half had ended in stalemate, the game ignited with a three goal blast from the home team inside 19 second half minutes.
In the afternoon’s other game, a goalless draw ensued in the clash between mid table Chesterfield and Barry Fry’s Peterborough United at Saltergate. The home side dominated throughout and had numerous chances, but could not convert any of them, and the Posh would have been the happier of the two teams as they returned home to