EFL: Leeds United lose to Wigan, Bristol City win again & Colchester are beaten at last

David Raya
Brentford goalkeeper David Raya has probably had better afternoons between the sticks... but at least it didn't cost his team

After another frantic January deadline day of wheeling and dealing in the English Football League, it didn't take long for the chaos to spill into the first day of February.

In Saturday's early Championship kick-off, Said Benrahma scored a hat-trick as high-flying Brentford thrashed Hull City - but it's a game that's just as likely to be remembered for two bizarre goals in the space of eight first-half minutes.

First, Tigers defender Reece Burke managed to send a perfect glancing header into the bottom corner of his own net, before Bees goalkeeper David Raya inexplicably let a wayward 50-yard pass from an opposition player slip under his foot and in at the other end.

The tone was well and truly set for another barmy day in the EFL.

History repeating for Leeds and Wigan

Groundhog Day, the festival associated with the 1993 film starring Bill Murray as a television weatherman caught in a time loop repeatedly reliving the same day, is officially celebrated in the United States and Canada on Sunday.

At Elland Road, it seemed to come a day early for Leeds United and Wigan Athletic in the Championship. For the second time in the space of 13 months, Wigan upset the form book and the league table by going to Leeds United and winning.

What's more, for the second time in recent history, Paul Cook's team got the better of a Marcelo Bielsa Leeds side pushing for promotion, potentially derailing their bid to reach the Premier League in the process.

Leeds manager Marcelo Bielsa
Marcelo Bielsa may want to sit out the next time Leeds United play Wigan Athletic

While last April's 2-1 victory came courtesy of two goals from Gavin Massey, Saturday's 1-0 success owed much to the goalkeeping exploits of David Marshall and the brave defending of Cedric Kipre, who amends for his sending-off in the previous league visit to Elland Road.

What made Wigan's win even more remarkable was it just their third in 39 away matches in all competitions - with two of those coming against Leeds.

To add another impressive accolade, the Latics also became the first team to beat Marcelo Bielsa's Leeds twice on home soil since the Argentine took charge of the Whites in the summer of 2018.

In the short term, the result had significance at both ends of the Championship table with Leeds losing their grip on top spot after West Brom ended a seven-game winless run to climb above them, while Wigan's three points took them two points closer to climbing out of the bottom three.

The Latics are still two adrift of fourth-from-bottom Stoke, but maybe Paul Cook can have a word with those in charge of the fixtures and move all their remaining games to Elland Road instead?

Streaky Johnson strikes again

They say momentum is huge in football and there's probably no manager or head coach out there who exemplifies that more than Bristol City boss Lee Johnson.

A club record eight successive league defeats in 2016-17, nine wins in a row across all competitions last season and now four consecutive victories without conceding a goal for the first time since 1990.

Saturday's 1-0 success at Queens Park Rangers has also kept "streaky Johnson" and his team firmly in the promotion race, cutting the gap to the top two to five points.

Famara Diedhiou scored the Robins' winner in west London - and was remarkably one of five Bristol City players to score for different EFL clubs on Saturday.

Sammie Szmodics
Sammie Szmodics scored twice as Peterborough won at Ipswich in League One

The Ashton Gate outfit have numerous players out on loan across tiers two, three and four, and many of them were among the goals.

Liam Walsh scored Coventry's winner against Bristol Rovers, Tyreeq Bakinson netted in Plymouth's victory over Newport, Jonny Smith grabbed one in Oldham's 3-0 thrashing of Bradford and Sammie Szmodics scored a brace as Peterborough hammered Ipswich 4-0.

One Bristol City player who didn't score, however, was Nahki Wells.

The Bermuda forward came off the bench to make his debut against QPR, the club with whom he spent the first half of the season before being recalled by Burnley and subsequently sold to City.

Villa's Hogan scores on Blues bow

Talking of debuts, arguably no-one needed a better one than Scott Hogan - who moved on loan to Birmingham from their arch-rivals Aston Villa on Wednesday.

Thankfully, the former Brentford striker came up trumps, scoring Blues' leveller at St Andrew's as they went on to beat promotion contenders Nottingham Forest.

Scott Hogan
Scott Hogan wasn't exactly prolific for Aston Villa, but having made his Birmingham debut on Saturday now averages one goal per game for Blues

"I think the best way to get fans on my side is to score, and happily I did and we won, so it's a good result all round," Hogan told BBC WM 95.6.

"If I play regularly I'll score. That's all I want."

You wonder what Villa fans make of that, particularly as they lost at relegation rivals Bournemouth in the Premier League on Saturday.

Doyle delights on Swindon return

Swindon Town fans will certainly have finished the January transfer window with smiles on their faces after what seemed like the enforced break-up of their love affair with striker Eoin Doyle, finally reached a happy ending.

Doyle was "snatched away" from the Robins on 8 January by his parent club Bradford City, who recalled him from his successful loan spell at the County Ground which featured 23 goals in 22 games.

Those strikes had fired Swindon to the top of League Two, but Doyle's sudden departure left a void, not just in supporters' hearts but in terms of goals scored as they slumped to two surprise away defeats.

But come Thursday, everything was rosy again in the Swindon Town garden as the club confirmed Eoin was coming back and this time, it would be a permanent move from Bradford.

And that glowing feeling continued 20 minutes into their home match against Exeter City as the man they nickname the "Ginger Pele" scored once more in a Swindon shirt.

That strike set Richie Wellens' side on the way to a 2-1 victory and allowed them to maintain a four-point lead over second-placed Crewe.

Managerless Cambridge end EFL's longest unbeaten run

In the battle of the U's in League Two, there had to be only one winner.

Colchester went into the game on a 16-game unbeaten run - having not lost since October - while hosts Cambridge had scored just one goal in their previous five matches, and sacked Colin Calderwood on Wednesday.

Luke Norris put the favourites ahead, prompting caretaker boss Mark Bonner to throw on Andrew Dallas and Harvey Knibbs, who scored within 70 seconds of each other to complete the unlikeliest of late turnarounds.

"That's what I call a proper Cambridge United performance - resilience and backbone, all the things I asked for," Bonner told BBC Radio Cambridgeshire.

"The phrase I used to all the boys this week was 'I want people to see a different animal this week' and I think we did."

You know what they say about London buses...

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