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Monday, August 27, 2012
Wrong end of the stick

Will Tidey

Welcome to The Trawler, your weekly submersion through the teeming waters of life in the Championship, League One and League Two. You might be surprised what you find down there.

Pedersen gives Shebby some stick

Morten Gamst Pedersen stole the Football League stage this weekend when he celebrated his goal for Blackburn by hobbling down the touchline with a walking stick. Pedersen's antics were in response to the pre-season accusation by Rovers' global advisor Shebby Singh that he was "a pensioner", past his prime at 30 years-old. Singh also said, in that infamous rant, that manager Steve Kean would be sacked if Blackburn lost their opening three games - but their 2-1 victory against Leicester made it seven points from nine and put them third in the table. Kean admitted his team weren't at their best at Ewood Park, but suggested it was a sign of a good team to win when you don't play well. He described Pedersen's celebration of the winner as "tongue-in-cheek banter."

Ince red-hot for Tangerines

Tom Ince, the son of former Manchester United, Liverpool and England midfielder Paul, turned in a virtuoso performance for Blackpool as they made it three wins from three to top the Championship. Ince scored twice and played his part in three others as Blackpool ran out 6-0 victors against Ipswich on Saturday. The 20-year-old has been linked with a possible move away from Blackpool, but manager Ian Holloway is confident that he will stay at Bloomfield Road for now. "The transfer deadline doesn't bother me because he's got his dad, Paul Ince, who understands what is best for him," Holloway said. "He knows that Tom needs games to develop and he's at a very good place at Blackpool to do that. I had a conversation with his dad, and he wants his boy to stay here."

Bridge on target

Wayne Bridge scored his first league goal since December 2003 in Brighton's 5-1 battering of Barnsley at the Amex Stadium. The former Chelsea and Manchester City fullback fired home from distance as Gus Poyet's Seagulls recorded their first victory of the new campaign. Barnsley manager Keith Hill blamed an injury crisis for his team's performance, while simultaneously refusing to make excuses. "We had 12 players out but I have no excuses whatsoever. It was inept and I include myself in that," he said. Exactly, Keith, well put.

Coventry remove Thorn from their side

League One Coventry have sacked manager Andy Thorn after starting the new season with three straight draws. The Sky Blues lost a 2-0 lead against Bury on Saturday and it seemingly sounded the death knell for Thorn's 16-month reign at the club. Chief executive Tim Fisher said in a statement: "... The fact that we have surrendered the lead in the first three league games has not helped, but there are several other factors in this decision  not just three disappointing results." Richard Shaw and Lee Carsley will take temporary charge as Coventry seek a new manager.

Late show at Carlisle

Fans who left Brunton Park early on Saturday missed no fewer than four goals in a blockbuster finish that the Carlisle manager Carl Abbott described as "ridiculous". Carlisle and Portsmouth were level at 1-1 with 89 minutes on the clock before Ashley Harris and James Berrett scored two goals in two minutes to put them 3-1 up. Pompey struck back through Conor Clifford soon afterwards, but there was still time for Paddy Madden to make it 4-2 in the sixth and final minute of added time. "We never do things easy, do we?" said Abbot afterwards. "And I think there's a bit of anxiety about getting your first league win."

Di Canio corner

Swindon's quest for back-to-back promotions is up and running with seven points from their first three games. Paolo Di Canio's team beat ten-man MK Dons in League One on Saturday, with Matt Ritchie scoring the winner against an opposition who couldn't even find enough bodies to fill their substitutes' bench. "It probably wasn't our best game, but in the first half we played our football," Di Canio said. "The second half I didn't completely enjoy because we played at a very low tempo." Up next for Swindon is a trip to face Premier League Stoke in the League Cup on Tuesday night.

Lightning strikes to deny Rovers

Bristol Rovers were 3-1 up at Wycombe when a torrential downpour, combined with flashes of lightning, prompted the stadium manager at Adams Park to advise officials to abandon the match in the 65th minute. Rovers fans were, unsurprisingly, angered by the decision, which robbed their team of a first victory this season - but their manager Mark McGhee retained a sense of perspective. "It was a genuine abandonment," he said. "It was the safety officer's decision, and not the referee's."

Goal buffets

Don't be surprised if Scunthorpe and AFC Wimbledon pick up a couple of extra defenders before the transfer window shuts, based on their respective goal difference totals after three games. League One Scunny have conceded nine, while AFC Wimbledon have shipped 11 in League Two - all of them coming in their last two games, a 6-2 defeat at Burton Albion followed by a 5-1 hammering away at Bradford on Saturday.

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