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Championship as it happened


Birmingham 1-0 Sheff Utd
Match report
Blackpool 0-1 Bristol City
Match report
Cardiff 2-1 Southampton
Match report
Charlton 2-0 Swansea
Match report
Coventry 2-0 Norwich
Match report
Crystal Palace 0-0 Watford
Match report
Derby 0-1 Doncaster
Match report
Ipswich 1-2 Preston
Match report
Plymouth 2-2 Wolverhampton
Match report
QPR 2-1 Barnsley
Match report
Sheff Wed 4-1 Burnley
Match report


To get involved use 606 or text us your views & comments on 81111. (Not all contributions can be used)

By Paul Fletcher

1711: And that, as they say, is that. The opening day over. If every matchday is like this it is going to be a season to remember. Thanks for all your contributions, wherever you are in the world.

And to the Blackpool fans in the Antarctic, now is a good time to get stuck into that brandy.

1703: Derby boss Paul Jewell made a lot of promises towards the end of last season about bouncing straight back, winning promotion, righting the wrongs of the Premier League campaign. The defeat to Doncaster at Pride Park is not the start he will have wanted.

1700: Well done to Sheffield Wednesday, who end the day top of the fledgling table. Not so well done Burnley, who are bottom.

All the 1500 kick-offs in the Championship have finished. What a cracking day of action, sadly let down by the goalless draw between Crystal Palace and Watford (though I understand there was a touch of handbags to enliven matters there).

I make it 25 goals in Saturday's 11 fixtures - and that is not a bad return. Of course, it is a marathon not a sprint, it is not about how you start but how well you finish etc etc

1652: GOAL Blackpool 0-1 Bristol City
Late, late drama at Bloomfield Road - and heartbreaking for the home team as Steve Brooker notches with a superb left-foot strike.

1648: GOAL Cardiff 2-1 Southampton
Roger Johnson makes superb headed contact with a free-kick that the heroic Kelvin Davis cannot keep out.

1648: GOAL Coventry 2-0 Norwich
Leon McKenzie scores the decisive second for the Sky Blues, who are off to a winning start.

1646: "There are 10 of us in a tent here in Antarctica and it's minus 40. And one glass of brandy between us. Come on Blackpool."
Scott via text on 81111

You win, though I'm not sure what. How much does it cost to text from down that way?

1644: GOAL Charlton 2-0 Swansea
Andy Gray seals an opening-day win for the Addicks with a diving header at the near post.

1642: RED CARD
Marciano van Homoet of Barnsley sees red for a professional foul.

1641: Very much into the last 10 minutes. What a feast we have had today.

1640: GOAL Plymouth 2-2 Wolves
Wolves sub Sam Vokes equalises, playing a one-two with Chris Iwelumo before slotting home.

1639: "As a Blackburn fan its good to see Burnley bottom of the league again."
Parky via text on 81111

1636: A couple of results you might be interested in - Leicester beating MK Dons 1-0 in League One.

In League Two, Luton Town are losing 3-1 to Port Vale. The Hatters, on minus 30, could really do with some points. Dagenham & Redbridge are thrashing Chester 5-0.

1633: "I have flown back from Chicago for this and cannot believe how bad this is going- I've forgotten what it feels like to actually win!"
Rams for Lyf on 606
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The above supporter is a Derby fan. One who has suffered from a extraordinary dose of pre-season optimism.

1629: RED CARD
Garry Monk of Swansea is giving his marching orders after picking up his second yellow of the match.

In other news, Doncaster's goal has now been credited to Lewis Guy, not Hayter or indeed Stock as previously claimed.

And Palace have the ball in the net against Watford but the effort is ruled out for offside.

1628: (See 1600) "In competitive games, Derby last won on Saturday the 12th of May 2007. They won 2-1 away to Southampton. (The play-off final was on a Monday.)"
Join the debate on 606

I've not checked this but it looks interesting.

1625: GOAL Sheffield Wednesday 4-1 Burnley
Marcus Tudgay strokes the ball home for his second of the game after latching on to a pass from Leon Clarke. It is going swimmingly on a wet day at Hillsborough.

1623: (See 1613) "You can keep your Romania. I am looking at Copacabana beach, and although it is winter here, it is still a very comfortable 30 degrees. And the sights are amazing."
Copacabluenose on 606
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I don't know what you mean.

1619: A hat-trick for Fitz Hall? Surely not? Well he had a cracking chance from the penalty spot after a foul on Dexter Blackstock but Barnsley keeper Luke Steele makes a cracking save.

1617: Plymouth 2-1 Wolves
Marcel Seip puts the Pilgrims ahead with a volley from six yards after Wolves fail to clear a corner.

1615: GOAL Derby 0-1 Doncaster
James O'Connor puts the ball into the box and the superb Lewis Guyputs Donny ahead. Do Derby have any answer?

1613: (See 1556) "I'll see your Italy and raise you an internet cafe in rural Romania! It's been pushing 40 degrees this last week, maybe a tall frosty lager."
Fifecanary on 606
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Though Norwich are losing. That cannot be good news, surely, given your user name?

1610: Coventry 1-0 Norwich
Elliott Ward smashes the ball into the top corner from the penalty spot after Stephen Wright is brought down by Sammy Clingan.

1607: Darren Pratley puts the ball in the net for Swansea but the goal is ruled out for offside.

1605: (See 1600) "Derby last won on a Saturday on December 17th 1931 against the Queen Vic pub team with Peggy Mitchell in goal. The score was 1-0."
Andy at work via text on 81111

Busy are we?

1600: "When was the last time Derby won on a Saturday?"
Karsh, Thatcham, via text on 8111

Come on people - any answers?

1556: "Well it's 33C here in Italy and no sign of rain. I've got Championship scores updates and a cool breeze. G&T soon I think."
JA, Tuscany, via text on 81111

Think you're clever do you? I've got west London, rain and strong tea.

1553: "As a Preston fan, I'm trying not to get carried away with this scoreline but GET IN WHITES!!!"
JakePNEFan on 606
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I'm feeling opening day excitement all over the pace. Blues v Blades might not have rocked my world by it has been all drama since Kevin Phillips struck that late winner.

1546: What have Blackpool v Bristol City, Coventry v Norwich, Crystal Palace v Watford and Derby v Doncaster got in common? No goals, that's what. Boring.

I make it 15 first-half goals from the 1500 BST kick-offs. Thrilling entertainment, says I.

1545: GOAL Cardiff 1-1 Southampton
Andrew Surnam crosses from the left and David McGoldrick is first to the ball to put Saints back on level terms. Just pure drama everywhere. I'm lovin' it.

1541: GOAL Cardiff 1-0 Southampton
Steven Thompson puts the Bluebirds ahead, smashing the ball into the corner after a blocked shot fell into his path.

1540: "What's the record for most opening day goals? And will the Premier League live up to this next week? I'm going no, but you can always hope!"
Mo, Epsom, via text on 81111

The charm of the Championship, I reckon.

1537: Cardiff are well on top against Southampton, with Saints stopper Kelvin Davis pulling off several top-grade saves.

1534: GOAL Ipswich 1-2 Preston
Simon Whaley puts PNE in front, converting from Billy Jones' square ball after a quickly-taken free-kick outwits the Town defence.

1531: GOAL QPR 2-1 Barnsley
Fitz Hall to the double with a spectacular strike. Darren Moore heads the ball clear but Hall crashes it into the net from the edge of the box.

Derby's Hulse wastes another cracking chance, hitting the side netting.

1529: GOAL QPR 1-1 Barnsley
Fitz Hall hits the crossbar but the rebound falls his way and he makes no mistake second time around, tapping home from one yard.

1528: Derby's Tyrone Mears crosses for Rob Hulse, who fails to convert from six yards, the ball striking his knee.

No hat-trick for Sheffield Wednesday's Akpo Sodje, who has been replaced by Leon Clarke.

1522: GOAL Plymouth 1-1 Wolves
Michael Kightly equalises for Wolves against the run of play with a volley from eight yards from a cross by David Jones. The goals just keep coming. Pure first day drama.

1521: GOAL Ipswich 1-1 Preston
Paul McKenna smashes the ball into the top left-hand corner from 25 yards to equalise for North End.

1521: "We are top of the league. I never thought I would say that this season."
magical_trev on 606
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Very early days, I would have to say.

1517: GOAL Sheffield Wednesday 3-1 Burnley
Another for the Owls and another for Akpo Sodje, who scores from close range, tapping home Jermaine Johnson's cross.

1517: "Five goals in the first five minutes from several games, maybe just a glimpse of what's in store for the rest of the season?"
Outclassed on 606
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My wrist will fall off if this carries on.

1514: I'm told there were seven goals in six minutes. I'm looking for a dark room.

1507: GOAL Plymouth 1-0 Wolves
Rory Fallon scores after a long kick forward by Graham Stack is misjudged by the Wolves defence. Fallon lobs the ball over Wayne Hennessey in the Wolves goal.

1506: GOAL Sheffield Wednesday 2-1 Burnley
Martin Paterson pulls a goal back for the Clarets with a near-post header. I'm close to breaking point.

1505: GOAL QPR 0-1 Barnsley
Iain Hume puts the Tykes ahead after a pass from Brian Howard.

1504: GOAL Sheffield Wednesday 2-0 Burnley
Akpo Sodje converts from Dean Burton's through ball.

1502: GOAL Ipswich 1-0 Preston
Kevin Lisbie puts the Tractor Boys ahead with a close-range header. I'll admit, I'm struggling to keep up here.

1502: GOAL Charlton 1-0 Swansea
Mark Hudson puts Charlton ahead with a near-post header.

1501: GOAL Sheffield Wednesday 1-0 Burnley
Marcus Tudgay shoots over the keeper to put the Owls ahead.

1501: "I don't know how Kevin Phillips does it."
Sheffield United boss Kevin Blackwell is at a loss to explain his team's defeat at Birmingham

1500: And the day's 10 remaining Championship fixtures start.

1450: "I knew that goal by Phillips was coming, I could feel it. I just kept refreshing the page thinking I bet someone is going to score for Birmingham now. I predicted 2-1 but they still won it."
I'm Not No1 I'm No7 on 606
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Do you do racing tips?

1439: Full-time Birmingham 1-0 Sheffield United
You could say the result is harsh on the Blades, who hardly deserved to lose. But then again that is exactly why Birmingham bought Kevin Phillips.

1438: GOAL Birmingham 1-0 Sheffield United
Great touch, turn and shot from Blues substitute Kevin Phillips and the ball nestles in the bottom corner. That will be that then as it is deep in injury time. Or will it, Jon Stead hits the woodwork for the Blades within seconds of the goals.

Phillips had done virtually nothing but showed just why he is so dangerous at this level.

Just for your information, prior to that I had written...The game ends goalless. A rather average, mediocre opener to be honest. I suppose both sides will takes the positives from a point on the opening day. But for the fans there was little excitement, few chances, not much drama.

1432: Liam Ridgewell blocks a shot from Jon Stead after the striker turns to create a yard of space. Blades take a corner but before the ball arrives a United player has been penalised for an infringement.

1427: Jon Stead replaces Darius Henderson for Blades while Birmingham's Sebastian Larsson makes way for Cameron Jerome. Nobody can say that the two managers have not made attacking substitutions in this game, it is just that they have not appeared to increase the likelihood of a goal.

1422: Blades win a free-kick 25 yards from goal, however Tonge's effort is blocked by Mehdi Nafti. The quality of blocking has been excellent in this game, which perhaps tells you all you need to know.

1417: Action, decent action. O'Connor, on less than a minute, scuffs his shot but the ball breaks invitingly to McFadden, who drills it over the Blades crossbar from 16 yards.

1415: A very even game at St Andrews, let down by a lack of composure. There has been a definite absence of chances. All in all, with about 20 minutes left, the season opener has been a bit of a damp squib.

Garry O'Connor replaces Bent for Blues.

1411: Blades boss Blackwell has that look on his face, you know the one, the look when you suddenly realise that you have been watching your players knock superb cross after cross into the box all through pre-season and that, come matchday, they have then whacked the ball into the crowd all afternoon.

1408: Michael Tonge delivers a free-kick - way over all the players waiting expectantly and into the crowd. A total waste.

Kevin Phillips, brilliant last year for WBA, comes on for Gary McSheffrey.

1405: The first change and it it made by Blackwell as Billy Sharp makes way for Danny Webber. Looking for something a little more dynamic perhaps?

1403: Gary McSheffrey knocks a brilliant low and teasing ball into the Blades box but Bent cannot quite get on the end of it.

1401: Gary Speed came the closest to scoring in the first half with a crisp strike and goes close with a long-range header that narrowly misses Maik Taylor's goal.

1357: David Murphy swings a cross into the box. There are several Blades defenders in a line all waiting to clear. The moment is perhaps telling in that it illustrates how the defences have been on top in this contest.

1355: Five minutes into the second half and it is very much as you were. Plenty of meaty tackles but not many shots on target.

1352: (See 1347) Scunthorpe, of course, took the lead, not the lad. That could get confusing. My mistake - and I've corrected it.

1349: Back under way in Birmingham. No substitutions to tell you about. Can we have a goal please?

1347: Just a quick update from League One. Leeds are now beating Scunthorpe 2-1 at Glanford Park. Scunthorpe took the lead in that contest.

1339: "I'm in Blackpool. I must be the only Bristol City supporter who lives in Glasgow and I hope they have good pitch drainage here because it is making home look like the Algarve. I'd also like the thank our gracious hosts for the lovely away stand minus the roof. We might have to swim home."
Mark, Blackpool, via text on 81111

Trust me, Bloomfield Road is a lot, lot better than it was just a few years ago. Having said that Michael I don't think it of much consolation to you right now. A decade or so ago I watched an FA Cup tie at Mansfield. It rained for the entire match and I was soaked but a last-minute winner eased the mood. My mate broke down at a service station on the way home and, to kill time, I had my photo taken at some fancy booth with a machine that allowed me to place my image next to Jet from the original Gladiator line-up. I fancied her in a big way.

1332: Half-time Birmingham 0-0 Sheffield United
Plus points - plenty of effort, commitment and the odd decent opening. Negative points - perhaps a lack of quality when it matters most, with poor final balls serving to unravel crisp approach work. No goals.

1331: Stuart Parnaby doesn't quite time a challenge, legs sliding all over the shop, and he is awarded the first yellow of the Championship season.

1328: The ball breaks to Bent from a corner. He must score, but his strike from six yards is blocked by a desperate Kilgallon.

1328: (See 1304) "Pie and chips Fletch? Gotta be a pot of curry sauce too. That's what I'd have anyway."
Dave, bored at work, hungry, Birmingham via text on 81111

Almost perfect. No curry sauce. A lot of tommy ketch though.

1325: "No one has mentioned Burnley yet, we have spent some money and quality like Eagles, Van Der Schaaf (signed by Hiddink at PSV), Kalvenes and McDonald. Should rise to the top, starting with three points at Wednesday."
Matt272 on 606
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Consider your team mentioned.

1320: Blues win a free-kick in a dangerous position. An awful strike from Sebastian Larsson, weak, high, wide. It won't make his greatest hits DVD.

1318: I guess we shouldn't expect too much from the opening day of the season. Players still getting to know each other etc. Gary Naysmith tries his luck from an acute angle but his effort is easily saved.

1314: Teasing cross from McFadden that just eludes Bent. While Blades have crafted the odd opening, Blues are on top.

1311: James McFadden shows his class with a deft turn but his shot is blocked by the committed Blades defender Chris Morgan.

1308: Early concern for Blues as Martin Taylor picks up a knock. The big defender is running uncomfortably.

1304: Blues are stroking the ball around quite sweetly. I'm trying to scoff my lunch from the chippy while writing this.

1300: Billy Sharp and Martin Taylor clash. An accident from which Sharp emerges as a very poor second.

1257: Blades win a corner - the first of the season I think though I don't think that will ever qualify as a quiz question. Bent, back in defence, heads out for another corner. The ball eventually drops to Gary Speed 20 yards from goal and he forces a very decent save from Maik Taylor.

1257: "As a Cardiff fan I am delighted with positions of ourselves and Swansea in the very very early league table. It's a shame fate doesn't work alphabetically!"
lairdtim on 606
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1255: Blues starting to dominate but Blades looking solid enough so far. Not seen much of Sharp and Henderson so far.

1253: Marcus Bent and Matt Kilgallon jump for the ball. The defender catches the striker with his elbow but it is an accident. Bent does not make a meal of it, which I think is good to see.

1250: Plenty of early effort and endeavour but no clear-cut chances thus far. I expect the players are pretty happy with the wet weather. Helps keep them cool you see.

1245: And we're off. All smiles as Alex McLeish and Kevin Blackwell shook hands before the game. Plenty of empty seats at St. Andrews. Raining.

And Scunthorpe versus Leeds is also taking place in League One.
Live text - Scunthorpe v Leeds

1243: "Your table is very misleading, at the moment it says Barnsley will be promoted along with Birmingham. You are having a joke!"
RedNosedBurglars on 606
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No my friend, I really, really hope you are having a joke.

1240: Just a touch more info on the early game. Marcus Bent and Lee Carsley make their debuts for Blues, but striker Kevin Phillips has to settle for a place on the bench. The Blades have five summer signings in their squad of 16, with debuts for Greg Halford, Sun Jihai and Darius Henderson.

1232: "Fletch, what are your thoughts on tomorrow? I'm a little worried that we've only got Earny fit up front and Reading have retained most of what was a good team!"
fatspants3 on 606
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I've just asked a Forest fan in the office and I think it is more than fair to conclude that he most sincerely shares your concerns.

1226: "I'm not going be too over-the-top, but as a Wolves fan I think we've made the signings to stay in and around the top six this year, and hopefully we'll make the play-offs. Still think the top two is a bit beyond us, but with any luck we can be this year's Hull, staying in the right area all year and going up at the end!"
abcisthealphabet on 606
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I know a few Wolves fans and they seemed pretty pleased with the business the club have done - particularly Sam Vokes from Bournemouth and the players they have managed to keep hold of, the likes of Michael Kightly.

1224: Can I just point out, following several 606-related enquiries, that there will be no Olympics style auto-refresh on the footy. I can only apologise and add that I don't know why we don't have it now but I'm surely hoping it will be coming your way real soon folks (please read the last part of this sentence as though you are from Texas).

1221: TEAMS

Birmingham: Maik Taylor, Parnaby, Martin Taylor, Ridgewell, Murphy, Larsson, Carsley, Nafti, McSheffrey, McFadden, Bent.
Subs: Doyle, O'Connor, Phillips, Jerome, Queudrue.

Sheff Utd: Kenny, Jihai, Morgan, Kilgallon, Naysmith, Halford, Tonge, Speed, Quinn, Henderson, Sharp.
Subs: Cotterill, Stead, Webber, Spring, Ehiogu.

Referee: Keith Stroud (Hampshire)

1220: "I predict that Birmingham, Reading and QPR will go up, and my outsiders are Coventry."
redvillaman on 606
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Coventry - very interesting. They look like they have done some good business - Freddy Eastwood, Clinton Morrison, Stephen Wright etc - and I will be very interested to see how they do under Cookie Coleman.

1207: "This is the day Norwich step out of the shadows and show that they have what it takes to reach the higher reaches this season."
canary_chibba on 606
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canary_chibba's comment does go on for a little longer but I think we all get the gist.

1202: Don't forget, the Olympics has started. Caroline Cheese, more than familiar to fans of our footy coverage, is turning her exquisite clockwatch skills to the action in Beijing.
Live - Olympics

1156: "Stuff the Olympics, this is what it is all about. Three months of shopping with the other half on a Saturday is quite enough, bring on the footy. Give me rain at Hillsbrough than smog in Beijing any day of the week. Come on you Owls!"
James, Nottingham, via text on 81111

You won't be saying when our star judo player brings home the bacon with gold. Oh, hold on a minute...

1155: "Blades 3-0 Brum today. My cash is down come on Blades!"
bladesmanscott in the Loft on 606
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Ah, here we go, a prediction on the first match of the season. I reckon we might see a slight difference of opinion from supporters of Birmingham City.

1151: "Excited isn't the word for it!!

"With all the hype around us (QPR) and signings from clubs of Real Madrid's stature its the most anticipated season for us for a long while.

"This division is renowned for being tough and this year is no different, in fact i would go as far to say harder than last looking at the Teams involved.

"Good luck to one and all apart from Barnsley just for today!"
Loomesy in the Loft on 606
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I love this. Everyone is being so nice to each other at the moment. In a few months time when the table has started to take shape supporters will all be looking for the results of the teams around them, desperate for so and so to lose on a murky midweek November night at some far outpost of the division.

1147: Just to answer a couple of questions that have dropped on 606. I don't honestly think that there will be a Championship clockwatch every week and as for League One updates...there might the odd update but I'm not going to lie to you and say that we will have every goal on here.

1145: "This takes more priority over any other sporting event.

"My opinion is that Leicester will begin with a win against MK Dons. I'm going to it later and I just hope that we get off to a good start. Dickov to come on and score at least one to secure a win."
FoxForever on 606
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This is technically a Championship clockwatch but I'm more than happy to entertain some League One and League Two chat.

1135 BST: Now then. Drama, big drama. It all starts today and I am VERY, VERY EXCITED.

All the summer months of watching and waiting and wondering about who you will sign, who will leave, who you will play on the opening day of the season, how the opposition are shaping up - it all ends today and reality starts to kick in.

It is a long, old season but the answers to the close-season questions will start to very slowly take shape, beginning today.

Any very early thoughts?

The Coca-Cola Football League Championship Table
30 January 2010 19:21
    P GD PTS
1 Newcastle 27 27 56
2 Nottm Forest 28 23 52

3 West Brom 27 26 50
4 Cardiff 27 22 45
5 Swansea 27 3 42
6 Sheff Utd 27 4 41

7 Blackpool 27 10 40
8 Leicester 26 2 39
9 Middlesbrough 28 7 37
10 Bristol City 27 -4 36
11 Preston 26 -2 35
12 QPR 27 -4 34
13 Doncaster 26 -1 33
14 Coventry 28 -8 33
15 Barnsley 26 -8 33
16 Scunthorpe 27 -13 33
17 Watford 26 -6 32
18 Derby 28 -11 32
19 Sheff Wed 28 -12 31
20 Crystal Palace 27 2 30
21 Ipswich 27 -8 29

22 Reading 27 -16 26
23 Plymouth 26 -14 24
24 Peterborough 28 -19 18

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