League One got back up and running on Tuesday evening with a full round of fixtures played across the country. This was after Saturday’s fixtures were postponed across the nation as a mark of respect after the passing of Queen Elizabeth II on Thursday last week. All fixtures observed a minutes silence and a rendition of God Save The King before kick-off writes Samuel Rowson.
This week, double disaster for Bristol Rovers as they lost 2-0 to Ipswich and were down to 9 men at the close of play. Shrewsbury claim all three points after coming from 2-0 down to win 3-2 at home to Exeter. Ex Imp and Career Journey Man Carayol returns to League One, but we start with Barnsley bringing in a highly rated defender from Premier League Fulham.
Larkeche Joins On Loan From Fulham
Barnsley have managed to bring in a late signing on loan from Fulham for the remainder of the season. The Tykes have recruited well on paper this season but with a turbulent first eight games this campaign, it sees them in mid table with just three wins in League One so far. Which is far lower than their fans were expecting given the recruitment campaign during the summer.
Ziyad Larkeche is a 19-year-old French defender who is yet to make a mark on any first team football. Making this loan deal crucial for his early development into a potential first team player going forward. He has however excelled in youth football playing 22 times in Premier League 2 for the Cottagers. He also previously played for Paris Saint Germain within the youth set up and became the youngest ever player to represent the Paris side in the UEFA Youth League. Barnsley are hoping that he will take to senior football like a duck to water in his first loan move and he could easily turn into a great signing.
He is at the same place in his career that Brooke Norton-Cuffy was in January when he joined us on loan from Arsenal. It shows that league experience is vital in a young players development and if they get the game time and the valuable knowledge from older players it can really help them develop as a player with a view to moving up the leagues to then be fighting for potential first team places.
Impressive Shrews Leave Exeter Stunned
Exeter fans will be feeling hard done by after this performance in Shropshire. After a solid first 20 minutes they were 2 goals to the good after goals by Sweeney and Grounds. These came three minutes apart with the second a very fortunate deflection, which wrong footed the keeper with the ball hitting the post on its way in. However a quarter of an hour later Shrewsbury were level, Pennington with a strike from close range and Bayliss scoring after the ball dropped to him just inside the penalty box. Exeter will look back and see both of those as avoidable goals with the away side having multiple chances to clear the ball before Shrewsbury scored.
As the game moved into the second half it looked as though the points were to be shared, after both sides hit the bar during the game one point a piece seemed to be the correct outcome. However when the ball fell to Shrewsbury’s Dunkley in the 93rd minute he smashed the ball home to steal all three at the death to leave Exeter rueing their mistakes. This result means that Shrewsbury move up to 8th in the table with three wins from eight with Exeter a place below and a point less as a result. Exeter will be wanting to quickly forget this performance and get a positive result on Saturday as they host a struggling Burton Albion.
Bristol See Red Twice In Away Defeat
Bristol Rovers will be preparing for Saturday’s home game against a buoyant Imps side with two players less after a difficult night for the Gas in Suffolk. This is after two late red cards for both their on field central defenders in Bobby Thomas and Alfie Kilgour, as the latter was a harsh decision by all accounts. As Kilgour lost possession of the ball deep in his own half, the ball fell at the feet of the inform striker in Conor Chaplin. From the replay there seemed to be little if any contact between the two players, however, Chaplin hit the deck and with the Rovers player being the last man he was shown a straight red. The challenge reminded me of one from the National League winning season when we hosted Tranmere at Home, Callum Howe on Andy Mangan little if any contact however both decisions were given.
Both red card decisions however did nothing to change the end result of the match, as by this point the game was already won by a very impressive Ipswich side who never got out of second gear. The opening goal from the aforementioned Chaplin was scored on 24 minutes. This was after a great passing move which saw him with space inside the penalty box, he duly took advantage of this with a smart first touch finish into the bottom right corner of the net. With 6 goals in 8 matches for the Tractor boys he could be a real star performer for them this season. The second by Evans on 55 minutes ended the game as a contest and leaves Ipswich top with 20 points, and still unbeaten with 6 wins from 8. Could this be their season?
Ex Imp Carayol Makes League One Return
Burton Albion have signed Ex Imp Mustapha Carayol on a short term contract meaning he will play in League One after being released by League Two Gillingham following their relegation last season. The now 34 year old experienced winger will start for his 16th club in a career which has been plagued by injuries and lack of consistency. This is noticeable in his career statistics with the highest appearances at any club being 50 at both Middlesbrough and Torquay. Having played as high as the Championship in 2018 with Nottingham Forest it is shocking to see the rapid decline in his fortunes. Following that going to Cyprus and Turkey to try and rejuvenate his career. During this time he made appearances in the Europa League for Apollon Limassol gaining high praise when they played and lost away at Italian giants Lazio.
“I’m happy to have the opportunity to be back playing football,” said Carayol. “Hopefully I can help the boys out.”
Carayol will hope to help Burton out of their current difficulties after a torrid start to the current campaign sees them languishing at the foot of the League One table at the time of writing with no league wins from eight games. As you can see in bold above he is also looking forward to the challenge ahead as he looks for more consistency in his final years as a player. Whether or not he can shake off injury issues and perform consistently is another matter, for Brewers fans they will be hoping he finds his form from when he was playing regularly in the championship.