An eight-point gap to the Play-Offs at the start of the week is now four after a positive seven days for Dean Smith’s Bees. Last weekend’s win at Sunderland was followed up by a superb 5-0 victory over Birmingham City at Griffin Park on Tuesday night. Ollie Watkins scored twice with Florian Jozefzoon, Neal Maupay, and a Marc Roberts own-goal completing the scoring. The Bees couldn’t complete a perfect week as Liam Cooper’s 30th minute header for Leeds United ensured that the points stayed in West Yorkshire on Saturday.
Off the field, there was more good news with the coaching team of Dean Smith, Thomas Frank, and Richard O’Kelly all signing new one-year contracts. The trio’s new deals will take them up to the end of the 2019/2020 season.
Sky Bet Championship news
It’s been a bad week for long-time league leaders Wolverhampton Wanderers after they saw their advantage at the top of the table cut to six points by Cardiff City. Neil Warnock’s side have strung together four straight wins to move out of the chasing pack and open up a four-point advantage over Aston Villa in third.
No win in four has seen Derby County drop to fourth with Fulham behind them in fifth after their victory over Wolves on Saturday. Bristol City’s defeat to Cardiff means it’s no win in five for Lee Johnson’s side and there’s now just six points covering nine teams in the chase for the final Play-Off spot.
At the other end of the table, Sunderland are now four points from safety after a sixth game without a win. Burton Albion are two points better off in 23rd with four straight defeats leaving Birmingham City back in the bottom three. Barnsley’s win over Blues on Saturday saw them leapfrog Steve Cotterill’s side and out of the relegation zone while Hull City picked up a vital three points after beating Sheffield United on Friday night.
Manchester City took the season’s first silverware on Sunday after a convincing 3-0 EFL Cup Final win over Arsenal at Wembley. Sergio Aguero, Vincent Kompany, and David Silva scored the goals as Pep Guardiola picked up his first trophy in English football. Much of the post-match reaction, however, centred on Gary Neville’s scathing analysis of The Gunners’ performance as they sunk to a tame defeat.
If overcoming a 3-1 deficit to Real Madrid wasn’t hard enough already, PSG might have to try and do it without talisman Neymar after he was stretchered off in tears during last night’s 3-0 La Classique win over Marseilles. The extent of the injury isn’t known yet but with Real heading to the Parc Des Princes in eight days’ time, Neymar’s participation looks in real doubt.
There was one piece of managerial news late last night as Grant McCann was sacked by Sky Bet League One Peterborough United after just one win in Posh’s last nine.