The first set of midweek fixtures of the season saw some very tight matches; in none of them did a team win by more than one goal. Comeback victories, red cards, own goals – Tuesday night’s full programme had a bit of everything…
Written by Mark Brumpton and Daniel Fraser
Portsmouth start strongly
After a low scoring night in the third tier of English football, seven matches finished with a scoreline of 1-0.
Portsmouth maintained their perfect start with a 1-0 victory over Shrewsbury down at Fratton Park. The only goal in the third minute came from Ryan Tunnicliffe, who found the bottom corner with a sweetly-struck shot after making a run into the penalty area.
Dan Udoh’s point-blank header nearly earned the Shrews a point but Gavin Bazunu produced a terrific save that ensured Danny Cowley’s side remained unbeaten and yet to concede a goal.
— Portsmouth FC (@Pompey) August 18, 2021
Burton make it three wins out of three
Two unbeaten sides locked horns at the Pirelli Stadium and it was Burton Albion that came out on top 1-0 over Sunderland; a second half strike from Jonny Smith ensured Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink’s side made their best ever start to an EFL campaign.
Aiden McGeady and Ross Stewart came up with the Wearsiders’ best chances but were unable to halt the Brewers climb to second in the table.
GET. IN. THERE!!!!!! THREE IN A ROW FOR HASSELBAINK AND MAAMRIA’S #BREWERS!
Thank you all – what an atmosphere at the Pirelli tonight, what a performance from these lads!
— Burton Albion FC (@burtonalbionfc) August 17, 2021
Sarcevic scores the winner
Lincoln City continued to have a mixed start to the season as they were beaten 1-0 by recently promoted Bolton Wanderers.
💛 Team. 💙 pic.twitter.com/4CP1dfWnB9
— Bolton Wanderers (@OfficialBWFC) August 17, 2021
In a game that took its time to get going, Bolton had the better chances with the woodwork rattled on two occasions before Antoni Sarcevic pounced 13 minutes from time to give the away side a deserved win.
Wednesday and Wycombe make unbeaten starts
Sheffield Wednesday moved up to fourth in the League One table with a 1-0 victory over Fleetwood Town. Lee Gregory scored the winner in the 15th minute to send the Cod Army home with no points in tow.
Wycombe earned their seventh point of the season with a 1-1 draw away at Wigan Athletic, thanks to a last-minute equaliser from defender Anthony Stewart.
Difficult starts for Charlton and Doncaster
Charlton had pre-season hopes of promotion but have so far found the new season a struggle; they slipped to a second defeat, this time away at MK Dons, who registered their first win of the campaign.
The Addicks started brightly and were ahead after 15 minutes thanks to a finish from Jayden Stockley before on-loan Spurs striker Troy Parrott equalised three minutes later.
Mohamed Eisa scored the winner in the second half to condemn Charlton to a winless start after three games.
Doncaster find themselves in the bottom four following a third straight defeat after going down 1-0 away at Accrington Stanley. Goalkeeper Pontus Dahlberg’s early own-goal summed up a poor evening for the Yorkshire side, who struggled to create many chances.
Elsewhere in the division, Cheltenham Town beat Ipswich Town 2-1 after coming back from a goal down.
Rotherham United hold the final play-off place in the fledgling league table after a stunning 40-yard effort from Michael Smith gave his side a hard-earned 1-0 win against Morecambe. Oxford beat Crewe Alexandra 1-0 with a win at the Kassam Stadium.
AFC Wimbledon and Gillingham shared the points in a 1-1 draw, which saw a red card for Gills player David Tutonda and a dramatic 97th minute own-goal from Dons defender Paul Kalabayi.
Cambridge United returned to Cambridgeshire with a point after Joe Ironside levelled the scoring after Luke Jephcott had earlier sent Plymouth into the lead.
After all the results, Portsmouth lead the way at the top of the table on nine points, with Burton the only other team to have a 100% record after the first three matches.
— Sky Bet League One (@SkyBetLeagueOne) August 17, 2021
Wycombe, Sheffield Wednesday, Oxford and Rotherham occupy the playoff spots. MK Dons are up to 12th and Lincoln drop to 13th.
Crewe Alexandra, Fleetwood, Doncaster and Shrewsbury are in the bottom four, with the latter three all yet to register a point this season so far.