League ChampionshipChampionship – teamtalk.com 22 Feb 12:52
After sacking Owen Coyle, Blackburn Rovers have announced Tony Mowbray as their new head coach.
The announcement comes less than 24 hours after confirmation that Rovers had parted company with Coyle.
Blackburn owners the Venky’s made the decision to change management yesterday with the club next to bottom of the Championship with just one win in their last 13 league games.
Mowbray, 53, has put pen to paper on an 18-month contract and succeeds Owen Coyle who left the Championship club by mutual consent on Tuesday.
Mowbray, most recently in charge at Coventry, is set to take training for the first time on Wednesday afternoon as he prepares the team for a crucial clash away at relegation rivals Burton on Friday night.
He will be assisted by David Lowe, who makes the step up from the club’s head of academy coaching, while former Rovers favourite David Dunn will take on the role of first-team coach.
Mowbray began his managerial career at Ipswich and has also managed Hibernian, West Brom, Celtic, Middlesbrough and Coventry.
At Hibs, he twice led the Scottish club into Europe while at West Brom he lost the Championship play-off final in 2007 before getting the Baggies promoted to the Premier League as champions the following season.
QPR manager Ian Holloway believes in-form Conor Washington has been rejuvenated by playing in his natural position.
Washington scored the winner in a 2-1 victory over Wigan at Loftus Road – his fourth goal in six matches.He set up an early opener for strike partner Matt Smith and then restored Rangers’ lead after Omar Bogle had equalised with a penalty.
Washington scored just twice in 31 appearances under Holloway’s predecessor, who often deployed him on the left flank.
Holloway said: “He’s a centre-forward and he knows he can play with Matt Smith. When he’s in a two he’s fantastic.
“If you know what your job is, which is to go and score a goal instead of worrying about defending all the time, it makes a difference.
“He can press a centre-half all day long, but he finds it difficult in that wider area.
“Conor’s a fantastic goalscorer and he’s won us the game with that goal.”
The victory took Rangers 10 points clear of struggling Wigan, who remain third from bottom.
“We got an ugly win but the character has come and you can see that the lads are growing ,” Holloway said.
“The work-rate is there. They’re all wearing the shirt with so much pride.
“Even if we had drawn that game I still would have been happy with their effort. I can’t ask for any more from any one of them.
“We’re getting that feeling we can win games and that’s absolutely vital.
“We need a feeling that we can be good at this level and are moving forward. That’s what looks like is coming.”
Wigan boss Warren Joyce was disappointed with his team’s defending in the build-up to both QPR goals.
“They were two poor goals to concede. For the first goal we were wide open to a long kick down the middle,” Joyce said.
“We did well to come back and were good value for the 1-1 at half-time. I thought it was a deserved score at half-time.
“We were certainly under plenty of pressure from how direct they were. We know the lad (Matt Smith) wins a lot of balls in the air and that we had to get to the second ball.
“But the first goal comes from their kick and for the second goal we don’t pick the second ball up – it’s straight through on the back four.
“They were poor goals, not goals where you’re carved open. It was two giveaway goals really.
“The fitness and desire were there and we could have got an equaliser near the end. It’s just disappointing the way we gifted the goals away.”
The post Ian Holloway hails ‘fantastic’ Conor Washington after QPR edge past Wigan appeared first on teamtalk.com.Championship – teamtalk.com 22 Feb 10:59
David Wagner has hailed Huddersfield Town’s fighting spirit after they secured a hard-fought 1-0 victory over Reading.
Philip Billing scored the only goal eight minutes from time to seal a sixth straight Championship win, pushing them to within four points of the automatic promotion places.
Huddersfield missed a first-half penalty but bounced back to snatch the points late on.
Wagner said: “The boys showed great fighting spirit. The goal was a moment the boys deserved.
“They showed with another late goal that they never give up. We always trust and believe in ourselves.”
Huddersfield had the chance to go ahead in the 36th minute when Tyler Blackett brought down Izzy Brown.
Brown went to take the penalty himself but instead the ball went to Rajiv van La Parra, whose effort was saved by Ali Al Habsi.
Wagner said: “Missing a penalty can always happen. I have to raise my hands up to this one as I didn’t get my message across.
“Izzy wanted to take it but he was feeling ill and went off straight after. I wanted Chris Lowe to take it but there was a misunderstanding and Rajiv took it. There was confusion and it was my mistake.”
Wagner added: “We have only had one penalty this season and we are not used to it!
“What concerned me was after we missed the penalty our body language was not good and for 10 minutes Reading were on top and Danny Ward kept us in it.
“We spoke about it at half-time and I told the players they could still go out and win it in the second half.
“Both teams had good chances but we had more and that’s why we deserved the three points.”
Reading had claims for a penalty in the 52nd minute when Lewis Grabban went down under a challenge from keeper Ward.
Reading boss Jaap Stam said: “I think it was a penalty and I think the keeper touched him. You could see from the reaction of the players.
“But we didn’t get the penalty and sometimes this happens.”
Stam praised his players and added: “I am very proud of what we have done.
“It’s disappointing that we did not get at least a point. All the teams in the top six are playing each other and if we can keep winning we will get there.
“We have played against a good side in Huddersfield and there is not a lot of difference between two teams who want to play good football.
“It’s a game of fine margins and sometimes you need a little bit of luck. We are going to do everything we can to get results over the remainder of the season.”
Steve McClaren admitted his team’s play-off hopes have been dented after Nigel Clough’s Burton held Derby to a 0-0 draw at Pride Park.
Derby failed to win at home for the third consecutive game in 10 days as Burton’s determined defensive display earned them a precious point and a first clean sheet in 17 Sky Bet Championship matches.
Clough was returning for the first time since his sacking in September 2013 after four-and-a-half years as manager and his players did not let him down as they made it a night of frustration for the home side.
Despite Derby having virtually all the possession, they did little with it and had only one clear chance which Darren Bent squandered when he fired over from two yards in the 42nd minute.
Jacob Butterfield forced Jon McLaughlin to tip over a 20-yard drive at the start of the second half but the expected improvement did not materialise as Burton kept their discipline right to the end to move five points clear of the bottom three.
Derby are now 10 points adrift of the top six and when asked if only two points from three home games had been damaging, McClaren said: “Very, there’s no hiding that fact.
“We are very disappointed with two points from three games when our home form has been excellent. We talked about a target but we’ve not achieved that.
“It was a yellow brick wall of four and six but I can’t fault the players, we kept plugging away but it wasn’t our night.
“Burton came for a draw and got it and it’s been a frustrating night all round. Sometimes you can play for two days and not score and I think that was the situation tonight.
“When we came here we were fourth bottom and just dreaming of getting away and the players have done a marvellous job to go on a run, but I knew after the first three or four games this would be a frustrating season.”
Clough sent his number two Andy Garner to address the media and he admitted: “I think proud is a bit of an understatement, I think it’s incredible, we worked incredibly hard, we’re honest enough to say we came for a point and for us to get that at Derby is absolutely unbelievable.
“That’s what we are all about, honesty and hard work, we’re not particularly good at times and the players will tell you that as well but we dig deep and everybody works for each other.
“Nigel is in the dressing room, it’s quite an emotional day for the gaffer. We had four magnificent years here, love the club and the fans so it’s very emotional coming back for the first time and little Burton have taken four points off them so we’re delighted.
“We didn’t want to lose tonight, we set up for a point, worked all week training to get a point so I think it’s good management really because we are going home with a point.”
The post Steve McClaren ‘very disappointed’ at Derby’s recent home form appeared first on teamtalk.com.Championship – teamtalk.com 22 Feb 10:36
The Owls saw a four-game winning run brought to an abrupt halt as they suffered a first home defeat since November.
First-half goals from John Egan and Harlee Dean did the damage for Brentford, with Wednesday only having an injury-time goal from Fernando Forestieri to show for a second-half onslaught.
The Owls were adamant they should have had a penalty with the score at 0-0 when Forestieri went down under a challenge from Dean, while Carvalhal felt there was a foul in the build-up to Brentford’s second goal.
“The referee in the first half was a disaster,” he said. “A very poor performance, he made everybody nervous, he made the fans nervous, he made my players nervous and he made me nervous.
“He didn’t see a clear penalty, he didn’t see a block on (Vincent) Sasso for their second goal and there were a lot of faults and little things that made everyone nervous.
“I checked the video and it is a clear foul on Fernando.
“We can achieve a very good position, but the referee was very poor, these are the facts.
“I hope in the future we can achieve a good position, but I hope we have more luck. The referee was very, very poor, I am not judging, I am just talking facts.
“We played very poorly in the first half. We didn’t start well, but we played three days ago and Brentford didn’t.
“The second half, the Brentford goalkeeper was fantastic, he made some great saves. We fought a lot and made opportunities but we didn’t score. But I don’t want to give excuses.”
Brentford boss Dean Smith was delighted with his side’s attacking display at Hillsborough, as they continue to thrive in front of goal since the sale of Scott Hogan.
The Bees lost their top scorer to Aston Villa in the transfer window and have now scored nine goals in four games without him.
“We have looked like scoring in the few games, we have scored nine goals since Scott has gone and some of our attacking play has been really good in recent weeks,” he said.
“We knew it would be tough here but I thought first half we controlled it. We deserved to go in at the break in front.
“We had a number of chances in the second half to break and create better opportunities and when you don’t get that third goal, it leaves them thinking they can get something.
“They have missed some chances that they would expect to score and we have defended wilfully and in the end it took a piece of magic from Forestieri to get past us.”
On the penalty incident, Smith added: “I have seen them given and I have seen them not given. Forestieri went down easily a few times before and that might have been playing on the referee’s mind.”
The post Carvalhal bemoans ‘disastrous’ referee as Wednesday’s winning run ends appeared first on teamtalk.com.BBC Sport | Football | Championship | World Edition 10 Aug 13:09