Championship round-up: Gianfranco Zola's Watford revolution under way but Blackburn stall
Monday 20 August 2012
In a season of high hopes fuelled by Watford's exotic new owners and playing staff, new manager Gianfranco Zola is keen to downplay expectations. The former West Ham manager began life in the Championship with a 3-2 victory at Crystal Palace on Saturday.
"I'm learning a lot from my players from this division," the Italian, who was appointed when the Pozzo family took over the club in the summer, said: "How far we can go is difficult to say. The type of football we need to play is expansive so the players need to be in top condition. Give me time."
Steve Kean remains confident that his Blackburn Rovers side can return to the Premier League at the first attempt, despite Rovers being held to a 1-1 draw at Ipswich Town. "We feel we've got a really good, competitive squad and that we're good enough to bounce back at the first attempt," he maintained.
Debutant Colin Kazim-Richards had given Rovers the lead at Portman Road with a headed goal but, with less than 10 minutes to play, Paul Robinson was unable to prevent Jason Lowe's touch from crossing his goal-line for the equaliser. Kean remained in positive mood after the final whistle: "This is the first point on the board at a difficult venue, so I've got to be pleased." Blackburn's next chance to record a first victory is against Hull on Wednesday.
Owen Coyle highlighted a lack of attacking threat as the reason for Bolton Wanderers' 2-0 defeat at Burnley. "We huffed and puffed without really imposing and I think we had one cleared off the line from Zat Knight at a corner," he said. "We certainly didn't create the goalscoring opportunities that I would have wanted." Bolton's next game is at home to Nigel Clough's Derby County, who threw away a two-goal lead against Sheffield Wednesday to draw 2-2.
The new Wolverhampton Wanderers manager, Stale Solbakken, is seeking to change the mentality among his team after a disappointing 1-0 defeat at Leeds United. "We are trying to find a winning formula," he said. "The only way to change is to win that first game and get that winning feeling."
Luciano Becchio scored the only goal of the game to give Neil Warnock's side the victory. "Now we have two home games and maybe we can get it [the mentality] then," Solbakken continued, ahead of tomorrow night's visit of Barnsley, who started with a 1-0 win over their Yorkshire rivals Middlesbrough.
Cardiff City 1-0 Huddersfield
Barnsley 1-0 Middlesbrough
Birmingham 1-1 Charlton Athletic
Burnley 2-0 Bolton Wanderers
Crystal Palace 2-3 Watford
Derby 2-2 Sheffield Wednesday
Hull City 1-0 Brighton
Ipswich 1-1 Blackburn Rovers
Leeds United 1-0 Wolves
Leicester City 2-0 Peterborough
Millwall 0-2 Blackpool
Nottingham Forest 1-0 Bristol City
Latest in Sport
Arsenal vs Tottenham player ratings: Mesut Ozil? Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain? Nacer Chadli? Who was the star man at the Emirates?
Colombian women's cycling team kit that makes wearer appear naked is branded 'unacceptable' by UCI president
Husain Abdullah penalised after celebrating a touchdown with a Muslim prayer - causing mass outrage among fans
Manchester United risk Uefa row over plan to play lucrative midweek friendlies
Cristiano Ronaldo banner: This is how Real Madrid striker reacted to the stunt by Manchester United fans
- 1 Reyhaneh Jabbari: Iran due to execute woman for murder of her alleged attempted rapist
- 2 Expert urges cat lovers to own just one animal each
- 4 The Simpsons death: Creator Al Jean would 'kill himself' before character like Homer or Lisa
- 5 British man raped while urinating in bushes at Oktoberfest beer festival in Germany
Isis, we are told, is a 'clear and dangerous threat to our way of life'. I’m sorry, but I just don’t buy it
Exclusive: 'Putin's Russia has been my biggest regret,' says Nato's outgoing Secretary General
'Women, walk wherever you want' posters taken down in Stamford Hill following 'unacceptable' signs separating men and women
There’s no excuse for Dave Lee Travis’s behaviour, but we need to keep a sense of proportion
Mark Reckless becomes second Tory MP to defect to Ukip in a month
Should gay sex be illegal? 16% of Britons think so