League round-up: Earnshaw helps Cardiff surge to top

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The Independent Football

Cardiff City yesterday climbed to the top of the Championship table after a comfortable 3-1 victory at home to Bristol City.

After a play-off defeat last season, and having seen rivals Swansea promoted, Cardiff have started the season strongly under the new stewardship of Malky Mackay. They saw one of his new signings, Robert Earnshaw, score one of three first-half goals. Captain Mark Hudson had opened the scoring from a Craig Conway cross on 18 minutes before Conway himself doubled the lead five minutes later with a stinging shot from outside the box. Earnshaw tapped in a third before half-time before Nicky Maynard got a late consolation.

Brighton continued their strong start to the season with a 1-0 victory at Portsmouth on Saturday. The newly-promoted side's record £3.25m signing Craig Mackail-Smith scored his first goal for the club on the stroke of half-time. Portsmouth had their best opportunity to draw level on the stroke of full-time as Lewis Dunk handled inside the area. Liam Lawrence smashed the resulting penalty against the post, leaving his manager Steve Cotterill frustrated: "We're still in a period of transition. There were times where we looked like a group of strangers."

League One's Notts County, who have just been invited to play Juventus next season to mark the opening of the Italian side's new stadium, went down 2-1 at home to title favourites Charlton. Summer signing Paul Hayes made one and scored another to send the south London club to the top of the table.

In League Two, AFC Wimbledon got their first ever Football League points with an impressive 2-0 win away to Dagenham and Redbridge.