In this week’s highlights of the action for our loan players, there are goals in two top-flights, the second tier in England and news of a cup semi-final…
In the Premier
Kurt Zouma returned to the Everton line-up after being ineligible for their last fixture against Chelsea, and wasted no time making an impact in their 2-0 win at West Ham United. The Frenchman rose highest in the box for Gylfi Sigurdsson’s corner and bounced his header into the back of the net to give the Toffees the lead in the fifth minute.
There was also a Premier League victory for Michy Batshuayi, as Crystal Palace beat Huddersfield Town 2-0, a result which confirmed the Terriers’ relegation.
There was major disappointment for our young goalkeeper Jared Thompson and his loan club Warrenpoint Town. They took on Ballinamallard in the Irish Cup semi-finals, one of the biggest games in both clubs’ histories. The match finished 0-0 after extra-time with Thompson making several saves, including a very good one from a free-kick late on, but he was denied a place in the final when his side lost the penalty shoot-out.
In the rest of Europe
In Spain’s La Liga, Alvaro Morata got his name on the scoresheet with a clinical finish when Atletico Madrid returned to winning ways with a 4-0 victory at Deportivo Alaves.
Eduardo and Jake Clarke-Salter were involved in a thriller in the Dutch Eredivisie. Vitesse came back from conceding an early goal at Den Haag before twice taking the lead themselves, but eventually had to settle for a 3-3 draw.
AC Milan lost 1-0 at Sampdoria with Tiemoue Bakayoko in their line-up. Ola Aina was not involved for Torino in their draw with Fiorentina due to injury.
In Serbia, Danilo Pantic played for fourth-placed Partizan Belgrade in their single-goal defeat away at Napredak.
Kylian Hazard suffered a 3-1 defeat at Union St Gilloise with Cercle Bruges.
Mason Mount returned to action in style after two months out injured. Fikayo Tomori also played as Derby County beat Rotherham United 6-1. Mount was the man fouled for the Rams to open the scoring from the penalty spot, and the midfielder turned in a low cross from close range to find the net himself for their fourth.
Tammy Abraham set Aston Villa on their way to their fifth consecutive win, firing them ahead from close range in the eighth minute. They beat Blackburn Rovers 2-1.
Tomas Kalas and Jay Dasilva were both in the starting line-up as Bristol City twice came back from behind to win 3-2 at Sheffield United, with Kasey Palmer coming off the bench for the Robins at 2-1 down and providing the cross for the second equaliser six minutes later.
Todd Kane and Hull City kept their play-off chances alive with a 2-0 win at bottom side Ipswich Town, who had Trevoh Chalobah in the team. Matt Miazga and Lewis Baker helped Reading earn an important three points in the relegation fight, beating Preston North End 2-1.
Michael Hector helped Sheffield Wednesday keep a clean sheet as they drew 0-0 at Stoke City. Reece James came closest to breaking the deadlock in Wigan Athletic’s goalless draw with Brentford, but his spectacular 30-yard volley was tipped over by the keeper.
In the French second division, there was a home win for Victorien Angban and Metz, 2-1 against Lorient keeping them well clear at the top of the table.
In League One, Dujon Sterling and Coventry City twice came back from going behind to draw 2-2 at fellow promotion hopefuls Barnsley.
Jacob Maddox came off the bench for Cheltenham Town as they recovered from conceding the first goal to win 3-1 at 10-man Crewe Alexandra. Nathan Baxter and Josh Grant suffered defeat as Yeovil Town lost 3-1 to Newport County.