In our latest round-up of the action involving Chelsea players on loan, two players catch the eye with their goal-scoring form in the Premier League, while there are some dramatic cup ties in Italy.
Armando Broja hit a couple of eye-catching milestones by netting for the seventh time in all competitions for Southampton in 2021/22, and fifth in the Premier League, as they beat Brentford 4-1 last Tuesday for a winning start in front of their new owner.
He got the Saints’ third at St Mary’s just after half-time to put them 3-1 up and subdue Brentford’s attempted fightback at a crucial moment in the match, running onto a through-ball by former Blues midfielder Oriol Romeu and producing a composed finish one-on-one.
That made Broja the youngest player to reach five goals in this season’s Premier League, at 20 years and 123 days. He is also the youngest ever to score in each of his first four home starts in the Premier League, and the first of any age to achieve that feat in the English top flight since Diego Costa did so for Chelsea in 2014.
Southampton couldn’t continue that form on the road when they travelled to take on Wolverhampton Wanderers on Saturday though, as despite threatening a late comeback and hitting the woodwork at 2-1 down, they succumbed to a 3-1 defeat.
Conor Gallagher also continued his form in front of goal, as his seventh Premier League goal of the season earned Crystal Palace a hard-fought point away at Brighton with a 1-1 draw. The midfielder finished calmly after Jeffrey Schlupp found him in the box with a cut-back, and it had looked like it would be enough for the win.
However, the Seagulls refused to give up after having a goal disallowed and a penalty saved by Jack Butland, eventually finding an 87th-minute equaliser via Joachim Andersen’s own goal. Gallagher’s strike makes him one of only three players aged 21 or younger to be directly involved in 10 Premier League goals this season, with seven goals and three assists to his name.
Coventry City had Jake Clarke-Salter in their defence as they returned to winning ways, beating Peterborough United 4-1 to end their run of seven Championship matches without a victory. Despite the Sky Blues' domination, the scoreline was relatively close until two goals in the last 10 minutes gave them the winning margin their performance deserved, taking them within two places and five points of the play-offs.
Goalkeeper Nathan Baxter couldn’t prevent Hull City suffering defeat, losing 2-0 at home against Stoke City, who had new signing Lewis Baker among their substitutes, the day after he completed his permanent move from Chelsea.
A difficult week for Danny Drinkwater and Reading started with a heavy defeat at home against Fulham. The midfielder was substituted after an hour with his side trailing by three goals, but Fulham made the final score 7-0. Drinkwater was then part of the side which travelled to Middlesbrough on Saturday, taking the lead with 20 minutes remaining, only to concede twice in the last six minutes to lose 2-1.
In League One, Jamie Cumming enjoyed a fine debut for MK Dons after switching loans from Gillingham this month. He helped his new team secure a 2-1 win away at Portsmouth, ending their opponents’ 10-match unbeaten run. Cumming made a stunning late save to claw out a header at the back post and ensure all three points would go to the Dons, leaving them five points short of the automatic promotion places with a game in hand.
Overseas, Michy Batshuayi scored a decisive goal, as his close range finish in the second half was enough to get Besiktas back to winning ways in Turkey. His eighth goal for the club secured a 1-0 victory at home against Gaziantep, their first league win since before Christmas, taking them within two points of the European qualification places.
Tiemoue Bakayoko was part of a dramatic cup comeback with AC Milan. The midfielder came off the bench with the Rossoneri trailing Genoa 1-0 at home in their Coppa Italia last-16 tie, but just 12 minutes after his introduction they were level through an Olivier Giroud header. That set up an exciting end-to-end period of extra time, and it was Milan who came out on top by scoring twice to book their spot in the quarter-finals with a 3-1 victory.
Ethan Ampadu and Venezia saw their Coppa Italia run come to an end in the last 16, as they were beaten 2-0 away at Atalanta in midweek. Things went better at the weekend, when they hosted mid-table Empoli in Venice, as former Manchester United winger Nani set up their equaliser just minutes after coming on for his debut, the 1-1 draw keeping the Lagunari two points clear of the relegation zone having played a game less.