THE HALF DECENT FOOTBALL MAGAZINE

Newcastle, Barnsley, Swindon and Wycombe

icon weekendPremier League ~ Ba on target for edgy Newcastle
Newcastle got only their second win of the season as they beat Norwich City 1-0 at St James' Park. The goal came from Demba Ba and was his third in two games, having come off the bench to score twice against Everton last week. It marked an unhappy return to Newcastle for former manager Chris Hughton, whose Norwich side are still without a league win this season. The gap could have been bigger for the Magpies but Papiss Cisse, who is yet to score this season, sent a penalty kick over the bar.

"It shows the spirit of the team that they wanted Papiss to take it because he hadn't scored this year – they invited him to step up," Newcastle manager Alan Pardew said. "It was not really what I wanted to see because he missed one in pre-season. I wanted my best penalty-taker to take it. Usually Demba or Hatem Ben Arfa would have taken it so I was a bit surprised – but I could understand the reason and it was important I didn't tell them off for it at half-time because it was a blow to them that we missed it."

Championship ~ Barnsley batter beleaguered Birmingham
Barnsley secured their biggest win since 1999 by beating Birmingham City 5-0 at St Andrew's. The scores were 0-0 at half time but Tykes scored five times in 23 minutes, including four from Craig Davies, as they consigned Birmingham to their fourth defeat of the season. The win was satisfying for Barnsley manager Keith Hill, who has embarked upon a risky transfer strategy of signing players with previously troubled records for cut-price fees.

"There has been no better result but we performed equally well at Blackburn in midweek and got beaten," Hill said. "I am really pleased for everyone who believes in what we are trying to achieve at Barnsley. Craig Davies takes the honours but this performance has been achieved from the groundwork he put in last season. You have to keep players to educate them and Davies is a mobile target man who scores goals. It's as simple as that."

League One ~ Robins pick off the Cherries
Swindon Town produced a convincing 4-0 victory over Bournemouth to move themselves up to fifth and within three points of an automatic promotion spot. Paolo di Canio's team scored twice in each half as they got their second league win in a row following two defeats and a draw. Before the match Bournemouth chairman Eddie Mitchell had claimed that he would rather work with his current manager Paul Groves because him and Di Canio were too similar. "Their mannerisms are completely different and I prefer Paul’s," Mitchell said. "His give a better atmosphere for everybody in and around the team."

The game also offered Di Canio a chance to be reunited with Harry Redknapp, who managed him as a player at West Ham and is now helping Bournemouth in an advisory role. "We will have an old reunion if he comes to the game," Di Canio said. "Then I will offer him a good red wine which we will enjoy – but after we have got three points. He likes the good life and he appreciates Italian wines and French wines but at the end I will offer it to him only so he can have a bitter taste after he loses the game."

League Two ~ Dons spell end for Wycombe's Waddock
AFC Wimbledon got their first win since the opening day of the season and at the same time condemned Wycombe Wanderers to a third straight defeat. The run of results has prompted Wycombe to sack manager Gary Waddock, after three years in charge. Wimbledon, who sacked their own manager Terry Brown last week, were lead by first-team coach Simon Bassey.

The result leaves Wycombe, who were relegated from League One last season, on only four points from seven games and in 21st place in League Two. The club statement on Waddock's sacking read: "The club would like to thank Gary for his efforts during his time at the club and wish him every success for the future." Brian Laws has emerged as the early favourite for the job, though no timescale has been announced for a new appointment. Tom Hocking

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