How the Irish fared: Anthony Pilkington pounces as Cardiff win again

Goals from Anthony Pilkington and Joe Mason broke Huddersfield’s resistance on Saturday and lifted Cardiff to second in the Championship.

Pilkington’s neat strike put the unbeaten Bluebirds ahead with 21 minutes remaining before Mason made the points safe eight minutes later.

Pilkington tweeted: “tough and frustrating game at times today but another 3 points and clean sheet. 3 on the bounce now. off the mark hoping for few more now.” Cardiff now trail only Brighton in the table and Chris Hughton’s men stretched their lead to four points after a 1-0 win over Hull.

Hughton was asked if Brighton, who finished 20th last season, were genuine promotion candidates and told reporters: “We wanted to be in a position where we could at least challenge to go up. That is still the case.

“We’ve made a tremendous start and I could not have envisaged it. I was hopeful we could challenge better. At the moment the margins are going our way.” In League One, Saturday was a landmark day in the fledging career of Aiden O’Brien after the 21-year-old’s first senior hat-trick fired Millwall to a 3-1 win at Crewe.

O’Brien second goal was one he won’t forget in a hurry, a stunning 30-yard strike that restored Millwall’s lead.

“What a hat-trick,” Millwall manager Neil Harris drooled. “He’s got the ability and quality to do that. It wasn’t just his goals, his all-round performance was good.” Saturday was also a good day for Conor Hourihane as he scored one and made two in Barnsley’s 4-1 rout of Swindon.

Tykes boss Lee Johnston said: “I thought Conor Hourihane was massive in what we did today, he was a captain out there. He recognised everything that needed to be recognised and helped apply pressure on them, meaning we started to nick things.” Paddy Madden maintained his fine early-season form as his fourth goal of the season gave Scunthorpe a 1-0 win over Coventry.

Madden said: “I’m happy, but I’m more happy that we’ve got a massive win. For me to score it’s an extra bonus. I’m just delighted we’ve got three points.” Elsewhere, Jimmy Ryan was on the mark in Fleetwood’s 1-1 draw with Bradford, a Rhys Murphy goal couldn’t prevent Oldham from crashing to a 5-1 home defeat against Peterborough while Chris McCann was also on the scoresheet in a losing cause as Wigan went down 3-2 to Port Vale.

It was an uneventful weekend for the Irish contingent in League Two although Eddie Nolan did net in York’s 2-2 draw at Stevenage.

In the SPL, Saturday was a mixed day for the Irish at Aberdeen as Adam Rooney was on the scoresheet via a penalty while Jonny Hayes was sent off.

However, Hayes’ dismissal – a decision that looked harsh – failed to prevent Aberdeen from recording a 2-1 win over Celtic to go top.


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