Five talking points from the EFL weekend, including Harry McKirdy's quartet of goals

EFL pundit Gab Sutton has his say on the action from the first weekend of January, including Harry McKirdy's four goals for Swindon and Andreas Weimann's treble.

The New Year's EFL fixtures threw up plenty to talk about, so we're going to do exactly that. This week, Planet Sport's Gab Sutton discusses Andreas Weimann's tremendous treble, QPR's closely-fought victory, Sheffield Wednesday's disappointing performance and much more...

Bristol City shine bright like a Weimann

Andreas Weimann celebrates his hattrick for Bristol City

Young midfielders like Alex Scott and Ayman Benarous have been the ones impressing for Bristol City this season, which is great - if they are supported by reliable, experienced professionals.

Unfortunately for Scott and Benarous, the older players have not always delivered, but Weimann corrected that and more on Sunday when the former Derby forward bagged a hat-trick against Millwall.

Oddly, a fifth of Weimann's overall league goal tally for City have come in two games - a treble at Sheffield United in April 2019 and another treble on Sunday.

QPR continue to edge teams out

Albert Adomah, QPR, Championship

For a team sitting pretty in 5th, QPR rarely blow anyone away.

Mark Warburton's side often find themselves on the back-foot, but in having such progressive defenders like Rob Dickie and Yoan Barbet, they always have the ability to beat the press by carrying the ball forward, then playing a vertical pass into the final third, where they have the means to do damage.

Do the Super Hoops need to improve? Of course, but they have already shown their class, including in Sunday's 2-1 victory at Birmingham. Now they need to find an extra layer of control.

More where that cambe from

Stephen Robinson, Morecambe manager, Dec2021

One of the facets that makes a great manager is knowing what to say to his or her players based on performance, not outcome.

After seeing Morecambe ship soft goals in the first half against Doncaster to fall three behind, a lesser coach than Stephen Robinson might have ranted at his players.

Instead, Robinson was somewhat philosophical about what had been a reasonable first half showing in terms of chances created, while the opponents had taken their opportunities.

The Northern Irishman's poise transmitted to his players, who launched an astonishing comeback to win 4-3 - and climb out of the drop zone.

No reaction from Wednesday

Barry Bannan appears dejected after losing to Sunderland

Having finished 2021 with a 5-0 thrashing by Sunderland, one might have hoped Sheffield Wednesday would have started 2022 with a spirited reaction.

In some ways, therefore, the 1-0 defeat at Shrewsbury was the more concerning performance and result.

The Black Cats were very clinical which gave the scoreline a slightly distorted look, so an off-night like that could be forgiven in isolation, but the issue is the absence of any kind of response.

Injuries in defence might be a hindrance, but they do not explain such a lifeless showing with a plethora of midfielders and forwards who would not look out of place in the Championship.

Oh my wordy, McKirdy

Harry McKirdy celebrates scoring four goals for Swindon Town

Swindon thrashed promotion rivals Northampton 5-2 last time out, as four goals from Harry McKirdy saw Ben Garner's side overturn a one-goal second half deficit in emphatic style.

McKirdy is something of an enigma with a questionable attitude, which has seen him struggle previously at Newport, Carlisle and Port Vale.

Suffice to say, had the former Aston Villa youngster not cut it at Swindon, he would have been looking over his shoulder at the non-league scene, but Ben Garner's excellent man management has coaxed the best out of the wide forward.

Behind McKirdy's mischievous demeanour is a lad who needs a cuddle, and with the right motivation, the 24-year-old is starting to live up to his lofty potential.

READ MORE: Manchester United, Liverpool, and three other clubs who need to win the 2022 FA Cup

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