As a quick round-up; Joshua King has ditched the Bundesliga and Borussia M’gladbach to join Robbie Brady at Hull for the remainder of the season. Kiko Macheda is going through deja vu at QPR as, like last season at Sampdoria, the manager who brought him to the club has been sacked. Neil Warnock’s replacement is widely tipped to be ex-United star Mark Hughes so he may learn a thing or two from Sparky.
Ryan Tunnicliffe has extended his stay at Peterborough until February with the option of a further extension for the rest of the season. Danny Drinkwater signed a new long-term contract at United and also extended his stay at Barnsley for the rest of the term. While John Cofie and Michael Keane have joined Belgian side Royal Antwerp for 6 months.
Brady showed his new team mate Josh King that it’ll be tough to get into this Hull side in their 3-1 FA Cup win over Ipswich. The home side went close through Brady’s dangerous free-kick and a drilled near-post effort from Stewart. But moments later Hull had the lead after a surging run from Brady. He found McLean, who held off Ibrahima Sonko and steered his shot past Arran Lee-Barrett. Prior to this game, Brady had only made cameos from the bench in their league losses to Burnley and Derby. The 19-year-old winger is usually on corner and free-kick duty and used his favoured left foot to create a few late chances for the Tigers in both games but to no avail.
Danny Drinkwater was up against Premier League opposition in the cup as his Barnsley side took on Swansea. Drinkwater, recovered from a thigh strain, produced the Tykes’ first threat on goal as he drilled a shot just over the bar from a tight angle and was a constant threat in the archetypal cup game at Oakwell which ebbed and flowed from end to end. Winger Nathan Dyer provided the cutting edge as Swansea held off Barnsley to reach the fourth round of the FA Cup. Winger Nathan Dyer provided the cutting edge as he set up Angel Rangel for Swansea’s first goal and added the third himself after good work from Wayne Routledge.
Scott Wootton and Ryan Tunnicliffe had the experience of playing live on terrestrial television in their FA Cup third round tie against Sunderland at London Road. The gulf in class was clear though and Martin O’Neill’s side ran out comfortable 2-0 winners with Sebastian Larsson both scoring and assisting promising youngster James McClean. Tunnicliffe lasted the full 90 in his usual energetic style whereas Wootton was hooked after half time as Darren Ferguson looked to chase the game but neither made much difference. This followed Monday night’s disappointment against Birmingham where a 94th minute Marlon King penalty levelled the score at 1-1 after a strong performance from The Posh. Peterborough were defending a very early lead as they scored after just 29 seconds through Emile Sinclair. Tunnicliffe has been a bit clumsy in the challenge as his enthusiasm is often mistaken for cynicism and is often penalised for physical challenges but his forceful shots and eye for a pass ensure he remains an asset. Remind you of anyone? Wootton has also been an attacking threat marauding forward whenever possible and he went close with fierce shot against Middlesbrough in another 1-1 draw on New Year’s Eve. Tunnicliffe wasn’t involved.
Oliver Norwood was put in a efficient performance in Scunthorpe’s 2-1 win over Hartlepool. The 20 year-old played in his preferred advanced midfield position and was in the thick of the action for periods as the away side dominated. Sam Johnstone was not involved after being dropped due to a goalkeeping gaffe in The Iron’s 2-2 draw with Chesterfield. Scott Bowden rifled in a fine equaliser for the Spireites before a bad error by home keeper Sam Johnstone left Craig Westcarr to slot into an open net.
Ritchie De Laet missed out on Norwich’s last three games due to injury including a game against fellow loanee Federico Macheda. With 10 minutes remaining, Federico Macheda came on to make his QPR debut almost immediately scored only to be beaten to a Wright-Phillips cross by Ruddy, who punched clear. The Italian was in the starting XI for QPR’s 1-1 draw with QPR looked like they were missing the influence of suspended captain Joey Barton but they started the second period with much more intent, driven on by the creativity of Federico Macheda.
Macheda, making his first start since joining on loan from Manchester United, almost found an opening when he jinked his way down the left and crossed for Campbell to nod agonisingly wide at the back post. He was replaced by Jay Bothroyd with 20 minutes on the clock.
Follow Saad on Twitter- Twitter: @saadnoor