Nathaniel Mendez-Laing bags brace as Cardiff stroll to victory over Aston Villa

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Nathaniel Mendez-Laing bagged a brace as Cardiff made it two wins from two at the start of the Sky Bet Championship season with a 3-0 victory over a shell-shocked Aston Villa.

The Bluebirds, who opened their campaign by beating Burton last weekend, took the lead midway through the first half when Mendez-Laing rose to head home Junior Hoilett’s cross to the far post.

Hoilett turned goalscorer on the hour mark with a close-range header before Mendez-Laing cut in from the left before firing into the top corner in the 71st minute to leave Villa well beaten.

Nottingham Forest joined the Welsh club on six points but were pushed all the way in a 4-3 defeat of Brentford.

John Egan’s header gave the Bees a deserved lead but two brilliant strikes from Andreas Bouchalakis, either side of Daryl Murphy’s tap in, pushed Forest into the ascendancy just after the restart.

Andreas Bjelland narrowed the deficit but Kieran Dowell restored Forest’s two-goal cushion, only for Neal Maupay to set up a tense finale, with Forest just about hanging on to condemn Brentford to a second defeat of the season.

Abel Hernandez’s hat-trick inspired Hull to a 4-1 victory over 10-man Burton, for who Jackson Irvine went from hero to villain.

The Brewers midfielder cancelled out Hernandez’s opener just after the half-hour mark but was then given his marching orders moments later.

Kamil Grosicki helped the Tigers regain the lead shortly after the resumption while Hernandez scored twice more to lift the hosts to an ultimately comfortable win.

Fulham had Tomas Kalas dismissed after 39 seconds but managed to leave Reading with a 1-1 draw.

Kalas was given his marching orders after hauling down Modou Barrow and it seemed the Royals would capitalise on their man advantage when they went ahead through Liam Kelly but Lucas Piazon’s late goal grabbed a point for the Cottagers.

Goals from Craig Gardner and Jacques Maghoma lifted 10-man Birmingham to a 2-1 win over Bristol City, who had gone ahead in the opening minute through Bobby Reid.

Second-half substitute Maikel Kieftenbeld was sent off in the closing stages but the Blues managed to hold on for their first three-point haul of the campaign.

Strikes from Barry Douglas and Ivan Cavaleiro saw Wolves maintain their 100 per cent winning start to the season as they eased to a 2-0 success at Derby.

Ipswich are also on six points after goals from substitutes David McGoldrick and Martyn Waghorn helped them edge out Barnsley, beaten 2-1 despite taking the lead through Tom Bradshaw.

Millwall and Bolton claimed their first point of the season after a 1-1 draw at The Den. George Saville’s opener just after the interval was cancelled out on the hour by Filipe Morais’ free-kick.

It was an identical scoreline at Hillsborough as substitute Sam Winnall’s strike gave Sheffield Wednesday a share of the spoils after Jamie Mackie had put QPR ahead.

Leeds drew a blank against 10-man Preston, who had Ben Pearson sent off with 30 minutes remaining but escaped Elland Road with a goalless draw.

Source: PA

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