Just two of Everton’s loanees were in action over the weekend.
With Matthew Pennington missing Coventry City’s 0-0 draw at fellow League One strugglers Yeovil Town with injury, and AFC Telford - featuring Ben McLaughlin - not in action, just Chris Long and John Lundstram made appearances.
Both Brentford and Norwich City had both exited the FA Cup in earlier rounds so were able to play out their Championship meeting at Carrow Road. Named to the bench, young Blues striker Long came on with four minutes remaining for his debut and helped the Bees hold on to a 2-1 victory that maintains their fine form in the second tier.
Meanwhile, down in League One, midfielder Lundstram was involved in a relegation six-pointer for loan club Leyton Orient.
The O’s have struggled this season and find themselves in the bottom four but had the opportunity to pick up three vital points against fellow basement boys Colchester United. Despite Lundstram playing the full 90, it was the U’s that ran out 2-0 winners.
Long will hope to feature further in Brentford’s top-of-the-table clash with fellow high-flyers Middlesbrough on Saturday, while both Lundstram and Pennington will hope to help their respective clubs pull away from trouble as they face Scunthorpe United and Rochdale respectively.
McLauglin, meanwhile, heads to the seaside to face Grimsby Town in the Vanarama Conference.