Swansea City replaced Leeds United at the top of the Championship in dramatic fashion as a 90th-minute strike from Wayne Routledge earned Steve Cooper's men a 1-0 win at Elland Road.

Leeds dominated for much of the game on Saturday, but they were made to pay for a lack of cutting edge when Routledge swept home late on.

As a result, Swansea are two points clear at the top of the table heading into the international break, having won five and drawn one of their opening six games.

Charlton Athletic, promoted from League One last season, are also unbeaten and sit second after a 2-0 win at Reading.

At the other end of the table, the misery goes on for Stoke City and Huddersfield Town, who both remain winless after giving up leads in respective 2-1 defeats at Birmingham City and Luton Town.

Derby County also endured a horrible day as they were trounced 3-0 at Brentford.

 

SUPER SWANS DEFYING EXPECTATIONS UNDER COOPER

Cooper was something of a surprise appointment by the Swans after Graham Potter left for Brighton and Hove Albion, but the former England Under-17 coach could hardly have asked for a better start to his tenure at the Liberty Stadium.

The Swans certainly rode their luck at Leeds, who created numerous chances to move ahead before being beaten by Routledge's last-gasp strike.

However, Swansea's resilience typified their early-season form under Cooper, which has seen them concede just four league goals thus far.

This win at Elland Road was their first in 70 years.

BAGGIES PREVAIL AFTER GOAL-FILLED FIRST HALF

Like Swansea, West Brom are yet to taste a Championship defeat after a change of boss in the close season. Slaven Bilic's men drew three of their first five games but are now up to fourth, a point behind Leeds, courtesy of a 3-2 win over a Blackburn Rovers side managed by former Albion chief Tony Mowbray.

All of the goals at the Hawthorns came in the first half, with Matt Phillips, Jake Livermore and Grady Diangana on target for West Brom after Bradley Dack's opener inside 25 seconds. Bradley Johnson pulled one back just before the break, but Blackburn could not rescue a point.

 

POTTERS STAY ROCK BOTTOM

Nathan Jones' future as Stoke's manager looks increasingly uncertain after they followed up a morale-boosting EFL Cup win at Leeds with a fifth league loss in six matches. Liam Lindsay put the Potters ahead after 58 minutes at Birmingham, but they were nevertheless beaten again, Jude Bellingham's deflected strike earning the hosts victory.

Huddersfield also have just one point, Andrew Shinnie claiming Luton's winner at Kenilworth Road, while Derby's struggles worsened as Ollie Watkins struck twice in an emphatic win for Brentford.

Bristol City and Middlesbrough played out a 2-2 draw in Saturday's early kick-off, while QPR came from behind to beat Sheffield Wednesday 2-1 thanks to Jordan Hugill's brace.

Elsewhere, Millwall and Hull City drew 1-1, as did Nottingham Forest and Preston North End. There were no goals in the game between Wigan Athletic and Barnsley.

 

Fulham thrashed Millwall on Wednesday but are only third in the Championship table thanks to victories for Leeds United and Swansea City.

Sheffield Wednesday went top on Tuesday but have dropped three places following wins for three of the early-season pacesetters.

Cardiff City overcame Huddersfield Town in south Wales in a battle of two of last season's Premier League sides, while Jack Butland had a game to forget for Stoke City at Preston North End.

West Brom and Nottingham Forest, meanwhile, each earned a point by virtue of late goals.

 

FULHAM ON SONG AS CARDIFF EDGE HUDDERSFIELD

Fulham's front three of Ivan Cavaleiro, Anthony Knockaert and Aleksandar Mitrovic is starting to look a formidable attacking threat.

All three were on the scoresheet as the Cottagers saw off Millwall 4-0 for a third win in a row in England's second tier.

Cavaleiro fired home the opener and crossed for Knockaert to make it 2-0 at the end of a move that saw 26 completed passes involving all 11 Fulham players.

Mitrovic got the third from the penalty spot and Cavaleiro added a cool fourth for a Fulham side who enjoyed a remarkable 84 per cent of the possession and completed 934 passes.

Cardiff and Huddersfield, who joined Fulham in dropping out of the Premier League last season, played out a much more even encounter at Cardiff City Stadium.

Trevoh Chalobah cancelled out Joe Ralls' opener, but Neil Warnock's side snatched all three points in the 88th minute through Junior Hoilett's deflected strike.

LEEDS AND SWANSEA SETTING THE STANDARD

Leeds and Swansea are the only two teams with 10 points from their first four games of the season, although Marcelo Bielsa's side left it late at home to Brentford.

Arsenal loanee Eddie Nketiah was the hero on his Championship debut at Elland Road, tapping in Helder Costa's cross with nine minutes to go to seal a 1-0 win.

Swansea were a little more comfortable, although their 3-1 win away to QPR came despite them attempting 10 shots to the hosts' 22.

Bersant Celina put them ahead and, after Jordan Hugill headed in an equaliser, Borja Baston converted a penalty and Sam Surridge secured the points at Loftus Road.

BUTLAND IN DEEP TROUBLE AT DEEPDALE

Stoke's miserable start to the season continued with a 3-1 loss to Preston in which goalkeeper Butland had something of a nightmare.

Having failed to stop Daniel Johnson's improvised half-volley from finding the bottom-right corner, Butland allowed Billy Bodin's shot to squirm beneath his body and put Preston 2-0 up after 25 minutes.

Former Manchester United man Josh Harrop netted the third from a rebound after Butland denied Johnson, meaning James McClean's close-range finish was little consolation for a side who have taken one point from four games.

West Brom had been staring at a home defeat to Reading until the 88th minute, when Kenneth Zohore's penalty – conceded by Ovie Ejaria – cancelled out a stunning goal from the Royals' Liverpool loanee.

Charlton Athletic's meeting with Forest at The Valley also finished 1-1, with Albert Adomah earning a point after Lyle Taylor had headed in the opener.

Leeds United capitalised on favourable results elsewhere to go top of the Championship on goal difference on Saturday.

Patrick Bamford scored both goals for Marcelo Bielsa's men in a 2-0 victory away to Wigan Athletic, who had Joe Williams sent off in the 21st minute.

Sheffield Wednesday enjoyed a numerical advantage for over 45 minutes in their match at Millwall but failed to muster a response to Matt Smith's first-half effort.

That result, coupled with Charlton Athletic's draw against Barnsley, opened the door to the Whites and means no team can boast a perfect record after three matches.

 

BAMFORD BRACE ERASES WIGAN WOE

Two tap-ins from former Chelsea forward Bamford helped Leeds exact a measure of revenge on Wigan at the DW Stadium.

The Latics derailed the Yorkshire club's promotion push last season when, with 10 men, they came from behind to claim a shock 2-1 win at Elland Road.

There was no repeat this time as the dismissal of midfielder Williams for two bookable offences only left the home side's defence prone to a pair of close-range Bamford finishes.

The goals arrived either side of half-time and improved the 25-year-old's season tally to three in as many matches.

 

MILLWALL MUSCLE PAST WEDNESDAY AS CHARLTON SNATCH POINT

Wednesday's winning start under interim boss Lee Bullen came to a disappointing end in a 1-0 defeat to a resilient Millwall.

Connor Mahoney crossed for towering striker Smith to nod home in the 37th minute and that was all Neil Harris' side needed despite losing Jed Wallace six minutes later.

The midfielder was shown a straight red card for his challenge on Kieran Lee but MIllwall held on to bank a second win, which moves them a spot above sixth-placed Wednesday.

Charlton would have taken over in first had they beaten Barnsley.

Instead, the Addicks had to make do with a point courtesy of Lyle Taylor's late leveller from the penalty spot in a 2-2 draw at Oakwell.

Cauley Woodrow and Conor Chaplin twice gave Barnsley the lead, but Taylor held his nerve over the 89th-minute spot-kick to add to Conor Gallagher's earlier equaliser.

 

WAGHORN DENIES STOKE IN FOUR-GOAL DRAW

Stoke City and Derby County played out an entertaining 2-2 draw as Phillip Cocu avoided what would have been his first defeat in English football.

Cocu had Martyn Waghorn to thank, the striker converting a 70th-minute penalty to go with his early opener.

Liam Lindsay and Scott Hogan got on the scoresheet in between but Stoke were restricted to a point, their first of the campaign.

Derby are now eighth, two points adrift of third-placed West Brom, who rallied from a goal down to win 2-1 at Luton Town after Grady Diangana netted a second-half double.

The largest winning margin of the day saw Nottingham Forest cruise to a 3-0 triumph over Birmingham City.

Sheffield Wednesday and Charlton Athletic were the only teams to maintain their 100 per cent records in the Championship, while Reading, Stoke City and Blackburn Rovers again slipped to defeats.

Last season's relegated Premier League sides Cardiff City and Fulham both bounced back from disappointing starts with home victories, the Bluebirds beating Luton Town 2-1 and Scott Parker's side claiming a 2-0 win against Blackburn.

Middlesbrough manager Jonathan Woodgate was furious after his side had two goals disallowed in a 1-0 home defeat to Brentford, Tommy Rowe's late equaliser earned Bristol City a 1-1 draw at Birmingham City and Preston North End beat Wigan Athletic 3-0.

Meanwhile, Leeds United, QPR, West Brom and Derby County, who all won their opening games, were held to draws by Nottingham Forest, Huddersfield Town, Millwall and Swansea City respectively.

GRABBAN DENIES LEEDS ANOTHER WIN

Forest boss Sabri Lamouchi was facing the prospect of starting the season with consecutive defeats until Lewis Grabban grabbed an equaliser in a 1-1 draw with Leeds, who dominated for long spells at Elland Road.

Marcelo Bielsa's men swept Bristol City aside in the first half an hour of their season opener but found themselves embroiled in a battle with an uncompromising Forest side determined to bounce back from their 2-1 defeat at home to West Brom.

After Patrick Bamford hit the crossbar, it was playmaker Pablo Hernandez who put Leeds in front, latching onto Mateusz Klich's chipped pass over the defence and burying a shot into the far corner of the net for his second goal in as many games.

But Forest equalised with their only shot on target of the game, Grabban capitalising on a penalty-box scramble and bundling the ball over the line from close range.

TWO WINS IN TWO FOR BOWYER'S MEN

Lyle Taylor, who scored Charlton Athletic's winner in their opening-day victory over Blackburn Rovers, picked up where he left off by firing Lee Bowyer's Addicks into the lead at home against Stoke.

The Potters responded through Tom Ince, but the tireless work ethic of Bowyer's newly promoted side wore the visitors down.

Close-season signing Chuks Aneke slammed the ball into the bottom corner from close range after Josh Cullen's cut-back to make it 2-1 to the hosts, and Conor Gallagher put the result beyond doubt seven minutes from time.

OWLS OFF TO A FLYER

Loanee winger Jacob Murphy wasted little time endearing himself to the Hillsborough faithful, pouncing on a loose ball and side-footing Sheffield Wednesday into the lead after two minutes of the South Yorkshire derby against Barnsley.

The Owls carried the momentum of their victory at Reading into the game and withstood waves of pressure from a well-organised Barnsley side before doubling their lead through Steven Fletcher.

After Murphy's mazy dribble, Kieran Lee fed Fletcher and the Scotland international showed great technique with a finish into the bottom-right corner from outside the box.

FULHAM OFF THE MARK AS ROVERS FALTER

Blackburn were widely tipped to push on after finishing 15th in the Championship last season, but two games in they are still without a point following their home defeat to Charlton and a 2-0 reverse at Fulham.

Parker's side drew a blank when starting the season with a defeat at Barnsley but they went ahead against Rovers when former Blackburn midfielder Tom Cairney let rip from 25 yards.

Blackburn matched Fulham for much of the contest and Sam Gallagher squandered the chance to pull them level when he headed wide 14 minutes from time, moments before Aleksandar Mitrovic scored a tap-in.

Arsenal have finally discarded of defender Carl Jenkinson, who has joined Nottingham Forest on a three-year deal.

The right-back, 27, has agreed a three-year contract with the Reds to become their eighth close-season signing and is available for Saturday's Championship visit to Leeds United.

Jenkinson, capped once at senior level by England, joined the Gunners from Charlton Athletic in 2011, but he made just 70 appearances for the club in that time.

He has also had loan spells with West Ham and Birmingham City, however he remained with Unai Emery's side last season, playing eight times across all competitions.

 

Manchester City have loaned United States goalkeeper Zack Steffen to Fortuna Dusseldorf for the duration of the 2019-20 campaign.

Steffen was signed by the Premier League champions in December but remained on loan with Columbus Crew for the first half of the Major League Soccer season.

He made his 84th and final appearances for Columbus in last month's 2-2 draw with New York City FC and is now heading back to Germany with Dusseldorf, having previously played 14 times for Freiburg's reserve team at the start of his career.

"I'm really looking forward to returning to Germany and becoming part of such a traditional club," he told his new side's official website.

The 2018 US Soccer Male Player of the Year was first-choice keeper for the United States at the Gold Cup, which ultimately ended in disappointment with a 1-0 defeat to Mexico in Sunday's final.

Confirmation of Steffen's departure came on the same day that City loaned fellow goalkeeper Aro Muric to Championship side Nottingham Forest.

Muric will also spend the whole of next season away from the Etihad Stadium, but he signed a renewal before departing that keeps him under contract until 2024.

"Extending my current deal with City by a further three years is incredible and an honour for me," he told City's official website.

"I really enjoyed the 2018-19 season and to be involved in our successful EFL Cup run was an amazing experience.

"The players and supporters have made me feel so happy and part of everything and the club have showed their belief in me with this deal."

Martin O'Neill has left Nottingham Forest after just five months in charge, with Sabri Lamouchi appointed as the Championship club's new head coach.

After leaving his role with the Republic of Ireland, former Celtic and Aston Villa manager O'Neill - along with assistant Roy Keane - took over in January.

O'Neill enjoyed a trophy laden spell at Forest during his playing days, winning the First Division title, two European Cups and one League Cup during his time at the City Ground under Brian Clough's guidance.

However, he could not propel Forest into the play-offs in the second half of the 2018-19 campaign, winning eight of his 19 games in charge.

Amid reports suggesting several key players had turned against O'Neill, the 67-year-old has departed Forest, five days after Keane left his role at the club.

"The club would like to thank Martin for all his efforts during his time at The City Ground and wish him well for the future," Forest said in a short statement.

Forest - who start their Championship campaign against West Brom on August 3 - moved quickly to replace O'Neill too, bringing in ex-Rennes and Ivory Coast coach Lamouchi.

The former France international will be assisted by six new members of staff, the club confirmed.

Roy Keane has stepped down as Nottingham Forest assistant boss to resurrect his managerial career.

The 47-year-old spent just five months at the City Ground, where he was working as Martin O'Neill's number two.

Keane has previously managed Sunderland and Ipswich Town and is now seeking a new job.

A statement from the club read: "Nottingham Forest can confirm that assistant manager Roy Keane has left the club.

"Roy would like to express his gratitude to the club's owner, board of directors, the staff, the players and in particular manager Martin O'Neill for the opportunity to return to the City Ground."

Keane has not held a senior management position since leaving Sunderland in 2011, having worked in an assistant capacity with Republic of Ireland, Aston Villa and Forest over the last six years.

But he has previously admitted he is keen on landing a top job and has taken the decision to end his association with O'Neill, whom he also worked alongside in the Irish coaching set-up.

"Working with Martin over the last few years has been a magnificent experience, one of my greatest in football both as a player and a coach and one I want to personally thank him for," Keane said in a statement.

Forest finished ninth in the Championship last season, eight points adrift of the play-offs.

Bolton Wanderers' clash with Nottingham Forest will go ahead as planned as the beleaguered club have confirmed their first-team players will be available, according to a statement from the English Football League (EFL).

Already relegated from the second tier, Bolton's final home fixture with Brentford, scheduled for April 27, was postponed amid an ongoing player strike over unpaid wages - a decision that was backed by the Professional Footballers' Association (PFA).

The club's ownership situation remains unresolved, with a proposed takeover by Laurence Bassini having reportedly not progressed, but the EFL has indicated that Wanderers' trip to the City Ground on Sunday will take place.

"Bolton Wanderers has confirmed to the EFL that its first-team squad will be available for the club’s away fixture against Nottingham Forest at the weekend," read the statement.

"As a result, the game will take place as originally scheduled on Sunday, May 5, kick-off 12:30pm, along with all other Championship fixtures.

"The EFL board will determine on Thursday, May 2 as to what arrangements are to be put in place in regards to last week's suspended fixture with Brentford and details will be confirmed in due course."

Sheffield United claimed another big win in their bid for promotion from the Championship as they beat Hull City 3-0 to pile the pressure on Leeds United.

With Leeds facing Brentford in Monday's late fixture, the second-placed Blades moved three points clear of Marcelo Bielsa's side with a dominant display at KCOM Stadium.

Above them, Norwich City were held to a fourth successive draw, and with two games remaining, their lead has been reduced to just three points.

Play-off candidates Middlesbrough and Bristol City succumbed to defeats at Nottingham Forest and Sheffield Wednesday respectively, and Derby County took the chance to move into the top six thanks to a Harry Wilson late show against QPR.

In the early game, Aston Villa beat Millwall to claim their 10th successive win, while at the other end of the table Wigan Athletic secured safety with a 2-0 victory over Preston North End.

BLADES SHARP AS THE RUN-IN HOTS UP

Having seen off Forest on Friday, Sheffield United took full advantage of playing before Leeds by dismantling Hull in a Yorkshire derby.

Chris Wilder's side took the lead 10 minutes in – David McGoldrick heading home unmarked from John Fleck's corner – and the Blades never looked back.

McGoldrick doubled his tally 12 minutes later, curling in an excellent finish from 25 yards out, with Enda Stevens capitalising on more slack Hull defending to effectively wrap up the points before half-time.

While securing automatic promotion will be the priority, United are just three points behind Norwich with two games – against Ipswich Town and Stoke City – still to come.

CANARIES' CELEBRATIONS STILL ON HOLD

A matter of weeks ago, it looked as though Norwich's charge to the title, and the Premier League, was a mere formality.

Now, however, after yet another draw, things look a bit more complicated for Daniel Farke's side. Depending on Leeds' result against Brentford, there could suddenly be a three-way tussle for not just promotion, but the title.

Norwich dominated proceedings for much of Monday's encounter at Stoke, with Onel Hernandez beating Jack Butland in the 24th minute.

But the hosts fought back through Ashley Williams' header, and though Teemu Pukki restored Norwich's lead, Thomas Edwards drew Stoke level once more to secure a share of the spoils, and delay the Canaries' promotion celebrations.

CONTROVERSIAL PENALTY HELPS DERBY

Derby moved into the final play-off spot thanks to a dramatic 2-0 triumph over QPR, though Frank Lampard's side relied on a contentious penalty to break the deadlock.

With 94 minutes played, referee David Webb harshly deemed that Luke Freeman had fouled Jayden Bogle, and Liverpool loanee Wilson made no mistake with a composed finish.

QPR rallied, with Pawel Wszolek seeing an effort hooked off the line, but the result was settled when Derby raced clear – Wilson tucking in his second in the 101st minute.

Derby's move into the play-off spots comes at the expense of Middlesbrough, who lost 3-0 at Forest, while Barry Bannan's stunner set Sheffield Wednesday up for a 2-0 win over Bristol, who drop to eighth.

VILLA MARCH ON, WIGAN SAFE

Villa seem to be hitting top form at just the right time, as they all but guaranteed a play-off place with a 1-0 win over Millwall – Jonathan Kodjia on target for Dean Smith's side.

Millwall's defeat handed Wigan a boost ahead of their clash with Preston, who had Ryan Ledson sent off as the Latics secured the points with goals from Leon Clarke and Lee Evans.

In the process, Wigan moved onto 48 points, enough to make sure of their Championship status for another season after Rotherham United lost at home to Birmingham City.

Sheffield United bounced back from successive draws by moving up to second place in the Championship with a 2-0 home win against 10-man Nottingham Forest on Good Friday.

Mark Duffy scored the opening goal with a brilliant long-range effort following Yohan Benalouane's red card, which contributed to Martin O'Neill's side succumbing to a fourth straight league loss, with Enda Stevens' late strike making sure for the hosts.

Jack Colback's 15th yellow card of the season was among the few notable moments in a flat first half at Bramall Lane, the Forest captain cautioned for simulation after going down too easily in the Blades box.

But there was an explosive start to the second period as Forest were reduced to 10 men shortly after the restart, Benalouane dismissed after bringing down David McGoldrick when through on goal.

Chris Wilder's men needed fewer than four minutes to make their man advantage count, Duffy sending a wonderful strike into the top corner.

And five minutes from time the Blades crucially doubled their lead, McGoldrick leading a break through a depleted defence and teeing up full-back Stevens on the overlap to drill a fine finish across Forest goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon.

Sheffield United move back above Leeds United on goal difference as the promotion race continues, with Marcelo Bielsa's men at home to relegation-threatened Wigan Athletic later in the day.

Sheffield United failed to put maximum pressure on Leeds United in the Championship promotion race with a dramatic 1-1 home draw against Millwall, while Ipswich Town were relegated to League One.

With Leeds in action later in the day against Sheffield Wednesday at Elland Road, the Blades had a chance to go two points ahead of Marcelo Bielsa's men and Gary Madine's goal seemed to have earned them victory.

Ben Marshall missed a late penalty for Millwall after John Egan was sent off, but Jake Cooper struck deep in added time for the relegation-threatened visitors.

Aston Villa's home win against Bristol City tightened the race for the top six, with West Brom, Middlesbrough and Derby County all collecting three points too, but Ipswich's time in the second tier is over.

 

BLADES LACK CUTTING EDGE

Sheffield United have lost form at a bad time of the season, with Chris Wilder's side having won only one of their past four Championship matches to hand the advantage to Leeds.

Madine's third league goal since joining on loan from Cardiff City in the January transfer window looked to have put his side clear of Leeds, at least temporarily.

But nerves struck in the closing stages and, after Egan was dismissed for handball having blocked a header from Tom Elliott, Marshall missed the resulting penalty.

Millwall punished the 10 men, however, with Cooper's diving header in the fifth minute of added time pushing the Lions two points clear of the relegation zone.


READING BOOSTED, IPSWICH DROP

Yakou Meite hit a priceless double for Reading in a 2-1 home win over Brentford that moved the Royals four points clear of the bottom three.

Meite struck twice in the first 15 minutes and, although Neal Maupay replied for the Bees with his 22nd Championship goal of the season, Jose Gomes' side held on.

Survival hopes are over for Ipswich, though, with Paul Lambert's side relegated despite Gwion Edwards' equaliser earning a 1-1 draw at home to Birmingham City, who are now six points above the danger zone.

Rotherham United came from two goals down to draw 2-2 at Stoke City, Michael Smith and Matt Crooks scoring in the second half to move the Millers within a point of safety.

QPR recorded their first win under caretaker boss John Eustace by thrashing mid-table Swansea City 4-0 at Loftus Road, Tomer Hemed with a double that sees Rangers pull eight points clear of Rotherham.

Bolton Wanderers, meanwhile, are likely to follow Ipswich through the trap door. Their 4-0 loss at Derby was their fifth defeat in six Championship matches and they are nine points adrift of 21st-placed Wigan Athletic, with the visit of leaders Norwich City to come on Sunday.


VILLA ON THE CHARGE

Bolton's next game is at home to Villa, with Dean Smith's men making it eight wins in a row courtesy of a 2-1 victory over top-six rivals Bristol City.

Goals from Tammy Abraham and Conor Hourihane set up Villa's win, although Famara Diedhiou hit back for Bristol City, who had been unbeaten in their last five games.

Middlesbrough continue to improve after a six-game losing streak seemed to have ended their play-off hopes, with a 1-0 win over Hull City secured thanks to Britt Assombalonga's first-half goal.

But slim top-six hopes are fading fast for Nottingham Forest and Preston North End. Forest lost 2-1 at home to Blackburn Rovers, their third straight defeat, while it is four reverses in a row for Preston after they went down 4-1 at West Brom.

Dwight Gayle fired in a hat-trick for James Shan's Baggies, who are close to guaranteeing a play-off place and are only six points behind Sheffield United.

Leeds United leapfrogged Sheffield United into second place in the Championship after a 2-0 win away at Preston North End on Tuesday.

Patrick Bamford scored twice as Marcelo Bielsa's side moved two points ahead of the Blades, who are in action against Birmingham City on Wednesday.

West Brom's automatic promotion hopes suffered a potentially fatal blow with a 3-2 defeat to Bristol City, while Middlesbrough boosted their play-off hopes with a win away at struggling Bolton Wanderers.

There were also wins for Blackburn Rovers, Sheffield Wednesday and Swansea City against Derby County, Nottingham Forest and Stoke City respectively.

BAMFORD PUNISHES 10-MAN NORTH END

Leeds and Sheffield United are locked in a pulsating battle for the Championship's second automatic promotion place and Bielsa's side have cranked up the pressure ahead of the Blades' visit to Birmingham.

Their cause was helped by the dismissal of Ben Pearson, who received a straight red card for hauling down Bamford as he went through on goal shortly after the interval.

The visitors took full advantage of their numerical superiority in the 62nd minute when Bamford powered home from 25 yards.

The former Chelsea striker then added a second 14 minutes from time, heading in Mateusz Klich's right-wing cross to seal a vital three points.

BAGGIES' TOP-TWO HOPES DEALT A BLOW

West Brom are now nine points behind Leeds in fourth after three goals in the opening 19 minutes set Bristol City on their way to a important victory in the play-off battle.

The Robins, who are four points ahead of seventh-place Middlesbrough in fifth, stormed ahead thanks to goals from Josh Brownhill, Andreas Weimann and Jack Hunt.

Dwight Gayle reduced the deficit two minutes into the second half before Jay Rodriguez added a second 16 minutes from time.

They were unable to find a leveller, though, as caretaker boss Jimmy Shan suffered a second defeat in four days.

FLETCHER KEEPS PULIS' MEN IN PLAY-OFF RACE

Middlesbrough ended a torrid run of form to push Bolton Wanderers closer to relegation.

Tony Pulis' side had lost their last six games in the league, but Ashley Fletcher scored twice to move them to within two points of sixth-placed Aston Villa.

Bolton, meanwhile, remain eight points from safety with just five games left to preserve their Championship status for another season.

RAMS WELL BEATEN IN LANCASHIRE

Derby County's hopes of sneaking a play-off place suffered a setback as Blackburn Rovers ran out 2-0 winners at Ewood Park, while Sheffield Wednesday jumped above Nottingham Forest into ninth after a resounding 3-0 win at Hillsborough.

Elsewhere, Swansea City ran out 3-1 winners over Stoke City at the Liberty Stadium.

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