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Championship MatchDay 34 review

last updated Tuesday 25th February 2020, 11:27 AM

Match Day 34 in the Championship saw Fulham hold on to third place after playing out a 1-1 draw away at Derby County. The Cottagers went behind to a Wayne Rooney penalty in the 55th minute after Tim Ream was judged to have handled the ball in the penalty area. But although Derby have the best home record in the Championship Aleksandar Mitrovic was able to score, for the 22nd time this season, to level the game up.

Championship table - 24th February 2020
    HOME   AWAY  
  Team P W D L F A W D L F A GD Pts
1 West Brom 34 7 7 2 34 22 11 5 2 28 14 26 66
2 Leeds 34 10 4 3 24 13 8 4 5 25 17 19 62
3 Fulham 34 10 2 5 29 21 6 7 4 19 16 11 57
4 Brentford 34 9 5 3 31 15 7 3 7 25 14 27 56
5 N Forest 34 8 4 5 20 16 7 7 3 25 17 12 56
6 Preston 34 11 3 4 34 21 5 5 6 15 17 11 56
7 Bristol C 34 7 4 6 24 26 8 4 5 24 23 -1 53
8 Blackburn 34 8 6 3 22 14 6 3 8 28 26 10 51
9 Swansea 34 8 4 6 24 20 5 8 3 20 22 2 51
10 Cardiff 34 8 7 1 24 14 4 7 7 24 33 1 50
11 Millwall 34 8 5 3 24 17 4 8 6 16 22 1 49
12 Sheff Wed 34 6 5 5 14 18 6 4 8 30 23 3 45
13 Derby 34 9 7 2 25 13 2 5 9 17 33 -4 45
14 Birmingham 34 6 5 6 26 26 6 4 7 19 26 -7 45
15 QPR 34 7 4 6 33 30 5 3 9 18 28 -7 43
16 Reading 34 6 2 8 21 21 5 7 6 20 17 3 42
17 Hull 34 6 3 8 27 28 5 5 7 21 25 -5 41
18 Charlton 34 7 5 6 25 22 3 4 9 19 26 -4 39
19 Stoke 34 7 3 8 24 23 4 1 11 19 30 -10 37
20 Middlesbrough 34 6 7 4 16 16 2 6 9 18 28 -10 37
21 Huddersfield 34 5 5 7 18 24 4 4 9 21 31 -16 36
22 Wigan 34 6 5 6 18 22 2 5 10 16 28 -16 34
23 Barnsley 34 5 7 6 26 31 2 3 11 15 27 -17 31
24 Luton 34 6 3 7 24 25 3 0 15 16 44 -29 30
Results Table Fixtures
West Brom romped to a 3-0 win away at Bristol City maintaining their four point lead at the top of the Championship. City had Romaine Sawyers sent off in the 75th minute for violent conduct but the damage had already been done by then with The Baggies already 2-0 up.

Second-placed Leeds once again won by a single goal thanks to Pablo Hernández’s strike against Reading.

Brentford missed the chance to overtake third-placed Fulham and increase the pressure on Leeds and West Brom despite overturning a two-goal deficit to draw 2-2 with Blackburn.

Nottingham Forest and QPR settled for a goalless draw after Joe Worrall’s header was ruled out when the wind blew the ball off the corner quadrant just before the set-piece was taken.

Just inside the playoff spots sit Preston, who battled back against Hull. Mallik Wilks put the Tigers ahead but Paul Gallagher levelled from the spot and then substitute Alan Browne got on the end of a Jayden Stockley cross to complete the turnaround.

Championship MatchDay 34 ~ Results
Friday 21st February
19:45Derby 1-1Fulham 25442
Saturday 22nd February
K.O.Home Res AwayAtt
12:30Brentford 2-2Blackburn 12082
15:00Barnsley 1-0 Middlesbrough 16108
15:00Birmingham 3-3Sheff Wed22120
15:00Bristol City0-3West Brom0
15:00Charlton 3-1 Luton 18969
15:00Leeds 1-0Reading 35483
15:00N Forest 0-0QPR 28750
15:00Preston 2-1Hull 12342
15:00Stoke 2-0Cardiff 25436
15:00Swansea 3-1Huddersfield 15148
15:00Wigan 1-0Millwall 9639
Results Table Fixtures
Swansea are still in with a shout of a top-six finish and proved their quality by defeating Huddersfield 3-1 at home.

Former friends Pep Clotet and Garry Monk met at St Andrew’s in a topsy-turvy game. The two fell out after Clotet, previously Sheffield Wednesday manager Monk’s assistant, replaced him at Birmingham’s helm. Clotet’s side looked set for victory until Scott Hogan popped up with a 91st-minute equaliser to make it 3-3.

Stoke maintained a three-point gap on the relegation zone after downing Cardiff 2-0. Callum Paterson netted an own goal and Joe Allen’s scrappy effort put the result beyond doubt.

There were some vital wins at the other end of the table. Wigan just got the better of Millwall after Shaun Hutchinson turned the ball into his own net.

Barnsley also took victory against Middlesbrough thanks to a single goal, theirs coming courtesy of Conor Chaplin but the Tykes are still five points from safety.

Luton are nestled at the bottom of the pile, with their latest loss coming at Charlton. Lyle Taylor’s fine finish opened the scoring, only for Harry Cornick to almost immediately equalise. Taylor kept his cool from the spot just after the hour mark and George Lapslie sealed the points late on.

Championship MatchDay 34 Wrap-up
Friday 21st February 2020

19:45Derby 1-1Fulham 25442

Aleksandar Mitrovic rescued a point for Fulham at Derby as Wayne Rooney marked his 500th appearance in English league football by scoring a Panenka penalty.

Championship MatchDay 35 ~ Fixtures
Tuesday 26th February 2020
K.O.Home AwayTV
19:45Cardiff N ForestSKY
19:45Huddersfield Bristol Citysky
19:45Luton Brentford sky
19:45QPR Derby sky
20:00West BromPreston sky
Wednesday 27th February 2020
19:45Blackburn Stoke sky
19:45Fulham Swansea sky
19:45Hull Barnsley sky
19:45 Middlesbrough Leeds sky
19:45Millwall Birmingham SKY
19:45Sheff WedCharlton sky
20:00Reading Wigan sky
Results Table Fixtures
The Championship's top scorer coolly volleyed in Aboubakar Kamara's cross for his 22nd goal of the season to lift Fulham within two points of second-placed Leeds in the race for promotion.

It had looked like former England captain Rooney would take the headlines when he calmly clipped the ball past Fulham keeper Marek Rodak from the spot to give the Rams the lead after Tim Ream had been penalised for handball.

But, despite chances at both ends, neither team could find a winner, with Rodak making a number of fine saves to keep his side in the game.

Rodak's mistakes had been to blame for the Whites' surprise 3-0 home defeat by Barnsley last weekend but boss Scott Parker kept faith with the Slovakian keeper and was rewarded with a superb display as he saved six of Derby's seven on-target efforts.

Championship MatchDay 34 Wrap-up
Saturday 22nd February 2020

12:30Brentford 2-2Blackburn 12082

Promotion-chasing Brentford fought back from 2-0 down to draw against Blackburn Rovers in the Championship.

Adam Armstrong put play-off hopefuls Rovers ahead early on and doubled his side's lead from the penalty spot soon

after the break after Bees keeper David Raya had brought down John Buckley. Ollie Watkins scored a stunning half-volley to pull a goal back for the hosts, and Said Benrahma's spot-kick levelled proceedings at Griffin Park after Mads Roerslev was fouled.

Raya denied Armstrong a hat-trick from a one-on-one situation before Rovers keeper Christian Walton made stops from Bryan Mbeumo and Benrahma as both sides were forced to settle for a point.

Brentford missed the chance to move above third-placed Fulham, while Blackburn would have moved into the top six ahead of the 15:00 GMT kick-offs if they had held on to take all three points in west London.

15:00Barnsley 1-0 Middlesbrough 16108

Conor Chaplin scored for the first time in five games as Barnsley boosted their chances of avoiding relegation with a home win over below-par Middlesbrough.

Chaplin kept his composure to net left-footed at the second attempt at a windy Oakwell after his initial effort struck the crossbar following Jacob Brown's nod down.

Having beaten Fulham last week, the goal was enough to give Gerhard Struber's Tykes back-to-back victories for only the second time this season.

Lewis Wing went close for Boro with a free-kick which deflected just wide off the wall, but the result stretched their winless run in the Championship to eight matches.

Middlesbrough drop to 20th, just three points clear of the relegation places, with Barnsley now off the bottom, but five points from safety with a dozen games left to play.

15:00Birmingham 3-3Sheff Wed22120

Scott Hogan's late equaliser denied Garry Monk a winning return to Birmingham City with Sheffield Wednesday after a pulsating clash at St Andrew's.

The in-form Blues were rewarded for a fast start when Jacob Murphy sliced into his own net from Jeremie Bela's corner, but Barry Bannan was given time to dispatch a low 30-yard equaliser into the bottom corner.

Lukas Jutkiewicz fired a low shot into the corner to restore the lead, but the Owls were soon level again through Fernando Forestieri's penalty after Kieran Lee went down under Maxime Colin's challenge.

Murphy appeared to have made amends with a goal at the right end after Forestieri teed him up to smash past Lee Camp, but Hogan ran on to Jutkiewicz's header to volley home and rescue a point.

The two sides began the day level on points, but in starkly contrasting form, with City unbeaten since New Year's Day and Wednesday with just one league win in 10 matches, dropping them from third place at Christmas to 13th.

15:00Bristol City0-3West Brom0

Championship leaders West Bromwich Albion produced a "complete" performance to beat Bristol City and move nine points clear of third-placed Fulham in the race for promotion, says head coach Slaven Bilic.

Callum Robinson gave the Baggies the lead in fortunate circumstances, the ball rebounding in off his head after Robins keeper Dan Bentley had saved the forward's initial shot.

Bentley was then at fault for Albion's second before the break when he failed to hold Jake Livermore's shot, presenting Hal Robson-Kanu with a simple tap-in.

Albion had to play the final 13 minutes with 10 men after Romaine Sawyers was shown a straight red card after grabbing former Walsall team-mate Jamie Paterson by the throat, pushing a steward as he made his way off.

But Robson-Kanu sealed an 11th away win of the season for Bilic's side, intercepting Ashley Williams' back header and beating Bentley with a left-foot volley.

Albion's fourth victory in their past five games also handed them their first league double over City, having run out 4-1 winners when the sides met at The Hawthorns in November.

And although their lead at the top remains four points after Leeds beat Reading 1-0, the weekend's draws for promotion rivals Fulham, Brentford and Nottingham Forest strengthens their position at the top of the table with 12 games remaining.

15:00Charlton 3-1Luton 18969

Lyle Taylor's double helped Charlton to a precious three points against Luton in their battle for Championship survival.

In an even first half, Taylor gave the hosts early impetus with a smart half-volley, but the lead was short-lived as Harry Cornick pounced on a poor clearance to smash a low shot into the corner.

Taylor put the Addicks back in front from the penalty spot - his seventh goal against the Hatters in the last five meetings - after James Collins handled George Lapslie's shot.

And Lapslie wrapped up victory late on with his first league goal for Charlton, slotting home after a one-two with Macauley Bonne.

Both teams were buoyed by improved form in their battle to avoid relegation.

Charlton have now followed a run of one win in 17 games with three victories in their last five games, while Luton had picked up three wins in five going into this game after seven defeats in the previous eight.

15:00Leeds 1-0Reading 35483

Leeds United strengthened their position in the Championship's top two, thanks to Pablo Hernandez's second-half winner against Reading.

Hernandez struck on 57 minutes, stabbing into the top corner after his first shot had been blocked.

Reading had frustrated the hosts until that point and almost snatched an equaliser late on, with Liam Moore denied by Leeds keeper Kiko Casilla.

Victory for Leeds puts them five points ahead of third-placed Fulham, who dropped points in a 1-1 draw at Derby on Friday.

Defeat sees Reading drop to 16th in the table, but eight points clear of relegation trouble.

15:00N Forest 0-0QPR 28750

Nottingham Forest missed the chance to move up to third in the Championship as their former boss Mark Warburton steered QPR to a battling draw at a blustery City Ground.

Forest dominated the first half and thought they had taken the lead, only for Joe Worrall's fine header to be controversially ruled out because Joe Lolley's corner was deemed to have been delivered from outside the quadrant.

Rangers, who go 15th thanks to a third game without defeat, improved after the interval with playmaker Ebere Eze continuing to be their standout player, but they could only fashion half-chances.

The Reds remained the more ambitious and dangerous.

Joe Lolley sent a header just past the post in time added on, but Forest only mustered two efforts on target from a drab game played in front of a packed crowd.

Victory for Leeds over Reading means Forest remain fifth and are now six points adrift of second place, but Bristol City's 3-0 defeat against leaders West Bromwich Albion does strengthen their play-off chances, with the Robins now three behind in seventh.

15:00Preston 2-1Hull 12342

Two goals in four minutes by Paul Gallagher and Alan Browne enabled Preston to come from a goal down and beat Hull to get their play-off bid back on course.

Hull took the lead five minutes before half-time through Mallik Wilks' third goal for the club, but the visitors saw their lead disappear in four second-half minutes.

Darnell Fisher was brought down inside the box and Gallagher made no mistake in firing home the equaliser from the spot.

Then second-half substitute Browne met Jayden Stockley's cross from the left to head Preston into a lead they protected to the final whistle.

Victory saw Preston bounce back from a rare home defeat to Millwall last week and extend their cushion inside the play-offs to three points.

15:00Stoke 2-0Cardiff 25436

Former Swansea midfielder Joe Allen helped Stoke move three points clear of the Championship relegation places with victory over Cardiff.

The Bluebirds gifted Stoke the lead when Callum Paterson headed into his own net from a corner.

Allen scrambled the ball home from close range after Tyrese Campbell's effort was blocked to secure victory.

Cardiff's play-off hopes were dented as they lost for just the third time in the league under boss Neil Harris.

They slip to 10th, a point behind rivals Swansea and six adrift of Preston in the final play-off berth, while victory lifts Stoke up to 19th, level on points with Middlesbrough.

15:00Swansea 3-1Huddersfield 15148

Swansea City breathed life into their Championship play-off bid with a 3-1 victory over Huddersfield Town.

Andre Ayew, Jay Fulton and Jordon Garrick were on target as Swansea won for the first time in six league games.

Steve Cooper's side led after top scorer Ayew pounced on a rebound to claim his 13th goal of the season.

Steve Mounie's close-range strike 12 minutes from time levelled, but Fulton quickly restored Swansea's lead before Garrick sealed victory late on.

With their winless run now standing at three matches, the Terriers, in 21st, are only two points above the bottom three with a dozen games remaining, while Swansea rise to ninth, five points off the final play-off spot.

15:00Wigan 1-0Millwall 9639

Shaun Hutchinson's own goal gave Wigan's Championship survival chances a boost as they beat Millwall at the DW Stadium.

The Latics began the day three points from safety but a slice of luck brought them their eighth win of the season.

Anthony Pilkington's cross was turned into his own net by Hutchinson 12 minutes into the second half and it was enough to hand Paul Cook's side victory.

It was just Millwall's second defeat from their last 10 away games and, after an impressive win at Preston last week, a blow in their push for the play-offs as they slipped back to seven points from sixth in the table.

Source Will Unwin at The Guardian/BBCSports
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