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 Post subject: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Sun Aug 07, 2011 8:14 pm 
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Substitute Will Buckley scored twice to christen Brighton's first competitive fixture at their new Amex Stadium with a 2-1 victory over Doncaster in the npower Championship.

Things started disappointingly for last season's League One champions, with manager Gus Poyet sent to the stands after kicking over a crate of water bottles in the first half and Billy Sharp handing Rovers the lead from close-range after 39 minutes.

But Buckley, a £1million summer signing from Watford, altered things with a game-changing effort from the bench, equalising in the 83rd minute and stroking home the winner deep in injury-time.

Brighton's fellow newly-promoted side Southampton proved too good for Leeds, beating Simon Grayson's men 3-1 at St Mary's.

Dean Hammond's long-range strike gave Saints the early advantage and a neat finish from Adam Lallana doubled their lead.

Veteran striker David Connolly added a third early in the second half before Max Gradel's late penalty provided the smallest of consolations for Leeds.

Birmingham began life back in the second tier with a morale-sapping 2-1 defeat at Derby.

Chris Hughton's side, weakened by the sale of a host of players over the summer following their relegation from the Barclays Premier League, took the lead through Curtis Davies' header in the 19th minute, but the Rams responded through Jason Shackell's own headed goal.

Steve Davies netted what proved to be the winner for Nigel Clough's men just before half-time.

Ipswich's £1.5million summer signing Michael Chopra enjoyed a dream debut as the Tractor Boys won 3-0 at Bristol City to climb to the top of the fledgling table.

The former Cardiff man scored in either half to sink the Robins, with Lee Martin netting Town's second goal.

Promotion favourites Leicester kicked off their season with a 1-0 win at Coventry in the division's early kick-off.

Right-back Lee Peltier, a summer signing from Huddersfield, scored the only goal in the 52nd minute as he headed home Richie Wellens' cross but was forced off by an injury eight minutes later.

Both sides had a man sent off in the first half, with Darius Vassell dismissed for the Foxes and Carl Baker seeing red for the Sky Blues.

Last season's losing play-off finalists Reading staged a remarkable comeback in a 2-2 draw at home to Millwall.

A brace from Mathieu Manset inside the last five minutes salvaged a point after the Londoners led through Darius Henderson and John Marquis.

Steve McClaren's reign at Nottingham Forest got off to an unspectacular start as they were held goalless by Barnsley at the City Ground, while his old club Middlesbrough had to settle for a point in a 2-2 draw at home to Portsmouth, for whom Luke Varney grabbed an injury-time equaliser.

Marvin Emnes gave Boro the half-time advantage before David Norris notched a debut goal for Pompey. Rhys Williams' smart finish restored the Teessiders' lead, but Varney's late strike denied the hosts a winning start.

Newly-promoted Peterborough came from behind to beat Crystal Palace 2-1 at London Road as substitute David Ball grabbed the winner.

Sean Scannell gave the Eagles the edge in the 33rd minute but Darren Ferguson's men equalised when Grant McCann drilled home from a clever Lee Tomlin set-piece, and their joy was complete when Ball nodded home Mark Little's cross in the 73rd minute.

Sean Dyche was denied a win on his managerial debut for Watford as Burnley battled back for a 2-2 draw at Turf Moor.

Craig Forsyth gave the Hornets the lead on the stroke of half-time and Mark Yeates appeared to have sealed the three points with a second goal with 20 minutes to go.

But Eddie Howe's men recovered thanks to goals from Charlie Austin (77) and substitute Keith Treacy (84).

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 Post subject: Re: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Sun Aug 07, 2011 8:15 pm 
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Kenny Miller scored in stoppage time as West Ham began life in the npower Championship with a shock 1-0 home defeat to Cardiff.

Sam Allardyce's first match in charge of the Hammers, who are favourites for promotion back to the top flight, was heading towards a damp squib of a goalless draw as the rain lashed down at Upton Park.

But Miller crashed in a dramatic winner on his Cardiff debut as West Ham were given a stark reminder that the Championship may not be the cakewalk the bookmakers are predicting.

After a dour first half, Matt Taylor tried to breathe some life into the home side and he cut inside and drove in a low shot which David Marshall palmed away, then his strong run and cross was turned onto a post by Frederic Piquionne.

Defender James Tomkins thought he had broken the deadlock but his header was blocked on the line by Peter Whittingham, while Marshall saved from Pablo Berrara a minute from time.

That set the stage for Miller to claim all three points with his shot on the turn from 10-yards out.

Allardyce told Sky Sports News: "From our point of view we've mastered the game, created numerous chances and today was one of those days when we were not clinical enough to punish the opposition and then we paid the ultimate price right at the very end.

"We've lost a game we really should have won. I told the players that you don't always get what you deserve but don't go and throw a game away, and that's what we've done."

New Cardiff boss Malky Mackay told the BBC: "It's a fantastic result and it was a good performance from the boys.

"It was hard work at times, they threw everything at us, our defence was outstanding and we got a reward in the end."

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 Post subject: Re: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Sun Aug 07, 2011 8:40 pm 
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Cardiff :thumbup:

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 Post subject: Re: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2011 12:51 am 
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A goal from Craig Mackail-Smith on the stroke of half-time was enough to secure Brighton's second win of the fledgling npower Championship season as they beat Portsmouth 1-0 at Fratton Park.

Gus Poyet's side celebrated a return to the second tier with victory over Doncaster last weekend and the Seagulls continued their good start after Mackail-Smith's winner, although only a last-minute penalty miss from Liam Lawrence kept them in front.

Lawrence missed from the spot with the last kick of the game after Mackail-Smith, Albion's £3.25million record signing from Peterborough, gave the visitors the lead when he was on hand to toe the ball over the line after Jamie Ashdown blocked a shot from Ashley Barnes.

Fellow Championship newcomers Southampton also continued their 100% start to the new league campaign with a 1-0 win at Barnsley.

Veteran striker David Connolly's close-range header on the half-hour mark was enough to secure victory for Nigel Adkins' men, who survived a late Barnsley rally after substitute Richard Chaplow was sent off on 84 minutes for a rash challenge on Jay McEveley.

The result means Keith Hill's Barnsley are without a victory this season and have yet to score a goal.

Leeds finished with nine men as they went down 1-0 at home to Middlesbrough, who themselves had Tony McMahon sent off just before half-time.

Max Gradel was the first Leeds player to see red but McMahon quickly followed him down the tunnel and the game was evenly balanced until Jonny Howson was also dismissed on the hour.

A Marvin Emnes goal midway through the second half was enough to give Boro their first league win of the season and end a miserable day for Leeds which began with a pre-match protest by a section of the home supporters against chairman Ken Bates.

Sam Allardyce celebrated his first win as manager of West Ham after new Hammers captain Kevin Nolan scored a fifth-minute goal that proved to be enough for a 1-0 win at Doncaster.

Jack Collison, the only change from West Ham's side last weekend, perfectly weighted a lofted diagonal pass to find Nolan's run to the back post where he prodded home on the volley.

But, after a dominant first half, Allardyce's side had to withstand several nervous moments after the interval as they dug in for victory against a Rovers side beset by injury.

Free-spending Leicester were brought back down to earth as last season's beaten play-off finalists Reading picked up a 2-0 win against Sven-Goran Eriksson's side at the King Power Stadium

Following the departure of Reading's prolific striker Shane Long to West Brom this week, more responsibility for goals rested on the shoulders of his Republic of Ireland international team-mate Noel Hunt and the Waterford man responded with the opener after 64 minutes, before substitute Hal Robson-Kanu wrapped up all three points in the final minute.

The unconvincing start to Steve McLaren's tenure at Nottingham Forest continued as they were beaten 2-0 at Millwall.

Forest enjoyed plenty of the ball, particularly after half-time, but lacked the incisiveness that marked much of the hosts' attacking play.

Darius Henderson scored his first Millwall goal on his home debut in the opening stages and, as the Reds struggled to find a way through, Liam Trotter made sure of the win on the counter-attack with 13 minutes to play.

A 73rd-minute goal from Keith Fahey earned Birmingham a 1-0 win against Midlands rivals Coventry at St Andrews in a largely even contest.

Crystal Palace picked up an impressive 2-0 win over Burnley with Jonathan Parr opening the scoring early on before a second-half Owen Garvan penalty secured the points for Dougie Freedman's side, before Clarets substitute Marvin Bartley was dismissed at the end.

Matt Fryatt struck the only goal of the game as Hull won 1-0 at Ipswich while Derby striker Steve Davies scored his second winning goal in a week as his solitary strike gave the Rams victory at Watford.

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 Post subject: Re: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Sun Aug 21, 2011 10:31 pm 
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An injury-time goal from George Boateng ensured the battle of the former England managers ended in a draw as Nottingham Forest came from two goals down to draw 2-2 at home to Leicester.

With Sven-Goran Eriksson in the away dugout and his former assistant and eventual national team successor Steve McClaren in the home camp, a sideshow was already guaranteed off the pitch, but that was superseded by the drama on it.

David Nugent, to whom McClaren gave his only England cap, put Leicester ahead (18), with Gelson Fernandes making it 2-0 three minutes later.

But the game changed with 79 minutes gone as Matt Mills' handball allowed Lewis McGugan to pull one back from the spot, while City goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel was dismissed for two separate displays of dissent either side of the goal.

It was a backs-to-the-wall job for Leicester - already under pressure after a summer of big spending - after that, but they couldn't hold out and Boateng netted in the fourth minute of added time.

Lee Tomlin scored the first senior hat-trick of his career as Peterborough beat nine-man Ipswich 7-1 in a remarkable encounter at London Road.

Midfielder Keith Andrews put the Tractor Boys ahead in the 23rd minute but Darren Ferguson's men hit back in stunning fashion to lead 4-1 at the break.

Paul Taylor - making his first start for Peterborough - drew them level in the 30th minute, Tomlin scored eight minutes later and both men found the net again in quick succession to put the hosts in total control.

Paul Jewell's side were dealt another hammer blow on the stroke of half-time when midfielder Lee Martin was shown a straight red card for a foul on Mark Little.

Ipswich defender Tommy Smith was then sent off for a professional foul shortly after the restart and Grant McCann scored twice, the first a penalty, before Tomlin completed his treble late on.


Derby beat struggling Doncaster 3-1 at Pride Park to maintain their 100 per cent start to the season.

Keeping a clean sheet in the process, the Rams were comfortable winners with Kevin Kilbane scoring early on and Steve and Ben Davies adding further goals after the break.

Southampton's perfect record also remained intact as they beat Millwall 1-0 thanks to Guly Do Prado's goal after 18 minutes - the first time the Saints have won their first four games of the season.

Brighton's hopes of doing the same were ended by a Kevin Phillips brace as Blackpool came from behind to draw 2-2 at the Amex Stadium.

Craig Mackail-Smith (29) and Ashley Barnes (50) put Brighton 2-0 ahead, only for Phillips (60 and 90) to peg them back.

Crystal Palace won their first game on the road since October last year as James Chester put through his own goal in a 1-0 win at Hull, while Rob Earnshaw cancelled out Charlie Austin's opener as Cardiff drew 1-1 at Burnley.

Barnsley picked up their first win of the season with a 2-1 success at Reading.

Steve Foster's header gave Keith Hill's men the lead, before Reading twice missed from the penalty spot in quick succession.

Jay McEvely conceded both penalties with fouls on Jimmy Kebe and Hal Robson-Kanu, but goalkeeper Luke Steele came to his rescue, keeping out Ian Harte and Noel Hunt from 12 yards.

Matty Done then made the duo pay as he doubled Barnsley's lead with 22 minutes left, before Hunt was fouled by Rob Edwards in the box, allowing Robson-Kanu to make it third time lucky from the spot, although his side could not find an equaliser.

Neil Kilkenny had a goal disallowed as Bristol City drew 0-0 with Portsmouth at Ashton Gate, while Coventry and Watford also ended goalless.

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 Post subject: Re: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Sun Aug 21, 2011 10:33 pm 
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Adam Clayton's last-minute goal salvaged a dramatic 2-2 draw for Leeds in their npower Championship clash at West Ham on Sunday.

The Hammers led twice and looked to be heading for a third straight win when Patrick Kisnorbo's own-goal made it 2-1 in the second half.

But as the clock ticked down Leeds, who earlier missed a penalty through Max Gradel, snatched an equaliser through 22-year-old midfielder Clayton.

Sam Allardyce's side had previously taken the lead in the sixth minute at Upton Park when Carlton Cole found the net while Leeds' first equaliser came after the break from Ross McCormack.

Faris Haroun came off the bench to score on his debut as Middlesbrough continued their impressive start to the season with a 3-1 win over Birmingham at the Riverside.

The Belgium midfielder, introduced at the start of the second half, fired Boro 2-1 ahead on 69 minutes before fellow substitute Malaury Martin put the game out of reach with a third.

Adam Rooney had given Birmingham the lead from the penalty spot, only for Barry Robson to level just after the restart.

Boro continue their unbeaten start to the season with their third consecutive victory.

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 Post subject: Re: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Sat Aug 27, 2011 7:07 pm 
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Southampton lost their unbeaten start to the npower Championship season as they fell to a 3-2 defeat to Leicester at the King Power Stadium, allowing Brighton to move to the summit.

Nigel Adkins' Southampton had begun life back in the top tier of the Football League in impressive fashion, but found themselves 2-0 down inside 22 minutes.

Darius Vassell and Richie Wellens helped put the smile back on the face of under-pressure manager Sven-Goran Eriksson, with the Foxes having gone three games without a win since the opening day.

A Dan Harding header put Saints back in the game after 28 minutes before an own goal from striker Rickie Lambert restored Leicester's two-goal cushion on the stroke of half-time.

However, Southampton came out strongly after the restart and David Connolly reduced the deficit in the 53rd minute.

Brighton are top of the table after they beat Peterborough 2-0.

The Posh, who themselves were also in League One last season, went behind in the 10th minute to a Craig Noone effort.

Recent signing Ryan Harley settled the tie in the 64th minute much to delight of the majority of fans at the Amex Stadium.

Fellow high-fliers Derby fell to a 2-1 home defeat to Burnley, with Charlie Austin netting either side of Theo Robinson's goal.

Marvin Emnes continued his impressive start to the season by handing Middlesbrough the lead against Coventry, although Lukas Jutkiewicz scored a late equaliser for the visitors as the game ended 1-1.

Blackpool also threw away two points at Crystal Palace, with Glenn Murray equalising in the 77th minute after Alex Baptiste's first-half opener in another 1-1 draw.

Hull secured a 1-0 home victory against Reading thanks to a superb Robbie Brady strike, while Millwall and Barnsley played out a goalless draw.

Bristol City winger Albert Adomah saw his first-half effort cancelled out in South Yorkshire as James Hayter earned Doncaster a 1-1 draw and their first point of the season.

Ipswich overcame 10-man Leeds 2-1 at Portman Road thanks to late goals from Jason Scotland and Keith Andrews.

Ross McCormack had broken the deadlock for the visitors but Aidy White's dismissal changed the balance of the game.

Finally, in another 1-1 draw, substitute Nwankwo Kanu rescued a point for Portsmouth after Andrew Taylor had given Cardiff the lead at Fratton Park.

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 Post subject: Re: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Sun Sep 11, 2011 6:35 pm 
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Ashley Barnes struck a late winner to keep Brighton at the top of the npower Championship standings with victory over Bristol City, while Rickie Lambert's hat-trick helped fellow high-fliers Southampton down Nottingham Forest.

Barnes netted his fifth goal of the campaign with 10 minutes remaining at Ashton Gate as Brighton made it five wins out of six since winning promotion as League One champions last term.

However, second-placed Southampton stayed within a point of Gus Poyet's men thanks to their 3-2 win over Steve McClaren's Forest at St Mary's - a club-record 12th successive home league win for the Saints.

Lambert was the home side's hero, scoring twice in the first half before completing his treble in the 82nd minute with what would prove to be the winner.

Forest, who have won just once in the league this season, scored through Matt Derbyshire and Radoslaw Majewski as the teams went into half-time level at 2-2.

Middlesbrough - one of only two unbeaten teams along with Brighton - were also victorious as goals at the start of either half from Nicky Bailey and Joe Bennett saw them down Burnley 2-0.

West Ham claimed their first home win in more than six months after seeing off Portsmouth in an exciting encounter that produced seven goals and saw both teams have players sent off.

Luke Varney's early opener for Pompey was quickly wiped out by Matthew Taylor's free-kick before West Ham took a 53rd-minute lead through debutant Henri Lansbury, only to see Pompey draw level seven minutes later through David Norris.

Portsmouth then lost Liam Lawrence to a second booking in the 67th minute and West Ham looked to have taken full advantage as, in the following nine minutes, Mark Noble (penalty) and Carlton Cole both netted to put the hosts 4-2 up.

However, in stoppage time West Ham suffered a scare when they saw Frederic Piquionne shown a straight red card before Portsmouth defender Greg Halford made it 4-3 from the penalty spot, but Sam Allardyce's men had done enough to take the points.

Sixth-placed Crystal Palace slipped to only their second loss of the season after going down 3-2 at Leeds.

Ross McCormack's eighth-minute opener for the hosts was soon cancelled out by strikes from Patrick McCarthy and Luciano Becchio, but Leeds hit back in the second half to claim the victory thanks to efforts from substitute Sean Scannell and McCormack, whose winner arrived six minutes from time.

Leicester gave a debut to striker Jermaine Beckford and he helped set up Andy King for a second-half equaliser as the Foxes drew 1-1 at Barnsley, for whom Jacob Butterfield had opened the scoring.

Second-half goals from Gary Taylor-Fletcher and Barry Ferguson helped Blackpool defeat Ipswich 2-0 at home.

Watford climbed out of the bottom three as goals from Mark Yeates and John Eustace earned them their first win of the season at fellow strugglers Reading.

Anthony Gerrard and Robert Earnshaw's second-half goals give Cardiff victory over bottom club Doncaster, while Aaron McLean scored the only goal as Hull defeated Peterborough.

In the teatime game, Lukas Jutkiewicz's controversial second-half penalty and a volley from Carl Baker were enough for Coventry to record their first win of the season as they beat Derby 2-0.

Jutkiewicz struck after Jason Shackell was harshly adjudged to have impeded Richard Keogh and Baker sealed the win in the closing stages to condemn County to a second straight defeat.

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 Post subject: Re: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Sun Sep 11, 2011 8:20 pm 
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Leicester gave a debut to striker Jermaine Beckford and he helped set up Andy King for a second-half equaliser as the Foxes drew 1-1 at Barnsley, for whom Jacob Butterfield had opened the scoring.

Rumour has it that Martin O'Neil could make a sensational return to Leicester in place of Sven.

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 Post subject: Re: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Sun Sep 11, 2011 8:38 pm 
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I think Leicester would love Martin back, he did well there last time around.

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 Post subject: Re: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Mon Sep 19, 2011 3:49 pm 
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The npower Championship promotion favourites Leicester ended Brighton's unbeaten record with a 1-0 win at the King Power Stadium.

Sven-Goran Eriksson's costly side have failed to meet expectations so far this season but are now four games unbeaten having seen off Gus Poyet's early leaders.

After enjoying the better of the first half, Japan international midfielder Yuki Abe put the Foxes ahead soon after the restart, meeting Darius Vassell's ball to earn his side just their third win of the season.

Marcos Painter's late dismissal rounded off a miserable day for the Seagulls, who slipped to second.

Middlesbrough went top with a spirited 1-0 win away to Crystal Palace.

Tony Mowbray's impressive side took the lead at Selhurst Park through dangerous frontman Marvin Emnes in the 65th minute.

Their cause was not helped by the dismissal of Joe Bennett for a second caution but Boro held on for the points and with Southampton not playing until Sunday, the Teessiders went top by a point.

Derby recovered from the second-minute dismissal of goalkeeper Frankie Fielding to beat east midlands rivals Nottingham Forest 2-1 at the City Ground.

Fielding was sent off for bringing down Ishmael Miller in the box in the opening stages and when Andy Reid scored the resulting penalty it looked grim for the visitors.

Nigel Clough's side rallied, though, with Jamie Ward equalising in the 29th minute before Jeff Hendrick drilled home a 72nd-minute winner.

David Bentley missed a sitter as West Ham dropped points on their travels for the first time this season after a bruising derby at Millwall.

The Hammers made the short trip across the Thames to face their bitter rivals on the back of three straight away wins and looking to go top, at least temporarily, following their noon showdown.

But they could not find a way past the Lions with on-loan Tottenham winger Bentley blowing the best chance of the afternoon on only his second appearance.

A decent scrap at Bloomfield Road saw Blackpool and Cardiff share a 1-1 draw.

Don Cowie's header put the Welsh side a goal up early in the second half but veteran poacher Kevin Phillips salvaged a point for the Seasiders with a well-taken finish in the 62nd minute.

Ten-man Leeds took the spoils with a turbulent 2-1 win at home to Bristol City.

An exciting opening saw Adam Clayton's left-footed effort fire Leeds ahead in only the third minute but just eight minutes later City were level as Neil Kilkenny, sent packing by Leeds in the summer, levelled.

The turning point came around the hour mark when Patrick Kisnorbo conceded a penalty and got himself sent off for a foul on Nicky Maynard. Maynard's kick was saved, though, and Leeds capitalised when Ross McCormack produced an 86th-minute winner.

Emile Sinclair's first-half double helped Peterborough to a 2-1 home win against Burnley, who had pulled one back through Keith Treacy.

Hull produced a fairly straightforward 1-0 win at home to 10-man Portsmouth.

Robert Koren gave the Tigers an 11th-minute lead and the south-coast side failed to respond, with Luke Varney's late dismissal the only real second-half incident of note.

Andy Gray's 57th-minute header earned Barnsley a 1-1 draw at home to Watford, who had led through Marvin Sordell's goal eight minutes before half-time.

Simon Church and Adam Le Fondre capitalised on some static Doncaster defending to give Reading a 2-0 win at the Madejski Stadium.

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 Post subject: Re: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Sun Sep 25, 2011 9:10 pm 
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Southampton remain top of the npower Championship after snatching a 1-1 draw at Burnley with a late equaliser.

After a lively first half at Turf Moor, the Clarets pressed for the opener after the break which came through Charlie Austin.

The former Swindon striker got to a knockdown in the box ahead of Jose Fonte to fire Burnley into the lead in the 53rd minute.

Southampton unleashed a barrage of attacks in a bid to get back into the game and eked out a leveller with 10 minutes remaining through Morgan Schneiderlin.

Nigel Adkins' side lead the table ahead of Middlesbrough, who had to settle for a 0-0 home draw with Ipswich.

Derby closed the gap on the top two with a thumping 3-0 victory against Millwall at the Pride Park.

Craig Bryson and Jeff Hendrick netted for the Rams in the first half, before Steve Davies wrapped up victory in the 65th minute.

Mark Noble's 11th-minute penalty helped West Ham to a 1-0 win against Peterborough, which moved Sam Allardyce's side up to fourth place.

Erik Huseklepp's second-half stoppage-time goal gave Portsmouth a 1-0 win against Blackpool, while John Oster's 65th-minute strike gave Doncaster a win by the same scoreline against Crystal Palace in Dean Saunders' first match as Rovers manager.

Birmingham looked as if they would fall to a home defeat to Barnsley after Jacob Butterfield scored in the 33rd minute, but Chris Burke secured a 1-1 draw with four minutes remaining.

Bristol City were in the same position after Robert Koren netted for Hull but they equalised at Ashton Gate through Brett Pitman late on.

Coventry v Reading also ended 1-1 after goals in the opening 10 minutes.

Gary McSheffrey gave the home side a second-minute lead, although Simon Church levelled eight minutes later.

In the day's late game, Ishmael Miller was Nottingham Forest's hero after pouncing on a defensive error to move his side out of the relegation zone with a 1-0 win at Watford.

The former Manchester City and West Brom striker bagged his first goal for his new club on the hour to end Forest's run of three successive defeats and ease the pressure on under-fire manager Steve McClaren.

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 Post subject: Re: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 12:30 am 
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Nottingham Forest boss Steve McClaren had blamed off-field "squabbling" for his side's poor start in the npower Championship this week and they responded by going down without a fight at Burnley.

Forest were 4-0 down at half-time against a Clarets side who started the night below them in 21st position in the table, and their 5-1 defeat must surely now leave McClaren's City Ground tenure hanging by a thread.

Jay Rodriguez shot Burnley into a two-goal lead inside 15 minutes and Chris McCann and Ross Wallace added goals before half-time. Ishmael Miller scored a 59th minute consolation before Charlie Austin completed the rout.

Brighton blew the chance take advantage of the inactivity of Southampton and Middlesbrough and move to the top of the table after falling to a dramatic late defeat at home to Crystal Palace.

Craig Mackail-Smith's seventh-minute strike looked set to be enough for the Seagulls but Palace replied with three goals in the last 10 minutes through Wilfried Zaha, Darren Ambrose and Glenn Murray to grab a shock 3-1 win.

Nigel Clough's Derby also missed their chance to go top. The Rams were held 1-1 by Barnsley at Pride Park, with Steve Davies' second-half penalty cancelling out Guy Butterfield's opener for the Tykes.

Former West Ham midfielder Lee Bowyer came back to haunt his old side at Upton Park as Sam Allardyce's men also missed the opportunity to threaten top spot with a late 1-0 home defeat to Ipswich.

Bowyer, who spent three Premier League seasons with the Hammers, struck in the 89th minute to grab all three points and stretch Paul Jewell's team's record to three games unbeaten.

Doncaster remain rooted to the foot of the table but continued their recent improvement under Dean Saunders by holding out for a point in a 1-1 draw with Hull City at the Keepmoat Stadium.

Martyn Waghorn put the visitors ahead on 25 minutes but Simon Gillett equalised on 58 for Rovers, who have now taken four points from two home games after Saturday's win over Crystal Palace.

Bristol City missed the chance to move clear of the foot of the table as they blew a two-goal lead against Reading, who stormed back to take all three points in a 3-2 win at Ashton Gate.

Albert Adomah gave City a half-time lead which Brett Pitman extended on 59 minutes. But the Royals stormed back through Jobi McAnuff and Adam Le Fondre before Mathieu Manset's last-minute winner.

Coventry's trying season continued as an injury-time equaliser from Keith Southern forced the Sky Blues to settle for a point in a dramatic 2-2 draw with Blackpool at the Ricoh Arena.

Gary Taylor-Fletcher gave the visitors the half-time lead but late strikes from Gary Deegan and Lukas Jutkiewicz - the latter just seven minutes from time - seemed to have swung the game City's way until Southern's late header.

An injury-time own goal from Erik Huseklepp handed Peterborough a 3-2 win over Portsmouth at Fratton Park. Lee Frecklingon had twice given Posh the lead only for a Gabriel Zakuani own goal and a strike from Benjani to bring Pompey level.

In another exciting late finish, Watford got the better of Millwall at Vicarage Road. Liam Feeney gave the visitors a 68th-minute lead but Carl Dickinson and Craig Forsyth responded to claim a 2-1 win.

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 Post subject: Re: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Sat Oct 01, 2011 7:56 pm 
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Rickie Lambert netted two penalties to help npower Championship leaders Southampton return to winning ways with a convincing 4-0 home victory over Watford.

Saints had picked up just one point from their previous two games away but Nigel Adkins' side got back on track thanks largely to top scorer Lambert.

The striker took his league tally to eight for the season with successful spot-kicks in the 22nd and 55th minutes before Guly Do Prado and Lee Holmes added further goals in the final 20 minutes.

The Saints have now won five matches out of five at St Mary's this term, making their best start to a league season in 52 years.

The victory lifts Southampton two points clear of Middlesbrough, who were held to their third successive goalless draw, this time by Reading.

And Derby are a further point back in third place after Sven-Goran Eriksson celebrated his 50th game in charge of Leicester with a 4-0 victory over the Rams.

Former England strikers David Nugent and Darius Vassell struck in the first half and Jeffery Schlupp and Lloyd Dyer scored late on in the 100th competitive meeting between the two sides.

Fourth-placed West Ham twice recovered from going a goal down to draw 2-2 at Crystal Palace, efforts from Kevin Nolan and John Carew cancelling out goals from Darren Ambrose and Glenn Murray for the hosts.

Brighton manager Gus Poyet was unable to celebrate his new five-year contract with the club with a victory as his side slumped to a 3-1 loss at Ipswich.

Former Spain international Vicente Rodriguez gave the Seagulls a 53rd-minute lead but Ipswich hit back with three goals in 14 minutes to earn the win, Michael Chopra's brace sandwiching an effort from Ibrahima Sonko.

Hull replaced Cardiff in the top six after defeating the Welsh side 2-1. Substitute Nick Barmby hit a 71st-minute winner for the Tigers not long after Bluebirds replacement Joe Ralls had equalised Matt Fryatt's first-half opener for the home side.

Blackpool moved up to seventh with a 5-0 mauling of Bristol City, Daniel Bogdanovic (two), Gary Taylor-Fletcher, Jonjo Shelvey - on his debut following his loan switch from Liverpool - and Brett Ormerod netting the goals for Ian Holloway's men.

City dropped to the foot of the standings after suffering their sixth defeat of the campaign as Doncaster climbed off the foot after recovering from a half-time deficit at Peterborough to record their first away points of the season. Goals from Brian Stock and Kyle Bennett overturned Grant McCann's opener for Posh.

Millwall slip into the bottom two after going down to a solitary Jay Rodriguez goal at home to Burnley.

A first-half Danny Pugh goal was enough for Leeds to see off Portsmouth at Elland Road and lift them into the top 10.

Also, Barnsley recorded their first home league win of the season after beating fellow strugglers Coventry 2-0 thanks to goals either side of half-time from Andy Gray, the first coming from the penalty spot.

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 Post subject: Re: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Sun Oct 16, 2011 9:09 pm 
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Championship leaders Southampton salvaged a point with a 1-1 against Derby at Pride Park thanks to Rickie Lambert's 11th goal of the season.

Theo Robinson opened the scoring for Derby in the third minute when Ben Davies' shot was parried by Saints goalkeeper Kelvin Davis, only for the Derby midfielder to lay the ball to Robinson who fired into the bottom right corner from close range.

Lambert then levelled the scores in the 61st minute to keep the Saints on top of the Championship.

Middlesbrough failed to take advantage of Southampton's slip up as they were held to a 1-1 draw by Millwall at the Riverside.

Boro took the lead at the thanks to a Barry Robson strike in the 24th minute when the midfielder blasted home from 25 yards.

However, Brian Howard equalised for Millwall 10 minutes into the second half, with the London side able to hold on for a draw despite increasing pressure from Boro.

West Ham fired in three goals in eight minutes as they totally dominated Blackpool in their 4-0 win at Upton Park.

John Carew gave the Hammers the lead with a header in the 12th minute before Sam Baldock scored a second-half brace.

Jack Collison added the fourth in the 55th minute as Blackpool put up little resistance.

Crystal Palace beat Watford 2-0 at Vicarage Road thanks to second-half goals by Wilfred Zaha and Jermaine Easter.

Zaha put Palace into to lead in the 66th minute with a terrific strike that gave Watford goalkeeper Scott Loach no chance.

Substitute Easter then scored in the 90th minute with a left-footed cross that went straight into the back of the net.

Lukas Jutkiewicz scored the only goal as Coventry beat Nottingham Forest 1-0 at the Ricoh Arena.

Jutkiewicz's header from the middle of the area, his fifth goal of the season, was the difference as the home side converted their dominance to hand troubled Forest their eighth defeat of the season.

Cardiff and Ipswich shared the points in a 2-2 draw at the Cardiff City Stadium.

Rudy Gestede headed the opening goal for the hosts in the 19th minute before Jason Scotland levelled after half an hour with a 20-yard strike after a period of pressure from Ipswich.

Michael Chopra's header gave the visitors the lead six minutes into the second half but Peter Whittingham equalised from the penalty spot after Aaron Cresswell handled the ball in the area.

Peterborough condemned Bristol City to their seventh league defeat of the season after they won 2-1 at Ashton Gate.

George Boyd's strike gave Posh the lead in the 51st minute before Lee Tomlin blasted a second from 35 yards.

Marvin Elliott pulled one back for the home side with a header eight minutes from the whistle but it was scant consolation.

Reading beat Burnley 1-0 thanks to an injury-time winner by substitute Jem Karacan who fired home from close range from Mathieu Manset's cross.

Portsmouth beat Barnsley 2-0 thanks to two goals in 80 seconds at Fratton Park.

David Norris put Pompey ahead with his 50th career goal when he scored with a half-volley in the 61st minute and Luke Varney doubled the lead seconds later when he poked Dave Kitson's cross home from close range.

Brighton and Hull drew 0-0 at the Amex Stadium.

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 Post subject: Re: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Sun Oct 16, 2011 9:13 pm 
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Marlon King's penalty and Chris Wood's late finish ended 10-man Leicester's seven-match unbeaten run and handed Birmingham a 2-0 victory in an npower Championship encounter which only came to life in the second half.

Replacement referee Kevin Wright was immediately thrown into the limelight having replaced the injured Graham Salisbury at half-time, but crucially got both decisions right.

First Jean Beausejour, who had just rattled the upright from 30 yards, was sent tumbling in the area by Andy King, with Wright pointing to the spot and allowing Marlon King to convert his first league goal of the season.

And within 11 minutes of the restart the game was changed completely when Leicester captain Matt Mills was rightfully shown a straight red card for a two-footed lunge on Morgaro Gomis, despite protests from the visitors.

It was left for Wood to round Kasper Schmeichel late on and add a well-taken and composed second goal to clinch Blues' third successive victory in all competitions.

Managers Chris Hughton and Sven-Goran Eriksson were in broad agreement that replacement ref Wright got the big calls correct.

Afterwards, Leicester boss Eriksson said: "The penalty I really don't know, I've seen it five or six times and I don't know if it's a penalty or not. I don't know if he touched the ball first. Difficult for a referee.

"The red card, he got it right. You're not allowed to tackle like that."

Hughton was certainly stronger in his opinions on the penalty, while sharing the same verdict over Mills' dismissal.

"There was certainly contact (for the penalty)," he said. "Jean is a strong personality and if he thinks there's an opportunity to go through and score he's not one who likes to go down too easily.

"I presume if there's contact, and it's in the box, then it's the right decision.

"(Regarding the red card) both feet are definitely off the ground when the challenge is made.

"Everyone will look at it over the next couple of days and have an opinion. But both feet are off the ground and generally these days if that happens then it is a red card."

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 Post subject: Re: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 2:08 am 
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Middlesbrough went second in the npower Championship after goals by Rhys Williams and Marvin Emnes guided them to a 2-0 win over Derby.

The match was also notable for Mason Bennett becoming Derby's youngest-ever player aged just 15 years and 99 days.

Williams broke the deadlock with a close-range finish on the stroke of half-time with Emnes sealing victory when he headed home seven minutes after the break.

Substitute Steve de Ridder earned 10-man Southampton an unlikely-looking point at Reading in the late kick-off.

The Belgian winger finished sublimely after latching on to a Guly do Prado's throughball 10 minutes from time to earn the leaders a 1-1 draw.

Having been thwarted by goalkeeper Kelvin Davis throughout the first half, the Royals looked set to secure victory when Mikele Leigertwood blasted home in the 71st minute.

Saints' predicament got worse when skipper Dean Hammond was sent off minutes later, before De Ridder wriggled free to give Southampton a three-point cushion at the top of the table.

Crystal Palace are up to third following a 1-0 win at Ipswich, who had Aaron Cresswell sent off.

Patrick McCarthy scored the only goal in the 55th minute with a 20-yard strike into the top corner. Cresswell was dismissed in the final minute for his second bookable offence.

Leeds climb to fifth after Darren O'Dea's injury-time winner secured a 3-2 victory at Peterborough in the early kick-off.

The Republic of Ireland defender tucked away Adam Clayton's free-kick in the 95th minute.

Andy Keogh's stunning opener had put Leeds ahead, but Gabriel Zakuani levelled before Posh were reduced to 10 men when Lee Tomlin scythed through the back of Keogh.

Clayton fired Leeds back in front but the hosts thought they had salvaged a point after Paul Rachubka's mistake allowed Mark Little to equalise two minutes from time.

Hull are just outside the play-offs after an injury-time goal by Robert Koren saw them beat Watford 3-2.

An own goal from James Chester put Watford 1-0 ahead only for Matty Fryatt's close-range shot to level matters six minutes after half-time.

However, the Hornets regained the lead five minutes later when Chris Iwelumo headed home only for Hull to equalise again in the 66th minute when Aaron Mclean slotted home.

Then came Koren's intervention from 25 yards.

Darius Henderson scored a hat-trick as Millwall trounced Leicester 3-0 at the King Power Stadium.

Henderson scored twice in the first half, the first from the penalty spot, to give Millwall a shock lead.

He then completed his hat-trick in the 68th minute when he nodded home from close range.

Cardiff enjoyed a rollercoaster 5-3 win over Barnsley.

Kenny Miller's fourth goal of the season put Cardiff ahead with Joe Mason doubling their lead. Danny Drinkwater pulled one back but Aron Gunnarsson put Cardiff 3-1 up at the interval.

Don Cowie extended the lead with a right-footed shot with half an hour to go before Gunnarsson scored the fifth from close range.

The Tykes got the seventh goal of the game when Jimmy McNulty headed home with eight minutes to go and Ricardo Vaz Te completed the scoring.

Ten-man Nottingham Forest won 2-1 at Blackpool. Wes Morgan put the visitors ahead with Kevin Phillips levelling before Radoslaw Majewski got the winner.

Guy Moussi was sent off in the 82nd minute for his second bookable offence.

Charlie Austin scored a last-minute winner for Burnley as they won 2-1 at Coventry.

Cody McDonald put the hosts ahead a little under a quarter of an hour after the break when he headed home but the Clarets levelled through Ross Wallace (73) before Austin struck.

Gael Bigirimana was given a straight red card for a foul on Kieran Trippier.

Luke Varney fired managerless Portsmouth into a third-minute lead against Doncaster, but former Southampton midfielder Simon Gillett drew Rovers level.

Dave Kitson and Varney then secured a 3-1 Pompey win.

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 Post subject: Re: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2011 4:38 pm 
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Southampton maintained their position as pacesetters in the npower Championship with a comprehensive 3-0 victory over Middlesbrough, who had began the afternoon in third spot.

Two headed goals from Brazilian midfielder Guly Do Prado put the Saints on the march, and substitute David Connolly hammered in a third.

West Ham held off a fightback by managerless Leicester to give the Foxes an uncomfortable start to life after Sven-Goran Eriksson.

Sam Baldock and Julien Faubert made it 2-0 to the Hammers at the break at Upton Park. Andy King gave the visitors some hope and Leicester were putting on the pressure before Baldock scored again on the break.

King then scored a brilliant second to set up a thrilling finish but the match ended 3-2 to the Hammers with Sam Allardyce's side maintaining second spot.

Steve Cotterill's 100% start as Nottingham Forest manager came to end at home to Hull. Aaron Mclean was the hero for the visitors with a late winner and the Tigers are one of four clubs in the play-off spots all on 24 points.

Burnley were the victors in a typically frantic Lancashire derby thanks to goals from Charlie Austin, Ross Wallace and Marvin Bartley's first for the club.

Austin and Wallace scored in a first half dominated by the Clarets and, even though Blackpool improved drastically after the break, scored a late third to send the Seasiders packing.

Derby set off at a gallop at home to Portsmouth to maintain their challenge at the top.

Craig Bryson opened the scoring in the third minute, Chris Maguire struck from close range to extend the Rams' lead and Jamie Ward made it 3-0. Jason Pearce hit a consolation but the score ended 3-1.

The clash between fellow strugglers at Doncaster ended 1-1 despite visitors Coventry taking the lead through Sammy Clingan's super strike. James Hayter equalised on the hour mark to leave both clubs still in the bottom three.

Bristol City grabbed an injury-time winner at Barnsley but still remain bottom. Albert Adomah put the visitors ahead, Craig Davies equalised before Nicky Maynard's last-gasp heroics earned a 2-1 win.

Millwall were impressive 4-1 winners over Ipswich.

The Lions raced into a 2-0 lead through Jay Simpson and Darius Henderson. Jimmy Bullard gave Ipswich hope with a strike from the edge of the box but Liam Feeney and Simpson ended the contest.

There was a goal-fest too at Watford where Marvin Sordell scored twice, once from the spot, to add to Mark Yeates' opener as the home side claimed a 3-2 win against Peterborough. Lee Frecklington and Emile Sinclair replied for the visitors, with all five goals coming in the first half.

Birmingham v Brighton and Crystal Palace v Reading both ended as goalless draws.

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 Post subject: Re: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 7:30 pm 
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Steve Cotterill endured a miserable return to Portsmouth as his Nottingham Forest side were beaten 3-0 in the npower Championship.

Cotterill left Pompey in mid-October after 16 turbulent months in charge to succeed Steve McClaren at the City Ground.

But Erik Huseklepp pounced to put Pompey ahead against the run of play on the stroke of half-time, Dave Kitson (76) made it two and Huseklepp's second six minutes from time confirmed Cotterill's misery.

Leaders Southampton surrendered a two-goal lead but rallied to win 4-2 at Coventry.

Richard Chaplow netted for the Saints in the 34th minute and Adam Lallana doubled the lead five minutes later, but Lukas Jutkiewicz got the hosts back into it two minutes into the second period.

Clive Platt's opportunistic strike in the 70th minute pulled the hosts level, but seven minutes later Guly Do Prado put Southampton back into the lead and Steve de Ridder rounded off the scoring five minute from time.

Second-placed West Ham were comfortable 2-0 winners at Hull.

Sam Baldock opened the scoring for the Hammers from close range four minutes after the break and Jack Collison made it 2-0 eight minutes later.

Scott McDonald scored his first goal in 12 games to ensure Middlesbrough stayed within touching distance of the automatic promotion places with a 1-0 win over Watford.

But the Hornets will feel aggrieved at the manner of their defeat, having more than matched their hosts and with the former Celtic striker well offside for the winning goal.

Two second-half goals gave Cardiff a 2-0 win over fellow play-off hopefuls Crystal Palace.

Kenny Miller broke the deadlock in the 69th minute and Peter Whittingham added a second 10 minutes from the end.

New man El-Hadji Diouf fired bottom side Doncaster to a much-needed 3-2 win at Ipswich.

Diouf headed home James Coppinger's cross for his first goal for the club after 18 minutes and Billy Sharp doubled the lead six minutes later.

Diouf grabbed his second six minutes before the break and though substitute Josh Carson pulled one back for Ipswich in the 53rd minute and Michael Chopra netted moments before the end, Doncaster held on.

Rovers remained bottom, though, because Bristol City were 3-1 winners over Burnley.

Stephen Pearson opened the scoring for the hosts three minutes before the break, but just just two minutes after the restart Ross Wallace's volley pulled the visitors level.

Substitute Brett Pitman put City ahead again in the 61st minute and Albert Adomah extended the advantage in the 73rd.

Peterborough came from two goals down to claim a last-gasp 3-2 win over Derby.

Theo Robinson scored in the 28th minute and again four minutes later to leave Derby in charge, but Paul Taylor pulled one back eight minutes before half-time.

Tommy Rowe levelled six minutes into the second period and Grant McCann completed the turnaround in stoppage time.

Kevin Phillips brought a dull game between Blackpool and Millwall to life with an excellent goal in the 61st minute, moments after coming off the bench, to give the Seasiders a 1-0 win.

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 Post subject: Re: The Championship: Race For The Prem
PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 7:31 pm 
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Adam Clayton's second-half wonder strike helped Leeds banish the memories of their midweek defeat to Blackpool with a 1-0 victory that gave Leicester another headache.

Leeds conceded five at home for just the second time in their history in losing to the Seasiders on Wednesday and would have probably taken a morale-boosting 0-0 draw were it to have been offered to them before kick-off.

But when they became the first of the sides to take a tepid game by the scruff of its neck with Clayton's 25-yard curler with 69 minutes gone, a maximum-point haul was a reality and their notoriously fragile defence held out to secure a first win over Leicester in nine attempts.

They were rarely tested by Leicester, though, who did not force debutant goalkeeper Alex McCarthy into a meaningful save all afternoon.

Noel Hunt came off the bench to score the winner for Reading as they beat in-form Birmingham 1-0 at the Madejski Stadium.

Hunt was only on the pitch for a matter of seconds when he beat Blues goalkeeper Boaz Myhill with a near-post tap-in to inflict on the visitors their first defeat since September 18.

In a lively and entertaining contest, both goalkeepers were in sensational form.

A first half filled with chances and half-chances saw Myhill deny Kaspars Gorkss and Joseph Mills, while Adam Federici in the hosts' goal continuously frustrated Birmingham striker Chris Wood.

After half-time Reading winger Jobi McAnuff was superbly foiled by Myhill and the Royals' centre-back Alex Pearce saw a clearing header come back off his own post, before Hunt popped up to steal all three points for the home side.

Gordon Greer and Ryan Harley fired Brighton to their first Championship victory in 10 attempts as they beat Barnsley 2-0.

Seagulls captain Greer grabbed his first goal for the club moments before half-time, and winger Harley ensured Gus Poyet's side got back to winning ways after the break.

Barnsley had their chances, notably when David Perkins was denied by the bar.

But Brighton, who topped the table after the first month of the season, deservedly brought an end to their recent slump and climbed back into the top half.

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