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Football League Review: Middlesbrough, Burnley win to lead Championship

Middlesbrough and Burnley both won to maintain their momentum in the Championship promotion race, while Dagenham and Redbridge were relegated from the Football League and Northampton Town won the League Two title on Saturday.

Championship leaders Middlesbrough came from behind to win 2-1 at already-relegated Bolton Wanderers in the day’s early kick-off.

Jordan Rhodes scored twice, including an injury-time winner, to seal Middlesbrough’s sixth straight win, which earned Aitor Karanka’s side a cushion at the top of the table, but their lead was reduced to two points by Burnley’s 2-1 win at Birmingham City. 
George Boyd put Sean Dyche’s Clarets ahead and Andre Gray’s 24th goal of the season secured the points, extending Burnley’s unbeaten run to 19 league matches, with Jon Toral sent off in the closing minutes.

That win lifted Burnley above Brighton and Hove Albion – who beat Fulham 5-0 on Friday night – and into second place ahead of a crucial home game against Middlesbrough on Tuesday.

A 1-1 draw at home to Ipswich Town saw Sheffield Wednesday take a step towards sealing a play-off place, with 16-year-old Andre Dozzell scoring on his debut for Mick McCarthy’s side.

Cardiff City’s 0-0 home draw with Queens Park Rangers dented their top-six hopes, as Russell Slade’s men have a five-point gap to make up on Wednesday with four games to play.

Charlton Athletic are 11 points from safety after a 1-0 defeat to Derby County, Johnny Russell scoring the winner for the fifth-placed Rams.

Milton Keynes Dons battled to a 1-1 draw at Preston North End but they are now nine points inside the drop zone, although makeshift goalkeeper Alex Revell saved Joe Garner’s penalty after Cody Cropper was sent off.

A shock 3-1 loss at relegation-threatened Doncaster Rovers cut Wigan Athletic’s lead at the top of League One, with second-placed Burton Albion closing the gap to three points after a 0-0 home draw against Barnsley.

Walsall heaped pressure on the top two and reduced Burton’s advantage to three points, Jordy Hiwula’s late goal sealing a 1-0 home win against Southend United.

League Two leaders Northampton Town were crowned champions after a 0-0 draw at Exeter City confirmed top spot, with two points separating the next four teams in the division.

Oxford United lost 3-2 at home to Luton Town, with Bristol Rovers moving into third thanks to their 2-1 win against Yeovil Town. Accrington Stanley dropped out of the promotion places with a 2-2 draw in a Lancashire derby at home against Morecambe, Plymouth Argyle’s 2-1 win at Portsmouth keeping them in the race.

Dagenham and Redbridge’s nine-year stay in the Football League was ended by their 3-2 defeat at Leyton Orient, while 10-man York City’s 2-1 loss at Hartlepool leaves Jackie McNamara’s side on the edge, 11 points from survival with four games to play.

Sat 16 Apr, 2016
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