Saturday, May 25, 2019

Championship Review – Matchday 25

Deke Hardman in Editorial, English Championship 31 Dec 2018

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Championship leaders Leeds United end 2018 with a defeat after Hull City continued their recent run of form with an impressive 2-0 victory at Elland Road.

Jarrod Bowen scored in each half to send the Tigers up to fourteenth place in the table, just nine points off the play-offs – remarkable considering that they were joint bottom-of-the-table just over two months ago.

Second place Norwich City also suffered defeat after Derby County came from behind late on to secure all three points in a thrilling clash at Carrow Road.

Ben Godfrey and Teemu Pukki had the hosts two-up just past the half-hour mark though strikes from Chelsea loan duo Fikayo Tomori and Mason Mount drew the Rams level before the break.

Madness

Pukki then restored the Canaries’ lead with his fifteenth of the season with nine minutes left on the clock then cue the madness.

The teams were taken off the field after one of the floodlights had failed and after a lengthy delay, they re-emerged only for Frank Lampard’s side to take control.

Florian Jozefzoon equalised on eighty-seven minutes, and there was still time for a winner – Jack Marriot the hero for the visitors, who move to within six points of the top two.

Pukki is now the joint top scorer in the division, and the Finland international can be backed at 9/2 to win the Golden Boot.

West Bromwich Albion were unable to fully capitalise on the top two faltering, having to settle for a point against Sheffield Wednesday.

Push

Sheffield United and Middlesbrough both edged further towards the top two after they secured home wins against Ipswich Town and Blackburn Rovers respectively while Nottingham Forest have slipped to tenth after they were beaten at Millwall.

The Reds’ were vocal in their support for manager Aitor Karanka, who’s position continues to be scrutinised and it doesn’t get much easier for the Spaniard with Leeds the visitors to the City Ground on New Years Day.

Birmingham City are seventh after their goalless draw with Brentford while Queens Park Rangers are behind the Blues on goal difference after they also drew 0-0 with Reading.

Aston Villa had to settle for a point with an own goal from Ahmed El Mohamady giving Preston North End a share of the spoils from their clash at Deepdale.

Clear

Bolton Wanderers climbed out of the bottom three after they held Stoke City to a 0-0 draw, with Rotherham United replacing the Trotters in the bottom three after they fell to a 1-0 defeat at Bristol City.

Finally, Wigan Athletic came from two goals down to rescue a point at Swansea City.

A brace from Joe Garner had the Latics in control at half-time though an own goal from Dan Burn put the hosts back in the game before Mike van der Hoorn levelled for the Swans nine minutes from time.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Deke Hardman


Freelance football writer with a love of the game that goes back to the mid nineties when both his beloved Nottingham Forest and England had genuine hope of acheiving some level of success. A regular contributor to both SoccerNews.com and FreeBetting.com, Deke also dabbles in music journalism with his heart and head still stuck in the latter years of the twentieth century.

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