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Championship round-up

The chase for the Premier League was shaken up on a Championship afternoon that took its time to get going up and down the country.

Last Updated: 22/01/13 at 12:11

Tommy Smith: Scored Cardiff's winner at Blackpool

Tommy Smith: Scored Cardiff's winner at Blackpool

Watford thrash Huddersfield as Palace and Hull are held

The chase for the Premier League was shaken up on Saturday afternoon as Hull City and Crystal Palace dropped points but Cardiff City marched on.

Leicester will count themselves as the biggest winners despite not kicking a ball on Saturday. Their win over Middlesbrough on Friday combined with draws for both Hull and Crystal Palace means they now sit in the second automatic promotion place.

And Watford took advantage of slips by those below them to open up a four-point gap in the race for the play-offs.

Leaders Cardiff now boast a 10-point advantage over the chasing pack after Tommy Smith's 64th minute goal secured a 2-1 win at Blackpool.

Hull needed a win at struggling Peterborough to reclaim second spot, after Leicester's 1-0 win over Middlesbrough on Friday night, but could only manage a 1-1 draw after conceding a late penalty.

Crystal Palace could not take advantage either, with the fourth-placed side held to a goalless draw at home to Bolton.

In the chase for the play-offs, Matej Vydra scored twice as Gianfranco Zola's Watford strengthened their grip on a spot with a convincing 4-0 home win over Huddersfield.

Burnley are now the leaders of the chasing pack in seventh. They leapfrogged Nottingham Forest, Brighton and opponents Millwall with a 2-0 win at The Den.

Brighton were disappointed to concede a late equaliser at Birmingham after coming from behind in the first half to lead 2-1.

And Nottingham Forest and Derby both lost ground in the lunchtime kick-off. Neither manager was overjoyed with a point from the East Midlands derby as the game ended 1-1.

Leeds are now level with Alex McLeish's side after they beat bottom side Bristol City at Elland Road - City the only side in the bottom nine to fail to pick up a point.

New Blackburn manager Michael Appleton's reign at Ewood Park got off to a poor start as Yann Kermorgant scored the winner for Charlton in their mid-table clash.

Ipswich and Barnsley played out a 1-1 draw in David Flitcroft's first official game in charge of the Tykes, and Sheffield Wednesday and Wolves drew 0-0 draw at Hillsborough.

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Readers' Comments

I

sn'tthis strange. Last season we were worried that we were stuck with a Dinosaur in Moyes while Liverpool and Everton were disappearing into the distance with their young, spritely managerts, playing football from heaven. Progressive managers, they said. Managers who understand the modern game.........

HarryBoulton
Rodgers: The pressure's on

B

eing consistently and unrelentingly dog turd really takes it out of you. Try shadow boxing. That's what it's like watching Liverpool, punching thin air.

sinbadsdad
Neville: Reds need a rest

G

ood list, some crackers in there. For me, I'd have had Steve McManaman for Liverpool away at Celtic in the UEFA cup in 1997. I was in the ground that night and everyone kept screaming at him to make a pass, but he just kept going and going and going...brilliant, and in the dying minutes too.

uncle-muller
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