Burnley beat Forest, QPR lose late

Burnley retained their place in the Championship top two with a 3-1 win over Nottingham Forest, while QPR suffered a late defeat at Charlton.

Last Updated: 22/02/14 at 18:10 Post Comment

Scott Arfield: Celebrates his goal for Burnley

Scott Arfield: Celebrates his goal for Burnley

Leaders Leicester had drawn their last two league matches, but returned to winning ways on Saturday, stretching their unbeaten league run to 13 matches, thanks to goals from forwards Jamie Vardy (19), David Nugent (31) and Chris Wood (88) in a 3-0 win over Ipswich.

That was not enough to extend their handsome lead at the summit, though, as Burnley kept within eight points of the pacesetters with a 3-1 home victory over fifth-placed Nottingham Forest.

Burnley were home and dry early on thanks to three goals in the opening 35 minutes, Sam Vokes netting twice following Scott Arfield's opener, with Forest only able to net a late consolation through Djamel Abdoun.

Two points further back are Derby, although Steve McClaren's men left it late before earning a 1-0 win over Bournemouth.

The division's leading scorers had looked set for a rare blank day until Chris Martin fired home an 85th-minute winner to give them the points.

There was also late drama in the London derby between struggling Charlton and QPR, where the latter's title challenge suffered another setback as they went down to a stoppage-time Johnnie Jackson header.

That 1-0 loss was QPR's third successive defeat and fourth consecutive game without a win as they fell 15 points behind Leicester.

The only silver lining for the Hoops was that three of the four teams immediately below them also lost, with Reading and Brighton joining Forest in failing to pick up points.

Sixth-placed Reading were beaten 1-0 at home by Blackburn, Craig Conway netting the winner after 36 minutes, while Brighton lost 2-1 at home to in-form Wigan.

James McArthur (21) and Chris McCann (50) set Wigan on their way to a fourth league win in five, with Brighton's only response coming from Leonardo Ulloa 12 minutes from time.

Seventh-placed Wigan are now three points above Brighton and just a point off the play-off spots.

At the foot of the table, things got considerably tighter as all of the bottom three picked up wins.

Last-placed Yeovil beat Doncaster 1-0 thanks to a 59th-minute penalty from former Rovers forward James Hayter, while an early Jim O'Brien goal earned second-bottom Barnsley a 1-0 win over Millwall.

With third-bottom Charlton's win ending a run of of four successive defeats, there are now just five points separating the bottom five. Millwall and Doncaster are the other sides in the thick of the relegation dogfight.

Bolton eased their fears of the drop with a 2-0 win over Watford.

First-half goals from Lukas Jutkiewicz and Joe Mason sealed the points as Dougie Freedman's side moved three points clear of Doncaster immediately below.

Just above Bolton, Blackpool continued to slip down the standings after losing 2-1 at home to Birmingham.

A first victory since November had been a possibility when Blackpool took a 22nd-minute lead, but Birmingham hit back with a second-half brace from Lee Novak - either side of a red card for home defender Jack Robinson - to take the points.

Also on Saturday, Sheffield Wednesday won 2-0 at Huddersfield with goals from Jeremy Helan and Jacques Maghoma, while, in an early kick-off, Middlesbrough and Leeds drew 0-0.

Championship results:

Barnsley 1 Millwall 0

Blackpool 1 Birmingham City 2

Bolton 2 Watford 0

Brighton 1 Wigan Athletic 2

Burnley 3 Nottingham Forest 1

Charlton Athletic 1 Queens Park Rangers 0

Derby 1 Bournemouth 0

Huddersfield 0 Sheffield Wednesday 2

Leicester 3 Ipswich 0

Middlesbrough 0 Leeds 0

Reading 0 Blackburn 1

Yeovil 1 Doncaster 0

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lassic management. Build them up and then knock them back. Raise expectations and then dampen them. Create a dynamic where by you demand the most from your team, but where the team are given room to manoeuvre unexpected or unwanted results. Classy work by Van Gaal, he really reminds me a lot of me. A smart cookie, make no doubt.

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