Championship round-up: Sunderland claim first home win of 2017 and the rest of Saturday’s results

Sunderland 1-0 Fulham

Better late than never! Sunderland finally claimed their first home victory of 2017 as 18-year-old Josh Maja’s goal was enough to see off Fulham.

The much-maligned Black Cats were close to going a whole calendar year without winning in front of their fans, but an inspired doubled substitution from new boss Chris Coleman turned the tide at the Stadium of Light.

Sunderland had not won at home since 17 December 2016, when they beat Watford in the Premier League. There have been signs of improvement since Coleman took over on Wearside and he was desperate to see the 21-match run without a home win – a day short of going a full calendar year without winning on their own turf – come to an end before Christmas.

It appeared they could be frustrated again when good efforts from Lewis Grabban and James Vaughan were saved by Fulham goalkeeper Marcus Bettinelli.

But, five minutes after being brought on for his senior debut, youngster Maja was an instant hero as he found the net on 77 minutes to finally give Sunderland’s beleaguered fans something to cheer about.

It was a tidy finish too from the academy graduate and it was enough to lift Sunderland out of the Championship’s bottom three against a Fulham side which had won three of its previous four games.

Birmingham City 1-2 Queens Park Rangers:

Jack Robinson scored twice to earn QPR a 2-1 win at Birmingham which plunged the hosts to the foot of the Championship table.

The full-back scored his first league goal to open the scoring in the 16th minute and grabbed the winner seven minutes from time after Sam Gallagher’s equaliser.

Robinson’s double earned Rangers their first away win in 18 games on their travels, their last one having come in a 4-1 win at Birmingham in February.

The situation is looking increasingly bleak for Blues, though, as they lost for the third game running. Steve Cotterill has presided over just two wins in his 11 games in charge and, most worryingly of all, has seen his side manage just four goals.

Bristol City 2-1 Nottingham Forest:

Long-range goals from Marlon Pack and Joe Bryan set Bristol City on course to boost their Championship promotion bid with victory over Nottingham Forest at Ashton Gate.

Midfielder Pack broke the deadlock on 36 minutes, accepting a Korey Smith pass 25 yards out and beating Jordan Smith with a sweetly struck right-footed drive. Bryan netted from even further out in first-half stoppage time, hammering a left-footed shot that appeared to wrong-foot goalkeeper Smith as it flashed into the net.

Forest replied with a special goal of their own two minutes after the break, Kieran Dowell advancing to strike a 30-yard shot past Frank Fielding with his left foot to stun the home fans.

But the visitors could not force an equaliser in a closely fought clash that did credit to both sides.

Leeds United 1-0 Norwich City

Pontus Jansson scored the winner as Leeds continued their revival with a 1-0 victory over Norwich at Elland Road which kept them on the brink of the play-off places.

Six defeats in seven league matches had seen Leeds plummet down the table, heaping the pressure on boss Thomas Christiansen.

But results have improved drastically over the last month and Jansson’s header – his second in as many home games – made it 13 points from a possible 18 to leave United one off the top six.

The impressive Alex Pritchard hit the crossbar late on for Norwich, who suffered a fourth consecutive defeat on the road, as they pushed hard for an equaliser.

Derby County 2-0 Aston Villa

Andreas Weimann came back to haunt his former club with the opening goal that set Derby on their way to victory over Aston Villa at Pride Park.

The Austria international, who joined County from Villa in 2015, scored after a mistake by Glenn Whelan, tapping in at the back post from Matej Vydra’s pass.

Villa, whose injury problems were highlighted by Josh Onomah playing as a striker, created very little throughout the game and were easily second-best here – with Scott Hogan’s off-target header the closest they came.

And Johnny Russell added Derby’s second goal in the first minute of added time with a neat finish to seal the Rams’ fifth victory in six games.

Millwall 2-1 Middlesbrough:

Jed Wallace and George Saville scored first-half goals to give Millwall victory over Middlesbrough at the Den.

The Lions twice caught Boro on the counter-attack and stretched their unbeaten league run to three games.

Stewart Downing pulled a goal back for the away side from long range as Middlesbrough looked to take something from the game.

But even as the visitors pushed, Millwall had the better chances and deserved their win.

Preston North End 1-0 Sheffield United:

Preston extended their unbeaten run to six Championship games as Jordan Hugill scored the only goal in a 1-0 win over Sheffield United at Deepdale.

Hugill’s strike means that the Blades are now winless in five games and have also lost four of those five matches.

Victory for Preston in the first Championship meeting between the sides since 2011 lifts Alex Neil’s side to within two points of the play-off places.

Ipswich 2-0 Reading:

Ipswich halted Reading’s unbeaten five game run and moved up to eighth in the Championship table with a 2-0 victory.

The Suffolk side now sit two points off the play-off places on 35, two positions below Sheffield United who are sixth on 37.

Goals came from Callum Connolly in the third minute and Joe Garner after 27 minutes but it was in front of the home side’s lowest attendance of the season of 13,832.

Bolton Wanderers 0-1 Burton Albion:

Lloyd Dyer scored the only goal of the game as Burton moved off the foot of the table with a precious 1-0 victory at fellow strugglers Bolton.

The experienced winger fired in his fourth goal of the season midway through the first half to lift Burton above the Trotters in the standings, with Birmingham now rock-bottom.

Albion had taken only one point from their last five league matches and this was only their second victory in 14 games but they certainly did not look like a struggling side and were worthy winners at the Macron Stadium.

Brentford 0-0 Barnsley:

Barnsley ended a five-game losing streak with a hard-earned point in a 0-0 stalemate at Brentford.

The Tykes had goalkeeper Adam Davies to thank for stopping the rot with a brilliant injury time save when he tipped Ollie Watkins’ sizzling angled drive just past the post.

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