2017/18 English League Championship, Regular Season
  • Romain Saïss (28')
  • Willy Boly (45')
  • Benik Afobe (74')

Wolves back on course with comfortable win at Leeds

Championship leaders Wolves returned to form with a bang as they beat Leeds 3-0 at Elland Road to move a step closer to promotion.

Nuno Espirito Santo had seen his side's rampant form stall in a three-match winless streak, allowing nearest challengers Cardiff to cut the gap from 13 points to three.

But Wolves put that behind them and doubled their advantage at the top courtesy of goals from Romain Saiss, Willy Boly and Benik Afobe in an impressive display.

Wanderers are now 10 points clear of third-placed Aston Villa, who host them on Saturday evening.

As in their 3-0 defeat at Middlesbrough last Friday, Leeds were again second best and saw their very slim play-off hopes go up in smoke.

Felix Wiedwald produced another shaky performance at the Riverside and head coach Paul Heckingbottom addressed his goalkeeping situation by dropping the German in favour of rookie Bailey Peacock-Farrell.

The 21-year-old, making only his second first-team start, soon settled his nerves by racing out to clear a hopeful long ball.

Leeds had the crowd engaged early on, hurrying Wolves with their pressing, but it was not long before the visitors' Diogo Jota started to influence the game.

Clever work from the forward began a move that resulted in Peacock-Farrell parrying Ivan Cavaleiro's shot in the 20th minute.

Jota then missed a golden chance moments later when, with only Peacock-Farrell to beat, he failed to connect cleanly with Matt Doherty's low cross from close range.

Leo Bonatini kneed over a Barry Douglas cross and Peacock-Farrell raced off his line to block a Jota chip as Wolves continued to dominate.

They eventually made their pressure count in the 28th minute when the unmarked Saiss headed in Douglas' corner.

Peacock-Farrell denied Wolves again with a fine save at the feet of Bonatini following a flowing team move that cut through the Leeds defence.

But he could do nothing about Boly doubling the visitors' advantage on the stroke of half-time, the defender nodding in from close range after Danny Batth's header from another Douglas corner came back off the crossbar.

Bonatini was denied a third by a clearance off the line at the start of the second half while Leeds defender Gaetano Berardi flashed a 25-yard shot just over.

Jota was almost rewarded with the goal his performance merited on the hour mark but his dipping shot cannoned back off the bar.

Second-half substitute Afobe sealed the win 16 minutes from time, racing on to a long ball over the top and chipping the onrushing Peacock-Farrell to leave Leeds with one win from their last 13 games in all competitions.

English League Championship Standings

1 Norwich City 17 +8 33
2 Middlesbrough 17 +11 31
3 Leeds United 17 +12 30
4 Sheffield United 17 +8 30
5 West Bromwich Albion 17 +12 28
6 Derby County 17 +5 28
7 Nottingham Forest 17 +7 27
8 Swansea City 17 +6 26
9 Blackburn Rovers 17 -1 26
10 Queens Park Rangers 17 -4 26
11 Aston Villa 17 +4 24
12 Birmingham City 17 +3 24
13 Bristol City 17 +1 22
14 Stoke City 17 -1 22
15 Brentford 17 +4 21
16 Wigan Athletic 17 -7 20
17 Sheffield Wednesday 17 -9 20
18 Preston North End 17 -4 18
19 Rotherham United 17 -9 18
20 Reading 17 -5 16
21 Millwall 17 -7 16
22 Hull City 17 -8 16
23 Bolton Wanderers 17 -12 16
24 Ipswich Town 17 -14 11