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 West Bromwich Albion 28 +19 53
2 Leeds United 28 +19 52
3 Fulham 28 +12 48
4 Brentford 28 +23 47
5 Nottingham Forest 27 +11 47
6 Preston North End 29 +8 46
7 Swansea City 28 +3 45
8 Millwall 28 +4 44
9 Bristol City 28 +2 44
10 Sheffield Wednesday 28 +8 42
11 Blackburn Rovers 28 +5 40
12 Hull City 28 +4 39
13 Cardiff City 28 -2 39
14 Queens Park Rangers 28 -5 38
15 Derby County 28 -7 37
16 Reading 27 +3 36
17 Middlesbrough 29 -7 35
18 Birmingham City 29 -11 34
19 Charlton Athletic 28 -4 29
20 Huddersfield Town 28 -13 29
21 Stoke City 28 -8 28
22 Barnsley 29 -19 24
23 Wigan Athletic 28 -18 23
24 Luton Town 28 -27 21