Cardiff and Leicester capitalise on Championship rivals slip-ups
Cardiff City returned to the top of the Championship table with a 2-1 victory away at lowly Barnsley.
The Bluebirds third win of the season on the road took them back to the summit and slashed their odds to win the league to 2/1.
It was a debut to remember for teenage defender Ben Nugent who opened the scoring on route to three points for Malky Mackay’s side, with Aron Gunnarsson netting the second in a 2-1 win.
Crystal Palace were the team to make way at the top for Cardiff, after suffering their first defeat under new boss Ian Holloway at Elland Road.
A 2-1 loss to Leeds United marked the Eagles first loss in the league since August, ending a superb run of 14 games unbeaten.
Palace still look good at odds of 11/5 to gain promotion to the Premier League, but Holloway will be hoping this result does not dent his team’s previously high-flying confidence.
Leeds’ win was their first since Middle East-based private equity group GFH Capital took control of the Yorkshire club, with Neil Warnock’s side holding on despite a late Peter Ramage goal to secure all three points.
The Whites are 9/1 outsiders for promotion, but if money becomes available for Warnock to spend in January then they could become a good bet for progress through the play-offs.
At the Riverside, Middlesbrough endured the shock result of the weekend by losing 3-1 to relegation candidates Bristol City.
The visitors ended a barren run of 11 games without a win by turning over Tony Mowbray’s side on Teesside, who have now lost two games on the bounce and slip to 3/1 for promotion.
One Premier League chasing club who managed a win was Leicester City, who comfortably beat Sheffield Wednesday 2-0 at Hillsborough.
Winger Ben Marshall was the star of the show in South Yorkshire as Leicester moved into third, and cannot be ruled out for the title at 4/1.
If the Foxes can maintain the form that saw them win five in a row earlier in the season they should make automatic promotion from second, with current odds for promotion quite short at 11/10.
Hull City were another top side who slipped to defeat, with a tame 1-0 home loss to Burnley condemning the Tigers to fifth place in the league.
It was the Clarets seventh straight victory over Hull, who are now priced at 9/2 for promotion with Burnley still an unlikely punt to do so at 12/1.
Millwall took inconsistent Blackburn’s place in the top six with a 2-0 win at Ewood Park, while Nottingham Forrest and Derby County also recorded victories.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.