Thursday 26 April 2018

Another Maguire strike helps Preston revive hopes

Sean Maguire kept Preston's faint hopes of a play-off place alive with the key goal in a second-half turnaround at Deepdale that delivered a 3-1 victory over Leeds. (stock picture)
Sean Maguire kept Preston's faint hopes of a play-off place alive with the key goal in a second-half turnaround at Deepdale that delivered a 3-1 victory over Leeds. (stock picture)
Daniel McDonnell

Daniel McDonnell

Sean Maguire kept Preston's faint hopes of a play-off place alive with the key goal in a second-half turnaround at Deepdale that delivered a 3-1 victory over Leeds.

Alex Neil's side came into the game off a run of three straight defeats, but last night's success will have rekindled their hopes of a top-six finish.

Preston now sit 11th, five points behind sixth-placed Millwall in a congested table with four matches to go in their season.

Leeds gave another opportunity to Irish rookie Paudie O'Connor and they led at the break, but that was cancelled out by Paul Gallagher before Maguire struck. His Irish team-mate Alan Browne added the insurance goal.

The race to join champions-elect Wolves in the Premier League took a twist on a dramatic night, with Jack Grealish's goal giving fourth-placed Aston Villa a win over Cardiff who had come to Villa Park in second position.

Form side Fulham have now leapfrogged Cardiff into the automatic promotion places courtesy of a single goal success over Reading although Cardiff do have a game in hand.

Norwegian midfielder Stefan Johansen hit the winner as Fulham stretched their unbeaten run to 20 matches. Leandro Bacuna was sent off in stoppage time for the Royals.

Shaun Williams was part of the Millwall team that jumped into sixth spot with a 2-0 success at Bolton. They overtook Middlesbrough who slumped to a 2-1 reverse at Sheffield United with Enda Stevens' side now just three off Millwall.

Brentford are a point behind after a significant 1-0 win away at Nottingham Forest that was also notable for Chiedozie Ogbene's debut. He was signed from Limerick in January.

Second from bottom Sunderland look doomed after a last minute concession at home to Norwich leaves them six points from safety.

To add to their woes, Aiden McGeady missed a penalty at the Stadium of Light.

By contrast, Hull City look to be secure following an emphatic 5-0 destruction of bottom side Burton Albion, with David Meyler and Irish hopeful Will Keane amongst the scorers.

Irish Independent

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