Wolves pull four points clear in Championship

Nuno Espirito Santo (Getty)
Nuno Espirito Santo (Getty)

London - Wolverhampton Wanderers opened up a four-point lead at the top of the English Championship with a 4-1 victory over 10-man Leeds United at Molineux on Wednesday.

The Midlands side are now five points clear of third-placed Sheffield United, who slipped below Cardiff City with a stunning 5-4 loss to Fulham on Tuesday, as they look to return to the Premier League for the first time since being relegated in 2012.

Wolves started strongly and took the lead in the 15th minute as Scottish midfielder Barry Douglas curled a magnificent left-footed free-kick into the top corner for his first goal of the season.

Nuno Espirito Santo's men have been a cut above the rest of England's second tier in the last few months, and Ivan Cavaleiro showed why with an excellent second goal.

The Portuguese winger spun his marker with a cute turn, before cutting inside and drilling into the far corner to score his fourth goal this term.

But the visitors halved the deficit only three minutes after the break, as Macedonian international Ezgjan Alioski hammered home a stunning left-footed volley.

A fightback never materialised, though, as Leeds teenager Ronaldo Vieira saw red after a second yellow card.

On-loan Atletico Madrid attacking midfielder Diogo Jota added a third against the 10 men, with former Benfica winger Helder Costa completing the rout.

Elsewhere, Garry Monk's Middlesbrough moved into the sixth and final playoff spot with a 2-0 win over Birmingham City, while Sheffield Wednesday extended their unbeaten run to five matches as substitute Atdhe Nuhiu's injury-time equaliser snatched a 2-2 draw at Ipswich Town.

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