Seán Maguire goal moves Preston up to third in the Championship
Round-up: Misfiring Leeds pay the price as Derby County snatch late point
Seán Maguire’s goal helped Preston beat Birmingham and move to third in the Championship table. Photograph: Lewis Storey/Getty Images
Ireland international Seán Maguire struck the winner as Preston moved up to third in the Championship with a 1-0 win at Birmingham.
In a game of few chances, the forward’s 23rd-minute effort ensured North End secured their first away league win since March.
Birmingham could count themselves unlucky not to claim something from the game, however, after seeing their unbeaten run at home end.
They appealed strongly for a penalty when Maxime Colin’s cross appeared to strike the hand of Ben Davies, and had an effort from substitute Alvaro Gimenez controversially ruled out for offside 11 minutes from time.
Preston had an early, albeit marginal, penalty shout when defender Harlee Dean appeared to shove Maguire in the back, causing him to fall over. But referee Stephen Martin waved play on.
North End took then the lead with the first real attack.
Maguire tapped in the rebound after Paul Gallagher’s low curling free-kick hit the inside of the post after beating a five-man defensive wall as well as goalkeeper Lee Camp.
Birmingham midfielder David Davis conceded the set-piece after upending Maguire following a surging run.
It was the 25-year-old’s second goal in as many games and third of the season.
Leeds’ Achilles heel hurt them once more as the Championship leaders were held 1-1 at home by Derby.
Marcelo Bielsa’s men were as dominant as ever at Elland Road, creating chance after chance while bossing possession, but only having Max Lowe’s 20th-minute own goal to show for their efforts.
Leeds remain top, on goal difference, after Swansea could only draw 0-0 at Bristol City, Jake Bidwell sent off for the visitors in the last minute.
Nahki Wells scored a double as QPR beat Millwall 2-1 at The Den to go fourth.
The on-loan Burnley man opened the scoring 56 minutes in and, after Shaun Hutchinson levelled in the 71st minute, Wells won it 60 seconds later.
Ben Watson’s strike on the counterattack helped Nottingham Forest beat Barnsley 1-0, while Kevin Stewart’s first goal since May 2015 helped Hull win 3-0 at Luton, with Kamil Grosicki adding a late second and Dan Potts scoring an injury-time own goal.
Adam Armstrong and Bradley Dack scored for Blackburn as they won 2-1 at Reading, Rovers shutting down the comeback that John Swift’s 57th-minute goal threatened to trigger.
Chey Dunkley grabbed a brace as Wigan beat Charlton 2-0, while Garry Monk remains unbeaten as Sheffield Wednesday manager, Atdhe Nuhiu levelling in injury time after Tom Cairney opened the scoring for Fulham in a 1-1 draw in South Yorkshire.
Ashley Fletcher put through his own goal two minutes in as Cardiff beat Middlesbrough 1-0, while at the foot of the table, Stoke picked up just their second point of the season with a 0-0 draw at Brentford.