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Sky Bet Championship

Elland Road (ATT 19,002) 2nd March 2013 - Kick off 12:30 Ref: M Jones

Leeds Leeds United vs Millwall Millwall

Leeds 1

S Warnock (pen 72)

ft

Championship: Leeds beat Millwall 1-0 at Elland Road courtesy of Stephen Warnock's penalty

Last Updated: 06/03/13 11:32am

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Stephen Warnock: Celebrates his winner against Millwall

Stephen Warnock: Celebrates his winner against Millwall

Stephen Warnock's second-half penalty gave Leeds United an important 1-0 win over Millwall in the Championship at Elland Road on Saturday afternoon.

Warnock spared Ross McCormack's blushes as his second-half penalty helped Leeds keep their play-off hopes alive.

Seventy-two minutes had gone when the former England international drilled a spot-kick down the centre of David Forde's goal, with the goalkeeper unable to replicate the first-half penalty save he had made from McCormack.

In the opening stages, Martyn Woolford pushed two half-volleys just wide and with 13 minutes gone, the winger's flick put James Henry clean through on Paddy Kenny's goal six yards out, but he side-footed against the post.

Henry then wasted the chance to put John Marquis clean through, and the home side grew into the game after that, starting with a 17th-minute penalty appeal when Forde appeared to clean up Luke Varney's head as they went for a Warnock cross.

A spot-kick was awarded in the 28th minute, though. The decision came when Byram - through after a superb pass from Paul Green - was hauled down by Woolford, with Mike Jones immediately pointing to the spot. The official was not done however, and halted McCormack's taking of the penalty to order a re-spot. The Scotland striker was far from happy but, after obliging, stepped forward and hit low to Forde's left, with the keeper getting down to save.

Desperate to redeem himself, McCormack retrieved possession and dug out a chip-cross that evaded everyone and floated onto the right post before bouncing back across the line.

If it was starting to seem as though his luck was out, then it was confirmed when he slipped as he tried to tuck in from six yards after a Varney cross, and he was grateful to some errant close-range finishing from Shane Lowry at the other end as the teams went in at the break all square.

The first half had been lively if without goals, but the second half's quality was summed up by Forde's save from a deflected Michael Tonge effort in the 65th minute being the first act to catch the eye.

With the game there for the taking, Millwall tried to seize the initiative and threw on two strikers in the form of Andy Keogh and Nathan Tyson, and the duo nearly combined to open the scoring with 68 minutes gone.

The former, twice an ex-Leeds player, cut in from the right and crossed for Tyson, but Lee Peltier was on hand to deny him and then Keogh on the rebound.

It would prove an vital contribution too as just two minutes later, Dunne tripped McCormack and Warnock made no mistake with an emphatic drive down the middle.

Millwall could have had a penalty of their own after that - Byram looking guilty of handling a Dunne flick - while Varney was denied by Forde, but there would be no more goals.

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Table

Sky Bet Championship

Sky Bet Championship
Pos Team P Pts
1 Bournemouth 22 42
2 Ipswich Town 22 41
3 Brentford 22 40
4 Middlesbrough 22 39
5 Derby County 22 39
6 Watford 22 38
7 Norwich City 22 34
8 Blackburn Rovers 22 34
9 Nottingham Forest 22 31
10 Wolverhampton Wanderers 22 31
11 Cardiff City 22 30
12 Charlton Athletic 22 30
13 Fulham 22 28
14 Sheffield Wednesday 22 28
15 Birmingham City 22 28
16 Bolton Wanderers 22 26
17 Reading 22 25
18 Leeds United 22 24
19 Rotherham United 22 24
20 Huddersfield Town 22 24
21 Millwall 22 23
22 Brighton and Hove Albion 22 19
23 Wigan Athletic 22 17
24 Blackpool 22 13