Pompey extend lead at top
By Peter O`Rourke. Last Updated: January 1, 1970 1:00am
PORTSMOUTH stretched their lead at the top of the First Division to five points with a hard-fought 3-2 win over Rotherham at Millmoor.
French ace Vincent Pericard fired the visitors in front after 15 minutes and Bulgarian striker Svetoslav Todorov doubled the lead seven minutes later.
Darren Byfied pulled one back for The Millers after 33 minutes, but the home side suffered a blow when Chris Swailles was sent-off for giving away a penalty for a foul on Todorov.
Paul Merson made no mistake from the spot to restore the visitors' two-goal lead.
Rotherham made a fight of it and pulled a goal back after 73 minutes from the penalty spot with Alan Lee converting, but despite some late pressure Pompey held on for all three points.
Nottingham Forest continued their fine run of form with a superb 2-1 win at Millwall.
Loan star Kevin Davies fired Millwall in front a minute before the break, but the in-form David Johnson equalised for the visitors after 65 minutes.
Millwall were reduced to ten men just minutes from time with Matt Lawrence seeing red and the visitors made the numerical advantage count with the winner from Johnson after 85 minutes.
Sheffield United moved into fifth spot with an impressive 3-1 win at Wolves.
The home side had got off to the perfect start with the unfortunate Robert Ullathorne putting through his own goal after 33 minutes.
The visitors drew level right on the stroke of half time through Michael Tonge and Wayne Allison headed them into the lead three minutes after the restart.
Tonge grabbed his second two minutes later to wrap up the win for Neil Warnock's troops and pile the pressure on Wolves boss Dave Jones.
Coventry climbed into the top six with a comfortable 2-0 win at Gillingham.
Jay Bothroyd put the visitors on the way with the opener a minute after the restart and David Pipe with his first senior goal for the club in the 53rd minute wrapped up the win for Gary McAllister's men.
Watford inflicted the tenth successive defeat on struggling Brighton with a 1-0 success at Vicarage Road.
Heidar Helgusson hit the only goal of the game five minutes before the break to pile the pressure on Seagulls boss Martin Hinchelwood.
Burnley maintained their winning ways with a 3-1 over Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough.
Gareth Taylor fired the visitors in front after just eight minutes and Glen Little doubled the lead in the 57th minute.
Ian Moore added to the lead with the third three minutes later and although substitute Simon Donnelly pulled one back for Wednesday it was nothing more than a mere consolation.
Grimsby remain second from bottom after a 3-0 home defeat to Reading.
Andy Hughes grabbed the opener for the visitors after 13 minutes and Nicky Forster doubled the advantage in the 32nd minute.
The home side's misery was compounded when Alan Pouton scored an unfortunate own goal in stoppage time.
Derby squandered a two goal lead to only draw 2-2 with Walsall at Pride Park.
A brace from Malcolm Christie (19,53) had looked to have put the home side in total control, but Steve Corica pulled a goal back for the visitors after 64 minutes to set up a nervy finish.
Walsall's hopes of getting anything from the game seemed to blow up when Danny Hay was sent-off ten minutes from time, but a dramatic injury time penalty from Zigor Aranalde earned The Saddlers an unlikely point.
Bradford and Preston shared the spoils after a 1-1 draw at Valley Parade.
On loan striker Michael Proctor fired the home side in front after 20 minutes but Graham Alexander drew the sides level from the penalty spot in the 39th minute.
Ricardo Fuller saw red for the visitors in the dying moments to take a little of the shine off North End's point.
Chris Iwelumo's late strike earned Stoke a 1-1 draw with Crystal Palace at The Britannia Stadium.
Dele Adebola's first league goal for The Eagles after 777 minutes looked to have earned the visitors all three points until Iwelumo's 85th minute equaliser.
In late match on Saturday, both Leicester City and Norwich City failed to close the gap on leaders Portsmouth after a tense 0-0 draw at Carrow Road.
Click on link for full match summary:
Bradford 1-1 Preston
Derby 2-2 Walsall
Gillingham 0-2 Coventry
Grimsby 0-3 Reading
Millwall 1-2 Nott`m Forest
Norwich 0-0 Leicester
Rotherham 2-3 Portsmouth
Sheff Wed 1-3 Burnley
Stoke 1-1 Crystal Palace
Watford 1-0 Brighton
Wolves 1-3 Sheffield Utd
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