Sheffield Wednesday registered their biggest-ever Yorkshire derby win against Leeds United with a 6-0 thrashing yesterday to increase the pressure on Brian McDermott. First-half goals from Reda Johnson and Atdhe Nuhiu put Wednesday firmly in control and after Matt Smith, the Leeds striker, was sent off for a foul on Johnson two minutes into the second half, Connor Wickham added a third. Chris Maguire's deflected free-kick in the 67th minute and substitute Caolan Lavery's superb late double completed the rout. McDermott claimed last week's 2-0 FA Cup defeat at Rochdale was his lowest ebb as a manager, but this Championship defeat plunged him deeper into despair. Asked if he could take any positives from the display, McDermott said: "Are you serious? It's public humiliation as far as I'm concerned. That was just unbelievable. It doesn't matter about being lower than the Rochdale game, that's just humiliating for all of us. It's a terrible time for Leeds United, the supporters and us." Stuart Gray, Wednesday's caretaker manager, believes the win will increase his chances of being appointed as Dave Jones' successor. "I've got to sit down and have a glass of wine with the chairman," said Gray. "It was a good performance, hopefully a 6-0 win will help me to get the job."
Kranjcar cracks Ipswich
Queen's Park Rangers underlined their promotion credentials with a 3-1 win at Ipswich Town. Niko Kranjcar scored the first of his side's three second-half goals in the space of 23 minutes when he calmly found the bottom corner. Gary O'Neil reacted quickest to a rebound for the second and the points were safe when Armand Traoré took advantage of some indecisive defending from Tommy Smith – before the centre-back atoned slightly with a consolation.
Ings brings points
Burnley's in-form strikers kept Sean Dyche's side second in the Championship table by securing a 2-1 win over Yeovil at Huish Park. Danny Ings opened the scoring with his 21st goal of the campaign before Sam Vokes made it two. Gary Johnson's struggling side snatched a lifeline through Keiffer Moore but failed to equalise and remain in the bottom three.
Merkel is no angel
Alexander Merkel was sent off on his debut for Watford as the Hornets lost 1-0 at home to Reading. The midfielder, who is on loan from Udinese, saw red in injury time for a reckless challenge on Nick Blackman. An early header from Kaspars Gorkss ended Reading's six-game winless run.
Carayol carries on scoring
Blackpool slumped to an eighth defeat in their last nine games at home to Middlesbrough. Mustapha Carayol came off the bench to claim a late double and seal a 2-0 victory for Aitor Karanka's in-form side. Carayol, who also scored in Middlebrough's 2-2 draw with Bolton on New Year's Day, curled home with six minutes remaining before celebrating a second strike in added time.
Fortuné favours Rösler
Wigan continued their unbeaten League run under Uwe Rösler with a convincing 3-0 home win against Bournemouth. The Latics made it four wins and two draws from their last six matches. Marc-Antoine Fortuné opened the scoring after five minutes with a wonderful finish. Fortuné's shot was then deflected past his own goalkeeper by Elliott Ward before Jordi Gomez added a magnificent third goal.
Off-day for Charlton
Charlton Athletic's clash with Barnsley yesterday was postponed because of the appalling state of the pitch at The Valley. It is the third fixture called off at the south London ground this season. Charlton's manager Chris Powell said: "It's something we are definitely going to get sorted."
Cardiff City have made their second signing in a week with midfielder Mats Moller Daehli, 18, joining from Molde.
Barcelona started with Lionel Messi and Neymar on the bench and were held to a 0-0 draw at Atletico Madrid in the battle of the top two in La Liga last night. Both forwards came on in the second half but could not break the deadlock.
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