Championship wrap: Cardiff, Norwich close in

Queens Park Rangers’ lead at the top of the Championship was cut to two points after Cardiff and Norwich both won on Saturday.

With QPR not in action until Sunday against Coventry, Cardiff took advantage with a 4-2 home win over Watford.

Dave Jones’ side lined up with a deadly attacking trio consisting of Manchester City loanee Craig Bellamy, Michael Chopra and Jay Bothroyd.

All three netted goals within the first 31 minutes, Peter Whittingham providing setting two of them up.

But the result was not a foregone conclusion as Wayne Buckley pulled one back for Watford after 33 minutes, while Marvin Sordell added another three minutes into the second half.

Cardiff defender Gabor Gyepes made sure of the result with his goal seven minutes from time giving the Welsh side their third home win a row.

Norwich City joined Cardiff on 47 points after a 2-1 away win at Sheffield United thanks to Andrew Crofts’ double.

Crofts opened the scoring on the hour mark before cancelling out Ched Evans’ 68th minute equaliser with another goal 10 minutes from time.

Swansea City are also on 47 points after being held to a 1-1 draw at Barnsley.

Bobby Hassell’s 14th minute opener looked to have given Barnsley all three points but Scott Sinclair equalised from the penalty spot with four minutes remaining.

Leeds United are in fifth after they twice came from behind in a 2-2 draw at Portsmouth.

Joel Ward gave Portsmouth a first-half lead before Luciano Becchio struck his 50th goal for Leeds just after half-time.

John Utaka restored Pompey’s lead but Davide Somma equalised two minutes later.

Nottingham Forest burst into the top six with a 1-0 away win over Derby County, with Robert Earnshaw’s 79th minute strike extending Forest’s unbeaten run to seven.

At the other end of the table, Preston North End stay bottom despite claiming a 1-1 draw at Middlesbrough.

Crystal Palace could have moved out of the bottom three but were held to a 0-0 draw by Bristol City while Ian Harte’s late penalty gave Reading a 1-1 draw with Hull City.

Yakubu snared his second goal in two games and Sol Bamba struck a double in Leicester’s 4-2 home win over Millwall, while Carlos Edwards grabbed the winner in Ipswich’s 3-2 win over Doncaster Rovers.

Article title: Championship wrap: Cardiff, Norwich close in

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