Derby move into play-off pack, Reading keep the pressure on

Derby County took advantage of Barnsley and Sheffield Wednesday slip-ups to move up to sixth with victory over Ipswich Town.

Deadline day took a back seat for little more than 90 minutes as action on the pitch took centre stage in the Championship, with no sign of distraction for Derby County.

An excellent first-half display saw Derby charge into a three-goal lead before half-time in their meeting with Ipswich Town at Portman Road - and that was how it stayed until the final whistle.

Reading moved to within three points of the automatic promotion places by beating Birmingham City 1-0, while there was a piece of history for Brentford in their home match against Aston Villa.

 

DERBY RAM DOWN PLAY-OFF DOOR

Wes Morgan's 86th-minute equaliser on Friday for Leicester City denied Derby a guaranteed spot in the FA Cup fifth round, but they did not let another impressive first-half display go to waste at Ipswich.

Craig Bryson put Steve McClaren's side ahead and Tom Ince added the second after just 12 minutes. The crossbar denied Bryson a second, but Darren Bent headed home on the stroke of half-time to effectively wrap up the points.

With Sheffield Wednesday held 2-2 at Bristol City and Barnsley going down 3-1 at home to Wolves, victory took Derby up to sixth.

READING KEEP PRESUSRE ON TOP TWO

With leaders Brighton and Hove Albion and second-placed Newcastle United not in action until Wednesday and Thursday respectively, Reading took the chance to temporarily close the gap.

Jaap Stam's side took their time to beat Birmingham at St Andrew's, though, John Swift netting the winner with 13 minutes left on the clock.

HISTORY FOR BRENTFORD

Aston Villa may be set to take sign Scott Hogan from Brentford, but they were unable to leave Griffin Park with any points in a 3-0 defeat.

Lasse Vibe scored either side of Nicholas Yennaris' 38th-minute effort to earn the west-London club their first victory over Villa, bouncing back from a 4-0 FA Cup defeat at Chelsea on Saturday.