October 21, 2017 / 5:03 PM / a year ago

Wolves hold off spirited Preston fightback to remain top

Soccer Football - Championship - Wolverhampton Wanderers vs Preston North End - Molineux Stadium, Wolverhampton, Britain - October 21, 2017 Wolverhampton Wanderers' Ivan Cavaleiro celebrates scoring their first goal with team mates Action Images/Paul Burrows

LONDON (Reuters) - Wolverhampton Wanderers remain top of the Championship after holding off a spirited Preston fightback to pick up a 3-2 win at Molineux on Saturday.

Goals from Ivan Cavaleiro, Leo Bonatini and Conor Coady looked to have put Wolves on course for a third successive win, but they were made to sweat late on as two goals from the visitors ensured a nervy finish.

Preston threw everything at Wolves in search of an equaliser, but could not complete the comeback and finished the match with 10 men after Alan Browne’s dismissal.

Cardiff remained two points behind in second after Joe Ralls’s late penalty was enough for Neil Warnock’s men to snatch a 1-0 win at Middlesbrough, while Sheffield United are also just two points back after battling to a 2-1 win over Reading at Bramall Lane.

Leeds jumped up to fourth after sweeping aside in-form Bristol City to earn a 3-0 win at Ashton Gate and end a run of three successive defeats.

Two goals inside the first 14 minutes from Samuel Saiz set the Yorkshire side on their way, with Pierre-Michel Lasogga making sure of the win in the second half. The success represents ideal preparation for a Carabao Cup clash with Premier League side Leicester in midweek before a derby showdown with third-placed Sheffield United on Friday.

John Terry was on the scoresheet as Aston Villa continued their fine recent form to move up to fifth in the table after a 2-1 win over fellow promotion hopefuls Fulham at Villa Park.

There were goals galore at Griffin Park where Sunderland let a 3-1 lead slip as Brentford stormed back to snatch a point in a pulsating 3-3 draw, with substitute Neal Maupay the hero with the late equaliser.

Nottingham Forest earned a 2-0 derby victory over Burton Albion and Derby County closed on the top six with a 2-0 win over Sheffield Wednesday.

Reporting by Peter Hall, editing by Ed Osmond

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