JOHN KRETLOW - Friday, April 15, 2011
Zak Whitbread and Norwich City battled to a draw at home versus Watford while Eric Lichaj and Leeds fell to Derby County.
Norwich City 2-2 Watford
Zak Whitbread and Norwich City tied Watford in midweek Championship action.
Whitbread started and went the distance for the Canaries.
Just minutes into the game, Norwich looked destined for a win after Sam Vokes latched onto a Grant Holt pass and finished passed goalie Scott Loach.
Watford though equalized in the 26th minute after some lucky bounces ended up giving space to Danny Graham who beat Norwich goalie John Ruddy.
Ten minutes later, Watford took the lead when Graham found Dan Cowie, who finished an impressive shot.
The Canaries salvaged a tie when a David Fox free-kick was flicked on and eventually fell to Simeon Jackson, who then finished easily.
Norwich are now in third place and fall behind Cardiff for the last automatic promotion spot. Watford are now seven points from a playoff spot and will need things to fall their way to have a chance at extending their season.
Graham and John Eustace were booked for Watford while Holt and Elliot Ward received yellow cards for the Canaries.
Leeds United 1-2 Derby County
Eric Lichaj and Leeds United went down to Derby County in a crucial game with promotion implications.
Lichaj started and went the distance for United.
Leeds took the lead early in the second half after Max Gradel's strong shot from outside the box beat goalie Brad Jones to open up the scoring.
Just minutes later though, Stephen Pearson found Jamie Ward who finished to give Derby the equalizer.
Derby then took the surprising lead two minutes after Ward's goal, after Ben Davies' volley off of a corner kick sent the home fans into a frenzy.
Daniel Ayala, Pearson, and Robbie Savage all received yellow cards for Derby while Luciano Becchio, Bradley Johnson, and Neil Kilkenny were booked for Leeds.
United now hold on to the last playoff spot with a slim one point lead over Nottingham Forest.
Preston North End 1-2 Doncaster
Eddie Johnson and Preston North End were dealt a heavy blow when they tied Doncaster in midweek Championship action.
With games dwindling, Preston are seven points from safety.
Johnson started and was subbed out in the 78th minute.
With a quiet first half from both teams, the second half came with more action. Johnson was taken down in the box by James O'Connor, but was not awarded the penalty, much to the dismay of the Preston faithful.
Doncaster though took the late lead in the game in the 77th minute when Brian Stock shot to the top corner of Iain Turner's goal.
The lead was shortlived for Doncaster, because Paul Hayes equalized for Preston just three minutes later when he latched onto a rebound after a corner kick.
O'Connor and Jason Euell were booked for Doncaster.
Carlisle United 0-0 Leyton Orient
Frank Simek and Carlisle United tied Leyton Orient in League One play.
Simek started and went the distance as usual for the Cumbrians.
Orient was dominant in the first twenty minutes of the game while Carlisle took some initiative in the latter parts of the first half.
Just before half-time, Craig Curran nearly gave the Cumbrians the lead but his header was stopped by Jamie Jones, who also denied Francois Zoko's rebound attempt.
Paddy Madden came close for Carlisle in the second half as well, but this time the post saved Orient.
Late in the game Dean Cox's effort went wide, leaving Orient goalless.
Stephen Dawson was booked for Orient while Lubomir Michalik and Paul Thirlwell received yellow cards for Carlisle.