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Bilic proud of Baggies, while O'Neill eyes Leeds scalp

 

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Dara O'Shea

Dara O'Shea

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Dara O'Shea

Slaven Bilic hailed his West Brom players after they returned to the summit of the Sky Bet Championship.

The Baggies moved two points clear of Leeds after goals from Grady Diangana and Dara O'Shea clinched a routine 2-0 win over Derby.

They need eight points from their final four games to end their two-year exile from the Premier League.

Derby had Louie Sibley sent off late on and missed the chance to close the gap on the top six.

"The guys below are putting the pressure on us and Leeds, us and Leeds don't put the pressure on each other but it's nice to be back on the top of the table," said Bilic, with the Baggies five points clear of third-placed Brentford.

"We were magnificent, we were fantastic. We played with a very offensive team and to defend like this against a good team and give them nothing and keep the ball, create so many chances - the only thing which was missing was an earlier second goal. I'm so proud of them."

Swansea strengthened their play-off claims after piling on more woe for Birmingham City with a 3-1 win at St Andrew's.

The South Wales side came from behind after Lukas Jutkiewicz's fifth-minute opener as on-loan Liverpool forward Rhian Brewster, Ben Cabango and Jay Fulton turned the game on its head.

A second successive victory for Steve Cooper's side saw them move within a point and a place of the top six behind fierce rivals Cardiff, while Brewster made it eight goals in 16 games since his arrival from Anfield in January.

But the result prolonged the frustration for the Blues, who are now 10 games without a win in the Championship.

Middlesbrough moved out of the relegation zone after two second-half goals gave Neil Warnock's side a 2-0 victory at play-off hopefuls Millwall.

Goals from Famara Diedhiou and Jamie Paterson gave Bristol City a 2-1 win over relegation-threatened Hull in their first match since sacking head coach Lee Johnson.

Crisis club Wigan Athletic boosted their hopes of avoiding relegation punishment for going into administration last week after overcoming Queens Park Rangers 1-0. In the late kick-off, Preston won 3-1 at Sheffield Wednesday.

• Stoke City boss Michael O'Neill says his side can't just go to Leeds United to defend as they try to take another step towards Championship safety.

Stoke face a tough task away to the promotion hopefuls tonight, but can take heart from their performance in Saturday's 4-0 win at home to Barnsley.

The former Northern Ireland boss said: "We will have to be at the same level of intensity, if not more.

"We will have to defend deep at times I'm sure as well.

"They are pushing for the ultimate prize of the Premier League and to be league winners so we will have to go there and make life difficult for them."

Belfast Telegraph