Updated Feb 15th 2020, 5:52 PM
LUKE AYLING SCORED against his former side as Leeds eked out a gritty 1-0 win over Bristol City to go three points clear in the Championship automatic-promotion spots.
Luke Ayling celebrates scoring for Leeds.
Source: Tim Goode
The defender lashed home early on but despite dominating the encounter, the hosts could not add to their tally.
Leeds would have been buoyed by leaders West Brom dropping points earlier in the day.
The Baggies were held by Nottingham Forest – and the win for Marcelo Bielsa’s side trimmed the gap between the pair to four points, with Leeds three ahead of third-placed Fulham.
West Brom looked set to extend their lead at the top of the table but Matty Cash unleashed a thunderbolt to the net in injury-time to rescue a draw for Nottingham Forest
Irish striker Callum Robinson had opened the scoring in the 37th minute but it was 1-1 at the break as Kyle Bartley put into his own net to draw Forest level. A second own goal of the game arrived in the 65th minute when Tobias Figueiredo was the luckless player as West Brom went in front 2-1.
That looked set to hand the home side all three points but Forest pounced late on at the Hawthorns and survived more drama when Robinson came close to the match-winner before offside was called.
Callum Robinson opened the scoring for West Brom today.
Source: Nick Potts
The victory was timely for Leeds as other promotion chasing sides did not enjoy a good afternoon with Fulham losing 3-0 to Barnsley, Preston defeated 1-0 at home to Millwall and Brentford drawing 1-1 with Birmingham City.
Leeds made an electric start and skipper Liam Cooper nodded wide from a corner after just two minutes. Helder Costa then saw a near-post effort well stopped by Dan Bentley.
Bristol City were struggling to live with Leeds at times, but their patterns of good build-up play were without any end product – a familiar theme for Leeds this season.
The opener arrived in the 15th minute and it came after a mad scramble in the box.
Leeds were repelled on a number of occasions by excellent Bristol City defending but their resistance was finally broken when the ball fell kindly to Ayling.