Wolves maintained their lead at the top of the Sky Bet Championship after a routine 3-0 win over Reading, with Irish defender Matt Doherty scoring twice for the midlanders.

On-loan Bournemouth striker Benik Afobe also netted at Molineux.

Wolves were on top from the outset and Doherty, who is still uncapped for the Republic, and had also been on target in Wolves 2-0 win against Reading in November, put them in front. 

A long pass from Helder Costa picked out Barry Douglas and his header to the centre of the penalty area was headed home by the unmarked Doherty from 12 yards out  five minutes before half-time.

The Irishman then turned provider in the 48th minute to tee-up Afobe, but the latter wasted an excellent chance to put the game beyond Reading when he dragged his weak shot wide from close range.

Fortunately for Afobe he soon got a chance to make amends and this time was clinical - making no mistake when he buried his low shot from eight yards after a mazy run by Costa.

Doherty then set the seal on a comprehensive victory with a cool finish from the edge of the area in the 73rd minute after exchanging passes with Cavaleiro. 

Nuno Espirito Santo's side had won just one of their previous five games to see their lead cut to three points.

But victory ensured they stayed ahead of Cardiff in the race for the title after the Bluebirds won at Brentford.

They came back from 1-0 down to win 3-1 at Griffin Park and strengthen their grip on second spot.

Sol Bamba, Callum Paterson and Kenneth Zahore scored for Neil Warnock's side after Neal Maupay had opened the scoring for Brentford.

It left a seven-point gap to third place after Aston Villa's automatic promotion hopes suffered a major blow with a surprise 3-1 defeat at home to QPR.

Ryan Manning celebrates his goal

A header from Galway youngster Ryan Manning and Jake Bidwell's deflected effort put the visitors 2-0 up at half-time.

Luke Freeman added a late third at Villa Park to move QPR up to 15th despite James Chester's consolation - the defender's third goal in as many games.

Sheffield United closed the gap to the top six to two points after a 2-0 win over Burton.

Former Shamrock Rovers player Enda Stevens, who was called up to the Irish squad last week. opened the scoring in the first half before David Brooks' goal after the break helped lift them to seventh.

At the bottom Barnsley inched three points clear of the relegation zone after a 1-1 draw with mid-table Norwich.

Swansea loanee Oli McBurnie celebrated his first Scotland call-up with a neat volley just before half-time only for Josh Murphy to equalise.

Hull also grabbed another crucial win and are now nine points above the bottom three.

The Tigers beat Ipswich 3-0 at Portman Road thanks to goals from Markus Henriksen, Harry Wilson and Jarrod Bowen.