London (AFP) – West Bromwich Albion moved to the top of the Championship table with a 4-0 win away to struggling Cardiff on Tuesday.
The Bluebirds suffered a fourth successive loss, with this reverse following hot on the heels of last weekend’s 5-1 thrashing by Blackburn.
Tuesday’s result saw Cardiff manager Mick McCarthy subjected to chants of “You’re getting sacked in the morning” from both sets of supporters.
“I’ve got no complaints about the fans at all,” McCarthy told BBC Sport Wales. “They come here to support us, to watch us and to expect better performances, so I share their frustrations.”
The former Republic of Ireland manager added: “Whether we’ll get back to the same form we were in last year I don’t know, but we’re going to have to try that’s for certain.
“We need a result and we need a result fast because confidence starts to ebb out of the place and that makes it difficult for everybody.”
Meanwhile Baggies boss Valerien Ismael was delighted by the result.
“I want to give a massive thank you to the players for the performance and the three points,” he said.
“We are now moving more towards my vision for this team. I want us to stay confident and move further in the right direction.”
Karlan Grant opened the scoring with a fine shot from the edge of the box in the fifth minute. The Baggies’ second came via a series of Cardiff mistakes that ended with Curtis Nelson putting the ball into his own net.
Alex Mowatt made it 3-0 in the 75th minute with a sweetly-struck half-volley from outside the box before substitute Matt Phillips completed the scoring eight minutes from time as West Brom went a point ahead of Bournemouth, who are away to Peterborough on Wednesday, at the summit of English football’s second tier.
Blackburn’s Ben Brereton Diaz followed his hat-trick against Cardiff with two goals against Huddersfield but the Terriers still won 3-2.
Rovers twice came from behind, Brereton Diaz equalising after Alex Vallejo made it 1-0 and then scoring from the penalty spot after Danny Ward had put Huddersfield back ahead to cap a spell of three goals in eight minutes.
Ward had the final say, scoring the winner for Yorkshire club Huddersfield in six minutes from time.
Stoke looked like they might make inroads on the top two when a header from Nick Powell gave them a sixth-minute lead against Preston but Ben Whiteman earned a 1-1 draw for the hosts.
Ilias Chair scored either side of half-time for Queens Park Rangers in a 2-0 win over Birmingham while Middlesbrough beat Sheffield United by the same score, with Duncan Watmore and Paddy McNair on target in the first half.
Elsewhere 10-man Hull gained a valuable point in a 1-1 draw with Blackpool.
Shayne Lavery opened the scoring for the visitors in the 42nd minute and Blackpool’s prospects of victory looked to have improved when Lewie Coyle was sent off with 10 minutes remaining only for Tom Eaves to score an equaliser.