Swansea maintained their foothold in the Coca-Cola Championship play-off places with a comfortable 3-1 home win over Barnsley.

Paulo Sousa's side have hit bad form at the wrong time, with only one win in their previous eight games, but took the lead when Ashley Williams bundled in a corner and doubled their advantage through Shefki Kuqi.

The Tykes were back in business when Darren Moore headed in Iain Hume's corner, only for Darren Pratley to emphatically restore the two-goal margin.

Blackpool kept the pressure on the Swans after beating third-placed Nottingham Forest by the same scoreline.

Ian Holloway's side kicked off just two points behind Swansea and are breathing down the Welsh side's neck after Charlie Adam's penalty put them ahead.

DJ Campbell struck early in the second half to extend the Seasiders' lead and, after Forest got themselves back in the game through Joe Garner's header, Campbell netted his second goal of the game with six minutes remaining.

Leicester also kept their place in the play-off zone after a 4-1 rout of strugglers Watford.

Martyn Waghorn's penalty put the Foxes ahead and Paul Gallagher grabbed a stunning second just before the break, but Steve Howard was sent off in stoppage time.

Nigel Pearson's side pulled further clear after the interval with goals from Jay Spearing and James Vaughan before Martin Taylor pulled a goal back for the Hornets late on.

A late strike from Stern John salvaged a point for Crystal Palace to boost their chances of avoiding relegation.

Russell Anderson's first goal for three years looked to have given Derby the three points they needed to ensure they were mathematically safe.

But Palace were a different proposition in the second half and John struck the bar before levelling five minutes from time to move the Eagles two points above third-bottom Sheffield Wednesday, who play Sheffield United on Sunday, with two matches remaining.

Gary Hooper's hat-trick dramatically boosted Scunthorpe's hopes of staying in the Coca-Cola Championship after a 3-0 victory over play-off chasing Bristol City at Glanford Park.

The 22-year-old's inspired performance helped the Iron build a five-point cushion over the relegation zone and ended a run of three successive defeats.

Peterborough have already gone down and suffered a miserable afternoon at the Madejski Stadium as Reading opened up a 4-0 lead by half-time and went on to win 6-0.

Alex Pearce took just three minutes to head in a corner, Gylfi Sigurdsson then scored his 17th of the season from the penalty spot and Jobi McAnuff and Jimmy Kebe also struck before the break.

Shane Long added the fifth on the hour mark before Sigurdsson rounded off the win with his second.

Coventry and Preston drew 1-1 at the Ricoh Arena, North End captain Callum Davidson levelling from the spot after Freddie Eastwood's opener.

Joe Ledley's 80th-minute goal earned Cardiff a 1-0 win at QPR, while Dean Shiels' penalty grabbed a point for Doncaster after Connor Wickham had put Ipswich in front at Portman Road.

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

Topics:
#Peterborough United
#Leicester City
#Ashley Williams
#Doncaster Rovers
#Ipswich Town
#Charlie Adam
#James Vaughan
#Sheffield Wednesday
#Reading
#Darren Pratley
#Watford
#Bristol City
#Football
#Scunthorpe United
#Championship
#Jimmy Kebe
#Shefki Kuqi
#Ashley Williams
#Darren Moore
#Cardiff City
#Joe Garner
#Alex
#Preston North End
#Russell Anderson
#Paul Gallagher
#Derby County
#Steve Howard
#Stern John
#Nottingham Forest
#Joe Ledley
#Martin Taylor
#Everton
#Queens Park Rangers
#Shane Long
#Barnsley
#Martyn Waghorn
#Sheffield United
#Gary Hooper
#Dean Shiels
#Crystal Palace
#Iain Hume
#DJ Campbell
#Jobi McAnuff
#Gylfi Sigurdsson
#Alex Pearce
#Jay Spearing
#Coventry City
#Connor Wickham
#Blackpool
#Callum Davidson
#Swansea City
#Anderson