Sheffield United maintained their spot in the Championship play-off places on a busy St. Stephen’s Day.
The Blades went in front against Derby five minutes before half-time through Billy Sharp.
On-loan Liverpool winger Harry Wilson equalised early in the second half with a fine free-kick before Ireland’s David McGoldrick put the home side back in front again in the 64th minute.
Substitute Leon Clarke headed a late third for Sheffield United, who moved up from sixth to fourth, ten points behind leaders Leeds United.
Aston Villa won 1-0 at Swansea courtesy of Conor Hourihane.
The midfielder’s goal in the 65th minute proved decisive after Swansea substitute Wilfried Bony saw a stoppage-time penalty saved for the hosts.
— AVFC Goals (@avfcgoals) December 26, 2018
However, Alan Browne of Preston was on the receiving end of a defeat by Hull City despite his best efforts.
The ex-Cork City star cancelled out Jackson Irvine’s opener with a superb goal of his own just after the restart, but Irvine added a second late on, condemning Preston to a second loss in a row.
Another home game, another banger from Alan Browne.
That's 8 league goals for the season now, all of them scored at Deepdale.
Is there any championship player in his position better than him at the moment? pic.twitter.com/nz4UP0rfT3
— North End Report (@northendreport) December 26, 2018
Elsewhere, Leeds snatched a remarkable 3-2 win over Blackburn thanks to two late goals, while promotion rivals Norwich escaped with a dramatic 3-3 draw against Nottingham Forest.
At Elland Road, Leeds took the lead through Blackburn defender Derrick Williams’ first half own goal. Blackburn equalised at the start of the second half from Charlie Mulgrew’s penalty. Mulgrew looked to have won it with a free-kick in the 89th minute, but Kemar Roofe equalised in stoppage time.
And Roofe struck again in the fourth minute of additional time to send Elland Road wild as Leeds moved three points clear at the top.
Second placed Norwich are Leeds’ nearest challengers in the race for promotion to the Premier League.
© Agence France-Presse (additional edits from Chris Kelleher)