Preston’s fine start to the Sky Bet Championship continued with their fifth straight win of the season after beating Plymouth Argyle 2-1.
Duane Holmes was straight out the blocks for the Lilywhites, scoring in the first minute, with Liam Millar doubling their lead going into the break and Ryan Hardie pulled one back for the Pilgrims, but three points sees Ryan Lowe’s side leapfrog Leicester to go top of the table.
Ipswich stay third after securing back-to-back league victories with Conor Chaplin’s strike the difference against Sheffield Wednesday, who are still without a win this season, while Norwich sit fourth thanks to Jack Stacey’s goal which saw the Canaries beat Stoke 1-0.
Sunderland also made it two successive league victories after coming from behind to beat 10-man QPR 3-1.
Kenneth Paal put the hosts ahead, but were soon reduced to 10 men when Jack Colback was dismissed with a straight red card and Jack Clarke levelled the score going into half-time.
Dan Ballard then gave Sunderland the lead in the second half before Abdoullah Ba put the game to bed in the 81st minute, leaving the Black Cats tied on 10 points with Blackburn, who piled more misery on Middlesbrough with a 2-1 win.
Sammie Szmodics’ double either side of half-time gave Blackburn the advantage with Matt Crooks scoring a consolation for Boro, who remain rock bottom of the table.
Late drama at Vicarage Road saw Watford overcome Birmingham, sparked by the visitors being reduced to 10 in the 88th minute.
After Lee Buchanan was dismissed with a second yellow card, Mileta Rajovic and Ryan Andrews were able to take advantage with late goals for the Hornets, who move into 11th.
Huddersfield earned back-to-back victories after goals from Josh Koroma and Sorba Thomas earned a win against Rotherham, while Bristol City‘s clash with West Brom finished goalless.
Leicester beat Southampton 4-1 and Hull drew 1-1 with Coventry on Friday night, with Cardiff hosting Swansea in Saturday’s late game.
Sky Bet League One
Exeter claimed top spot in Sky Bet League One as Caleb Watts marked his debut with a second-half winner against struggling Cheltenham.
Watts settled a tight game at St James Park with the only goal after 68 minutes, lifting the Grecians to the summit on goal difference from Port Vale as Stevenage were held 1-1 by Charlton. Cheltenham, meanwhile, are still awaiting their first victory of the campaign.
Port Vale moved into second as they earned a tight 1-0 win of their own against Northampton, courtesy of an 84th-minute strike from Ben Garrity.
Oxford are just a point behind in third after crushing bottom side Fleetwood 3-0 with goals from Stanley Mills, Billy Bodin and Kyle Edwards.
Stevenage, having looked set to end the day top, slipped to fourth after being pegged back by a late Charlton equaliser.
Jamie Reid had put them ahead after 34 minutes but an injury-time penalty from Corey Blackett-Taylor meant honours ended even.
Bolton lost ground as they conceded twice late on to lose 2-1 at troubled Reading.
Dion Charles put the Trotters ahead but Reading, who have now had four points docked this season after a second deduction this week, responded through Charlie Savage and substitute Caylon Vickers in the final 13 minutes.
Portsmouth extended their club record unbeaten run to 18 games thanks to a last-minute Colby Bishop goal.
An 86th-minute James Collins penalty had looked like winning it for Derby but the game ended 1-1.
Elsewhere, Barnsley beat Burton 2-0, Lincoln and Carlisle drew 1-1, as did Peterborough and Leyton Orient.
Bristol Rovers won 2-0 at Shrewsbury, Wigan beat Cambridge 2-1 and Wycombe saw off Blackpool 2-0.
Sky Bet League Two
Gillingham moved top of League Two with a 2-1 win over 10-man Morecambe at Priestfield.
Connor Mahoney scored what proved the winner after 23 minutes after the Shrimps’ Michael Mellon had cancelled out George Lapslie’s opener. Mellon was sent off for a second bookable offence 14 minutes from time.
Unbeaten Swindon sit third after a 2-0 win over Walsall. Charlie Austin opened the scoring after just two minutes at the County Ground and Rushian Hepburn-Murphy made victory secure late on after Walsall had Tom Knowles dismissed.
Wrexham continued their strong start to life back in the league with a convincing 3-0 win over Grimsby at the Racecourse. Ollie Palmer, Will Boyle and Elliot Lee were on target.
At the opposite end of the table, Doncaster moved off the bottom as they claimed their first win of the campaign with a last-gasp 2-1 success at Forest Green.
Ben Close claimed the winner in injury time after Jordan Moore-Taylor had equalised for Rovers in the 84th minute.
Sutton fell to the bottom as they suffered their seventh successive league defeat, losing 4-1 at Accrington, for whom Tommy Leigh scored twice.
Tranmere were beaten 3-2 in a dramatic finish at Crawley in their first match since sacking Ian Dawes as manager and appointing Nigel Adkins as interim boss. Klaidi Lolos scored Crawley’s winner deep into injury time.