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Sheffield United midfielder John Fleck had to be taken off on a stretcher in the second half of a 1-0 win at Reading in the English Championship on Tuesday.

The Blades were already ahead through Jayden Bogle’s 56th-minute shot when Fleck went down, seemingly unchallenged, before his concerned team-mates signalled to medical staff to run on to the pitch and treat their stricken colleague.

Fleck, 30, appeared to receive emergency attention before, following a stoppage of some 10 minutes, he was taken off on a stretcher and out of the Madejski Stadium to a waiting ambulance.

“He is in hospital, he is conscious and he asked for the result,” Blades manager Slavisa Jokanovic told reporters after the game when asked about Fleck’s condition.

“Hopefully he we will be okay. He is safe, in good hands and we pray that everything will be okay,” he added.

In other matches, West Brom ended a run of four successive away defeats but still lost ground in the race for automatic promotion to the Premier League with a goalless draw at Blackpool.

And it needed Baggies keeper Sam Johnstone to make a brilliant double save as he denied Gary Madine and Keshi Anderson to preserve a point for the Midlands club, with Matt Clarke almost scoring late on for the visitors.

Only the top two clubs at the end of the regular season are guaranteed promotion and Tuesday’s draw left third-placed West Brom seven points adrift of Bournemouth in second.

Chris Wilder, formerly in charge of Sheffield United, was left waiting for his first win as Middlesbrough manager after Preston came from behind to win 2-1 at the Riverside.

Paddy McNair’s 33rd-minute goal put Boro ahead but Ched Evans equalised in the 77th minute and four minutes later Preston were ahead through Emil Riis Jakobsen.

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Birmingham at least managed a goalless draw at former tenants Coventry, following two straight defeats, despite having Ryan Woods sent off eight minutes from time.

Two-time European champions Nottingham Forest also ended the night down to 10 men after Jack Colback was sent off for two bookable offences in a goalless draw at home to Luton.


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