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Football | English Championship

Lee Chung-Yong © Action Images

Freedman salutes Lee's goal



Bolton manager Dougie Freedman saluted Lee Chung-Yong after the South Korea midfielder scored a stunning strike to inspire his Championship side's 3-1 win over Birmingham.

Freedman's side trailed to Nikola Zigic's early goal at the Reebok Stadium on Saturday, but Marcus Alonso equalised for the hosts before Lee scored one of the goals of the season with a superb run through the Birmingham defence followed by a fine finish.

Keith Andrews netted a penalty in the second half after Birmingham captain Steven Caldwell was ruled to have handled, but it was Lee's effort that caught Freedman's eye.

The 24-year-old missed virtually all of last season with a broken leg, but he is showing signs of returning to peak form.

"It was a wonderful goal from a wonderful player and he deserves all the credit he gets because he had a horrible injury and he's worked so hard to get back from it," Freedman said.

Lee added: "It's a long time since I scored at the Reebok Stadium because of my injury. When I score here it makes me very happy."

Huddersfield manager Simon Grayson admitted he was stunned by referee Mick Russell's blunder in the 0-0 draw with Sheffield Wednesday.

Russell made a glaring error midway through the first half when he failed to send off Sheffield Wednesday midfielder Jeremy Helan for a second yellow-card offence.

Helan, on loan from Manchester City, was booked by Russell for a 26th-minute foul on Huddersfield winger Adam Hammill, having already been shown a yellow card for diving in the penalty area in the ninth minute.

But despite animated reminders from Huddersfield players and the home bench, Russell restarted play with Helan still on the pitch.

"As we came off the pitch he came to me to apologise for the error he made," Grayson said.

"I think he's probably written the wrong number down in his book, which is staggering and I also think he should have been helped by his officials, who should be overruling because they all know, when a referee makes a mistake like that, who he's booking."

Cardiff assistant manager David Kerslake was delighted with Rudy Gestede after the French striker maintained the Welsh club's five-point lead at the top with the decisive goal in a 1-0 home win against Millwall.

Gestede scored his second goal of the season on his first start of the campaign in the eighth minute.

"Rudy is an outstanding professional. He came in, took his chance and will play a major part in what we are trying to achieve this year. He is a huge option for us," Kerslake said.

Hull manager Steve Bruce hailed his second placed side after they beat Leeds 2-0 at the KC Stadium.

The Tigers have taken 16 points from 18 in December and they remain one point clear of third placed Middlesbrough in the race for automatic promotion.

"It's been a huge month for us. Six games, won five, drawn one. I couldn't have wished for a better return," Bruce said.

Elsewhere, Middlesbrough defeated Blackpool 4-2, fifth placed Leicester enjoyed a 1-0 win at Burnley and Ipswich won 2-0 at Wolves.

Barnsley sacked boss Keith Hill after a 3-1 home defeat against managerless Blackburn, while Nottingham Forest's new manager Alex McLeish had to settle for a 2-2 draw against Crystal Palace.

Watford won 3-1 at Brighton, Bristol City beat fellow strugglers Peterborough 4-2 and Charlton drew 1-1 with Derby.

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