Leeds United 2 Middlesbrough 1: Losing streak snapped to ease pressure on Christiansen
Leeds United ended a run of four successive defeats in all competitions by beating Middlesbrough 2-1 at Elland Road, easing the mounting pressure on coach Thomas Christiansen.
A defeat to Leicester City in the EFL Cup was followed by three consecutive Championship losses before the visit of former coach Garry Monk, undoing much of the great early season work which had put them top of the league.
But a battling display against Monk's men proved the tonic they required, with Pablo Hernandez sending them on their way in the 24th minute as he stabbed in from close range after Ezgjan Alioski's cross had been flicked on by Kalvin Phillips.
Hernandez played a pivotal role in Leeds' second as well, playing a fine low cross into the danger zone from the left flank for Alioski to provide an easy finish.
A controversial penalty gave Middlesbrough hope late on, with Luke Ayling pulling Daniel Ayala to the floor after previously being thrown down by the Spaniard, but they were unable to add to Britt Assombalonga's 12-yard strike and Leeds held on to move up to seventh, level on 26 points with their visitors.