Barnsley's survival hopes suffered a blow as they were beaten by Leeds to leave them three points from safety.

They have three more games to avoid relegation to League One.

Ross McCormack gave the visitors an early lead after Matt Smith's knock-down found him free inside the area and he fired low past Luke Steele for his 29th goal of the season.

Barnsley never seriously threatened to drag themselves back into this Yorkshire derby.

Home keeper Steele was called into action to keep out a header from Smith and Luke Murphy was the next to threaten for Leeds, as he saw a header blocked.

Leeds defended their lead well during the opening 45 minutes, restricting Barnsley to a solitary effort on goal - a looping header from Dale Jennings that was easily gathered by keeper Jack Butland.

Tomasz Cywka also volleyed wide from a cross from Stephen Dawson.

Early in the second half, another tame Jennings effort was easily saved by Butland and team-mate Kelvin Etuhu then saw his shot blocked before putting the follow-up well wide.

As the visitors began to press forward in search of a second goal, Smith found the target with a header from Tom Lees' free-kick but could only direct it straight at Steele.

For Barnsley, Jennings saw another header saved by Butland and Liam Lawrence put a 25-yard effort over the bar.

But Noel Hunt threatened to find a way through at the other end before being blocked by Jean-Yves M'voto and it was Leeds who looked the likelier scorers in stoppage time - McCormack firing a low drive wide of Steele's left-hand post.

Barnsley manager Danny Wilson: "It wasn't a good result, obviously, and it doesn't make it any easier, but who said it was going to be easy anyway?

"We thought it was going to go right to the wire and I think I'm right. We didn't offer enough quality and I thought the game was poor.

"There were not a lot of chances and there was one bit of quality. Of all the people for it to fall to, it was McCormack and you didn't want it falling to him with the form that he's in at the moment. That was the difference."

Leeds United boss Brian McDermott: "I think it was well deserved.

"I think the game was separated by a bit of real quality. Ross's first touch was fabulous and then a great finish.

"He's a match winner and those players are very, very important. He took the one chance that made the difference. He's right up there as a finisher."

Lineup, Bookings (3) & Substitutions (4)

Barnsley

  • 01 Steele
  • 23 Etuhu Booked (McCourt - 66' )
  • 04 Kennedy
  • 14 Lawrence
  • 22 Mvoto
  • 06 Cranie
  • 27 McLaughlin
  • 08 Dawson (Proschwitz - 76' )
  • 10 O'Grady
  • 19 Cywka
  • 16 Jennings

Substitutes

  • 02 Hassell
  • 05 Nyatanga
  • 09 Proschwitz
  • 11 Woods
  • 21 Mellis
  • 31 Turner
  • 42 McCourt

Leeds United

  • 30 Butland
  • 22 Wootton
  • 15 Warnock
  • 05 Pearce
  • 24 Zaliukas (Hunt - 60' )
  • 04 Lees
  • 06 Murphy Booked
  • 17 Brown Booked
  • 44 McCormack
  • 20 Smith (White - 82' )
  • 18 Tonge

Substitutes

  • 08 Austin
  • 10 Hunt
  • 14 White
  • 16 Pugh
  • 26 Poleon
  • 33 Cairns
  • 36 Mowatt
Ref: David Webb
Att: 15,190

Match Stats

Shots

13 9

On target

3 3

Corners

1 1

Fouls

8 13

Live Text Commentary

Full time

Full Time Match ends, Barnsley 0, Leeds United 1.

90:00 +5:21 Full time

Full Time Second Half ends, Barnsley 0, Leeds United 1.

90:00 +4:56

Foul by Thomas Kennedy (Barnsley).

90:00 +4:56

Aidan White (Leeds United) wins a free kick on the right wing.

90:00 +3:21

Attempt missed. Ross McCormack (Leeds United) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Michael Tonge.

90:00 +2:37

Offside, Leeds United. Scott Wootton tries a through ball, but Ross McCormack is caught offside.

90:00 +1:41

Foul by Liam Lawrence (Barnsley).

90:00 +1:41

Stephen Warnock (Leeds United) wins a free kick on the left wing.

87:54

Attempt missed. Ryan McLaughlin (Barnsley) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left following a set piece situation.

87:15

Liam Lawrence (Barnsley) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

87:15

Foul by Luke Murphy (Leeds United).

81:20 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Leeds United. Aidan White replaces Matt Smith.

78:00

Attempt missed. Liam Lawrence (Barnsley) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Tomasz Cywka.

77:10

Attempt blocked. Matt Smith (Leeds United) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Ross McCormack.

75:21 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Barnsley. Nick Proschwitz replaces Stephen Dawson.

73:19

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

72:30

Delay in match Ross McCormack (Leeds United) because of an injury.

71:24

Tomasz Cywka (Barnsley) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

71:24

Foul by Ross McCormack (Leeds United).

69:53

Hand ball by Stephen Dawson (Barnsley).

68:56

Attempt saved. Dale Jennings (Barnsley) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top right corner. Assisted by Stephen Dawson with a cross.

68:03

Attempt saved. Matt Smith (Leeds United) header from the left side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Tom Lees.

67:37

Foul by Patrick McCourt (Barnsley).

67:37

Luke Murphy (Leeds United) wins a free kick on the right wing.

65:21 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Barnsley. Patrick McCourt replaces Kelvin Etuhu.

63:33

Attempt blocked. Michael Tonge (Leeds United) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

62:51

Attempt missed. Ross McCormack (Leeds United) right footed shot from outside the box is too high.

61:43

Offside, Barnsley. Thomas Kennedy tries a through ball, but Tomasz Cywka is caught offside.

60:01

Corner, Leeds United. Conceded by Thomas Kennedy.

59:16 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Leeds United. Noel Hunt replaces Marius Zaliukas.

58:35

Attempt missed. Kelvin Etuhu (Barnsley) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left.

58:32

Attempt blocked. Kelvin Etuhu (Barnsley) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Stephen Dawson.

55:43

Martin Cranie (Barnsley) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

55:43

Foul by Matt Smith (Leeds United).

55:14

Attempt saved. Dale Jennings (Barnsley) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Chris O'Grady.

53:25

Martin Cranie (Barnsley) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

53:25

Foul by Ross McCormack (Leeds United).

52:27

Offside, Leeds United. Scott Wootton tries a through ball, but Ross McCormack is caught offside.

47:25

Corner, Barnsley. Conceded by Ross McCormack.

46:52 Booking

Booking Luke Murphy (Leeds United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

46:37

Chris O'Grady (Barnsley) wins a free kick on the right wing.

46:37

Foul by Luke Murphy (Leeds United).

45:00

Second Half begins Barnsley 0, Leeds United 1.

45:00 +2:12 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, Barnsley 0, Leeds United 1.

45:00 +1:21

Foul by Stephen Dawson (Barnsley).

45:00 +1:21

Luke Murphy (Leeds United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

44:21

Attempt missed. Tomasz Cywka (Barnsley) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Liam Lawrence.

43:21

Dale Jennings (Barnsley) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

43:21

Foul by Tom Lees (Leeds United).

41:11

Attempt missed. Tomasz Cywka (Barnsley) right footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Stephen Dawson with a cross.

38:06

Attempt blocked. Stephen Dawson (Barnsley) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

36:54

Attempt saved. Dale Jennings (Barnsley) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top left corner. Assisted by Thomas Kennedy with a cross.

35:38

Attempt missed. Liam Lawrence (Barnsley) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Thomas Kennedy.

32:36

Stephen Dawson (Barnsley) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

32:36

Foul by Michael Tonge (Leeds United).

28:06

Foul by Chris O'Grady (Barnsley).

28:06

Ross McCormack (Leeds United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

26:40

Attempt blocked. Tomasz Cywka (Barnsley) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

25:36 Booking

Booking Michael Brown (Leeds United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

25:28

Liam Lawrence (Barnsley) wins a free kick on the right wing.

25:28

Foul by Michael Brown (Leeds United).

22:55

Foul by Liam Lawrence (Barnsley).

22:55

Matt Smith (Leeds United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

19:44

Liam Lawrence (Barnsley) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

19:44

Foul by Michael Tonge (Leeds United).

19:10

Liam Lawrence (Barnsley) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

19:10

Foul by Michael Tonge (Leeds United).

18:15 Booking

Booking Kelvin Etuhu (Barnsley) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

18:08

Foul by Kelvin Etuhu (Barnsley).

18:08

Michael Tonge (Leeds United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

16:49

Liam Lawrence (Barnsley) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

16:49

Foul by Matt Smith (Leeds United).

15:40 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Barnsley 0, Leeds United 1. Ross McCormack (Leeds United) left footed shot from the left side of the box to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Matt Smith with a headed pass.

13:46

Ryan McLaughlin (Barnsley) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

13:46

Foul by Jason Pearce (Leeds United).

11:13

Attempt blocked. Luke Murphy (Leeds United) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Ross McCormack with a cross.

7:31

Attempt saved. Matt Smith (Leeds United) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top left corner. Assisted by Michael Tonge with a cross.

6:21

Attempt missed. Dale Jennings (Barnsley) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Liam Lawrence following a set piece situation.

5:31

Tomasz Cywka (Barnsley) wins a free kick on the left wing.

5:31

Foul by Tom Lees (Leeds United).

2:01

Attempt missed. Luke Murphy (Leeds United) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right.

1:19

Offside, Barnsley. Liam Lawrence tries a through ball, but Ryan McLaughlin is caught offside.

1:09

Offside, Leeds United. Luke Murphy tries a through ball, but Ross McCormack is caught offside.

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

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