Ipswich Town missed the chance to move into an automatic promotion spot as play-off-chasing Hull City came from behind three times in a thrilling 3-3 Championship draw at The MKM Stadium.

Ipswich knew a victory would take them second after Leeds United were surprisingly beaten 4-0 by Queens Park Rangers on Friday, and they led on three separate occasions, George Hirst opening the scoring before Omari Hutchinson produced two brilliant strikes from the edge of the area.

However, buoyed by slip-ups from rivals Norwich City and West Brom earlier on Saturday, Hull dug deep to fight back on each occasion, Ozan Tufan and Liam Delap scoring their first two equalisers.

With Liam Rosenior's men 3-2 down with just four minutes to play, substitute Noah Ohio blasted his shot in off the crossbar to punish an error from Ipswich goalkeeper Vaclav Hladky.

The result keeps Ipswich behind second-placed Leeds on goal difference, though the Tractor Boys have a game in hand to come at Coventry City on Tuesday.

Hull, meanwhile, are two points adrift of the top six, with Norwich's goal difference advantage meaning their top-six spot is all but assured. The Tigers will, however, leapfrog West Brom if they beat Plymouth Argyle on the final day and Albion lose to Preston North End. 

Data Debrief: Hutchinson's best not enough

Hutchinson was a man who deserved to be on the winning side on Saturday, giving Ryan Allsop no chance with two near-identical left-footed strikes from the right corner of the penalty area.

His goals came from an expected goals (xG) total of just 0.6, and he led all players on the pitch for shots (eight) and passes in the final third (21), also laying on three chances for his team-mates.

Hull boss Liam Rosenior saw Daniel Bachmann dent the Tigers’ play-off hopes – then heaped praise on the Watford keeper after the 0-0 draw at Vicarage Road.

Bachmann saved Ozan Tufan’s 11th-minute penalty to rob City of vital points in their push for the top six.

Rosenior spared Tufan any criticism for the miss, insisting Bachmann deserved all the credit for keeping City at bay.

The manager said: “Their keeper was magnificent. You just have to hold your hands up. There was the penalty stop and three or four other world-class saves.

“But no blame on Ozan. He’s been brilliant all season. He’s brave and he will take the next penalty.

“I was pleased with the response of the whole group after that. We never gave up until the final whistle. I can’t fault this group – I’m so proud of them.

“The players worked themselves into the ground and never gave up. They’re a credit to this club and a credit to the shirt.”

Hull continue their quest for the top six on Wednesday away to FA Cup semi-finalists Coventry.

They lie six points behind sixth-placed Norwich having played a game less and Rosenior added: “Norwich dropped points today and they will be as flat as we are.”

Turkish forward Tufan, rejected by Watford in 2022 after a loan spell, faced a barrage of abuse as he prepared to take the kick in front of the home end.

Watford’s defenders also encroached as they complained that the ball was not on the spot.

But Austrian stopper Bachmann remained calm and dived low to his left to save.

Watford interim boss Tom Cleverley, beaten just once in his seven games in charge, restored Bachmann to the team when he took over last month.

He said: “I don’t know how much homework has gone into that or whether Dan dived into the archives of penalties against us, but it was a fantastic save.

“He showed his real worth today. I knew his worth from playing alongside him for all those years – not only on the pitch but in the dressing room.

“He’s massive for me. He’s come in for some unfair criticism but we have full belief in him and we know how important he is to the squad.”

But Cleverley was not happy with a Watford performance that saw the Hornets fail to get a shot on target in the first 60 minutes.

They have not won at home in the league since November 28 – 12 matches – and Cleverley said: “We were flat for an hour. We need to make things happen, not wait for them to happen.

“I must change the mentality. From the first minute we must grab the game by the scruff of the neck.

“But we’ve played five of the top seven and we’ve made them all work hard to get points off us.”

Ozan Tufan’s penalty blunder left Hull facing a mammoth task to make the play-offs after a 0-0 draw at Watford.

Home keeper Daniel Bachmann saved the Turkish forward’s spot-kick in the 11th minute of a lacklustre match and now the Tigers, who have three games to play, are six points off the top six.

Hull had started the day desperate for points to keep in touch with the promotion pack.

Fifth-placed West Brom’s defeat at Leicester in the lunchtime kick-off gave the Tigers an extra incentive and they looked full of purpose at the start.

Watford were given a taste of what to expect when Matty Jacob’s well-flighted pass to Jaden Philogene completely took out right-back Ryan Andrews. Unfortunately for Philogene, his cross was easily gathered by Bachmann.

Soon after, Philogene earned a talking-to from referee Ben Toner for bundling over Hornets defender Ryan Porteous in the Watford penalty area.

Then Hull were were presented with a golden opportunity – and wasted it.

Abdulkadir Omur and Tufan combined to send Fabio Carvalho racing into the box from the left, where Wesley Hoedt brought him down.

Tufan, once rejected after a trial at Watford, stepped up to take the spot-kick in front of the home end and was taunted by the Hornets supporters.

That might have unnerved him – or it could have been Watford’s defenders agitating because the ball was not on the penalty spot – but Bachmann guessed correctly, diving to his left to keep out the kick to the joy of the home fans.

Predictably, that fired up Watford, with Yaser Asprilla and Emmanuel Dennis trying their luck.

But the visitors always looked more dangerous in the final third, and Bachmann rescued the Hornets again midway through the first half. Tufan came close to redeeming himself with a close-range backheel but Austrian stopper Bachmann somehow got down to the foot of his right-hand post in time to keep it out.

Watford, chasing their first home win since November 28 – this was their 12th attempt – just could not match Hull’s attacking menace and the home side reached the break without a shot on target.

Tufan did finally manage to get the ball into the net in the 52nd minute only to be foiled by a late offside flag.

Andrews’ shot on the hour whistled wide of the post – meaning Watford still had not troubled Tigers keeper Ryan Allsop.

Finally, in the 64rd minute, Allsop had a save to make – but it was so easy from Ismael Kone’s soft, low shot.

Watford looked woefully short of ideas, and soon after, Vakoun Bayo’s attempt to score with a header almost hit a corner flag.

Substitute Mileta Rajovic livened up Watford after coming on in the 72nd minute, winning a free-kick after being bundled over by Alfie Jones and forcing a flying save from Allsop with a 25-yard free-kick.

Hull sub Liam Delap matched that with a shot across the box that flashed just wide of the far post.

Then, with six minutes of normal time left, Bachmann made a crucial save from a Carvalho free-kick.

Manager Marti Cifuentes called for cool heads after QPR suffered a damaging 3-0 defeat at Hull.

Rangers are three points clear of the Sky Bet Championship relegation zone and were outclassed by the Tigers, who still have a slim chance of making the play-offs.

Goals from Ozan Tufan and Fabio Carvalho earned Hull a deserved lead at the break, after which Jaden Philogene added gloss to the scoreline in the second half.

Cifuentes said: “I was really disappointed with the result. We played against a very good team and they showed their quality after we made a good start to the game.

“I am now not thinking about the narrative of this game – now it is time to move on.

“Now is the time to stay calm. We have three games to go – two of them at home – so it is up to us.

“I have been saying it (safety) could be (decided) until the last minute of the season.

“Five months ago, perhaps even one month ago, we could only dream (to be 19th in the table).

“People thought this would be a walk in the park but that is not the case.

“It’s up to us. We need to remain together and keep pushing.”

QPR’s away form has been strong since Cifuentes arrived at the club, but they were unable to match Hull’s tempo from the outset.

Tufan’s brilliant strike from distance after eight minutes set the tone of a one-sided game.

The Turkey international’s smart assist after then allowed Carvalho the chance to convert a smart one-on-one – and essentially put the game out of sight after 27 minutes.

Rangers improved marginally after the restart but they could never lay a glove on the hosts and conceded a third when Philogene executed a perfect half-volley from the left of the penalty area.

Cifuentes said: “The main difference was that, in some moments, they were better than us in front of goal.

“We have three games to go, and we have to keep working.

“Despite creating a lot of chances, we are not scoring and, instead, we are getting punished because of small mistakes.

“The guys have showed a big development in the last four months.

“I see a team still competing and not giving up, even when we were 3-0 down.

“We now have an important game against Preston next Saturday and it is time to move on.”

Hull’s home form has been the big issue this season – they have won just eight times at the MKM Stadium – but they are six points adrift of sixth-placed Norwich with a game in hand.

Head coach Liam Rosenior said: “Our performance level was not dissimilar to Middlesbrough (a 1-1 draw on Wednesday).

“But the difference was in both boxes. We were clinical and ruthless and the players showed their quality.

“We dominated the game, controlled the game – some of our football was excellent.

“That’s what I’ve been working so hard to do since I re-joined the cub.

“We were very, very good. If we play at the level for the next four games we are going to be a very, very difficult side to play against.”

Rosenior added: “Some of our interlinking play now is a joy to watch.

“The players I have in the attacking positions are in form and that needs to continue.

“There are still things to iron out – we still need things to improve – but we’ve got to win the next game.

“That’s all we are focussed on doing. We’re in a good place. We have to focus on what we can do.

“We just need to make sure that if there are any slip-ups, we are there to pounce.”

Hull kept alive their faint chances of reaching the Sky Bet Championship play-offs with a 3-0 win over QPR, who remain in deep relegation trouble.

Ozan Tufan’s wonderful solo effort from 20 yards and Fabio Carvalho’s cool one-on-one finish put the Tigers in control at the break.

Jaden Philogene then put the seal on a dominating home performance with a sweet half-volley after 52 minutes.

Hull, who were claiming just an eighth home victory of the season, are six points adrift of sixth-place Norwich – but with a game in hand.

QPR also have work to do, but for far differing reasons as they are now two points clear of the relegation zone.

With just one away league defeat since December 29, it was unsurprising that Marti Cifuentes’ men were quickly into the stride against a Hull side who have this season been hamstrung by their form at the MKM Stadium.

The visitors’ early vigour was, however, soon curtained when Tufan scored after eight minutes.

The Turkey international was firstly given too much space by Jimmy Dunne near the left-hand corner of the penalty area.

Dunne also seemed complacent to the danger when Tufan cut inside before striking fiercely with his right boot.

The ball screwed over the head of Asmir Begovic, battered the underside of the crossbar and landed into the top-right corner of the net.

QPR looked shell-shocked and never recovered.

And they might have gone further behind soon afterwards had Philogene and Carvalho not been guilty of poor decision-making in good areas.

Carvalho, though, impressively made amends after 27 minutes with a lovely second goal.

Tufan again played a key role with a cute first-time pass around the corner that outfoxed centre-backs Steve Cook and Jake Clarke-Salter.

Carvalho controlled beautifully and never looked like missing from the edge of the penalty box once Begovic came rushing too far off his line.

QPR brought on Reggie Cannon and Paul Smyth at the break, and the double substitution nearly yielded immediate dividends when the latter somehow headed wide Illias Chair’s cross from close range.

But Rangers’ slim hopes of getting back into the game sailed into the River Humber when Philogene scored another excellent goal once Tufan’s free-kick was partially headed clear by Sam Field.

The former Aston Villa winger, 10 yards out toward the left of box, showed laudable composure to cushion a textbook half-volley into the right of the goal.

QPR might have added a consolation soon afterwards when Jacob Graves cleared off Hull’s line after Chair waltzed past two defends and goalkeeper Ryan Allsop.

Yet that was as good as it got for Rangers, who will need to improve markedly to avoid a nervous end to the season.

Hull, who nearly scored a fourth when substitute Liam Delap’s 76th-minute lob was headed off the line by Cannon, could also be set for a dramatic finish to the campaign on this evidence.

Mark Venus hopes Birmingham’s 1-1 draw at play-off-chasing Hull can act as “a springboard” in their battle against relegation.

Substitute Lukas Jutkiewicz’s late header cancelled out Ozan Tufan’s first-half goal to move Blues one point clear of the Sky Bet Championship drop zone.

Venus, still assisting for the unwell Tony Mowbray, said: “Hull are a very good team and they are, of course, not in the top six after 35 games for no good reason.

“But we stuck at it and kept going, which was great to see.

“They obviously had a lot of possession, which we expected, but we also caused them a few problems and I felt we deserved a point in the end.

“This now has to be a springboard for the rest of the season.”

Birmingham looked in big trouble when Tufan scored at the back post on 25 minutes after Fabio Carvalho’s corner was flicked on by Jacob Greaves.

Tufan’s final touch appeared to come off his left hand but the goal was given.

The Turkey international nearly doubled Hull’s lead after 40 minutes when his strike from distance was expertly pawed on to the left post by John Ruddy.

The hosts dominated for most of the second half, but they were obsessed by trying to score a perfect second goal when a more direct approach could have put the game out of sight.

And they were punished after 82 minutes when substitute Alex Pritchard sent over a lovely cross that was powerfully headed home by Jutkiewicz.

Venus said: “It (Tuzan’s goal) looks handball to me, but maybe the officials were not in a position to give it.

“I just feel, at the moment, that things are going a little bit against us in terms of decisions, but hopefully we can get a few more in our favour going forwards for the rest of the season.

“We’ve had some really tough fixtures that have stretched us to the limit so to come here and get something, in a game that teams in Hull’s position usually win, was great.

“We have to build on this now and move forwards, but we need everybody with us as we’ve got a big task ahead.”

Hull are unbeaten in six and remain in the play-offs, but head coach Liam Rosenior was unhappy that his players could not convert their superiority into more goals.

He said: “Some of the control, some of the areas we get into and the dominance – and we come away with a point? I’m very angry and frustrated.

“I keep saying the same things, but this has to be the last time I say them.

“We have to be more ruthless and we have to take advantage of our dominance.

“They didn’t have a sniff and we’ve just thrown away another two points – when Jutkiewicz came on we should have been 3-0 up.

The reason we play this way is to score, dominate and take the game away from the opposition – we have to grow up and understand where we are.”

Rosenior added: “The one-touch stuff is great but we’re here to score goals.

“This is on me – I’d never criticise individuals –but for us to get to where we want to be we have to all take responsibility.

“I’d say 95 per cent of our performance was magnificent but we didn’t finish it off and that’s the bit that makes the different in football.

“I love this group, but time is going to pass us by if we don’t learn lessons.

“Everyone can see the potential of this team, but we have turn the potential into reality.”

Birmingham secured an important point in their battle against relegation with a hard-earned 1-1 draw at play-off contenders Hull.

Ozan Tufan looked to have consigned Blues to a 13th away defeat when he headed home in the first half.

But Hull, still in the Sky Bet Championship play-offs and now unbeaten in six, were sloppy in front of goal and could not score the second which their dominance arguably warranted.

They were punished after 82 minutes through Lukas Jutkiewicz’s firm header which moved Birmingham, still without unwell manager Tony Mowbray, a point above the drop zone.

With the visitors clearly short of confidence – only Rotherham have a weaker Championship away record – Liam Rosenior’s men were, unsurprisingly, keen to seize control early on.

Fabio Carvalho’s smart hit was sharply deflected for a corner by Emanuel Aiwu, after which Jean Michael Seri warmed John Ruddy’s palms from distance on seven minutes.

But just when it felt like Hull would kick on, Birmingham came desperately close to opening the scoring just 60 seconds later.

Junior Bacuna too easily beat Ryan Giles on the right before crossing hard and low towards the near post.

Hull centre-back Jacob Greaves looked to have snubbed out the threat, but his sliding defensive block skewed inches wide of the right post.

The hosts were fleetingly knocked off their stride following that let-off, but they always looked a threat in possession and gradually retained a strong foothold into the game.

Mark Venus, however, will still have been most disappointed by the manner in which Blues conceded after 25 minutes.

Abdulkadir Omur’s fierce corner was flicked on by Greaves towards the far post, but Tufan was still given too much space to head home.

Turkey international Tufan came close to adding a second after 40 minutes when he let rip from the edge of penalty area following good work from Jaden Philogene.

The ball bounced awkwardly but Ruddy did brilliantly to palm the ball onto the base of the left post, with Carvalho a stud’s length away from scoring on the follow-up.

Hull largely bossed proceedings after the restart, but they were often guilty of overcomplicated build-up play when a direct approach would have been more beneficial.

No better was this illustrated than after 73 minutes when Philogene cashed in on a defensive mix-up but tried to score the perfect goal when a simple strike would have had Ruddy in big trouble.

But with Hull goalkeeper Ryan Allsop a virtual bystander, few inside the MKM Stadium would have bet against a home win.

That was until substitute Alex Pritchard whipped over a teasing cross from the right, with Jutkiewicz heading home from close range to earn Birmingham what could prove to be a huge point.

Liam Rosenior believes Ozan Tufan is reaping the rewards his efforts deserve after his hat-trick helped Hull to a 4-2 Championship comeback win at home to Sheffield Wednesday.

The Turkey international was at times unplayable, with his performance – some could say – emblematic of the difference in quality between the two Yorkshire sides.

Rosenior said: “It (the hat-trick) was better than good. He deserves it and I’m so happy for him.

“The reason the quality is there is because the fitness is now there – that sums up his attitude.

“He is working so hard. He’s pressing so hard from the front along with Liam (Delap). And when you work so hard in life, you get the rewards.”

Wednesday were poor, but they somehow took the lead after 36 minutes when Juan Delgado capitalised upon Dominic Iorfa’s low cross via a deflection.

Hully equalised in first-half injury time when Lee Gregory elbowed Jacob Greaves inside the box and – from the resulting spot-kick – Tufan scored an unstoppable penalty.

The Turkey international then stole the show after the interval by firstly scoring a wonderful second from the edge of the penalty area after 58 minutes.

With Wednesday out of ideas and fatigued, Tufan put the game out of sight with a similarly-precise finish with the inside of his right foot.

Substitute Aaron Connolly made it 4-1 after he passed the ball into an open net following Michael Ihiekwe’s poor back-pass.

And though Wednesday substitute Michael Smith added a touch of respectability to the scoreline in stoppage time, Owls fans may have few qualms with the result.

Rosenior: “I’ve got to give the players all the credit in the world – they were fantastic from start to finish.

“They responded brilliantly (from the opening goal) and also by how I want to build as a club.

“In my opinion, it was complete domination from start to finish. That was not a 4-2 win. We should not have conceded a second and it should have been more.

“If you look at us now, we are much fitter and more front-footed as a team.

“We must stay consistent and keep working but there are some really, really positive signs.”

Wednesday have now lost their first two games since gaining promotion from League One.

Manager Xisco Munoz said: “The second half we were very far away from what I want.

“I didn’t see the balance for a consistent performance, but the situation right now is to control emotions.

“We need to control the moments and we need to improve with duels – both in offence and defence.

“We needed to improve on many things, but every day we get better and better and get closer, but we need to find a solution.

“We need to improve about clean sheets and defensive situations, but this is my job. They called me for this situation, and I will give 100 per cent.

“It is my responsibility. The players gave everything, but we now have to improve our tactics and our fitness.”

Munoz, who ironically signed Tufan when in charge at Watford two years ago, added: “We need the balance – this is the situation.

“The first half was closer to the performance we want, but we didn’t do it in the second half.

“The intensity in the second half was the difference. This is one of the situations we need to improve.

“This team has more capacity for attacking, but we need to work very hard about the balance, with more time on the ball and playing higher.

“We need to understand better about what the Championship demands.”

Ozan Tufan’s hat-trick inspired Hull to a 4-2 comeback victory against Sheffield Wednesday, who remain pointless in the Sky Bet Championship.

The newly-promoted Owls looked in good shape when Juan Delgado struck after 26 minutes.

But the Tigers dominated for long spells of this Yorkshire derby and equalised in first-half injury-time through Tufan’s well-taken penalty.

Hull also showed the greater endeavour after the restart and scored a second goal their efforts warranted when Tufan let fly with a beauty.

The Turkey international added a third when he scored in similar fashion from just inside the penalty box after 70 minutes.

Substitute Aaron Connolly then added gloss to the scoreline when he capitalised upon a terrible defensive mix-up late in the game.

Michael Smith scored a consolation for Wednesday in stoppage time, but it failed to mask the visitors’ clear deficiencies following their promotion from League One.

In keeping with most of the match, Liam Rosenior’s team controlled possession during a tactical first half.

Indeed, Barry Bannon nearly gifted the hosts an opening goal after nine minutes when he uncharacteristically lost possession to Regan Slater in a central area.

Slater charged into the penalty area, but the Wednesday captain made amends with a fine sliding challenge as the Hull midfielder was about to shoot.

The visitors might have lacked enterprise, but, as the first half wore on, Xisco Munoz’s men grew in stature – especially on the break.

And after having sensed a weakness on Hull’s left, Wednesday pounced when Dominic Iorfa flighted a neat, low cross towards the near post.

Delgado reacted quickly with a sharp effort that took a significant deflection.

Hull responded purposefully and might have equalised when defender Bambo Diaby deflected Liam Delap’s flick on to the right post.

Yet parity was restored when Jason Lokilo easily defeated Callum Paterson on the left before crossing the ball towards the back post.

Jacob Greaves rose the highest but a poorly-positioned Lee Gregory elbowed the Hull defender in the head.

Referee Matt Donohue awarded a just penalty – with Greaves needing treatment for a bloodied right eye – and Tufan scored from the spot.

The game seemed to have passed him by until then, but Tufan was inspired thereafter.

He was admittedly given too much time on the ball after 58 minutes, but the strike with his right foot was perfect.

The visiting fans must have expected a response, but it did not arrive.

And they were further punished after 70 minutes when Tufan artfully threaded a low ball into the bottom-right corner of the net.

Tufan was unplayable at times, but Wednesday should offer no excuses for Hull’s fourth.

Michael Ihiekwe’s atrocious back-pass left goalkeeper Devis Vasquez stranded. Connolly could not miss.

Smith side-footed a second for the Owls, a mere consolation as they went home pointless.

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