LEEDS United moved into the Championship play-off positions with a scrappy 1-0 win against struggling Queens Park Rangers at Elland Road on Wednesday night.

The Whites were deserved winners but made hard work of it after failing to find a second goal to ease the tension among the home fans.

Leeds manager Daniel Farke recognised the importance of bouncing back with a win after losing 3-1 at Southampton in the previous game.

He said: “I’m really happy and really pleased and I told the lads in the dressing room that today I’m really proud.

“When the confidence level is not there like it was before, to grind out a result is never champagne or football fireworks, it’s always hard work.

"To bring this tight lead over the line and be there again with a clean sheet and answer a disappointing loss with a win is fantastic.”

Leeds produced a dominant first-half display against the Hoops which should have furnished more than Crysensio Summerville’s smartly taken ninth-minute strike.

Good work by Sam Byram sent the lively Georginio Rutter speeding down the left and his excellent pass took out the entire QPR defence for Summerville to tuck the ball past Asmir Begovic.

Leeds continued to force the issue with Joe Rodon missing with a diving header and Summerville having a goal-bound effort blocked.

Rangers asked very few questions of the Leeds defence but added more physicality to their game in the second-half, successfully breaking up United’s fluency.

It took until 66 minutes for the West London side to have a shot on goal, Ilias Chair’s 25-yarder safely gathered by Illan Meslier.

Although the game developed into a dogfight, substitute Patrick Bamford gave Leeds ore impetus as he replaced the disappointing Joel Piroe. His low angled drive drew a good save from Begovic who then tipped a deflected Dan James effort over the bar before Pascal Struijk somehow missed from close range.

Leeds’ failure to kill the game off almost cost them as Meslier’s chest saved a point-blank jab from Lyndon Dykes with three minutes remaining.

In stoppage time Bamford went racing through and appeared to be brought down outside the box by Begovic who was red-carded by referee David Webb. Subsequent replays showed there had been no contact on Bamford by the goalkeeper.

Having used all their substitutes Rangers finished the remaining few minutes with ten men, big striker Dykes donning the ‘keeper’s jersey.

According to QPR manager Gareth Ainsworth both players involved in the incident were agreed Begovic should not have been dismissed.

He said: “I’ve had verification from both players there was no contact. Patrick is a great lad, he’s jumped out of the way and the referee thought he caught him. Hopefully we may be able to get one overturned.”

Former Leeds player York-born Niall Huggins scored his first senior goal in Sunderland’s 2-0 win over Watford to move the Black Cats into fourth, two places ahead of Leeds who entertain Bristol City on Saturday.