Sheffield United 1, Bristol City 2: Late heartbreak for Blades after hitting woodwork FOUR times and having Fleck sent off

Frustration for Billy Sharp
Frustration for Billy Sharp
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Aden Flint snatched a stoppage-time winner for Bristol City as they claimed a dramatic 2-1 victory at promotion rivals Sheffield United, who hit the woodwork a remarkable four times.

The Robins, who closed the gap on second-placed Cardiff to three points, took the lead towards the end of a first half dominated by the home side, with Jamie Paterson letting fly with a stunning strike from distance.

Leon Clarke levelled early in the second half with his 14th goal of the season, before the Blades were reduced to 10 men when John Fleck was sent off with just over half an hour remaining.

Defender Flint popped up in the box to grab a late winner for the visitors and condemn United to a fourth game without a win.

Sheffield United were appealing for a penalty in only the second minute following Josh Brownhill's robust challenge on Mark Duffy, but referee David Coote was unmoved.

Brownhill was then involved at the other end of the pitch, firing a shot on target from the edge of the area which was comfortably saved by Simon Moore.

Duffy had a fierce shot saved by Frank Fielding at his near post before going close again when his free-kick from wide on the left crashed against the goalkeeper's left-hand post. When the ball was played back in, Clarke headed over.

As the hosts continued to dominate, Billy Sharp twice threatened to score a breakthrough goal.

After being played in by Clarke, Sharp's effort hit the top of the crossbar and the striker then saw Fielding produce a superb save, turning his header onto the bar from Fleck's corner.

The visitors took the lead against the run of play in the 43rd minute when Brownhill laid the ball off to Paterson and he fired past Moore and into the top corner from the edge of the area.

Clarke equalised just three minutes after the break, beating Fielding with an equally good effort following a good run into the area.

Duffy hit a post again with a shot and Sharp's follow-up effort struck Nathan Baker in the face.

United were reduced to 10 men in the 59th minute when Fleck was dismissed following a reckless challenge on Korey Smith. After receiving treatment, Smith was helped off the pitch and replaced by Matt Taylor.

As the hosts regrouped, Clarke had a shot saved by Fielding.

A defensive lapse let in Marlon Pack whose deflected effort was saved by Moore and Taylor's follow-up was blocked by Richard Stearman.

George Baldock had a shot blocked as Sheffield United continued to go in search of a winner, despite their numerical disadvantage.

Brownhill then saw a shot deflected wide with Flint heading off-target from the resulting corner.

The centre-back was not to be denied, however, and he struck the winner at the far post, meeting Bobby Reid's sublime cross and guiding the ball past Moore.