Sheffield Wednesday consigned Brighton, Crewe and Millwall to relegation with a 2-0 win over The Seagulls at The Withdean Stadium.
A Gary Hart own goal cruelly gave The Owls the lead after just eight minutes, but Wednesday, who would have been sucked into the relegation battle if they had lost, were the better team throughout the first half.
Brighton needed to win to keep their hopes alive and showed a lot more resistance after the break, but Burton O'Brien's finish (69) sealed Brighton's fate. Dean Hammond was sent off late on as the home side's frustrations boiled over.
Millwall would not have survived anyway, after they lost 2-0 to Southampton, Kenwyne Jones (13) and Ricardo Fuller (90) doing the damage.
Crewe battled hard to preserve their Championship dream, but had to settle for a 1-1 draw with Cardiff at Gresty Road. David Vaughan (58) scored a superb goal to raise spirits, before Jason Koumas (76) levelled for The Bluebirds.
At the other end of the table, leaders Reading took their points tally for the season past the 100 mark with a convincing 3-1 victory over Stoke. Steve Sidwell (25) fired The Royals in front, and Kevin Doyle doubled their lead from the penalty spot (56), before Adam Rooney (59) reduced The Potters' arrears.
Their hopes were short-lived though, as John Halls (62) sewed up the points.
With the play-off places already decided all that needs to be settled is the respective positions of Leeds, Watford, Preston and Crystal Palace.
With Leeds not in action, Watford took advantage to consolidate their grip on third place. Darius Henderson's strike (33) put Adrian Boothroyd's side on course for victory, and although Nicky Forster (57) equalised for Ipswich, Henderson struck again (77) to secure a 2-1 win.
Preston also moved above Leeds after cruising to a 2-0 win at home to Wolves. Lewis Neal (42) and Brett Ormerod (71) found the back of the net to heap the pressure on under-fire Wolves boss Glenn Hoddle.
Crystal Palace look set to finish sixth after they were held to a goalless draw by Burnley at Turf Moor.
Coventry and Leicester shared the points at The Ricoh Arena, with Richard Stearman (9) on target for The Foxes and Stern John (11) replying for The Sky Blues.
Tommy Smith's late penalty (89) rescued a point for Derby against Hull, who had taken the lead through Stuart Green's volley (33).
Norwich sensationally recovered from 2-0 down to defeat Queens Park Rangers 3-2 at Carrow Road. Gareth Ainsworth (45) and Lee Cook (61) netted for Garry Waddock's side, but The Canaries hit back to win courtesy of Darren Huckerby (78) and a Robert Earnshaw brace (85 and 90)
In the day's final game there was also late drama, as Plymouth surrendered the lead given to them by Akos Buzsaky (70). Rowan Vine (79) and Calvin Andrew (88) struck late to give Luton a 2-1 win.
Click below for match reports
|Brighton|| 0-2|| Sheffield Wednesday|
|Burnley|| 0-0|| Crystal Palace|
|Coventry|| 1-1|| Leicester|
|Crewe|| 1-1|| Cardiff|
|Derby|| 1-1|| Hull|
|Norwich|| 3-2|| QPR|
|Plymouth|| 1-2|| Luton|
|Preston|| 2-0|| Wolves|
|Reading|| 3-1|| Stoke|
|Southampton|| 2-0|| Millwall|
- Adkins - We must stay in the race
- McDermott relishing Reading tie
- Red cards at Reading
- McCarthy feels hard done by
- Cottee - Reading 2-1 Ipswich
- Adkins wants entertaining football
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