Leeds have been essentially relegated to League One football next season, following a 1-1 home draw with Ipswich on Saturday, combined with Hull winning away at Cardiff 1-0. Although Leeds can still finish even with Hull on points, Hull are ahead of Leeds by 9 in goal differential. The Leeds-Ipswich match was tainted by a chaotic Elland Road pitch invasion (following Alan Lee’s 88th minute equalizer for the Tractor Boys), which delayed the match by 30 minutes.
At the top of the table, Birmingham moved back into first with a massive 2-0 result over Sheffield Wednesday at St. Andrews, which eliminated the Owls from playoff contention. In light of Sunderland’s 3-2 win on Friday v. Burnley, the pressure is now firmly on Derby ahead of their Sunday fixture with Crystal Palace in London. A Derby draw or loss against Palace would virtually secure top flight football next season for both Birmingham and Sunderland.
In addition to Sheffield Wednesday, Colchester United’s hopes of qualifying for the playoffs realistically ended Saturday with a 3-1 loss at Stoke (due to an inferior goal differential to Stoke and Southampton). That leaves five clubs competing for the final three playoff positions going into the final round of fixtures (West Brom, Wolves, Southampton, Stoke, and Preston).
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