Championship - Birmingham City stay up on dramatic final day

Birmingham City scored two late goals, including a stoppage time equaliser, to stay in the Championship on a dramatic final day.

PA Sport
Championship - Birmingham City stay up on dramatic final day

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Paul Caddis of Birmingham City scores their second goal with a header to equalise during the Sky Bet Championship match between Bolton Wanderers and Birmingham City

Birmingham clinched survival in the most dramatic fashion as Paul Caddis' header three minutes into stoppage time prevented the 2011 League Cup winners from dropping into the third tier of English football for the first time in 20 years.

With 14 minutes remaining, second-half strikes from Bolton's Lee Chung-yong and Lukas Jutkiewicz had left Lee Clark's men staring down the abyss.

Yet late goals from Nikola Zigic and Caddis earned them a 2-2 draw, and Leicester's win over Doncaster therefore meant Blues, who only dropped into the bottom three for the first time this season a week ago, stayed up at the expense of Doncaster.

David Nugent's 75th-minute penalty gave champions Leicester a 1-0 victory over Doncaster and doomed Rovers to relegation

It meant Lee Clark's Birmingham side, who were playing in the top flight just three seasons ago, can now look to rebuild in the Championship following a tumultuous campaign both on and off the field. The club is reportedly up for sale after former owner Carson Yeung was sentenced to six years in prison for money laundering, while Clark and the future of many of his players, a handful of whom are on loan deals, remains murky.

There was also drama at the other end of the table where Brighton clinched the final play-off spot in stoppage time when Leonardo Ulloa scored the winner in a 2-1 victory over Nottingham Forest.

The Argentinian striker netted with a neat header to seal a 2-1 victory and lift the Seagulls above Reading and into sixth place.

It was the second season running that another side had sneaked into the top six on the final day at the City Ground, with Leicester having done the same last year.

However, a Forest side that was hampered by having as many 16 players injured, suspended, ill or unavailable was unable to hold out against Oscar Garcia's team.

Forest had taken the lead in the 22nd minute through Matt Derbyshire, but saw Stephen Ward fire the visitors level, before Ulloa delighted the 2,000 travelling fans with his late, late strike.

That meant they leapfrogged Reading who could only manage a 2-2 draw with Burnley.

Reading went ahead early when Kieran Trippier diverted a Jobi McAnuff cross into his own net but Burnley struck twice in eight minutes through Scott Arfield and Danny Ings to lead 2-1 at half time.

Garath McCleary fired in a superb equaliser in the second half to draw Reading level, but in the end that proved not to be enough.


Champions – Leicester City

Promoted – Burnley

Playoffs - Derby, QPR, Wigan and Brighton

Relegated – Doncaster, Barnsley and Yeovil

Final day results

Barnsley 2 - 3 QPR

Blackburn 4 - 3 Wigan

Blackpool 0 - 3 Charlton

Bolton 2 - 2 Birmingham

Ipswich 2 - 1 Sheff Wed

Leeds 1 - 1 Derby

Leicester 1 - 0 Doncaster

Millwall 1 - 0 Bournemouth

Nottm Forest 1 - 2 Brighton

Reading 2 - 2 Burnley

Watford 1 - 4 Huddersfield

Yeovil 1 - 4 Middlesbrough

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