Donny relegated; Hammers hit six

Round-up: Doncaster will return to the third tier of English football next season after a dramatic 4-3 defeat at home to fellow strugglers Portsmouth.


Bottom club Rovers needed a result at home to second-bottom Portsmouth, and it appeared to be on the cards when Habib Beye and Fabien Robert put them two goals up after just five minutes.

But a pair of Greg Halford penalties in the second half, the first of which seeing Beye sent off in the process, sparked the game into life as James Coppinger restored the lead within two minutes of 2-2, only for Pompey to strike twice in stoppage time to dodge the chopping block for another week.

The goals, from Dave Kitson and Marko Futacs, meant there would be no such luck for the home side who will begin next season in League One with fellow strugglers Bristol City holding Birmingham to a 2-2 draw at St Andrew's.

Stephen Pearson and Jon Stead had given the Robins a first-half lead which would have condemned both Doncaster and Portsmouth to the third tier on the day, only for Marlon King and Nikola Zigic to lead the fightback with a goal apiece for another point in their promotion charge.

Chris Hughton's side lost ground on West Ham, however, who wiped the floor with Brighton in a 6-0 win which brings them within three points of Southampton in second place, following their defeat to table-toppers Reading on Friday.

Ricardo Vaz Te helped himself to a stylish hat-trick with Kevin Nolan and Carlton Cole making it five after little over an hour, before an own goal by Gary Dicker summed up the afternoon for Gus Poyet's side.

Leeds United arrested recent struggles on home turf with a 4-1 victory over Peterborough United at Elland Road, with braces from Ross McCormack and Billy Paynter coming after Joe Newell had broken the deadlock.

Millwall also gave their home support something to cheer about, with a 2-1 win over Leicester City which mathematically sealed their Championship status: Harry Kane's third in three and an Andy Keogh penalty were enough to weather a late consolation from Daniel Drinkwater at The Den.#

Cardiff picked up three valuable away points with a 1-0 win at Barnsley through Liam Lawrence, a result mirrored by Middlesborough when Curtis Main struck in the second half to keep his side's play-off hopes alive at Derby.

Elsewhere, Watford survived 25 minutes with ten men to hold onto a 1-1 draw at home to Hull City, and further one apiece scorelines were found at Selhurst Park between Crystal Palace and Ipswich, and at Turf Moore between Burnley and Coventry.

The latter result sees the Sky Blues remain four points adrift of safety, while Portsmouth desperately need a win in their next match to avoid joining Doncaster on the confirmed list.

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