Norwich’s relegation from the Premier League was confirmed following defeat at Aston Villa after Burnley came from behind to beat strugglers Watford, while Liverpool kept up the pace at the top with a 1-0 win at Newcastle.
The Canaries needed to pick up at least a point to cling on to their Premier League status for another week, and hope Burnley’s revival did not continue when they travelled to fellow strugglers Watford.
Dean Smith’s return to Villa Park for the first time since his dismissal in November did not get off to a solid start as Leon Bailey saw a shot pushed onto the crossbar by Norwich goalkeeper Tim Krul.
Villa took the lead through Ollie Watkins five minutes before the break, with substitute Danny Ings also on the scoresheet during added time to inflict a first relegation on their former boss, who had taken over at Carrow Road from Daniel Farke.
Liverpool, showing five changes ahead of the Champions League semi-final second leg against Villarreal, took the lead in the 19th minute at St James’ Park through a controversial goal from Naby Keita.
Newcastle were incensed after referee Andre Marriner waved away appeals for a foul on Fabian Schar as James Milner slid in, with the ball eventually finding Keita who slotted home in the six-yard box.
Miguel Almiron saw his effort late in the first half ruled out by an offside flag as Liverpool went into the break still ahead.
Sadio Mane and then substitute Mohamed Salah both squandered decent opportunities in the second half.
Newcastle, though, failed to conjure an equaliser as Liverpool moved two points ahead of Manchester City, who travel to Leeds in Saturday’s 5.30pm kick-off.
Burnley climbed to 16th – five points clear of Everton who have two games in hand – after they came from behind to win 2-1 at Watford.
The Hornets took an early lead through an own goal from Burnley captain James Tarkowski after the ball bounced off the crossbar and onto his back in the eighth minute.
Burnley were given a penalty for a foul on Dwight McNeil by Moussa Sissoko, but the decision was overturned by VAR, with a free-kick awarded on the edge of the area instead.
Ashley Barnes’ header struck the crossbar before the Clarets were level when Jack Cork nodded in with eight minutes left.
There was, though, still time for Josh Brownhill to strike a late winner from 20 yards, which confirmed Norwich’s relegation and also left Watford on the brink.
Substitute Wilfried Zaha struck as stoppage time winner as Crystal Palace came from behind to win 2-1 at Southampton.
Oriol Romeu headed the Saints in front from a James Ward-Prowse corner after nine minutes.
Eberechi Eze hauled Palace level on the hour, volleying in a cross from Nathaniel Clyne, and Zaha struck in added time to complete the turnaround.
Brighton missed a first-half penalty, but still ran out 3-0 winners at Wolves.
The visitors had the chance to take the lead from the spot after VAR had ruled for a handball against Romain Saiss – but Alexis Mac Allister saw his effort hit the post.
The Seagulls were then given another spot-kick five minutes before the break for a foul on Danny Welbeck and this time Mac Allister did hit the back of the net.
Leandro Trossard added a second for Brighton with 20 minutes left before Yves Bissouma wrapped things up late on with a 25-yard strike.
Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access
Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription
Join now for unlimited access
Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
Get the best features, fun and footballing frolics straight to your inbox every week.
Thank you for signing up to Four Four Two. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.