Brighton promoted to Premier League from Championship for first time
Brighton & Hove Albion sealed promotion to the Premier League for next season and increased their lead at the top of the Championship to seven points with a 2-1 win over Wigan at a jubilant Amex Stadium on Monday.
The Seagulls last played in England's top flight in the 1982-83 season and will become the 48th team to play in the Premier League since it was introduced in 1992.
Brighton were officially assured of a top-two spot in the Championship and a promotion to the top flight after Derby County held Huddersfield Town to a 1-1 draw in the late game on Monday.
The result means the gap between Brighton and Huddersfield Town grew to 14 points, while the Terriers can only earn a maximum of 12 from their four games remaining.
Albion missed out on automatic promotion on goal difference on the final afternoon of last season, but that is now a distant memory for Chris Hughton's men.
"I don't necessarily think that was the motivation behind what we've been able to achieve this season," Hughton told Sky Sports. "I think the motivation was that they thoroughly enjoyed being at the top end of the table last season, all season."
Glenn Murray opened the scoring for Brighton eight minutes before half-time, his 22nd goal of the campaign and fifth in as many games at the Amex Stadium.
England under-21 international Solly March ensured the celebrations could continue in earnest when he converted Anthony Knockaert's cutback and a late goal from substitute Nick Powell could not change the picture.
At Derby, Collin Quaner had given Huddersfield a ninth-minute lead, and it looked as if Brighton's official welcome would have to wait until Jacob Butterfield scored from a deflected shot in the 88th minute for the hosts.
Among other games on Monday, Newcastle, league leaders for so long, slipped to seven points behind Brighton as they took their winless run to three matches with a 3-1 defeat at Ipswich.
Freddie Sears put the hosts ahead just before half-time, but when former Tractor Boy Daryl Murphy levelled in the second half the Magpies had a chance to switch their fortunes. Instead they conceded twice more -- David McGoldrick and Emyr Huws the scorers.
Gianfranco Zola's brief and forgettable stint at Birmingham ended after a 2-0 defeat at home to Burton left Blues two places and three points clear of the drop.
Burton leapfrogged their opponents in the table after Lloyd Dyer and Lucas Akins hit the net and Zola's 22-game reign came to an end within minutes of the final whistle.
In the playoff picture, wins for Reading, Sheffield Wednesday and Fulham saw Leeds edged out of the top six.
Reading went behind to relegated Rotherham, Tom Adeyemi on target, but hit back in the second half.
First Lewis Grabban then John Swift beat Richard O'Donnell to seal the points with a 2-1 win.
Wednesday also won 2-1 at Queens Park Rangers, Adam Reach and and Daniel Pudil notching either side of Idrissa Sylla's equaliser.
Fulham enjoyed a straightforward outing at home to Aston Villa, who slumped 3-1 after playing 68 minutes with 10 men.
Ryan Sessegnon gave Fulham the lead after hitting the crossbar and, although Jack Grealish restored parity following Jonathan Kodija's red card, the result never seemed in doubt.
Sone Aluko and Neeskens Kebano settled matters as the numerical disadvantage came to bear in the second period.
All of that spelled bad news for Garry Monk's Leeds, who were turned over 1-0 at Elland Road when Wolves striker Nouha Dicko grabbed the only goal of the game.
Blackburn salvaged a 1-1 draw from Bristol City's trip to Ewood Park, Sam Gallagher cancelling out Tammy Abraham's effort, but they remain third bottom and deep in trouble.
Norwich defeated Preston 3-1 at Deepdale, but neither side can now hope to crack the playoffs.
Graham Dorrans and Josh Murphy gave the Canaries a first-half cushion before Tommy Spurr and James Maddison traded strikes.