SAINTS CELEBRATE

Southampton secured promotion to the Barclays Premier League with a 4-0 win over Coventry City in front of a jubilant sell-out crowd at St Mary's.

After enduring a nervy start in which Coventry created chances, Southampton took control of their fate with two goals in three minutes. Billy Sharp stuck out a toe to turn Adam Lallana's volleyed shot past Joe Murphy in the 16th minute, and moments later Jose Fonte's stooping header found the net to make it 2-0.

When Jos Hooiveld lashed in a third just before the hour mark and Lallana notched a fourth moments later, the party got under way.

ON THE ROAD TO WEMBLEY

That meant West Ham United had to settle for third place even as a Carlton Cole brace sank Hull 2-1 at Upton Park. Corry Evans scored a header for Hull with nine minutes to go and Richard Garcia thought he had a late equaliser, but it was ruled out for offside

Cardiff City wrapped up the final Play-Off spot, but made their fans sweat first before beating Crystal Palace 2-1.

They fell behind at Selhurst Park when Wilfried Zaha linked up with Darren Ambrose to score a fine goal on the break after 13 minutes. Cardiff struggled to impose themselves but Peter Whittingham scored a free-kick from a tight angle with his trusty left foot eight minutes into the second half and Don Cowie then volleyed in a second after the hour mark to turn it around.

Middlesbrough had needed Cardiff to drop points and to beat Watford, but got neither as they went down 2-1 at Vicarage Road, where Troy Deeney snatched an 88th minute winner moments after Marvin Emnes had cancelled out Chris Iwelumo's close-range finish.

Champions Reading fell to a 2-0 defeat at Birmingham City, substitute Adam Rooney firing in the opener after 24 minutes and Wade Elliott making sure with a 75th minute penalty after a handball by Jay Tabb.

The win lifts Birmingham into fourth above Blackpool, who were held 2-2 at

ELSEWHERE IN THE DIVISION

In the day's dead rubbers, Leicester City beat Leeds United 2-1, Doncaster Rovers lost 3-1 to Ipswich Town, Portsmouth were beaten 2-0 by Nottingham Forest, Burnley and Bristol City drew 1-1, as did Derby County and Peterborough United, while the game between Barnsley and Brighton & Hove Albion was goalless.

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