Fulham got relegated from the Premier League after a defeat by Burnley in which the Clarets defended their top-flight driving streak.
For the first time in the Premier League, all the relegation zone got confirmed with three games to go. The Cottagers join the relegated Sheffield United and West Bromwich Albion as the teams drop into the Championship.
Fulham lost the match before the break as Burnley hit twice in the last ten minutes of the first round at Craven Cottage.
The Clarets first hit their opponents during the attack when Matej Vydra showed a clean slate. Before selecting Ashley Westwood to put the ball in the empty net.
Chris Wood also hit a second from the edge of the field. To score Burnley’s 50th goal and sent Fulham down.
It leaves Scott Parker’s side 10 points from defense with three games to go back. To the Championship for the first time in question.
Burnley will be playing Premier League football for the sixth season in a row, climbs to 14th place on the table.
The cottagers are straight back on the floor.
Fulham still has three games to play in the Premier League. But the Cottagers will have to start thinking about how they plan to return to England’s top flight.
Parker has a manager who has already been able to direct his team to the playoffs last season after relegating in the previous year.
Parker’s and Fulham’s problem is that some of his key players this season, those who would have excelled in the Championship, are in the club on loan only.
Four loaned players first faced Burnley, with two others coming off the bench.
Ademola Lookman was another player, and the Everton midfielder looked to have a great chance. To make something happen for the players and another, goalkeeper Alphonse made a lot of good money before Burnley’s opening.
Parker highly praised his team’s style of play. In the three-game losing streak, the Cottagers could feel very unlucky after a minor defeat. And a stunning win away from Liverpool, Everton Leicester City.
But they have lost both consistencies and especially the problematic goal-scoring threat. After scoring only 25 goals in 35 games, Sheffield United scored only a few goals this season.
Parker wanted to rectify the situation on Monday by turning to Aleksandar Mitrovic. He has scored 26 goals in the Fulham promotion campaign.
But the player has failed to add to his three goals this season. And which is his fifth league start since the start of the year.
The management showed off their fighting in the second half. And Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa was unlucky to see his effort hit the goal line, and he left after crushing a crossbar.
But Parker’s side has not been able to destroy Burnley as they have played in vain. They were having scored nine goals at home in the league this season.
After going back to a place where they were level with 17th-placed Brighton after a win at Anfield, Fulham’s relegation comes after taking one point seven games from there.
Clarets secured a top-flight status.
Every season spent on a top-flight is a success for Burnley because they always have a minimal budget in the league.
And the club can now look at their sixth consecutive campaign among the big names in English football.
The league this season was Dyche’s 350th league game in charge of the Clarets. And the fact that he used most of those in the top tier proves his ability. To deliver the best of his players.
Despite working on a lower budget than the clubs, his team finished above.
However, after finishing 10th place in the last term, the 49-year-old will be relieved his side is no longer in talks. To step down from the campaign.
The visitors did well to defend Fulham’s exciting start, with James Tarkowski making a goal-saving game for Lookman. Before putting himself in the game.
Burnley’s goal kept coming, and Wood was denied twice in quick succession.
First, his head was diverted to a wide range by Tosin Adarabioyo before Areola made an excellent save. For the New Zealand striker in the next corner.
Shortly afterward, a direct ball from Fulham’s defense found Vydra jumping past Joachim Andersen. Before picking up Westwood’s easy finish with Areola standard. Wood-fired a moment beyond the Paris St-Germain goalkeeper on loan.
And Ben Mee, who was playing his 350th game at the club, alongside Tarkowski in defense.
At the Clarets midfield and solidified as Fulham put pressure on the second half. They tried to keep their hopes of survival alive.
Dyche can now look forward to the summer transfer window under the new owners. And hopes that some, if not all, investors in his team.
“I’m happy with lots of people at the club and their performance,” said Dyche. “It’s an essential thing for the club, and it’s vital for the city. It’s been a very challenging season with the sale of the club.
“There was less amount of money spent from the outgoing owners. And we had a lot of injury problems.”
‘I’m just sad.’
Fulham manager Scott Parker told BBC Sport: “It has been approaching. But it does not hide the embarrassment, pain, and grief I feel tonight. I am tired.
“This year, at some point, while we have made significant progress. And progress in some areas, the facts are lacking.
“At the moment, I have nothing but misery. Now and in the days to come, we will have a long, hard time thinking and coming together. My job is to make sure that these games end in the right way.
“The team needs to make big decisions. We have been defeated, promoted, and reinstated. The rollercoaster of that and the ups and downs is not what you want.
“As a football club, we now have to make good decisions and know where we want to go.”
The Burnley manager Sean Dyche told BBC Sport: “Fulham have changed their style. By putting the ball forward faster than they used to.
“We had a good deal of that, and we got two good goals. The second half was a dog fight, and we were ready for that.”