Southampton relegated in front of British PM

·2-min read

Southampton's 11-year stay in the English Premier League is over, with relegation sealed by the 24th loss of a forgettable season and in front of its most famous fan.

Not even the presence of British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak at St. Mary's stadium could inspire Southampton in its 2-0 home loss to Fulham, which consigned the south-coast team to life in the Championship with two games to spare.

"It is a moment that has been coming," said James Ward-Prowse, Southampton's England midfielder on Saturday.

"We knew we had put ourselves in a difficult position. When these things happen you go away individually and as a club and ask if you have done enough? I don't think we have."

At the other end of the league, Manchester United has almost done enough to secure a return to the Champions League.

United rebounded from back-to-back losses to ignite its push to reach Europe's top competition with a 2-0 win over Wolverhampton.

United moved level on points with third-placed Newcastle - which drew at Leeds 2-2 - and both teams were four ahead of fifth-placed Liverpool in the race for a top-four finish. All three teams have three games left.

Tottenham dropped out of contention for Champions League qualification after losing 2-1 at Aston Villa, which moved level on points with its beaten opponent.

They are fighting for berths in the two minor European competitions - the Europa League and the Europa Conference League - with Brighton, which is two points further back in eighth place but has three games in hand.

With Southampton down, there are two more relegation spots to fill and two of the four teams in most danger — Leeds and Nottingham Forest — showed fighting spirit to avoid the drop.

Leeds' draw with Newcastle came after a battling 2-1 loss at Manchester City and left the team only a point from safety. Forest also drew at Chelsea 2-2 to stay three points above the bottom three.

Crystal Palace beat Bournemouth 2-0 in the other game with Eberechi Eze scoring twice.