After being promoted, Cardiff gets league title

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After being promoted, Cardiff gets league title

LONDON - Cardiff City drew 1-1 at Burnley on Saturday to ensure they returned to the top flight of English football as winners of the English Championship (second division) after securing promotion earlier in the week.

Craig Conway put the Welsh club ahead after 27 minutes at Turf Moor before David Edgar equalized for the home side with a thumping header in the dying minutes.

The point moved Cardiff into an unassailable seven-point lead over second-placed Hull City with only two matches remaining.

Cardiff, who drew 0-0 with Charlton on Tuesday to ensure the return to the top flight after a 51-year absence, went ahead after a counterattack when Kim Bo-kyung threaded a pass through to Conway, who worked the ball on to his right foot and curled it home.

Edgar’s goal moved Burnley on to 55 points and virtual safety in the tight battle to avoid relegation.

Hull moved a step closer to a return to the Premier League after being relegated three years ago when it drew 0-0 against already-relegated Bristol City on Friday. With two matches to play, Cardiff has 85 points, Hull 78 and Watford 74.

The three other teams in the playoff places behind Watford are Brighton (69), Crystal Palace (67) and Bolton Wanderers (66) with Brighton underlining its credentials for a return to the top flight for the first time since 1983 with a 6-1 demolition of Blackpool.

Arsenal consolidated its position in the Champions League places with a nervy 1-0 win at Fulham on Saturday, while Sunderland, Stoke and Norwich grabbed huge victories to boost their hopes of surviving relegation from the English Premier League.

Per Mertesacker’s 43rd-minute header proved enough for Arsenal to climb provisionally above Chelsea into third place. Sixth-place Everton’s hopes of reaching the top four nosedived by losing 1-0 at Sunderland, which climbed six points clear of the relegation zone thanks to Stephane Sessegnon’s winner on the stroke of halftime. With Stoke beating next-to-last Queens Park Rangers 2-0 away and Norwich overcoming last-place Reading 2-1, the final relegation berth looks to be between Aston Villa and Wigan, which lost 2-0 at West Ham to stay third from bottom. Villa visits runaway leader Manchester United on Monday, and a win for Paul Lambert’s side at Old Trafford will finally condemn QPR and Reading to the drop.

AP
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