Derby County’s relegation to League One was confirmed on a dramatic afternoon in the Championship this afternoon.
Wayne Rooney’s side knew they needed to match Reading’s result if they were to keep alive their faint hopes of remaining in the second tier.
However, the Rams fell to a late defeat to Queens Park Rangers away from home, whilst the Royals incredibly came from 4-1 down to salvage a point against Reading, meaning they are ten points clear of Derby with three games to play.
It was always going to be a difficult task for Rooney to keep the East Midlands outfit up, with the off-field issues the club have meaning the boss was restricted in terms of the business he could do in pre-season.
Then, they were hit with a huge 21-point deduction, which meant relegation felt inevitable.
Despite that, the Rams have continued to fight, with an unlikely survival seeming possible at different stages of the campaign, but it wasn’t to be.
The hope for Rooney and all connected to the club is that Chris Kirchner completes his takeover having been named as the preferred bidder earlier this month.
Can you name which club Derby County signed these 25 non-British players from?
This will be a tough time for everyone involved with Derby County, because even though relegation has seemed likely for some time, it will still hurt.
Of course, this is not down to Rooney or the players, who have been superb this season, but instead those above them who have left the club in such a difficult situation.
Now, the only priority is getting the takeover finalised, which would at least offer some hope for the future after this tough year.
Thoughts? Let us know in the comments below.