There was never any question for the 38,000 who crammed Hillsborough that Sheffield Wednesday would make it and so it proved. Milan Mandaric's bizarre decision to fire his manager, Gary Megson, after victory in February's Sheffield derby was vindicated amid emotional scenes as Wednesday clambered back into the Championship after two years in the backwaters of League One.
Dave Jones not only took them back up, he did so with some highly attractive football. This was an emphatic victory that justified the rolling, repetitive chants of "the city is ours" that flooded the ground on the final whistle along with the pitch invasion. But for a clearance off the line and some superb keeping from Nikki Bull this would have been a rout.
There was never a time in the game when Wednesday were not going up. Everything, realistically, was settled in the 25th minute when Michail Antonio had gone through on goal, steadied himself and shot home.
Frankly, the goal had been coming with Bull saving twice from Miguel Llera as Wednesday attacked on the pitch with the same ferocity that their fans urged them on from the stands.
For the 22-year-old striker, his loan move from Reading has been well timed and eventful. His debut came in the victory over Sheffield United that served as Mandaric's bizarre cue to sack Megson. He had scored the winner against Carlisle in the fifth minute of stoppage time and now he had scored a critical goal in Hillsborough's history.
The news that Sheffield United had scored twice at Exeter provided just the barest whiff of anxiety as Wycombe demonstrated why they were relegated. There was no attempt to challenge Chris Lines' free-kick and Nile Ranger, on loan from the Sports Direct Arena, headed effortlessly home. In the first half, Ranger had seen what appeared a perfectly good header disallowed for offside. This one, like everything else at Hillsborough on this afternoon, was beyond dispute.
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image: © Ben Sutherland