Reading and Queens Park Rangers were relegated to the Championship after a scrappy goalless draw between the Premier League’s bottom two clubs.
Royals striker Pavel Pogrebnyak was denied by Jose Bosingwa’s clearance off the line before the Russian fired just wide after Jobi McAnuff’s pass.
Esteban Granero clipped the bar for Harry Redknapp’s QPR in a game lacking in quality at the Madejski Stadium.
And both teams will play next season in the second tier after poor campaigns.
Reading and QPR have been flirting with relegation all season yet their fate is now sealed.
Even if they win their remaining three games they can only reach a maximum of 34 points.
Aston Villa, 17th in the table, are currently on 34 points, but for Villa to lose all of their remaining games would involve 18th-placed Wigan, who they meet on the final day, finishing on a minimum of 35 points.
The final whistle was greeted by some jeers by the home fans while QPR owner Tony Fernandes, who sacked Mark Hughes in November after a dreadful start to the season and has invested more than £50m in transfers since last July, cut a frustrated figure in the main stand.
Redknapp has been planning behind the scenes for life in the Championship for some time, but the QPR manager will have been encouraged by his team’s first-half showing.
Jermaine Jenas, Granero and Jay Bothroyd all had chances to mark their return to the side with a goal as Redknapp made five changes after the 2-0 home defeat to Stoke in the previous game.
After Jenas had fired wildly over the bar from 20 yards, former Real Madrid player Granero clipped the top of bar from the same distance in the 12th minute.
And former Cardiff forward Bothroyd also went within a whisker of breaking the deadlock after lifting the ball over goalkeeper Alex McCarthy, who was well off his line, only for it to bounce narrowly wide of the target.
It was not until the final minute of the first half that McCarthy’s opposite number Robert Green was tested, the Hoops keeper beating away McAnuff’s attempt.
Moments earlier Pogrebnyak had been denied by a clearance off the line by Bosingwa, who has gone from Champions League winner with Chelsea to the Championship in the space of 12 months.
The second half was not much better in terms of quality between two teams who have managed just nine league wins between them.
In arguably the move of the match, Pogrebnyak sped past Bosingwa and cut inside the area before bending a shot just wide after McAnuff’s clever pass.
This time last year it was all smiles at the Madejski Stadium as the club celebrated promotion to the top flight.
But there was an air of resignation in the penultimate home match.
Substitute Adam Le Fondre should have scored in the closing stages while Sean Morrison’s powerful header was tipped over by Green.
There was still time for Bothroyd to win it but his finish was not clinical enough, the story of QPR’s season.