Stunning late Derby County twist may see Wycombe Wanderers receive relegation reprieve from the Championship

Derby County could yet be relegated to League One despite avoiding the drop – after a stunning late twist in their financial case against the EFL.

Wycombe Wanderers could be spared relegation to League One after dramatic Derby County twist
Wycombe Wanderers could be spared relegation to League One after dramatic Derby County twist

The Rams drew 3-3 with Sheffield Wednesday on the final day of the Championship, with the Owls, Wycombe and Rotherham all dropping down to League One.

It prompted huge scenes of celebnration among Wayne Rooney’s side – but the Daily Mail is reporting that they could still be relegated.

The EFL brought two charges against Derby last year, claiming that the club had breached FFP rules – but an independent disciplinary commission cleared the club, meaning they avoided a serious sanction.

However, the league since appealed that decision. While some reports have today claimed that the appeals process has been settled in favour of the EFL, both the club and the league recently stated that the process was ongoing.

Wycombe owner Rob Couhig, who has a background in law in America, had previously suggested that the Chairboys could challenge their relegation.

"I don’t know that the season is over yet,” he said.

"To me, we have accumulated all the points we can and now we will see what happens.

"People tell me that Derby County have issues out there. I don’t know whether we’re ready to go to lawyers yet. The message is: Watch this space.”

Were the EFL to win their appeal and a points deduction subsequently issued and applied to the current season then it could see the Rams drop into the third tier – while handing third-bottom Wycombe Wanderers a reprieve.

It would be a remarkable turnaround for Gareth Ainsworth’s side, who sneaked into the League One play-offs last season through a controversial points per game ruling after the club voted not to finish the season.

And having sat bottom of the table for most of the campaign, they leapfrogged Rotherham and Sheff Wed on the final day thanks to a 3-0 win over Middlesbrough and Rotherham conceding a late equaliser at Cardiff City.

Wednesday, meanwhile, ended bottom after having had their own points penalty for FFP infringements – a 12 point sanction which was reduced to six points on appeal.