The Rams played an upside down 3-3 draw with rivals Sheffield Wednesday – a result that relegates the Owls.
Rotherham drew 1-1 at Cardiff, meaning the Millers will also play in League One next quarter. Derby remains in the lead with 44 points – one point ahead of Wycombe, two from Rotherham and last Wednesday with 41.
It was Wednesday that led to the break thanks to Sam Hutchinson’s goal just at the end of the first half. It seemed offside on TV reruns, but of course VAR is not in operation in the Championship.
Derby came out of the traps after the restart with Martyn Waghorn and Patrick Roberts turning the game on their heads.
Wednesday equalized by Callum Paterson, then went 3-2 by Julian Borner, but they couldn’t hold on. Waghorn’s penalty restored parity again and that, thanks to Cardiff’s equalizer against Rotherham, was enough to keep Rooney’s side in second place.
Lewis Wing’s marvelous strike saw Rotherham score a half-time goal in Cardiff – meaning the Millers were safe.
But Paul Warne’s team couldn’t hold out as Marlon Pack’s equalizer knocked them down. Wycombe, who was expected to pull off a miraculous goal-difference swing, was also relegated after a season to number two.
But at least they ended on a high note with an impressive 3-0 win over Middlesbrough.