REUTERS: Watford put Norwich City's Championship title celebrations on hold after a 1-0 away win that left them on the brink of automatic promotion to the Premier League on Tuesday.
Dan Gosling's 57th-minute goal earned the visitors the points to put Watford nine points clear of third-placed Swansea with three games remaining and a massively better goal difference.
Already-promoted Norwich have 90 points to Watford's 85 with Swansea, who lost 1-0 to Queens Park Rangers at the Liberty Stadium, on 76 with three games remaining.
Lyndon Dykes scored in the 89th minute with his sixth goal in seven games to send QPR eighth.
Fourth-placed Brentford's slim automatic promotion hopes were all but dashed as they were held to a 1-1 home draw by Cardiff City to continue their slump in form.
The Bees, who suffered a late season collapse before losing to Fulham in the playoff final last season, have 75 points with four games to play, with Bournemouth on 74 and Barnsley on 71.
At the bottom, last-but-one Sheffield Wednesday staved off relegation for another day after beating Blackburn 1-0 while Wayne Rooney's Derby County remained in danger after a 3-0 hammering at Preston.
Derby are on the edge of the drop zone, four points clear of Rotherham United - who have three games in hand - and Wednesday, whose hopes were kept alive by Josh Windass's deflected winner.
Wycombe Wanderers are bottom, five points behind Wednesday.
(Reporting by Martyn Herman/Alan Baldwin; Editing by Ken Ferris/Mitch Phillips)