Wisła Kraków, Bruk-Bet Termalica Nieciecza and Górnik Łęczna were confirmed as the three sides to be relegated from the Ekstraklasa on Sunday. All three will start the 2022/23 season in the Fortuna 1 Liga.
At the start of the day, five clubs remained in the relegation battle. On Saturday, Bruk-Bet Termalica had suffered a 1-0 defeat to Piast Gliwice, which ultimately left them with little influence on their top-flight future.
The action started in Mielec, where Stal Mielec and Śląsk Wrocław both fought to ensure their survival. The 1-1 draw was good enough for Stal, but left Śląsk needing results elsewhere to go their way to avoid a final-day shootout.
Unfortunately, that result spelled the end for both Górnik and Bruk-Bet Termalica, who had needed to rely on a Stal victory to stand any chance of their slim hopes extending to the final day.
The result meant that Górnik Łęczna took to the field in the second game of the day, knowing their fate and playing only for pride. The lack of pressure had seemed to lift a weight off of their shoulders, as they took a two-nil lead at Górnik Zabrze with less than an hour on the clock.
In a dramatic change of fortunes, though, the hosts quickly turned the match in their favour; goals from Robert Dadok, Lukas Podolski, Krzysztof Kubica and a first goal in Poland for Higinio Marin, left the Zielono-Czarni with not even a consolation to take back to Łęczna.
The earlier draw between Stal and Śląsk had a massive effect on what Wisła Kraków required from their penultimate game, against Radomiak Radom, too. With Śląsk now four points ahead of Wisła, and with a significantly better head-to-head record thanks to a 5-0 victory earlier in the season, a victory was the minimum requirement for the Biała Gwiazda‘s ever-thinning survival hopes.
By half-time, Wisła had looked to be on their way to a win, too; and when Stefan Savić added to Giorgi Tsitaisvili’s opener early in the second half, perhaps Wisła fans could be forgiven for already looking ahead to a final day clash against Warta Poznań.
However, perhaps the players began to look ahead, too. A twenty-minute Karol Angielski hat-trick – taking his tally up to 17 for the season – quickly swung the game in Radomiak’s favour; and with Wisła desperately looking for two goals, a quick Radomiak break, and a cool finish from former Wisła full-back Dawid Abramowicz, condemned his former club to beginning a season outside of the top flight for the first time in 27 years.