Chelsea brought down the curtain on Jose Mourinho's trophyless return campaign with a 2-1 win at relegated Cardiff City.
Mourinho's men did send their fans into the close-season on a high, with late strikes from Andre Schurrle and Fernando Torres earning the points after Craig Bellamy's deflected effort had given Cardiff a first-half lead.
By contrast, Cardiff's supporters are left to ponder another campaign of Championship football after their first season in the top flight following a 51-year absence ended with them finishing in bottom spot.
Oscar had an early chance for the visitors but it was Cardiff who took the lead in the 15th minute.
Bellamy picked up the ball, moved to the edge of the area and unleashed a shot which deflected off Cesar Azpilicueta to wrong-foot Mark Schwarzer.
The visitors responded impressively, with Oscar seeing a deflected effort go just wide before Mohamed Salah missed the target from a tight angle.
Clear-cut chances continued to elude Chelsea and City almost capitalised once more with Fraizer Campbell wriggling into the box and firing over.
Determined to get back into it, Mourinho's side pressed further forward after the break with Torres curling wide from just outside the area.
Yet, as was the case in the opening period, possession did not initially lead to goals - although the visitors came agonisingly close when Eden Hazard stuck the side-netting.
Chelsea did finally draw level in the 73rd minute. After Azpilicueta had forced a fine reaction save from David Marshall from inside the area and hit the crossbar with the follow-up, Schurrle showed fine poise to power a volley into the net.
As is often the case, one goal immediately brought a second as Torres, who was just onside, chested down Branislav Ivanovic's header into the area and finished coolly.
Schurrle almost added further gloss when his effort was tipped over by Marshall, yet it mattered little as Chelsea signed off with a win.
Cardiff manager Ole Gunnar Solksjaer: "I am the manager and I will take the blame (for relegation).
"I didn't make the impact on results I hoped for. I came in hoping to make a difference and we could move up the table but it didn't happen.
"The experience of playing in the Premier League will give everyone a taste. There will be changes but I will do my best to keep hold of the most important players.
"The whole club is disappointed but there is only one thing to do and that is come back stronger."
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho: "Finishing third is not a drama, it is a position we will have to accept in a transitional season. We deserved to win [against Cardiff], we played well, especially for an end-of-season game.
"We need to improve, we know that, but today with young players in creative roles we played well. We can improve our killer instincts, because we need to score more goals from less chances.
"The club will not run away from the responsibility of bringing in a couple of important players to help the team immediately."
"Yes he [Fernando Torres] is in my plans. He's a good player. He's not the kind of guy who will score goal after goal but the way he works and moves he contributes to the team. He's a player I like."