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Sunday, 23 May 2010 16:34

Sportspy Extra - The Championship Play-off Final 2010

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Well, what a fantastic day.  It wasn't a dream, it really happened, and Blackpool FC will be playing Premier Division football next season.  Whether you were fortunate enough to be at the game or watched it in a pub somewhere I'm sure you all have your own memories of the day.  These are ours to share, difficult to describe in words but the photo's and video will hopefully paint a picture.  If you'd like to add your photo's to this article just E-mail me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.    If you see any picture that you would like us to remove (Not you Cardiff fans) then just E-mail us and they will be deleted.

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The last time we went to Wembley I remember that it poured down with rain from the moment we left home to the moment we passed Kirkham on the way back.  It was a tough and tiring drive but made far less painful due to a memorable win against Yeovil that took us up to the Championship.  This time around the forecast was for hot weather so we decided to go by train splashing out on 1st class tickets but obtaining cheaper prices by booking on-line and opting for the 06:58 train from Preston and the 20:30 train back from Euston.  We were in for a long, hot and sticky day.  One advantage of arriving in London early on such a fine day was that we had plenty of opportunity to see the sights.

06:30 on Platform 4 at Preston and it's already teeming with Tangerine

Some ladies struggle to look their best first thing in the morning.  Time for some electrolysis

The train arrives - all aboard.

One opts for 1st class rail travel to avoid the ruffians but due to the ineptness of Virgin trains this trip was more like something that you would expect to experience in New Delhi.  The train was vastly overcrowded as Virgin were too stupid to realise that with Blackpool FC playing at Wembley, many fans may have wished to travel by train.  This resulted in the herd from Standard class invading the tranquility of 1st and taking over available seats.  This included Wayne Taylor (Above) and his cans of Strongbow - only joking mate - happy birthday.

18 platforms at Euston and we have to roll in on number 13 - hopefully not a bad omen

On the South bank with Cardiff supporters

Underneath Big Ben

Downing Street - There was to be another shift in power this weekend

Pool fans on Whitehall

Bird in St James' Park

....and another

............and one more

Changing the Guard

At the Palace - When is King Olly moving in?

Pump & Truncheon Celtic FC keeper Johnny Evans and family at the Palace

More fans in Green Park - the little girl on the left was crying as she was unable to go in and see the Queen....ahhh

At the Monument

Tower Bridge

Enough sights - time for the Pub - EC3A

During the day - Crisps, Hot Dog, Fish & Chips and then Burger King - Mum not happy

 

On the tube from Baker Steet to Wembley Park

WARNING - video not for children - It was very lively in the carriage with supporters from both sets of supporters involved in 'friendly' but bawdy banter.

 

The famous Wembley arch as you exit Wembley Park tube station

Will Gardner

He must have lost a fair few pounds down in the furnace in that costume

Same again this afternoon please DJ

Blues, yellows, whites, blacks - we were ALL in Tangerine and it looked the business

The lucky mascot gets a kick pre-match on the famous turf

Off we go - the views are from Block 516, Row 3

The sun is in Gilk's eyes

Good shadows

All colours

and creeds

I just leaned over to my mate and said, 'It's unusual for us not to be 1-0 down after seven minutes' and then Cardiff broke clear and scored.  'Just keep yer mouth shut'

Chopra enjoyed kissing his badge in front of the Pool support but he was nowhere to be seen at 5pm

Free kick for Blackpool.  Charlie Adam smashed one in against Scunthorpe earlier in the season at home but since then he's generally been off target from the dead ball.  However, big stage, big pressure - big man.  What a free kick !!  I can't fill in the description on YouTube for this Vid as the Football League will delete it as well as my account so consider saving it as a favourite.  They do not allow 'match action' - especially  goals like this.

It wasn't long before Cardiff regained the lead with almost a carbon copy of the first but on the other flank

The lead up to GTF's brave nodded equaliser

Ormerod scores on the brink of half time.  Once again he didn't look the favourite to win the ball but he has the heart of a lion that lad. 

 Graeme Hutchinsonn celebrates

Still time for Cardiff to score - but it's ruled out for offside

Half time score : Blackpool FC 3 - 2 Cardiff City FC

Time to study the programme

Like me, probably thought he'd never see the day.............

Into the second half and Burgess comes on for Gary Taylor-Fletcher who again worked really hard in the oppressive heat.  Scored and hit the post.

Stifling heat down there - I don't know how they stood it

A flap from Gilks but the ball just went the right side of the post - a let off

A late sub - Bannan on for the excellent Vaughan

Running the clock down

The referee deemed that there would be four extra minutes.  They appeared to go on forever.  It was 106 degrees out there and both sides had weary legs.  Blackpool had given it all they had.  It ended up in the hands of Gilks - a collective exhale from the Pool fans, a kick upfield, a blow of the whistle and Blackpool FC are promoted.  The camera is shaking as I had 'something in my eye'.  An emotional time after 40 years of support through some hard times.

In contrast - two LDV wins and three play off final wins and he's only nine - lucky boy

After climbing the steps to collect the Trophy the players returned on to the pitch for the fireworks, a lap of honour and to celebrate with the huge support of the Tangerine Army - '........feelin' Glad All Over'

Crainey - great balance that fella

No rush in leaving the ground - just chill out and catch your breath

I didn't recognise Kev Kennerley - he frightened me to death

Harrison Farrar (Third left)

Enough to make grown men cry

'Need a lift?'

Back to the Tube and Central London

'THE GIRL WITH THE BLACKPOOL TATTOO'

Time to cool down with a pint of refreshing cider near Euston waiting for the 20:30 train

Barney Woolcock on the train home - Poulton boys always only ever travel 1st class

23:10 - Only eighteen hours after we'd set off, a good walk around London, the high emotion of a play off win and a long journey home on the 'red eye'.  'Wake up boy, we're nearly there'.  No staying  power these kids

All in all, a day that will live long in the memory for all those that were present at Wembley on Saturday May 22nd 2010.  Thanks to Ian Holloway, the players, Karl Oyston and all those associated with Blackpool FC.  Congratulations on a fantastic achievement.  The whole of London appeared to be behind us.  Fans from Chelsea, Arsenal, Spurs and Burnley all came up to congratulate us. 

You can run a club within its means and achieve the impossible.  Let's keep the manager, finish the ground, improve training facilities and invest in the right kind of players - players who give 110% in every match and play to the maximum of their capabilities week in, week out.  I expect that many of us will have a better chance of watching the team away next season due to 'new' season ticket holders but whatever happens with the results, we'll still be there supporting the team.  Onwards to Europe.

Final score : Blackpool FC 3 - 2 Cardiff City FC

Article written and created for all of those Blackpool FC supporters who are no longer with us to witness and savour the moment including Dad/Grandad who died suddenly in March although I suspect that he may have had something to do with our recent form from above. 

Sportspy 2009/10

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