A dogged football battle that had somewhat of a local rivalry to it with both teams coming from the south and west of Yorkshire, Huddersfield Town were triumphant in the Football League One Play Off Final at Wembley Stadium, holding their nerve in a tense penalty shoot out that saw them promoted to the Championship.
In a game that saw no goals, despite the lack of goalmouth action, it was a contest worthy of any Play Off Final in football league history with both sides enjoying a fair amount of chances. With the game heading into the 90th minute, there looked to be no Wembley repeat of West Ham’s dramatic late winner that saw them catapulted back into the Premiership last week and by the full time whistle, the deadlock had not been broken with the score still goalless at 0-0. Both teams were summoned to command their last morsels of energy for a gruelling 30 minutes of extra time in the searing Wembley heat. With no team able to break the other team, the cruel fate of penalties appeared to be on the cards.
With the added 30 minutes of extra time, this was still not enough to decide a winner and still at 0-0, as the final whistle blew for end, penalties it was. In a shootout that mirrored the game for its lengthiness, it seemed no team were willing to give up the fight and surrender promotion with both sides failing to capitalise on missed penalties by the opposing teams. Sudden death in the shootout came and with the score at 8-7 to Huddersfield, the pressure was on Sheffield United keeper Steve Simonsen to score and keep the Blades in the game. In a cruel twist of fate, Simonsen missed his spot kick, handing victory to Huddersfield Town and leaving Sheffield United to wait on promotion for another year. Huddersfield now join Charlton and Sheffield Wednesday in the Championship, however this game proved how unfair and cruel the play offs can be with Danny Wilson’s Sheffield United team being placed nine points ahead of Simon Grayson’s Huddersfield town in League One.
As for Huddersfield, their super star striker Jordan Rhodes will be relishing a new challenge in the Championship. In this campaign, Rhodes has netted a staggering 40 times in all competitions making him one to watch next year.
On Saturday 26th May 2012, WinkBall video reporters were at Wembley Stadium speaking to both sets of fans at the League One Play Off Final between Huddersfield and Sheffield United to find out their predictions for the game and what they made of the match afterwards.