An afternoon that began with the ridiculous ended in sheer joy for Charlton Athletic, as a last-minute winner sent them back to the Sky Bet Championship in the most dramatic fashion...
Charlton Athletic 2-1 Sunderland AFC
More than 76,000 people were at Wembley Stadium to witness the 2019 Sky Bet League One Play-Off Final between Charlton Athletic and Sunderland AFC, as Lee Bowyer’s side scored with virtually the last kick of the game to secure promotion.
The Addicks made the worst possible start, as Naby Sarr’s backpass was misjudged by goalkeeper Dillon Phillips, who watched the ball roll past him into his own net in the opening five minutes - a moment to forget for the then 23-year-old.
However, Lee Bowyer's side were not going down without a fight as Charlton responded brilliantly to take control of the game and limit Sunderland's chances in front of goal. Joe Aribo and Anfernee Dijksteel combined to find leading goalscorer Lyle Taylor, whose cross found Ben Purrington at the back post - the Addicks were level.
At 1-1 the game looked destined for extra-time, but deep into stoppage time it was the London side who stole the show and secured a place in the Sky Bet Championship.
An inviting cross was sent towards the back post, where centre back Patrick Bauer rose above everyone to head towards goal. After seeing his initial header blocked, the defender was there to tap in the rebound and score his first - and only goal for the club. With only six seconds remaining, it was Charlton who sealed promotion in another memorable EFL Play-Off Final.
Charlton: Phillips, Dijksteel, Bauer, Sarr (Pearce 45'), Purrington, Cullen, Bielik, Pratley (Williams 71'), Aribo, Parker, Taylor.
Subs not used: Maxwell, Solly, Lapslie, Forster-Caskey, Reeves.
Sunderland: McLaughlin, Oviedo, Ozturk, Cattermole, Maguire (Grigg 57'), Wyke (McGeady 72'), Honeyman, Flanagan, O'Nien, Leadbitter, Power (Morgan 9').
Subs not used: Stryjek, Matthews, Gooch, Dunne.
“I’ve said so many times that we have a unique group and they could have easily gone under, but they were brave and they were men. What we have done is something special.” - Lee Bowyer
“It’s amazing. We worked hard all season - and now we’ve done it and it’s unbelievable. The boys were excellent all season; big respect to Lee Bowyer got getting such a squad together.” - Patrick Bauer