Morecambe’s Aaron Wildig has described winning Monday’s Sky Bet League Two Play-Off Final as an “unbelievable achievement” following the Shrimps’ 1-0 victory over Newport County at Wembley.
Victory at Wembley will see Morecambe play in the third tier of English football for the first time in their 101-year history next season.
Speaking exclusive to the EFL after the game, Wildig said: “It’s incredible. This is an unbelievable achievement. We dug so deep today and that’s been us all season, we dug in to get over the line and found a way to win. It’s almost hard to celebrate I’m that tired, but it’s been an unbelievable day.”
In what was an incredibly hot day at Wembley Stadium, Derek Adams’ side had to withstand heavy pressure from Newport to get the victory, but resilience has been a strength all season, and Wildig praised his teammates for the character shown.
“We’ve got some big characters in this squad and that showed today,” he added. “All season we’ve found a way to win, we don’t dominate games, we don’t dominate possession but we’re going up and days like this are what it’s all about.
“It’s unbelievable when you think about it, but it was so tough out there. My demons kept telling me to stop running, the heat was incredible but to get over the line is an incredible achievement and we’ve got to just enjoy it.”
The game was level until Carols Mendes Gomes stepped up to cooly convert from the penalty spot, in what proved to be the promotion-winning goal.
“I came off after 90 minutes and extra-time seemed to go on for about two days, it was tough watching but when I saw the penalty go in, wow, what a moment.”
Today was Wildig’s second Wembley appearance, having been on the bench as a 17-year-old during Cardiff City’s 2010 Play-Off Final loss to Blackpool. This time, he leaves on the winning side.
“The only thing I remember about that day is that it was as hot as it was today. I’ve had a little boy in the last year and whilst he won’t remember today, it’ll be a good story to tell him in a few years.
“I’m sure it won’t actually sink in what we’ve achieved until later in the summer. To miss out on the final day by a point was disappointing at the time, but if you’d have given us a choice of doing it on the final day or doing it this way at Wembley we’d take that every single day.
“This is a special place, it’s an unbelievable achievement for us and this moment is something I will take with me until the day I die.”