Carlisle 3 – 1 Bradford
Carlisle United will face Stockport County within the Sky Guess League Two play-off remaining at Wembley after Ben Barclay’s dramatic extra-time winner earned a 3-1 semi-final victory over Bradford which noticed them progress with a 3-2 mixture win.
Bradford travelled to Brunton Park with a slender 1-0 benefit from Sunday’s first leg, nevertheless it was erased halfway by the primary half when Brad Halliday put into his personal objective amid a spell of relentless Carlisle strain.
Either side readily exchanged assaults however, with neither in a position to land a telling blow in regular time for the second successive League Two play-off semi-final, a further half-hour have been required.
Callum Man seemed to have despatched Carlisle to Wembley when he volleyed residence within the first interval of extra-time however Matt Derbyshire hauled Bradford degree inside 29 seconds of the restart because the drama continued to unfold at a spellbound Brunton Park.
With penalties looming, on-loan striker Barclay glanced residence the winner to arrange a play-off remaining reunion on Might 28 in opposition to his parent-club Stockport, which he’ll miss as a result of ineligibility, as Carlisle sealed a primary Wembley look since 2011, after they beat Brentford to win the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy remaining.
How Carlisle booked their ticket to Wembley
Carlisle had dominated the opening half, energised by striker JK Gordon’s return after a three-game retrospective ban. Solely three minutes had elapsed when Gordon minimize in from the house left and fired in a low shot Lewis comfortably saved.
Carlisle’s second half of the season fadeout in entrance of objective price them a attainable automated promotion place. Gordon was fired as much as make up for misplaced alternatives and solely Lewis’ proper glove after which the upright prevented Gordon scoring his first objective since January 28 after 16 minutes.
The breakthrough finally got here six minutes later. Lewis produced an excellent save to disclaim star midfielder Moxon however couldn’t maintain the shot with Gordon and Halliday converging on the rebound. Gordon wheeled away in celebration because the ball went in although the Bradford defender was credited with getting an undesirable remaining contact.
Scoring possibilities have been in shorter provide after the break and the stalemate remained by to the ultimate whistle, together with 9 minutes of stoppage time.
However additional time erupted with motion, with Man putting just for Derbyshire go away penalties on the playing cards, earlier than Barclay introduced his Carlisle mortgage to a becoming finish as his 112th-minute winner despatched the Blues to Wembley.
Simpson: No one gave us an opportunity – what a day
Carlisle’s Paul Simpson:
“I am simply pleased with the gamers. They have been magnificent over the entire season. No one gave us an opportunity this season, no person fancied us in any respect. There’s been a confidence in there, a perception, and we knew at present, though we have been 1-0 down, we knew it was there for us. We knew we had an incredible alternative. The 2 video games have been a fully sensible instance of what League Two soccer is about.
“Credit score to Bradford Metropolis. The primary sport, they performed rather well within the first half. Right now, I believe we have proven we’re a very good facet, that we have good people, we have perception, we have character and persona. Wow. What a day that has been for us. It is the longest 120 minutes I’ve ever gone by, however I am delighted. I am sweating buckets – I really feel as if I’ve executed the sport myself!”
Evaluation: ‘The 2 greatest groups have gotten to the ultimate’
Stevenage’s Steve Evans on Sky Sports activities Soccer:
“Having watched each semi-finals, over the 2 legs, I believe the most effective two groups have gone by. Carlisle have been higher at present and Stockport have been higher earlier at present. However overlook who wins the play-off remaining, it makes League Two subsequent season tremendously robust. Bradford are an enormous membership and Salford are there, too.”
Leyton Orient’s Richie Wellens on Sky Sports activities Soccer:
“Ben Barclay will probably be happy he scored the winner, however he’ll be completely gutted he cannot play at Wembley. There was an enormous crowd at each video games at present, so I think about it is going to be a extremely special day. It will likely be bittersweet.”
Whereas Bradford will stay in Sky Guess League One for the 2023/24 marketing campaign, Carlisle will play Stockport within the play-off remaining at Wembley Stadium at 1.30pm on Sunday Might 28 for a spot in Sky Guess League One.