• Date: Sat 22 May 2010
  • Venue: Wembley
  • Ref: Marriner, A
  • Attendance: 82,244


Adam (13)

Taylor-Fletcher (41)

Ormerod (45)

3 - 2
Cardiff City

Cardiff City

Chopra (9)

Ledley (37)

Blackpool vs Cardiff City

Team Lineups


Matt Gilks
Stephen Crainey
Ian Evatt
Alex John-Baptiste
Seamus Coleman
Keith Southern
David Vaughan (Barry Bannan, 90)
Charlie Adam
Brett Ormerod (Stephen Dobbie, 60)
Gary Taylor-Fletcher (Ben Burgess, 53)
DJ Campbell

Cardiff City

David Marshall
Kevin McNaughton (Anthony Gerrard, 74)
Mark Hudson
Mark Kennedy
Peter Whittingham
Stephen McPhail
Chris Burke (Ross McCormack, 58)
Joe Ledley
Darcy Blake
Michael Chopra
Jay Bothroyd (Kelvin Etuhu, 15)

Match Report
Blackpool will play in the Premier League next season following a stunning 3-2 Championship play-off final victory over Cardiff City at Wembley. Ian Holloway's side twice found themselves behind in an end-to-end first half before claiming a lead they would not relinquish on the stroke of half-time. Cardiff were strong pre-match favourites after finishing six points and two places above the unfashionable north-west outfit at the end of the regular season. However, the Seasiders ripped up the formbook at Wembley to secure a surprise return to the top-flight after a near 40-year absence. Cardiff drew first blood through the lively Michael Chopra with just nine minutes on the clock. Chopra had already rattled the woodwork in the fourth minute when he latched on to Peter Whittingham's throughball after returning from an offside position before squeezing a well-placed shot between goalkeeper Matt Gilks and the upright. But Blackpool's legendary spirit was on display almost immediately as they clawed their way back on level terms through Charlie Adam. The former Rangers midfielder dispatched a stunning 25-yard free-kick over the wall and into the top corner of the net to send the Seasiders fans wild. Cardiff lost key striker Jay Bothroyd to injury soon after but managed to score against the run of play to get their noses back in front. After repelling wave after wave of Blackpool attacks, Whittingham again opened up the defence with a perfectly weighted pass through the inside left channel and Joe Ledley found the back of the net from 12 yards. However, Bluebirds fans had barely retaken their seats when Blackpool restored parity for a second time. Gary Taylor-Fletcher profited from a scramble at a corner to bravely head home a loose ball to level up an entertaining game once again. Blackpool then struck the decisive blow on the stroke of half-time. Dudley Campbell broke into the area but failed to make clean contact with the ball before it rolled into the path of Brett Ormerod and the veteran striker lashed a low shot through the goalkeeper's legs. The second half was a more cagey affair and every time Cardiff built up a head of steam they were deflated by an injury problem. Stephen McPhail and Kevin McNaughton were both troubled, with the latter having to be replaced in the 74th minute as Dave Jones was forced into a third and final substitution. Dangerman Chopra rattled the crossbar with a rising shot while Ledley glanced a corner narrowly wide as the Welsh side repeatedly knocked at the door. However, they couldn't find a way through a defence which gave everything in the final 45 minutes and at full-time it was the sea of orange-clad Blackpool fans celebrating the most unlikely of promotions to the promised land of the Premier League.
Live Text Commentary
Full time



Orange-clad fans are beginning to celebrate the most unlikely of promotions to the Premier League as we enter the closing seconds


Vaughan heads off to be replaced by Barry Bannan as more precious seconds tick away


Four minutes will be added to this nail-biting game for stoppages


The Seasiders were simply brilliant in the first half and a little unlucky to concede twice so nobody can say they don't deserve to win this game


The promised land is just seconds away for Blackpool now and thy are managing to run the clock down with some much-needed possession in the Cardiff half


Supporters from both sides can barely bring themselves to watch these closing moments but for very different reasons!


Cardiff are dominating possession but every long ball forward is being returned with interest as more minutes tick away


Ian Holloway is urging his players on from the technical area as the Seasiders are just minutes away from the most unlikely of places in the Premier League


Blake runs past two tacklers but his low shot is straight at the keeper who holds well under pressure


These are nervous times for Blackpool fans as their team is being pinned back almost in their own penalty area


McCormark sends an ambitious angled effort into the side-netting as Cardiff continue to knock at the door


Gilks gets away with a howler as he flaps at a high ball under pressure from Chopra and the ball shaves the upright on its way behind. There was no whistle for a free-kick so any goal would have counted


Dave Jones is urging his players on but time is beginning to tick away on Cardiff's Premier League dream


Instead McNaughton limps off and is replaced by Anthony Gerrard and Cardiff only have 10 and a half men!


McPhail is really struggling to shake off the knee problem and is set to be replaced


Chopra turns away in disgust after being sent sprawling by Crainey when looking to latch on to a Whittingham throughball. Perhaps it's just not going to be Cardiff's day?


In a reversal of roles from the first half it is Blackpool now struggling to get the ball out of their own half. Ian Holloway looks concerned in the technical area


McCormack cuts inside his marker but drags a poor right-foot shot well wide of the target from distance


Stephen McPhail's afternoon might be over following a strong tackle in the centre circle. He's stayed down and his knee looks to be the problem. He's up but for how long?


Matt Gilks has his palms stung by a first-time shot from Etuhu after a swift break led by Chopra


Cardiff are turning the screw now and it's all hands on pump at the back for Blackpool at the moment


Stephen Dobbie comes on for Ormerod for the Seasiders


Ledley meets a corner with a glancing header which drifts just wide of the mark. That had equalising goal written all over it!


Adam drags an ambitious 25-yard shot wide of the target as Blackpool go straight up the other end and threaten


Burke is replaced by Ross McCormack for Cardiff


Chopra slams a rising shot from 18 yards off the top of the bar after keeping himself just onside. That was a warning to Blackpool that this game is far from over


The quality of the first half has dropped away a little but that's understandable in these sweltering conditions


Adam spots the keeper off his line but his shot from inside his own half is way off target and the Cardiff fans let him know about it!


Taylor-Fletcher is carrying a knock and is replaced by Ben Burgess for Blackpool


Campbell twists and turns in the box but his shot deflects away to safety off the body of Blake amid calls for a handball


Adam is lucky to escape a caution after two late tackles in quick succession right under the referee's nose


Etuhu darts down the wing and sends over an early cross which Chopra can't reach


Ormerod catches Kevin McNaughton with a late tackle in midfield but the Cardiff full-back will be okay to continue


Blackpool get the second half underway in baking conditions here at Wembley

Half time



Blake sticks out a leg to divert a free-kick into the net but he's clearly offside and the effort is rightly ruled out by the assistant referee


BLACKPOOL 3-2 CARDIFF CITY: BRETT ORMEROD is in the right place at the right time as Campbell slips while shooting but the ball falls at the feet of the striker who lashes a low shot through the keeper's legs


Blackpool have probably shaded the first half but have twice been forced to come from behind. Football can be a funny old game!


The first half has flown by such has been the quality of this match and this is a great advert for Championship football


BLACKPOOL 2-2 CARDIFF CITY: He doesn't have to wait long for another chance as TAYLOR-FLETCHER heads in the loose ball from close range following a scramble at a corner. What a game!


Gary Taylor-Fletcher holds his head after rattling the post with a 20-yard half-volley which had Marshall beaten


BLACKPOOL 1-2 CARDIFF CITY: LEDLEY slots the ball home from 12 yards after a great throughball from Whittingham opens up the Pool defence down the inside-left channel


Chopra and Ledley play a neat one-two in the box but the ball is blocked out for a corner as Cardiff make a rare foray up front


Cardiff just can't retain the ball as we edge towards half-time and Blackpool fully deserve to be back on level terms


Adam leaves Ledley in a heap in the centre circle and that's almost the first free-kick for a foul in the opening 32 minutes


Ledley lofts a perfect pass into the feet of Chopra but he mis-times a 10-yard volley and Blackpool are given a let-off


Peter Whittingham drives in an ambitious angled shot which is well wide but at least it earns the Cardiff defence some much-needed respite


Dave Jones looks an agitated man in the Cardiff technical area as his side remains second best


Blackpool are domninating possession as we move towards the midway point of the first half. Cardiff just can't break out of their own half


David Vaughan goes for goal from 25 yards but his powerful left-foot effort drifts just wide of the upright with Marshall covering


Campbell takes a swipe at fresh air after being picked out by an inch-perfect cut-back from the left wing. That was a really good chance for the on-loan striker


Darcy Blake does well to cut out a terrific cross into the heart of the six-yard box and this is a real end-to-end encounter


Chopra looks a real livewire up front for the Bluebirds and the Blackpool defence will have to be wary of him as this open match progresses


Bothroyd finally limps off with a possible calf problem and Kelvin Etuhu takes his place


BLACKPOOL 1-1 CARDIFF CITY: CHARLIE ADAM lights up Wembley as he steps up and drills a stunning 25-yard free-kick over the wall and into the top corner of Marshall's net


The Cardiff fans are in full voice now and there's silence among the hoardes of orange-clad Seasiders followers


BLACKPOOL 0-1 CARDIFF CITY: CHOPRA picks his spot low past the keeper after coming back from an offside position to latch on to Joe Ledley's inch-perfect throughball


Dave Jones is barking out orders from his technical area and Bothroyd might have to bow out early as he's still not happy


Cardiff have their tails up now as they attack down both flanks. Meanwhile, Jay Bothroyd looks like he might be struggling with a foot problem


Michael Chopra rattles the woodwork as he gets across Evatt and meets a near-post cross with an outstretched foot. That was Cardiff's first attack and it almost ended in an early goal


Ian Evatt overhits a long ball down the middle looking for Dudley Campbell and the Cardiff keeper claims


David Marshall comes off his line but fails to get the ball only for his defence to recover. Blackpool are on top in the opening moments


Cardiff get the game underway to a huge roar from both sets of fans

Awaiting Kickoff

The teams are on the Wembley turf, the sun is beating down and we are just minutes away from kick-off

Awaiting Kickoff

Both sides are unchanged from the second legs of the semi-finals when Cardiff beat Leicester City on penalties and Blackpool overcame Nottingham Forest

Awaiting Kickoff

Dave Jones' Cardiff are pre-match favourites but don't write off the Seasiders following their superb season under maverick manager Ian Holloway

Awaiting Kickoff

It's the richest game in world football - with the winner earning a reported £90million from promotion to the top-flight

Awaiting Kickoff

Cardiff City take on Blackpool in this afternoon's Championship play-off final at Wembley with the winner earning a lucrative place in the Premier League