Peterborough United have secured promotion to the Championship after a stunning comeback against Lincoln City.
Today’s 3-3 draw has confirmed Posh’s automatic promotion from League One, meaning they will return to the second tier of English football for the first time since 2013.
On 84 points with just one league match to play, Darren Ferguson’s side cannot be caught by any of the chasing pack.
Hull City, who lead Posh by five points, were also crowned champions today after a 3-1 victory at home to Wigan.
Though it could (and maybe should) have been secured against Doncaster Rovers on Tuesday, Posh showed character today (May 1) as they fought back from a three-goal deficit.
Anthony Scully headed Lincoln into a 31st-minute lead before Jorge Grant doubled the advantage from the penalty spot in first-half stoppage time after Morgan Rogers was sent tumbling by Nathan Thompson.
City looked set to have sealed victory when Scully struck again from 20 yards eight minutes into the second half, but Posh came roaring back.
Siriki Dembele began the revival in the 65th minute before Clarke-Harris struck with a deflected free-kick after 76 minutes.
Newly-crowned League One Player of the Year Clarke-Harris then hit the bar with a header before Posh were handed one final chance when referee John Busby pointed to the penalty spot in the sixth minute of added time.
Scully went from hero to villain when bringing down Sammie Szmodics and Clarke-Harris lashed home his 31st league goal of a spectacular campaign to send Posh up and leave City facing the play-offs.
10 years on from Peterborough’s last promotion to the Championship – also achieved by Ferguson – it is a remarkable feat for the club and manager, who has now won promotion four times with Posh.
Granted, it may not have been achieved in quite the dramatic style of the club’s last ascent to the Championship – a 3-0 Play-Off final win against Huddersfield at Old Trafford – no fan will care.
Having marginally missed out on the League One Play-Offs in both of the last two seasons – finishing seventh both times, Ferguson has now got the club over the line.
It has been on the agonising side in recent weeks. Victory on Tuesday against Doncaster could have secured promotion, especially considering Posh were 2-0 up.
Having squandered the lead and dropped two points in the process, you would not have blamed fans for feeling as if they were cursed.
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However, that loss of composure was just a blip – with today’s result putting it beyond all doubt and continuing the fine form that has seen Posh ascend to the upper echelons of the table.
It has been a campaign that people associated with the club – fans, players and staff – will look back at fondly.
Mark Beevers, Joe Ward and Jonson Clarke-Harris have all been included in the division’s team of the season, with Clarke-Harris picking up the player of the season gong for his 31 league goals.
The football and the results have warranted promotion, taking Posh back to a division that they may feel is their rightful home.