Charlton Athletic promoted to the Championship after late Wembley drama against Sunderland
Charlton Athletic 2 Sunderland 1Captain Patrick Bauer’s scrambled last-gasp strike sealed Charlton’s promotion to the Championship in a dramatic League One play-off final victory over Sunderland at Wembley.
The centre back prodded home after Sunderland goalkeeper Jon McLaughlin had parried his initial header to send the Addicks into raptures and English football’s second tier for the first time in three years.
Charlton fully deserved their victory but pulled it off in almost the hardest possible way after leaking a calamitous own goal from Naby Sarr in the fifth minute.
Ben Purrington levelled before half-time thanks to Lyle Taylor’s assist, and just when the clash looked headed for extra time, up popped Bauer with the winner.
It was the cruellest of ways for Sunderland to be consigned to a second year in England’s third tier but in truth the Wearsiders could hardly argue with the result.
Charlton boss Lee Bowyer said his side’s last-gasp victory was the best moment of his career.
“It’s not sunk in yet,” he said. “All I’m seeing is all these proud people. I’m so proud of my players, they just keep going and going.
“I said it in the semi-finals, they just give me everything. This is probably the proudest moment of my whole career.”