As it happened: Blackpool 2-1 Lincoln City in the League One Play-Off Final
Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images


17:25a year ago

Thanks for following!

That's it from us at VAVEL this afternoon - what a game that was!

The play-offs never disappoint, especially if you are a Blackpool fan who return to the second tier after securing their sixth promotion via the play-offs!

Thank you for following along!

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17:22a year ago

Critchley reaction

"The support I've been given [from everyone at the club] has been incredible, especially after the slow start we made to the season.

"Two fantastic strikes [from Dougall] Kenny is a top guy and great to work with, as are all the players at the club!

"We're under no illusions as to how tough the Championship will be [...] but will go up and give everything we've got [next season]."

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17:14a year ago

Play-off ecstasy for the 'Pool

17:12a year ago

Dougall reaction

"Earlier on in the season, he [Critchley] was telling me not to shoot!

"We'll enjoy tonight, that's for sure!"

Dougall the obvious man of the match in this one, with two brilliant goals from the defensive midfielder.

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17:08a year ago

Turton reaction

"It [the ball] came so quick so I couldn't do much about it, but we still had ninety minutes to play so we had to stick to the game plan.

"We knew we'd create chances and score goals, and that's what we've done!

"I've been here four years and the club has come on leaps and bounds during that time - the only way is up now!"

Relief for the defender in the end!

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17:02a year ago

Blackpool love the play-offs

16:58a year ago

What a season for Critchley's men

16:55a year ago


There were some nervous moments at the end there for Neil Critchley's side, but the EFL's most successful play-off side have won again, and they're back in the Championship after a six-year absence!
16:52a year ago

90+4' Poole with a big chance!

Most likely the final chance for Lincoln to equalise as the ball falls to defender Poole with space and time to shoot just inside the box.

He's leaning back, however, and the ball was only going upwards as he swung his right boot at it. That could be it.

16:47a year ago

90' Standing ovation for Yates

Jordan Thornley replaces Yates, who has put in a professional performance for his side today despite not scoring, and he gets some appreciation from the Blackpool support as he walks off the field.
16:46a year ago

88' Rogers fires just wide!

Maxwell in the Blackpool goal is relieved to see Rogers' curling effort bounce just wide of the right post as the Lincoln player was given time and space to shoot!
16:43a year ago

85' Lincoln toiling for an equaliser

Substitute Morton heads over from a Johnson cross, but Lincoln are struggling to create clear-cut opportunities, and time is running out to find that crucial equaliser
16:35a year ago

77' Madine goes close with a header!

They brought him on to win the aerial battles, and he does on this occasion; he can't quite keep his header down, however, as it loops onto the roof of the net!

Another good opportunity for Blackpool to put the game out of sight - will they rue these missed chances?!

16:32a year ago

15 minutes for Blackpool to hold on!

16:31a year ago

73' Great chance for Yates!

Blackpool's top scorer has had to be patient this afternoon, but when Dougall's through-ball rolled straight into his path, you would expect him to score!

Yates looks to chip Palmer but does not get enough power on the ball to see it over the goal-line!

16:28a year ago

69' Madine on as Blackpool look to go direct

It looks to be a switch to a straight 4-4-2 formation for Blackpool as they bring on the Madine for Mitchell, with the aim to go more direct as Lincoln push for an equaliser.
16:19a year ago

61' Big opening for Lincoln!

Lincoln need a response, and Johnson could be the man to provide it if they can get the ball to him more often!

The ball falls to the winger in the box, and he gets in the position to shoot from close range but hesitates and allows more defenders to arrive on the scene!

16:13a year ago


Blackpool have an unlikely hero in Dougall as he grabs his and his side's second goal to turn the game on its head!

Good work from Jerry Yates to hold the ball up in the box and roll it into the midfielder's path to strike!

16:09a year ago

51' Lincoln defend well as Pool bombard box

The Imps are standing firm in defence as Blackpool continue to get balls into the box - they're having a lot of success down the right-hand side to start the half!
16:04a year ago

46' Back underway

Lincoln need to pick up their performance if they're going to win this game! Can Blackpool keep up the pressure?
15:57a year ago

Dougall equaliser

15:57a year ago

Opening goal

15:48a year ago

HT: Scores are level, but Blackpool on top!

It was the perfect start for Lincoln, scoring inside the first minute, but ever since that happened, Blackpool have been one step ahead and deserved their equaliser.

Food for thought for both managers at the break!

15:43a year ago

41' Mitchell again with a chance!

This time the winger gets a free header on the edge of the six-yard box, but Palmer gets down well to save! 

Lincoln really on the back foot here; the midfield have been starved of possession, and Blackpool continue to press!

15:36a year ago


Elliot Embleton rolls the ball to Kenny Dougall outside the Lincoln area - he fires a low, swerving effort that Plamer gets a hand to but can't keep out!

Definitely deserved for the Tangerines; they've been on top since conceding!

15:28a year ago

27' Palmer denies Mitchell!

Two hands to the ball from Palmer to push away Mitchell's strong effort from about ten yards out! Big save!
15:26a year ago

25' Grant hits the bar!

Lincoln come so close to a crucial second goal as Jorge Grant is given the space to turn and shoot from just outside the box. His curling efforts clips the crossbar and spins out! SO CLOSE!
15:22a year ago

21' Garbutt on target with free-kick

Garbutt manages to guide his long-distance free-kick on target, but Palmer is well-positioned to grab the ball.
15:16a year ago

15' Poor effort from Mitchell

Demetri Mitchell gets into a good position to shoot on his left foot just outside the box, but his shot is poor, and Alex Palmer easily collects.
15:10a year ago

9' Yellow for Garbutt, great start from Johnson

Luke Garbutt gets an early yellow as Brennan Johnson glides past him and forces the defender to foul.

Johnson has made a great start for the Imps, playing a crucial role in the own goal, getting to the byline and crossing the ball in.

15:03a year ago

1' GOAL LINCOLN! Nightmare OG for Turton!

Wow. What a start! It's poor from the young defender who gets his body position all wrong to turn the ball into his own net trying to clear a low cross into the box!
15:00a year ago

1' We're underway at Wembley!

The fans of both sides are in full voice as the game gets underway to decide who will occupy the final spot in the Championship next season!
14:55a year ago

Teams are out!

The teams are out; the stage is set! Time for play-off final number two of three this weekend!
14:50a year ago

A momentous day for Lincoln

Lincoln have lost both of their previous Football League play-off finals; both played at the Millennium Stadium, but they did win their only previous Wembley appearance in the final of the 2018 EFL Trophy.

The Imps are looking to reach England's second tier for the first time in 60 years against Blackpool - the most successful play-off side.

Lincoln would become the first-ever team to win promotion from the non-league, fourth tier and third tier in the space of five seasons if they're successful today!

14:45a year ago

How Lincoln made the final

14:40a year ago

How Blackpool made the final

14:35a year ago

30 mins to KO! Who will be the key man in this one?

Not long to go now! Who will be the key player in this fixture?

Will Jerry Yates add to his 21 goals this season? He's scored and set up three goals each in his last four appearances!

Can Jorge Grant lead the way for a Lincoln? He leads the way for goals and assists in his team with 22 direct goal contributions.

14:30a year ago

Blackpool FC: The Tangerine dream

The last decade or so has been a rollercoaster ride for the seaside club; Trent Hutson looks into this journey in-depth for VAVEL UK...


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14:25a year ago

Lincoln arrive a little late!

14:20a year ago

Slight tweaks for both teams

Blackpool boss Neil Critchley is forced to make one change to the side that drew 3-3 with Oxford in the semi-final second leg, as Keshi Anderson replaces Ellis Simms.

As expected, Connor McGrandles and Joe Walsh start after their impressive substitute performances in the second-leg against Sunderland!

14:15a year ago

Lincoln confirmed team

14:10a year ago

Blackpool confirmed team

14:05a year ago

Last meeting

14:00a year ago

Lots of goals this afternoon?

The two League One matches between Blackpool and Lincoln this season produced nine goals - a 3-2 win for the Imps at Bloomfield Road and a 2-2 draw at Sincil Bank.

If that's anything to go by, then when should be in for a great game this afternoon!

13:55a year ago

Will form matter in the final?

At the beginning of March, Blackpool were in the bottom half of the league, but an incredible run, including 5 wins in their last six, has them as the bookies favourite.

Lincoln's form has not been quite as brilliant this calender year, and they'll have to become just the fifth team to beat Blackpool in the last five months to gain promotion.

They have, however, done the double over the Seasiders this season, and anything can happen in the final!

13:50a year ago

Players get their first look at Wembley turf

13:45a year ago

Blackpool prolific in the play-offs

13:40a year ago

Check out our preview!

With not long to go to kick-off at Wembley Stadium, why not check out our PREVIEW, written by Jack Theaker, to get all the information you need for the game!

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13:35a year ago

Follow the big game on VAVEL

Do not miss a detail of the match with the live updates and commentaries of VAVEL. Follow along with us all the details, commentaries, analysis and lineups for Blackpool vs Lincoln City.
13:30a year ago

Appleton surprised by his team's performance this season

Appleton admitted that the Lincolnshire outfit's incredible progress has taken even him by surprise but is determined to grasp the opportunity to make history. (via LincolnshireLive)

The Lincoln boss said: "If you want to build something, you've got to do it step by step and hope that you put the foundations in place to go up to the next level.

"We've done a lot quicker than we thought we would but we've got an opportunity to do something, and hopefully we can do that now."

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13:25a year ago

Critchley wants one last push

Blackpool boss Critchley insists nothing has been achieved yet, and it's no good coming back empty-handed from Wembley. (via Blackpool Gazette)

Critchley said: "The consistency we have shown has been outstanding, but I've said on many occasions I know the strength of the squad we've got and the quality we've got in the dressing room, so my job is always to challenge them and make sure I get the best out of them.

"I think they've done that, but we're not quite finished yet."

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13:20a year ago

How to watch Blackpool vs Lincoln City Live TV and Stream

If you want to watch the game on TV, your options are: Sky Sports Football and Main Event channels

If you want to stream it directly: Sky Go or NOW TV

If you want to watch it on the internet, VAVEL UK is your best option!

13:15a year ago

Lincoln City: Predicted Lineup

(4-3-3): Palmer, Poole, Eyoma, Walsh, Edun, McGrandles, Bridcutt, Grant, Johnson, Hopper, Rogers.
13:10a year ago

Blackpool: Predicted Lineup

(4-4-2): Maxwell, Turton, Ekpiteta, Husband, Garbutt, Mitchell, Stewart, Dougall, Embleton, Simms, Yates.
13:05a year ago

Lincoln City team news

Taken from Jack Theaker's preview on VAVEL UK:

In the other camp, Lincoln manager Michael Appleton could start both Joe Walsh and Conor McGrandles after their impressive impact off the bench in the semi-final second leg. 

James Jones and Adam Jackson will miss the game, however, so TJ Eyoma is likely to continue at centre-back, where he has been so solid in recent weeks. Although Eyoma, Walsh and Lewis Montsma have all been put down as ‘50/50’ for the game.  

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13:00a year ago

Blackpool team news

Taken from Jack Theaker's preview on VAVEL UK:

Blackpool boss Neil Critchley could be without promising defender Dan Ballard who went off with a knock at half-time of their second leg, following a meaty challenge.

There is a possibility that winger Sullay Kaikai will be involved after missing out on both semi-final legs with a hamstring injury. However, it will likely be from the bench, if anything.    

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12:55a year ago

Lincoln's incredible rise

Blackpool's time spent away from the second tier of English football is unequivocally trumped by the Imps, who will bid to end a 50-year absence on Sunday.

The Lincolnshire outfit were playing non-league football just over four years ago, and they were by no means considered a promotion candidate this season.

Firstly under the Cowley brothers and now Michael Appleton, Lincoln have built a solid foundation for future success whether or not they are triumphant on Sunday.

12:50a year ago

A new dawn for The Tangerines

It has now been six years since Blackpool fans last experienced Championship football, with the North-West outfit having finished no higher than 10th in League One during that time - until now.

Since 16 February, Neil Critchley's side have only lost two games, both by 1-0 scorelines, a momentous run that has Blackpool within touching distance of second-tier football for the first time in a while

12:45a year ago

Route to the final

Blackpool finished third in the League One table, setting up a semi-final tie with Oxford United, who they overcame comfortably, winning 6-3 on aggregate.

It was not quite as plain sailing for Lincoln, who had to fend off a second-leg comeback from Sunderland to book their place at Wembley with a 3-2 aggregate victory.

12:40a year ago

Kick-off time

Blackpool vs Lincoln City will be played at Wembley Stadium, in London, England. The kick-off is scheduled at 15:00 BST.
12:35a year ago


Welcome to VAVEL UK’s LIVE coverage of the 2021 Sky Bet League One play-off final: Blackpool vs Lincoln City! My name is Sam Allen and I’ll be your host for this game. We will provide you with pre-game analysis, team updates, and news as it happens live here on