Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Ups and Downs from Charlton's Narrow Escape to Palace's PS120m Penalty, Giuseppe Muro on London's Rollercoaster Ride in the Play-Off Final

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Ups and Downs from Charlton's Narrow Escape to Palace's PS120m Penalty, Giuseppe Muro on London's Rollercoaster Ride in the Play-Off Final

Article excerpt

THE first two years of the play-offs saw the fourth-bottom team in the First Division joining the three teams who finished below the automatic promotion places in the Second Division.

1987 CHARLTON (STAYED UP) First Division Charlton stayed up by beating Leeds in the final. Two legs could not separate the sides so a decider was arranged at St Andrews, Birmingham, where Charlton won 2-1 after extra-time.

1988 CHELSEA (RELEGATED) Chelsea are the only team to go down from the top flight via the play-offs. They finished fourth bottom in Division One and were beaten 2-1 by Division Two Middlesbrough over two legs.

1989 C PALACE (PROMOTED) One of the most dramatic Play-off Finals in history saw Crystal Palace beat Blackburn in the last-ever two-legged final. Trailing 3-1 from the first leg, goals from Ian Wright and Dave Madden took the game into extra-time. Wright scored a 117th-minute winner to spark a pitch invasion at Selhurst Park, joy at full-time (left) and send Palace up.

1996 C PALACE (MISSED OUT) In the final minute of extra-time at Wembley, Leicester manager Martin O'Neill brought on 6ft 7in substitute goalkeeper Zeljko Kalac for a penalty shootout. But with just two seconds of extra-time remaining, Steve Claridge scored to break Palace hearts. Palace players later admitted they were put off by O'Neill's substitution.

1997 C PALACE (PROMOTED) After the disappointment of the previous year, it was Palace who were promoted to the Premier League with virtually the last kick of the game against Sheffield United in front of 64,000 at Wembley. Scotland midfielder David Hopkin (above) scored an injury-time winner to send the Eagles up.

1998 CHARLTON (PROMOTED) Arguably the most exciting game ever played at Wembley. A sensational final between Charlton and Sunderland saw the Addicks emerge triumphant 7-6 on penalties after a 4-4 draw. …

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