On This Day: City earn place at Wembley with dramatic derby triumph

Wes Hoolahan celebrates after scoring from the spot, moments after Christophe Berra saw red Picture:

Wes Hoolahan celebrates after scoring from the spot, moments after Christophe Berra saw red Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

‘For one team, the season ends today. For the other the dream lives on’ – so said the front page of the Pink Un.

The day was May 16, 2015, the occasion the second leg of the Championship play-off final. The opposition: Ipswich Town. The scoreline at ‘half-time’: 1-1.

This was anyone’s game, play-offs re like cup finals - unpredictable. But the odds were stacked in City’s favour. City were the top home scorers in the division with 50 in 23 games. Ipswich had failed to win any of their last three Championship away games

Ipswich conceded more (36) than they scored (32) on the road in the Championship. City were unbeaten in the previous five Carrow Road derbies against Town. And then Town had a Devon Loch moment when it all went pear-shaped and the race suddenly got an awful lot more difficult. Christophe Berra acted on instinct when he stuck out his left arm to prevent Nathan Redmond’s shot from going in, Berra saw red, Wes Hoolahan calmly rolled the ball home, and Norwich were on the way to Wembley and, ultimately, the Premier League.

180 minutes of football and handle Nathan Redmond’s

Nathan Redmon jumps for joy after putting City ahead for the second time Picture:Paul Chesterton/Foc

Nathan Redmon jumps for joy after putting City ahead for the second time Picture:Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd


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Tommy Smith levelled on the hour, but City’s quality shone through as Redmond quickly put them back in front again before Cameron Jerome sealed the deal on 76 minutes.

“I am really proud of the players, after last season’s relegation, to build up a head of steam to give us that momentum to finish the season strongly,” said City boss Alex Neil. “To beat your local rivals is the cherry on top of the cake but we want to top that next week.”

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Which they did, with a comfortable 2-0 win over Middlesbrough...

City: Ruddy, Olsson, Whittaker, Bassong, Martin, Redmond, Tettey, Johnson (Bennett 87), Howson, Jerome (Hooper 83), Hoolahan (Dorrans 74). Subs not used: Murphy, Bennett, O’Neil, Rudd.

Goals: Hoolahan 50 pen, Redmond 64, Jerome 76

Ipswich: Bialkowski, Mings, Berra, Chambers, Smith, Sears, Skuse, Bru (Tabb 71), Anderson (Hunt 83), Bishop (McGoldrick 71), Murphy. Subs not used: Gerken, Clarke, Parr, Hunt.

Goal: Smith 60

Referee: Roger East

Cameron Jerome celebrates after making it 3-1 Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Cameron Jerome celebrates after making it 3-1 Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Att: 26,994

The scoreboard says it all Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

The scoreboard says it all Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Norwich fans celebrate Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Norwich fans celebrate Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Joy for Norwich fans Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Joy for Norwich fans Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Wes Hoolahan keeps Cole Skuse at bay Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Wes Hoolahan keeps Cole Skuse at bay Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Bradley Johnson in action Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Bradley Johnson in action Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Cameron Jerome takes a tumble Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Cameron Jerome takes a tumble Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Delia Smith and Michael Wynn Jones watching the action Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Delia Smith and Michael Wynn Jones watching the action Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Jubilant scenes at the end of the game Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Jubilant scenes at the end of the game Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

And they were! Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

And they were! Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

A City fan celebrates Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

A City fan celebrates Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

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