2011 Football League One play-off Final

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2011 Football League One play-off final
Old Trafford inside 20060726 1.jpg
Old Trafford hosted the match
Event 2010–11 Football League One
Date 29 May 2011
Venue Old Trafford, Manchester
Man of the Match Grant McCann[1]
Referee Steve Tanner
Attendance 48,410

The 2011 Football League One play-off final was a football match contested by Huddersfield Town and Peterborough United on 29 May 2011 at Old Trafford to decide the third team to be promoted from League One to the Championship for the 2011–12 season.

Under League One play-off rules, the final is contested by the two teams which secured an aggregate victory over two-legged semi-finals, with the team that finished sixth in the league table (Bournemouth) having played third (Huddersfield Town), and fifth (Milton Keynes Dons) having played fourth (Peterborough United).

Peterborough United won the match by a scoreline of 3–0, with goals from Tommy Rowe, Craig Mackail-Smith and Grant McCann in the later stages of the second half.

Venue controversy[edit]

Due to the UEFA Champions League 2011 final being held at Wembley Stadium on 28 May 2011, it appeared that the three Football League play-off finals may have to be played at a different venue for the first time since 2007 due to the double-booking of Wembley.

Manchester United's Old Trafford had been confirmed as a possible alternative, while Arsenal's Emirates Stadium and the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff were also said to be under consideration to host the Championship, League One and League Two play-off finals.[2]

It was later confirmed that Wembley would host the Championship play-off final on 30 May, while Old Trafford would host the League Two and League One finals on 28 and 29 May respectively.[3]

Route to the final[edit]

The two-legged semi-finals determined that the final will be contested by Huddersfield Town and Peterborough United.

First legs[edit]

14 May 2011
Bournemouth 1 – 1 Huddersfield Town
McDermott Goal 60' Report Kilbane Goal 22'
Dean Court, Bournemouth
Attendance: 9,043
Referee: Mick Russell (Hertfordshire)

Second legs[edit]

18 May 2011
Huddersfield Town 3 – 3 (a.e.t.) Bournemouth
Peltier Goal 27'
Ward Goal 45+2'
Kay Goal 105+2'
Report Lovell Goal 45' (pen.)63'
Ings Goal 104'
Novak Penalty scored
Ward Penalty scored
Kilbane Penalty scored
Kay Penalty scored
4 – 2 Penalty scored Symes
Penalty missed Feeney
Penalty missed Robinson
Penalty scored Cooper

Huddersfield Town 4–4 Bournemouth on aggregate. Huddersfield Town won 4–2 on penalties.

19 May 2011
Peterborough United 2 – 0 Milton Keynes Dons
McCann Goal 11'
Mackail-Smith Goal 54'
London Road Stadium, Peterborough
Attendance: 11,920
Referee: Colin Webster (Northumberland)

Peterborough United won 4–3 on aggregate.

Match overview[edit]


Huddersfield Town fans at Old Trafford
Huddersfield Town fans at Old Trafford
Peterborough United fans at old Trafford
Peterborough United fans celebrate

A victory would see Huddersfield Town return to the second tier of English football for the first time since the 2000-01 season. The Terriers went into the final unbeaten in twenty-three games in all competitions, including thirteen wins. Manager Lee Clark saw his team finish ninth and sixth in the two seasons prior to concluding the 2010-11 campaign in third place. This was Huddersfield's sixth venture in the play-offs and their second consecutive; the two years that they reached the final (1995 and 2004) they secured promotion.

For Peterborough United, a final win would mean an immediate return to the Championship, having spent only one of their last seventeen seasons in League One. The London Road club were the top-scoring club in the country this campaign, with 106 goals (their 46 league games generated a total of 181 goals, or 3.93 per game). Manager Darren Ferguson, who returned in January 2011, two years after leaving them at the end of the first managerial appointment of his career, will oversee his club's third play-off campaign; 1992 and 2000 were both successful attempts at promotion via the play-offs for the eastern England side.[4]


Despite the form of both teams, the match appeared to be heading for extra-time until the 78th minute when Peterborough's Tommy Rowe broke the deadlock when he flicked a header in from a Grant McCann free-kick. Two minutes later, Craig Mackail-Smith's shot deflected in off Antony Kay, and any remaining Huddersfield hopes were dashed when McCann curled in an 85th-minute free-kick to seal Town's first league defeat of 2011 and United's third play-off success in as many attempts.[4] McCann also became the first player to win three play-off finals at three different stadiums, with three different clubs, having already won at the Millennium Stadium with Cheltenham in 2006 and at Wembley with Scunthorpe in 2009.


Huddersfield Town
Peterborough United
GK 13 England Ian Bennett
DF 32 England Jack Hunt YC 39'
DF 8 England Antony Kay YC 76'
DF 5 England Peter Clarke (c)
DF 3 Scotland Gary Naysmith
MF 20 Republic of Ireland Kevin Kilbane
MF 10 England Danny Ward Substituted off 79'
MF 2 England Lee Peltier YC 34'
MF 16 Scotland Scott Arfield Substituted off 81'
MF 7 England Gary Roberts
FW 24 England Benik Afobe Substituted off 81'
GK 25 Republic of Ireland Nick Colgan
DF 18 England Jamie McCombe
MF 4 Iceland Joey Guðjónsson
FW 9 England Danny Cadamarteri Substituted in 79'
FW 17 Scotland Jordan Rhodes Substituted in 81'
FW 19 Republic of Ireland Alan Lee Substituted in 81'
FW 21 England Lee Novak
England Lee Clark
GK 28 England Paul Jones
DF 2 England Mark Little
DF 5 Democratic Republic of the Congo Gabriel Zakuani
DF 16 England Ryan Bennett
DF 27 Wales Grant Basey Substituted off 64'
MF 7 Australia James Wesolowski
MF 11 Northern Ireland Grant McCann (c)
MF 14 England Tommy Rowe Substituted off 84'
MF 10 Scotland George Boyd
MF 24 England Lee Tomlin YC 29' Substituted off 90+2'
FW 12 Scotland Craig Mackail-Smith
GK 30 England Barry Richardson
DF 4 England Kelvin Langmead
DF 6 England Charlie Lee YC 65' Substituted in 64'
MF 18 England Chris Whelpdale Substituted in 84'
MF 19 England Nathaniel Mendez-Laing
MF 35 England Joe Newell
FW 9 England David Ball Substituted in 90+2'
Scotland Darren Ferguson


  • Assistant referees:
    • Peter Bankes
    • Charles Breakspear
  • Fourth official: Mick Russell


  • 90 minutes.
  • 30 minutes of extra-time if necessary.
  • Penalty shootout if scores still level.
  • Seven named substitutes.
  • Maximum of three substitutions.


  1. ^ "HUDDERSFIELD 0 -- PETERBOROUGH 3: FERGIE'S BOY RESTORES THE FAMILY PRIDE". Daily Express. 2011-05-30. Retrieved 2011-05-30. 
  2. ^ Ogden, Mark (16 April 2010). "Old Trafford considered as venue for 2010-11 Football League play-off finals". Telegraph. London. 
  3. ^ "2011 Football League Play-Off Final and Semi-Final Dates". London Events 2011. 
  4. ^ a b Begley, Emlyn (29 May 2011). "BBC Sport - Huddersfield 0-3 Peterborough". BBC News. Archived from the original on 30 May 2011. Retrieved 2011-05-30. 
  5. ^ "News | npower Play-Offs | npower Play-Offs news | npower League 1 Play-Off final preview". The Football League. Retrieved 2011-05-30.