Forest Green Rovers clinch last gasp League Two title win

Amid extraordinary scenes across Saturday’s EFL League Two final day fixtures, the sustainable superstars of Forest Green Rovers clinched their maiden EFL title with a 2-2 draw away at Mansfield Town, with title rivals Exeter City’s 1-0 home loss to Port Vale sealing their fate.

The carbon neutral crusaders knew before kick off that they’d need results to go their way if they were to be the ones celebrating come full time, and that’s exactly what transpired on a breathless afternoon.

It was a former Aberdeen striker, James Wilson, who scored the only goal of the game for Port Vale which condemned Exeter to 2nd place and another former Dons man, Matty Longstaff, opened the scoring for Mansfield against Forest Green with a well taken finish following a flowing move.

Ebrima Adams levelled for Forest Green on 64 minutes as the away side turned the screw but, as they pushed for a winner, it was the home side, themselves not out of the automatic promotion race, who struck through Jordan Bowery on 78 minutes.

Rovers manager Rob Edwards then turned to the bench, bringing on Josh March for Regan Hendry in an attacking switch which almost immediately yielded the title-winning goal, as the substitute evaded the offside trap before lifting a deft chip over the onrushing keeper.

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Had Exeter City managed a late equaliser in their match, the title would have been theirs, but Port Vale held on to crown Forest Green Rovers as champions on goal difference – in what’s seen as a major victory for the eco-football movement.

Edwards was understandably in buoyant mood as he spoke to the assembled media post-match. “I think the lads completely deserve it. We’ve been at the top all season long, apart from one week. We knew we’d have to come here to Mansfield and get something from the game, but we ultimately knew we were relying on other teams – and thankfully Port Vale did us a big favour today. It’s so difficult to get over the line – as today’s games have shown. We knew we were going up, but to do it as champions is so special. The players deserve it. I’m so proud of them.”

Amazingly, this title tussle almost took a back seat in terms of drama, with Bristol Rovers hitting five second half goals against relegated Scunthorpe to secure the other automatic promotion spot with a scarcely believable final day seven goal difference swing that nudged Northampton Town into the end of season playoffs on goals scored.

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