Forest Green Rovers 1, Tranmere Rovers 1
Tranmere win 2-1 on aggregate
Former Forest Green Rovers hit man James Norwood wrecked hopes of a Severnside derby in the League Two play-off final at Wembley Stadium.
Norwood scored for Tranmere in their 1-1 draw against Forest Green Rovers at the New Lawn.
That earned Tranmere a 2-1 aggregate win and they will play Newport County in the final at Wembley Stadium.
Former England schoolboy international Norwood, now aged 26, netted his 32nd goal of the season.
— Tranmere Rovers FC (@TranmereRovers) May 13, 2019
Forest Green finished with 10 players after having Carl Winchester sent off for a second bookable offence.
Joseph Mills opened the scoring for Rovers with a well-directed first half header before a Norwood volley levelled the scores.
Tranmere moved to within one win of achieving back-to-back promotions. Micky Mellon’s side, who went up through the National League play-offs last term, will face Newport County at Wembley on Saturday, May 25 for a place in the third tier.
Mellon’s team will be going to Wembley for the third year in a row.
Tranmere are bidding to return to League One for the first time since their relegation in 2014, which was followed by another relegation and then three years in non-league.
Tranmere had the advantage of an extra man for about 100 minutes over the two games, with Gavin Gunning shown a straight red card early in the first leg and then Winchester’s second-half dismissal on Monday.
— Nicola Palios (@NicolaPalios) May 13, 2019
Wirral-based Premier League referee Mike Dean – a Tranmere fan – was among the travelling supporters at The New Lawn, enjoying the moment as Mellon’s men celebrated a third play-off semi-final victory in as many seasons.
Forest Green Rovers: Ward, Shephard, Collins (McCoulsky 81), Rawson, Winchester, Grubb (James 70), Doidge, Brown, McGinley, Mills (capt), Mondal (Williams 45). Unused subs: Montgomery, Pearce, Digby, Godwin-Malife
Tranmere Rovers XI: Davies (capt), Ridehalgh, Nelson, Monthe, Harris, Norwood, Jennings, Caprice, Perkins Morris (Gilmour 66), Banks. Unused subs: Pilling, Buxton, McNulty, Mullin, Smith, Dagnall
Referee: Eddie Ilderton
Attendance: 4492 (1188 away)