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Saturday 19 May 2012

West Ham promoted to Barclays Premier League

Striker Ricardo Vaz Te scores late winner in Championship play-off final

Ricardo Vaz Te with the goal that won West Ham promotion to the Barclays Premier League

Blackpool 1-2 West Ham United

West Ham United secured an immediate return to the Barclays Premier League after beating Blackpool in the Championship play-off final at Wembley.

Striker Ricardo Vaz Te was the Hammers hero, rifling into the roof of the net after the ball broke to him in the penalty area in the 87th minute.

After Stephen Dobbie had hit the post for Blackpool, the Hammers took a first-half lead when Carlton Cole latched on to Matt Taylor's pass and fired past Matt Gilks.

But Blackpool responded superbly and levelled straight after half-time when Tom Ince expertly directed a Matt Phillips pass into the corner of Robert Green's net.

Blackpool had chances to go in front but Green and the West Ham defence stood firm, and after Kevin Nolan had thumped a volley against the crossbar for the Hammers, Vaz Te lashed in the winner.

West Ham join Reading and Southampton in winning promotion from the Championship this term.

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Key Points

  • West Ham beat Blackpool in Championship play-off final to win promotion
  • Cole gave West Ham lead; Ince struck equaliser
  • Vaz Te popped up in 87th minute to rifle winner