Hull City won promotion back to the Premier League at the first attempt after beating Sheffield Wednesday 1-0 in the play-off final at Wembley.
Mohamed Diame’s stunning strike with just less than 20 minutes to play was enough for the Tigers to claim victory, as his 25-yard shot flew past Keiren Westwood for his tenth, and most important, goal of the campaign.
Wednesday goalkeeper Westwood kept Carlos Carvalhal’s side in the game after making several outstanding saves as the Yorkshire club tried to regain their top flight status for the first time in 16 years.
Before Steve Bruce’s men took the lead they had already hit the post via a Diame effort and seen a header from Abel Hernandez cleared off the line by Kieran Lee.
Captain Michael Dawson also had a volley brilliantly saved by Westwood, who was arguably the best player on the pitch.
Wednesday’s best chances came from a Ross Wallace free-kick, which was comfortably saved by Eldin Jakupovic, and Fernando Forestieri who also failed to find the target.
But, it was the Tigers who dominated the game and on the day they thoroughly deserved their win and the estimated prize of £170m, thanks to the new television rights deal the Premier League has in place for next season.
Barnsley will be plying their trade in the Championship next season after a resounding 3-1 victory over Millwall at Wembley on Sunday.
The Tykes raced into an early lead as they scored twice in the opening 20 minutes, with on-loan Manchester United striker Ashley Fletcher finding the net after just 88 seconds with a well-timed finish after a defensive error.
Adam Hammill then doubled Barnsley’s lead with an excellent 25-yard curling effort after a brilliant mazy run on the left wing.
Mark Beevers did pull one back for the Lions before half-time, with a simple finish from close-range, but Lloyd Isgrove sealed the win with 15 minutes left to play as he notched up only the second goal of his career with a great header from Conor Hourihane’s corner.
Paul Heckingbottom’s side have now been victorious at Wembley twice this season after winning the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy in April, and they can now look forward to playing the likes of Newcastle United and Aston Villa next term.
Meanwhile, Neil Harris’ side will remain in League One despite having a tremendous campaign in which they almost sealed promotion back to the Championship at the first attempt.
AFC Wimbledon sealed their sixth promotion in just 14 season since they were founded with a 2-0 win against Plymouth Argyle in the play-off final on Bank Holiday Monday.
In a tight affair, the opening Dons goal didn’t come until the 78th minute, when Lyle Taylor finished well from a corner, before substitute Adebayo Akinfenwa, making his last appearance for the club after it was announced that he would’t be offered a new deal at Kingsmeadow, netted an injury time penalty.
Neal Ardley’s men will now play in the third tier of English football for the first time in their history, where they will face arch-rivals MK Dons, who were relegated from the Championship this term.
Meanwhile, despite being in the top three for most of the campaign, Argyle eventually fell short and now must prepare for their sixth successive season in League Two.