Play-off classics

Ahead of the Championship play-off final between Crystal Palace and Watford at Wembley on Monday, we look back into the archives for some memorable matches, next up is Blackpool 3 Cardiff 2.

Blackpool's manager Ian Holloway celebrates in 2010

Throughout its 26-year history, the second tier play-off final has provided thrills and spills aplenty - with it surprising to see so many enthralling encounters played out when the stakes are so high.

Another contest to have kept viewers on the edge of their seats was Blackpool's clash with Cardiff City in 2010.

The Bluebirds were looking to make history as the first Welsh club to reach the Premier League, but ended up suffering on two counts as they came unstuck against the plucky Seasiders and saw Swansea succeed where they failed 12 months on.

It appeared at one stage as if Cardiff would get over the line in 2010, as they twice took the lead at Wembley. Michael Chopra offered them the perfect start with just nine minutes on the clock, only to see Charlie Adam lash home a spectacular free-kick for Blackpool.

The Bluebirds edged back in front courtesy of Joe Ledley on 37 minutes, but once again they were quickly pegged back as Gary Taylor-Fletcher equalised four minutes later. The Seasiders had momentum firmly behind them at that stage and Brett Ormerod pounced in first half stoppage-time to make Ian Holloway's half-time team talk a little easier.

Whatever the enigmatic tactician said, it worked. After an enthralling first half produced five goals, the second quickly became an intriguing battle of wills. Blackpool held their nerve to tumble over the line, with a 3-2 success setting up a top flight adventure which will live long in the memory of those involved.