Antoni Sarcevic's second-half goal earned Fleetwood promotion to the third tier of English football for the first time in their history at the expense of Burton Albion.

Sarcevic's direct 30-yard free-kick flew straight past wrong-footed Brewers keeper Dean Lyness when under pressure from Town defender Nathan Pond.

Billy Kee had gone close to giving Burton the lead earlier in the second half of the League Two play-off final at Wembley, but he fired over when through on goal.

It means Fleetwood have now won promotion in six of the last 10 seasons.

Pond's involvement in the only goal of the game highlighted the dramatic rise of a club who were playing in the North West Counties League just nine years ago, and had last appeared at Wembley as FA Vase finalists in 1985.

The 29-year-old defender has ended his testimonial year with his own personal double hat-trick of promotions, having made his debut for the Lancashire club in front of just 81 fans more than a decade ago.

But it was a second year of heartbreak for Burton fans, who saw their side fall at the semi-final stage against Bradford last season.

Fleetwood celebrate Antoni Sarcevic's second-half goal

Fleetwood celebrate Antoni Sarcevic's second-half goal which won them promotion to League One

Fleetwood, who had finished fourth in only their second season in League Two, had looked the most likely to score early on, with Lyness twice denying David Ball before Pond headed wide from one of the Cod Army's many corners.

Lee Bell went close with a 30-yard strike at the other end and, with Burton beginning to create chances, Adam McGurk fired over with an ambitious attempt before Kee saw a diving header fly just wide of Chris Maxwell's goal.

Maxwell then did well to block another powerful shot from Bell before Burton again found themselves in danger at the other end, with Ball shooting off-target following good work from Conor McLaughlin.

The road to the final

Regular season

  • Fleetwood finished fourth on 76 points; won 22, drew 10, lost 14
  • Burton finished sixth on 72 points; won 19, drew 15, lost 12

Semi-finals

  • Fleetwood beat York 1-0 on aggregate. Only goal came from Matty Blair in first leg.
  • Burton secured a 2-2 draw in second leg against Southend to progress 3-2 on aggregate.

After a stale opening to the second half, Burton began to press more and, after long-range attempts from Bell and Chris Hussey, Kee should have done better when he fired over with just the keeper to beat.

Sarcevic then fired wide at the other end before the Brewers came forward again, this time Robbie Weir shooting over from distance.

As Gary Rowett's side continued to push, Alex MacDonald's shot deflected onto the top of the net and Shane Cansdell-Sherriff headed off target from the resulting corner.

Although Burton controlled much of the second half, it was Sarcevic who broke the deadlock when a distracted Lyness raced off his line and was unable to reach the former Manchester City youngster's long-range free-kick.

Despite even more pressure from the Brewers late on, Graham Alexander's Fleetwood held on to celebrate another significant milestone in their rise from step five of the non-league pyramid to within only two divisions of English football's top flight.

Fleetwood manager Graham Alexander:

"I'm just pleased for my players. They have worked so hard. I'm chuffed to bits. The whole club deserves this."

Long-serving Fleetwood defender Nathan Pond:

"I can't believe it, from the North West Counties League to Wembley, I'm still pinching myself. I did not think any of this would happened when I joined in 2003. Conference maybe but not League One."

Burton manager Gary Rowett:

"I wanted the players to watch Fleetwood pick up the trophy so they felt the hurt. We now have two choices: sit and sulk or use it positively.

"Wembley is a cruel place to lose but I'd rather lose here than in the semi-finals. Goalkeeper Dean Lyness will be hurting - his handling has been terrific this season. We knew a mistake could win or lose it. One or two players just felt the occasion too much."

Lineup, Bookings (1) & Substitutions (5)

Burton Albion

  • 16 Lyness
  • 02 Edwards Booked
  • 15 McFadzean
  • 08 Weir
  • 21 Holness (Diamond - 65' )
  • 25 Cansdell-Sherriff
  • 11 MacDonald (Ismail - 73' )
  • 07 Bell (Palmer - 78' )
  • 29 Kee
  • 20 McGurk
  • 03 Hussey

Substitutes

  • 05 Diamond
  • 09 Alexander
  • 18 Knowles
  • 19 Ismail
  • 23 Palmer
  • 26 Gray
  • 30 Hall

Fleetwood Town

  • 28 Maxwell
  • 15 McLaughlin
  • 20 Taylor
  • 13 Goodall
  • 06 Pond
  • 05 Roberts
  • 17 Blair (Parkin - 74' )
  • 18 Sarcevic
  • 36 Hume (Murdoch - 86' )
  • 23 Ball
  • 24 Morris

Substitutes

  • 04 Murdoch
  • 07 Evans
  • 08 Schumacher
  • 09 Parkin
  • 10 Matt
  • 25 Jordan
  • 33 Lucas
Ref: Michael Naylor
Att: 14,007

Match Stats

Shots

19 16

On target

2 4

Corners

8 8

Fouls

8 13

Live Text Commentary

Full time

Full Time Match ends, Burton Albion 0, Fleetwood Town 1.

90:00 +4:05 Full time

Full Time Second Half ends, Burton Albion 0, Fleetwood Town 1.

90:00 +3:29

Foul by Shane Cansdell-Sherriff (Burton Albion).

90:00 +3:29

Conor McLaughlin (Fleetwood Town) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

90:00 +2:56

Corner, Burton Albion. Conceded by Antoni Sarcevic.

90:00 +2:31

Callum McFadzean (Burton Albion) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

90:00 +2:31

Foul by Jon Parkin (Fleetwood Town).

90:00 +1:43

Attempt missed. Callum McFadzean (Burton Albion) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right.

90:00 +0:13

Corner, Burton Albion. Conceded by Charlie Taylor.

90:00

Attempt blocked. Billy Kee (Burton Albion) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Chris Hussey.

88:20

Attempt missed. Zander Diamond (Burton Albion) header from a difficult angle on the left misses to the left. Assisted by Chris Hussey with a cross following a corner.

87:55

Corner, Burton Albion. Conceded by Charlie Taylor.

87:27

Hand ball by David Ball (Fleetwood Town).

85:31 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Fleetwood Town. Stewart Murdoch replaces Iain Hume.

84:43

Attempt missed. Matthew Palmer (Burton Albion) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the right.

82:04

Offside, Fleetwood Town. Jon Parkin tries a through ball, but Iain Hume is caught offside.

78:26

Alan Goodall (Fleetwood Town) wins a free kick on the left wing.

78:26

Foul by Billy Kee (Burton Albion).

77:42 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Burton Albion. Matthew Palmer replaces Lee Bell.

74:54 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Burton Albion 0, Fleetwood Town 1. Antoni Sarcevic (Fleetwood Town) from a free kick with a right footed shot to the bottom right corner.

74:13 Booking

Booking Philip Edwards (Burton Albion) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

74:11

Josh Morris (Fleetwood Town) wins a free kick on the left wing.

74:11

Foul by Philip Edwards (Burton Albion).

73:32 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Fleetwood Town. Jon Parkin replaces Matty Blair.

72:55

Corner, Burton Albion. Conceded by Charlie Taylor.

72:26 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Burton Albion. Zeli Ismail replaces Alexander MacDonald.

71:01

Antoni Sarcevic (Fleetwood Town) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

71:01

Foul by Lee Bell (Burton Albion).

70:11

Attempt missed. Shane Cansdell-Sherriff (Burton Albion) header from very close range misses to the right. Assisted by Chris Hussey with a cross following a corner.

69:38

Corner, Burton Albion. Conceded by Charlie Taylor.

69:35

Attempt blocked. Alexander MacDonald (Burton Albion) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Lee Bell with a headed pass.

68:59

Hand ball by Antoni Sarcevic (Fleetwood Town).

64:30

Attempt missed. Zander Diamond (Burton Albion) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Philip Edwards following a set piece situation.

64:08 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Burton Albion. Zander Diamond replaces Marcus Holness.

63:12

Foul by Josh Morris (Fleetwood Town).

63:12

Philip Edwards (Burton Albion) wins a free kick on the right wing.

61:53

Offside, Fleetwood Town. Conor McLaughlin tries a through ball, but David Ball is caught offside.

61:06

Attempt missed. Robbie Weir (Burton Albion) right footed shot from outside the box is too high following a corner.

60:33

Corner, Burton Albion. Conceded by Conor McLaughlin.

58:20

Foul by Antoni Sarcevic (Fleetwood Town).

58:20

Philip Edwards (Burton Albion) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

57:37

Attempt missed. Antoni Sarcevic (Fleetwood Town) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Charlie Taylor.

56:00

Attempt missed. Billy Kee (Burton Albion) right footed shot from the centre of the box is too high. Assisted by Philip Edwards.

55:12

Attempt missed. Chris Hussey (Burton Albion) left footed shot from outside the box is too high. Assisted by Callum McFadzean.

54:12

Foul by Nathan Pond (Fleetwood Town).

54:12

Adam McGurk (Burton Albion) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

53:15

Attempt saved. Lee Bell (Burton Albion) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Billy Kee.

52:23

Foul by Conor McLaughlin (Fleetwood Town).

52:23

Chris Hussey (Burton Albion) wins a free kick on the left wing.

49:38

Offside, Burton Albion. Billy Kee tries a through ball, but Chris Hussey is caught offside.

46:19

Corner, Fleetwood Town. Conceded by Shane Cansdell-Sherriff.

45:34

Attempt saved. David Ball (Fleetwood Town) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the top left corner. Assisted by Iain Hume with a headed pass.

45:06

Hand ball by Chris Hussey (Burton Albion).

45:00

Second Half begins Burton Albion 0, Fleetwood Town 0.

45:00 +1:31 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, Burton Albion 0, Fleetwood Town 0.

45:00 +0:50

Foul by Alan Goodall (Fleetwood Town).

45:00 +0:50

Adam McGurk (Burton Albion) wins a free kick on the right wing.

43:53

Attempt blocked. Josh Morris (Fleetwood Town) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Charlie Taylor.

43:29

Attempt blocked. Matty Blair (Fleetwood Town) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Alan Goodall.

42:32

Antoni Sarcevic (Fleetwood Town) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

42:32

Foul by Alexander MacDonald (Burton Albion).

41:55

Corner, Fleetwood Town. Conceded by Marcus Holness.

40:36

Offside, Fleetwood Town. Chris Maxwell tries a through ball, but Iain Hume is caught offside.

39:29

Foul by Conor McLaughlin (Fleetwood Town).

39:29

Chris Hussey (Burton Albion) wins a free kick on the left wing.

36:19

Iain Hume (Fleetwood Town) wins a free kick on the right wing.

36:19

Foul by Lee Bell (Burton Albion).

33:14

Attempt blocked. Alexander MacDonald (Burton Albion) right footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Chris Hussey with a cross.

32:36

Attempt blocked. David Ball (Fleetwood Town) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Josh Morris.

30:51

Attempt missed. David Ball (Fleetwood Town) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Alan Goodall.

28:42

Attempt missed. David Ball (Fleetwood Town) left footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Conor McLaughlin.

27:56

Attempt blocked. Antoni Sarcevic (Fleetwood Town) right footed shot from a difficult angle and long range on the left is blocked. Assisted by Nathan Pond with a headed pass.

26:52

Corner, Fleetwood Town. Conceded by Alexander MacDonald.

23:38

Attempt saved. Lee Bell (Burton Albion) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Billy Kee.

21:48

Attempt missed. Adam McGurk (Burton Albion) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Robbie Weir.

20:39

Foul by David Ball (Fleetwood Town).

20:39

Dean Lyness (Burton Albion) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

20:11

Corner, Fleetwood Town. Conceded by Callum McFadzean.

18:57

Attempt missed. Billy Kee (Burton Albion) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Chris Hussey with a cross.

18:11

Attempt missed. Adam McGurk (Burton Albion) left footed shot from the right side of the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Alexander MacDonald.

17:21

Josh Morris (Fleetwood Town) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

17:21

Foul by Alexander MacDonald (Burton Albion).

16:48

Attempt missed. Lee Bell (Burton Albion) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right following a corner.

16:02

Corner, Burton Albion. Conceded by Josh Morris.

12:59

Attempt missed. Nathan Pond (Fleetwood Town) header from very close range is close, but misses the top left corner. Assisted by Josh Morris with a cross following a corner.

12:33

Corner, Fleetwood Town. Conceded by Adam McGurk.

12:06

Corner, Fleetwood Town. Conceded by Shane Cansdell-Sherriff.

12:04

Attempt blocked. David Ball (Fleetwood Town) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.

10:44

Attempt blocked. Alexander MacDonald (Burton Albion) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

9:59

Foul by Mark Roberts (Fleetwood Town).

9:59

Billy Kee (Burton Albion) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

8:48

Corner, Burton Albion. Conceded by Mark Roberts.

7:41

Corner, Fleetwood Town. Conceded by Marcus Holness.

7:38

Attempt blocked. Matty Blair (Fleetwood Town) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.

3:29

Foul by Alan Goodall (Fleetwood Town).

3:29

Adam McGurk (Burton Albion) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

2:14

Attempt missed. Mark Roberts (Fleetwood Town) left footed shot from the centre of the box is just a bit too high. Assisted by Iain Hume with a headed pass.

2:02

Attempt saved. David Ball (Fleetwood Town) header from very close range is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Josh Morris with a cross.

1:37

Corner, Fleetwood Town. Conceded by Dean Lyness.

1:35

Attempt saved. David Ball (Fleetwood Town) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the top right corner. Assisted by Iain Hume.

1:33

Attempt missed. Iain Hume (Fleetwood Town) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Josh Morris.

0:49

Attempt missed. Billy Kee (Burton Albion) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Chris Hussey following a set piece situation.

0:21

Foul by David Ball (Fleetwood Town).

0:21

Callum McFadzean (Burton Albion) wins a free kick on the left wing.

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

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