Despite being down to 10 men for most of the second half, Peterborough United hung on to beat Chesterfield 3-1 and win the 2014 Football League Trophy at Wembley Stadium.
FT. Posh 3 Chesterfield 1. Posh make history. Football League Trophy winners for the very first time. #theposh— BBC Cambs Sport (@BBCCambsSport) March 30, 2014
Two first-half goals off set pieces gave Peterborough a flattering lead, but Eoin Doyle would strike back early in the second before Joe Newell's rash challenge left United having to defend the lead at a disadvantage.
But Britt Assombalonga would win his club a penalty and convert the spot kick himself, restoring the two-goal cushion that would ultimately prove decisive.
Chesterfield were the better team in the first half, controlling much of the ball and collecting a handful of chances, but some wasteful finishing opened the door for Peterborough to take the lead.
Josh McQuoid struck early and Shaun Brisley would add to the team's tally right before half-time. As BBC's Steve Claridge noted on the site's live blog, the score did not reflect the action on the pitch:
The 2-0 scoreline does not give a fair representation of the game. Chesterfield switched off at two dead-ball situations and that has been the difference in the game. In open play, there has not been much in it.
Peterborough are not the best of teams at closing out a match and if Chesterfield get one goal back that belief will come rushing back, but they need to get a goal quickly.
Doyle finished off a beautiful attack early in the second half to give his team a fighting chance, and Joe Newell's unnecessary kick at Sam Morsy blew the tie wide open once again. EPL Agent agreed the challenge was a particularly foolish one:
Joe Newell what a silly silly boy. Chesterfield right in it now. Cmon the Spireites— EPL Agent (@TransferSpoiler) March 30, 2014
But an excellent run from Assombalonga ended with the official pointing at the spot, and the forward stepped up himself and cheekily played the ball through the centre for his team's third goal of the day.
BBC Radio Cambridge thought the goal would ease the mind of one man in particular:
78' Joe Newell will be somewhere in this stadium breathing a huge sigh of relief. #theposh— BBC Cambs Sport (@BBCCambsSport) March 30, 2014
A late push from Chesterfield would not be enough to change the final result, as Peterbrough held on to win the final and lift the Johnstone's Paint Trophy for the first time in club history.
League Two's Chesterfield put in a valiant effort and will be disappointed at the final outcome, as the team held the ball for long spells of time and had its chances to score more goals. But a failed appeal for a penalty seemed to have a negative effect on the team's spirits, and the squad never seemed to recover.
Peterborough meanwhile took full advantage of their chances early and weathered a second-half storm initiated by Doyle's strike and Newell's silly red card. With the cup win, all will surely be forgiven as the team will go into the night with plenty of reasons to celebrate.