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Monday, 19 November, 2018

Tranmere to land promotion with Wembley win

Tranmere boss Micky Mellon
1 of 1

National League promotion final
BT Sport 1, 3pm Sunday

Tranmere were the only team to get close to Lincoln in the National League title race and can seal a return to Sky Bet League T by beating Forest Green in the promotion final at Wembley.

Micky Mellon's side finished on 95 points, four behind the champions but nine ahead of third-placed Forest Green.

Sometimes it can be hard for teams to refocus after coming close to winning automatic promotion but Tranmere have showed no sign of feeling sorry for themselves.

They produced one of their best performances of the season in the semi-final first leg at Aldershot, winning 3-0 against a side who hadn't lost a home game since November.

Tranmere relaxed a little in the second leg against the Shots, drawing 2-2 at Prenton Park, but Mellon will have been geeing up his players to produce their best football at the national stadium.

Forest Green had to work a little harder for their passage to the final. They drew 1-1 at Dagenham & Redbridge before winning the return match 2-0 in Gloucestershire.

They were losing playoff finalists last year, going down 3-1 to Grimsby, and will be hoping to have learned from the experience.

Thanks to the ongoing investment from millionaire chairman Dale Vince, Forest Green have become established as a strong fifth-tier outfit and are competing in the playoffs for a third successive season.

Vince insists it is only a matter of time before Forest Green win promotion and has a long-term vision of leading the club into the Sky Bet Championship.

However, the National League is a notoriously tough division to get out of and Rovers may have to wait at least another year before their dream of a place in the Football League is to be realised.

1pt 7-5 Betfred, Sky Bet

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Team news
No fresh injuries are reported but Steven Jennings, Darren Stephenson, Ben Tollitt, Jake Kirby, Jay Harris and Ritchie Sutton are out long-term.

Forest Green
Forest Green have no new injuries and manager Mark Cooper says he has a full squad to pick from.

Key stat
Tranmere have lost only one of their last 14 matches.

Micky Mellon's side finished on 95 points, four behind the champions but nine ahead of third-placed Forest Green
E.W. Terms
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