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Coventry City 1-1 Luton Town AET (5-6 on pens)

Luton Town beat Coventry City at Wembley to win promotion to the Premier League! Read the report and play the game to test your English for football skills.

The Championship Play-Off Final is one of the biggest matches in the English football calendar. The finalists know they are just one win away from the Premier League.

Coventry City finished sixth in the Championship table and knocked out Middlesbrough in the play-off semi-finals. The last time they played in the Premier League was in the 2000/01 season. Before that relegation, they had been in the top division for thirty-four consecutive seasons.

Luton Town ended this season in third position and then earned their place at Wembley by beating Sunderland in the play-off semi-finals. The Hatters were relegated from the First Division in the 1991/92 season, the season before the Premier League started. In the years after, they were relegated all the way down to the National League but they were now one game away from a dream return to the top division.

The first half began with Luton on the attack but after just five minutes their captain, Tom Lockyer, seemed to collapse. There was a long pause in the game as Lockyer was treated on the pitch and then stretchered off. He regained consciousness in the dressing room and was then transferred to hospital, where he watched the rest of the match on the TV with his family.

When play resumed, Luton continued their positive start, causing Coventry a lot of problems with their direct and dynamic attacking style.

The opening goal came on twenty-three minutes when Elijah Adebayo ran onto a long ball, beat the full-back with great skill and passed the ball back to Jordan Clark who was arriving on the edge of the box. Clark took a perfect first touch to beat a defender and he finished emphatically with a powerful left-foot shot past the goalkeeper.

Luton dominated the rest of the half but they failed to increase their lead. The teams went in at half-time with Luton winning by one goal to nil.

Coventry had been disappointing in the first half but they made some changes at half-time and started the second half much better, dominating possession and controlling the tempo. It was no surprise when they equalised on sixty-six minutes.

The goal was very similar to Luton’s. Doyle played a perfectly weighted pass down the left wing for Viktor Gyökeres, who carried the ball into the box and then passed back across the box towards the D, where Gustavo Hamer was arriving unmarked. The Netherlands u20 player hit his first-time shot into the bottom-right corner and the Sky Blues were back in the game.

Both teams seemed to tire in the last fifteen minutes of normal time and it was clear neither team wanted to take many risks.

Extra-time was more of the same until Luton thought they had won it in the final seconds, but the goal was disallowed by VAR for a handball before the goal.

So the final was decided on penalties. The first five penalties from each team were perfect but when Luton scored their sixth, all the pressure was on Coventry. Fankaty Dabo hit his attempt over the bar and Luton Town were the winners.

Nine years after winning promotion from National League to League Two, Luton have won the Championship Play-Off Final and promotion to the Premier League, a true footballing fairy tale!

READING EXERCISE
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