Nottingham Forest were eliminated from the Premier League in their final season

Nottingham Forest were eliminated from the Premier League in their final season

Nottingham Forest were eliminated from the Premier League in their final season
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Nottingham Forest overcame Huddersfield Town 1-0 in the Championship playoff final at Wembley on Sunday to reclaim their Premier League membership.

Forest fans had hoped that their long-awaited return to the top division could be guaranteed with additional success this weekend after gaining victory in their playoff semi-final against Sheffield United via a penalty shoot-out after a 3-3 aggregate deadlock.

Since taking over the reins in late September, Forest manager Steve Cooper has won 23 of his 40 Championship matches in charge – more than any other club — and Forest fans were full of optimism coming down to Wembley.

When it mattered most, his ‘Tricky Trees’ beat Huddersfield in their fourth encounter with the Yorkshire club this season.

Nottingham Forest fans haven’t seen their team play in the Premier League since the 1998/99 season, which was 23 years ago.

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Forest was a founder member of the Premier League in its first rebranded season of 1992/93, having been in the top level of English football since 1977/78.

Despite placing ninth or higher in each of the previous 10 Division One seasons, the Midlands club was relegated from the Premier League in its debut season in 1992/93, finishing 22nd and bottom of the table under legendary manager Brian Clough.

Forest have spent a total of four seasons in the Premier League since that inaugural season, but have been relegated three times.

Forest’s most successful season was in 1994/95, when, after achieving promotion from the English second tier the year before, they finished third, qualifying for the UEFA Cup.

After watching their team wallow in the Championship for 14 seasons, their fans will be partying late into the night on Sunday. Forest has now spent more seasons (57) in the English second tier than it has in the top league (56). Those figures are, of course, about to level out again.

Although Nottingham Forest’s appearance in the Championship playoff final against Huddersfield was their first in any Football League playoff final, the Midlands club has a long history in the playoffs.

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Forest has been knocked out of the playoffs in the semi-finals on four previous times.

The failures occurred in the seasons 2002/03, 2006/07, 2009/10, and 2010/11, with three semi-final losses occurring in the Championship playoffs and one in League One.

Forest’s win over Huddersfield on Sunday was also the club’s first visit to the new Wembley Stadium, since the club had not reached a domestic final since losing 1-0 to Manchester United in the 1991/92 League Cup final.

 

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