Thomason | We've Given Ourselves A Shot

Celebration Barnsley

George Thomason is relishing the prospect of a Wembley return and the chance to help Wanderers win promotion, writes Pete Oliver.

The Whites booked their place in the League One play-off final with a 5-4 aggregate win over Barnsley.

Ian Evatt’s men came through a tense semi-final as a 3-2 home defeat in Tuesday night’s second leg wasn’t enough to deny them the chance to face either Oxford or Peterborough in pursuit of a place in the Championship.

It was a nervy evening at the Toughsheet Stadium as Barnsley struck twice in the second half but goals from Aaron Collins and Eoin Toal were ultimately enough to get Wanderers over the line and a step nearer their goal.


Toal Thomason celebration Barnsley

“Thankfully it's a two-legged affair and we've done enough over the course of two legs,” said Thomason. “It was relief towards the end because they put us under a lot of pressure.

“But the boys have been brilliant throughout the whole season and we fully deserve this, as well as the fans and everyone involved with the club. We’ve got a couple of days off now to rest and recuperate and then it’s full focus ahead because it's going to be a cracking day.

“The objective was to get to Wembley and give ourselves a shot and that's exactly what we've done. It's exciting. Portsmouth and Derby have done it automatically but everyone else that’s below us and hasn't gone up this season, and aren't in this play-off mixture, would snap your hands off for an opportunity like this.

“We've got a one-game shoot-out to get back to the Championship. We've been at Wembley before, last season. It was a great, great day out and a great experience to take with us and I know the fans will be backing us all the way and really helping us over that line.”


Thomason gesture Barnsley

Thomason came off the bench to help Wanderers win the EFL Trophy with a 4-0 win over Plymouth Argyle last season but has been a regular starter throughout an outstanding campaign this time around.

The midfielder, 23, is Wanderers’ longest-serving player and after helping the Whites win promotion from League Two under Evatt in 2021, knows as well as anyone what a repeat would mean for the fans who generated an incredible atmosphere to help Wanderers seal the deal against Barnsley. 

“It was absolutely phenomenal,” Thomason added. “When I came in afterwards my ears were still ringing and you could see the joy on so many people's faces. 

“They deserve it so much. From the first promotion to where the club is now is like a real upturn and the positivity is just booming around everyone. You can see the smiles on faces. They really are the extra man, the 12th man. It's so cliched but they really do play an important part and we just need them for one more game.

“We had one goal set out at the beginning of the season and now we've got an opportunity to go and do that and let's make it a memorable one.”

Watch George’s full post-match interview on Wanderers TV HERE

Read Time: 3 mins