Controversial Wembley play-off defeat for ex-Admiral Lord Nelson pupil and Portsmouth fan as Morecambe triumph

Baffins’ Tom King suffered Wembley heartbreak at the hands of a controversial extra-time penalty.

Monday, 31st May 2021, 5:56 pm
Referee Bobby Madley's controversial penalty decision condemned Newport - and Tom King - to a 1-0 Wembley defeat in the League Two play-off final. Picture: Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

The former Admiral Lord Nelson pupil was gunning for promotion through this afternoon’s League Two play-off final.

However, Newport County’s goalkeeper was beaten by Morecambe’s Carlos Mendes Gomes’ 107th-minute penalty in a 1-0 defeat.

It ensured the Shrimps reached League One for the first time in their history – and will now face Pompey next term.

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The game’s decisive moment was mired in controversy, with referee Bobby Madley adjudging Ryan Haynes had fouled substitute John O’Sullivan.

It looked a soft decision, while appeared to have taken place outside the box, nonetheless Mendes sent King the wrong way with a right-footed penalty.

That was enough to win the match for Derek Adams’ side, who had finished one place above Newport in the League Two table.

For Pompey supporter King, it is now an uncertain summer, with his Exiles contract up for renewal.

He has totalled 18 appearances for Mike Flynn’s side this season, while created history in January by scoring against Cheltenham, writing himself into the Guinness Book of Records.

However, the season has now ended in disappointment for the ex-East Lodge player, who played in the same youth side as James Ward-Prowse.

King, who previously went under the surname Fry, was also on Pompey’s books as a youth player before moving to Crystal Palace at the age of 16.

That switch earned the Blues – the club he supports – compensation.

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