Ex-Blackpool loanee dubbed ‘king of the play-offs’ after helping Sunderland reach the Championship

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The former Blackpool loanee scored Sunderland’s first goal in their 2-0 win over Wycombe Wanderers in the League One play-off final on Saturday.

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Embleton made a big impact at Bloomfield Road last season after joining Neil Critchley’s side in the January transfer window.

At the time of his move on deadline day, the Seasiders were 15th in the League One table, while his parent club were seventh and just one point off the top six.

But Embleton would go on to help Blackpool work their way to a play-off berth, making 21 appearances between early February and the Wembley play-off final.

Embleton have been on the winning side of the League One play-off final in each of the past two years

It came as a surprise to many that Embleton, who has scored nine times in 47 appearances this season, was included in Sunderland’s squad from the start.

The former Grimsby Town loanee only came off the bench in the first leg of their semi-final against Sheffield on Wednesday and did not feature in the away fixture.

Explaining his decision to start Embleton upfront, former Preston North End boss Alex Neil said: “I’ve watched Wycombe’s last two games and Elliot was amazing in both games.

“He created a goal where Ross Stewart scored a header, he played a one-two and hit it in the far corner, he created one in their place where he put it in front and Ross scored, he hit the underside of the bar.

“There are certain players who agree to play against specific teams. I knew, in my opinion, that was a really brave move because I’m sure there were people sitting in the house wondering, “Why isn’t Jack Clarke playing?” But Embo does exactly what I thought Embo would do.

“He was going to have a key moment in the game and he did. It’s not fortune because there’s a lot of hard work, but when it works and when it happens it’s so nice. I thought he was going to have that impact, and he did.

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