Wycombe Wanderers manager Gareth Ainsworth has praised his side’s fans for sticking by him during a difficult time when the club made a late escape from relegation to the Conference last season.
Ainsworth hopes that he is repaying fans that stuck with him and believed that he was the right man for the job after securing a place in the League Two play-off final.
The Chairboys beat Plymouth Argyle 2-1 on Thursday night and 5-3 on aggregate and will face Southend United at Wembley on Saturday 23rd May.
Goals from Paul Hayes and Alfie Mawson put the Blues into the final in the capital and is a far cry from their performances last season.
There were calls for Ainsworth’s sacking from some sections of the Wycombe crowd when the side performed poorly after losing to relegation rivals Bristol Rovers on the penultimate weekend.
However his side beat Torquay United on the final day of the season and beat the drop and the former QPR player has been hailed as a hero in Buckinghamshire after guiding Wanderers to Wembley this season.
Ainsworth told GetBucks, “It is a pride that fills me inside that I am celebrating tonight and the fans deserve this. They stuck by me, gave me faith and I hope I have repaid that faith.
“It was fantastic to stay in the league last year and we’ve just kicked on this year.
“The team spirit and characters we have here are amazing – it’s one of the best dressing rooms I’ve known in 25 years in football.
“I want to make sure that Wycombe Wanderers never return to the days they had last year. The club is turning around slowly off the pitch and I’m very optimistic about the future.
“I’m really pleased that I’m able to lead such a great, small squad out at Wembley.
“It will be an amazing experience for all, but the most important thing is the building blocks that are being put in place to get this club to a solid base.
“I thought my players handled the situation extremely well. I thought the mental side was the most important thing today after what happened at Home Park.
“I had players out there today who were far from being fully fit but that is what I have here; I have characters and players who want to play in every game.
“They would play through anything for me and as a manager that is special.”