Forest Green boss Mark Cooper has described the club’s guaranteed play-off berth as a “brilliant achievement”.
Rovers are three points off the automatic promotion places with two games to go but are assured of their place in the end-of-season knockout following a 2-1 win over Cambridge.
Gavin Gunning’s first goal of the season gave Rovers the lead at the break, before Paul Lewis restored parity. However, Christian Doidge’s winner left Rovers dreaming of promotion.
Rovers benefited from results elsewhere, with Mansfield losing 3-2 at Oldham and MK Dons drawing at home to Port Vale.
Cooper beamed: “We’ve qualified for the play-offs, which is a brilliant achievement, but we have two really tough final games – Crewe away, who can still get into the play-offs, and Exeter at home, who are scrapping to get into the play-offs.
“This is a brilliant achievement for the boys and the club. From where we were last year – we stayed up and we’ve kicked on this year and still kept to our style and the way of playing, so full credit to the boys.
“Nice to come into form towards the end of the season when you have all to play for of course, but we’ve done nothing yet. All we’ve done is qualify to play a semi-final with a chance to go to Wembley and get promoted, so a lot of work to do.”
Meanwhile, Cambridge boss Colin Calderwood bemoaned his side’s defending from corners. He said: “I’m very annoyed about the two goals from set play.
“They were probably too easy. Well organised by them of course, getting the first contact.
“It’s hurtful because until the lead up to the corner, there was nothing too much to worry about.
“We had to chase and shuffle and charge across the pitch a wee bit, but they allowed us plenty of time to get back.”