Tony Stewart, the Rotherham United chairman, is relishing the challenge of competing in the Championship next season after the Millers triumphed at the home of English football.
Rotherham sealed back-to-back promotions yesterday after defeating Leyton Orient 4-3 on penalties in the League One play-off final at Wembley.
Their hopes of going up looked remote at the interval, with the O’s 2-0 ahead after strikes by Moses Odubajo and Dean Cox.
But the Millers battled back, forcing extra time and penalties following a second-half brace by man of the match Alex Revell.
Stewart, who is confident of finalising a new extended deal for manager Steve Evans, said: “It’s an incredible feeling (to gain promotion). It’s a perfect day. I’m so proud.
“It means a lot to the club and the town to be playing the likes of Nottingham Forest, Leeds and Derby next year.”
“To get to Wembley is one thing, but to win to get into the Championship – it doesn’t get better than that,” he added.
“In six years at Rotherham, we have now had two promotions, back to back and the Championship is something the town, club and fans can look forward.
“It’s great. The adventure goes on. It’s the pinnacle for me. From starting at League Two and now being in the Championship, it’s progression and shows our ambition.
“I said six years ago that in five years we’d be in the Championship. I’ve let the people of Rotherham down because it’s taken six years. But joking aside, it was something we really wanted to do and with the new stadium and now promotion to the Championship, it showed we are serious about what we are saying.
“We have a good manager who has been on board two years and we are now looking forward to the challenge of the Championship.
“We’ve got quite a lot of players and we can now make choices.”
The Rotherham chief felt they were “unlucky” to be trailing 2-0 at half-time.
“I felt sorry for the lads because they have been tremendous,” he said. “We were unlucky to be 2-0 behind. I thought it was a balanced game.
“I think we were slightly in shock to be 2-0 down. It was an injustice.
“I remember going up to Orient’s chairman Barry [Hearn] and shaking his hand and saying you’ve had a good first half. Little did I know, we would capture the second half.
“It took extra time and penalties but we got there in the end. We have got a habit of coming back and we got the result.”
Stewart watched on from the sidelines as the penalty drama unfolded.
“I kicked every ball and saved everyone of their shots,” said Stewart. “It was good.”