Reading may have left it late but thanks to Mikele Leigertwood the team were able to celebrate promotion on Tuesday night as a 1-0 win over Nottingham Forest was enough to guarantee them a spot in the Premier League.
Automatic promotion had looked unlikely in January, but a run of 14 wins in 16 games has led Brian McDermott's side back to the top flight after the heartache suffered last year when they lost in the play-off final.
"It feels unreal, like I'm looking down on a different bloke managing Reading!" McDermott told the club's official website. "It was incredible. It was a night for the supporters and the players."
"After the worst moment of my career at Wembley, May 30th last year, now to this, my best moment. I just think of the resolve and the character that the players and staff have shown.
"I was only aware of the score tonight because of the fans singing 'one goal and we're going up' so I realised the game at Bristol City was finished because of that. You know what we're like as a team, we never stop going.
"We were nowhere near our best tonight, we were nervous, of cousre, but you know what, you have to get over the line."
Leigertwood's 80th minute striker will now go down in Reading history as the goal that sealed their return to the top flight after West Ham had only managed a 1-1 draw with Bristol City.
One man that has been instrumental in helping Reading gain automatic promotion is veteran striker Jason Roberts who moved to the club in January and has played a major role in the success of the team.
The former Blackburn striker revealed how pleased he was for the team and he now hopes they can go on and claim the Championship title.
"It means so much for this group of players that worked so hard last season (only) to fall at the final hurdle in the play-offs," Roberts told Sky Sports.
"You saw their character this season (with) what they've achieved. It's been a pleasure to be a part of it. It's a special group. I've been involved with some special groups over the years and this is up there with the best of them.
"We'll enjoy tonight and on Saturday we'll go on and win it (the title) because that's what I want to do - that's what we want to do - that's our ambition."
The Royals could claim the crown on Saturday when they play Crystal Palace but they may been forced to wait a little longer if Southampton also gain a win.