Published: Sun, May 27, 2018
Entertaiment | By Mabel Barber

Tom Cairney goal takes Fulham back to the Premier League

Tom Cairney goal takes Fulham back to the Premier League

Cairney said he believed "football" had triumphed at Wembley.

The win secures the west London club a windfall of at least £160 million ($212.91 million) as they look forward to joining Championship title winners Wolverhampton Wanderers and second-placed Cardiff City in the top flight next season. If they prove capable of surviving one season, that could even increase to £280million. "I've been playing all season not fully fit".

Villa fan Prince William was among the 85,243 in attendance on a baking Wembley day, where intensity from the stands translated onto the pitch.

There was only misery for Villa as they missed out on promotion on the 36th anniversary of the club's famous European Cup final victory over Bayern Munich.

Villa threw the kitchen sink at Fulham late on and amidst increasing pressure on all fronts, were unable to find the breakthrough, leaving the Cottagers to return to the Premier League for the first time since the 2013/14 season.

Who will come out on top in the battle of the managers Steve Bruce or Slavisa Jokanovic?

But although Fulham had an average age of three years younger than Villa, there was no sign of stage-fright from Jokanovic's team.

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Villa are the division's heavyweights, former European champions who boast familiar faces - both African and otherwise - while Fulham are arguably the Championship's most attractive side to watch.

Jokanovic added: "If we make a mistake ourselves, it's going to be really complicated for us".

The Villa Park outfit managed to shut out Middlesbrough in the previous round, and will be hoping they can keep Fulham at bay for 90 minutes.

Teenager Ryan Sessegnon received the ball midway inside Villa's half, evaded a tackle, and turned to play a through ball that Cairney calmly slotted past keeper Sam Johnstone.

With emotions still running high after Cairney's goal, Fulham got lucky when defender Ryan Fredericks avoided a red card after appearing to deliberately stamp on Grealish.

Grealish fluffed his lines again early in the second half, heading over from a good position.

Jack Grealish suddenly got involved in the game and he forced a save from goalkeeper Marcus Bettinelli after a superb slaloming dribble through the Fulham defence.

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