Fulham defeat Aston Villa in Championship play-off final to reach Premier League

Mae Harvey
June 2, 2018

"We must show ambition but we must know that next season we will probably not win as many games as at this level".

Despite his age, Grealish is capable of getting on the ball and dominating games from midfield, driving the team forward with technique and intensity, and creating chances for his team-mates.

Villa were finally clicking into gear and Grealish embarked on a dazzling run through the Cottagers defence, but Fulham keeper Marcus Bettinelli was equal to his shot. "Soon as we did that it's a totally different game".

"He made a system that every player enjoys and feels comfortable playing in", the on-loan Newcastle man told BBC Sport.

The Serbian will expect some funds to strengthen the squad in the close season - as well as keeping the club's best players like Sessegnon and 27-year-old Cairney. "We'll dust ourselves down next year and try and go one better".

"It's been hard this season financially, so we understand".

A place in the Premier League brings potential earnings of £280million if Fulham can stay in the top division, but the London side will earn at least £160million after its success at Wembley.

Fulham's Tom Cairney celebrates promotion (Barrington Coombs/EMPICS).

A more prudent approach will be needed, with their parachute payments - around £15 million this coming year- following relegation from the Premier League in 2016, ending this season.

Having barely slept the night before through nerves, I arrived at Wembley in a caffeinated adrenaline-fuelled haze. If he'd scored, I'm sure we would have gone on to win the match. There were certainly times when they wanted to rip my head off and rip the head off the players.

The United States worldwide helped Fulham keep a clean sheet despite his center-back partner Denis Odoi's sending off in the 70th minute.

But 57-year-old Bruce said: "The feeling is utter disappointment for everybody. Getting sent off sucked".

Fulham, Wolves, and Cardiff should do the same if they are to stay up next season. "We've been saying that for the last 12 months", the experienced Bruce said.

"All together the quality, team spirit and everything came at the right time and that is why we won". Those big decisions that went against us too. "We score a goal and today we get a red card. We are a Premier League team".

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