Tom Cairney The Hero As Fulham Promoted To Premier League

Carla Harmon
May 27, 2018

Fulham returned to the Premier League after a four-year absence as Tom Cairney scored the victor in a 1-0 victory over Aston Villa in the Championship playoff final at Wembley on Saturday, the richest game in world football.

Despite being under pressure throughout the second half, Tom Cairney's first-half finish proved enough for their often-promising season to end in glory.

According to a report from the Sunday Mirror (27/05; page 73), it is looking likely that Jack Grealish will be sold this summer as Aston Villa brace themselves for a third successive season in the Championship.

The deafening sound as Fulham celebrated promotion under the Wembley arch gave a whole new meaning to white noise, for Slavisa Jokanovic's slow-burning, swaggering side had finally got over the line.

Fulham's financial windfall from increased revenue could rise to £280 million if they go on to survive for one season among the elite.

The risk, as typified by Denis Odoi's wild kick on Jack Grealish to pick up his second yellow card, is that they can sometimes overindulge but they are mightily good fun. "A Premier League striker against two Premier League centre-backs".

However, two minutes later, Fulham were ahead.

Fulham will earn £95 million next term, as part of the Premier League's huge broadcasting rights deal, and up to £75 million in parachute payments in 2019-20 and 2020-21 should they fail to stay up.

Another blank in front of goal, Grabban has now gone seven Championship play-off games without scoring including runs to the final in 2015 with Norwich City and last season at Reading.

"After we missed out on promotion (in the playoffs) last season, a lot of people wrote us off".

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. I'm so exhausted right now I don't feel my legs "We are really happy and proud".

Grealish raced to head just over with the goal gaping before Hourihane's cross-shot threatened, but Fulham were looking unsafe on the break and Aleksandar Mitrovic nodded wide.

Grealish had another chance to draw his side level as he challenged Fulham keeper Marcus Bettinelli to a 50th minutes cross, as Villa started the second half with more intensity and intent than they showed before the break.

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