Steve Bruce: Aston Villa manager keen to stay after play-off defeat

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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.

Fulham suffered a nervy final period of the game after their defender Denis Odoi was sent off for receiving two yellow cards, but they held their nerve to return to the Premier League at the expense of Aston Villa.

The final saw the side that finished third in Fulham, who were unlucky not to go up automatically on the last day of the season, against Steve Bruce's fourth placed side.

The 21 year-old has been offered a new contract, with his current deal running out at the end of next month, however, the signs are that he will not be sticking around at Hillsborough.

It sparked a melee between players on both sides and like Fredericks, Grealish was lucky to stay on the pitch.

Welcome back to the Premier League Fulham.

After the break, Fulham continued where they left off and Stefan Johansen got on the ball on the edge of the area but fired wide.

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"I prefer not so much to think about bad things, about problems", Jokanovic, palpably in celebration mode as a beery, bubbly, bouncing Fulham dressing room cavorted a few metres away, said after it was suggested that victory at Wembley against Aston Villa may have brought a sense of vindication.

Slavisa Jokanovic believed Fulham's promotion to the Premier League was a culmination of a great season long campaign. We all are. With a big game, it's tough to swallow.

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.

Ryan Sessegnon set up the goal for Cairney with a pinpoint through-ball, continuing his influential role for Fulham this season and especially in the playoffs. "We'll dust ourselves down next year and try and go one better".

Sessegnon wasted a chance to double Fulham's lead when he headed straight at Johnstone, while Grealish squandered Villa's only decent first-half opportunity with a wild shot high over the bar. "But today we smashed the second match point".

Jokanovic said: "That transfer window was successful and gave an important push for the team".

The United States, China, Japan or perhaps a player-manager role is a likely move for the 37-year-old if he decides to dig out his boots again rather than a clipboard.

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