Mitro­vic Ful­ham fu­ture un­clear af­ter fi­nal win

Yorkshire Post - Sports Monday - - FOOTBALL -

ALEK­SAN­DAR MITRO­VIC is sure Ful­ham will flour­ish in the Pre­mier League next sea­son – with or with­out him.

Slav­isa Jokanovic’s swash­buck­ling side ended their fouryear top-flight ab­sence by dig­ging deep to beat As­ton Villa and win Satur­day’s Cham­pi­onship play­off fi­nal at Wem­b­ley.

Ful­ham de­fender De­nis Odoi’s send­ing off brought a nervy end­ing to pro­ceed­ings, but cap­tain Tom Cair­ney’s goal proved enough in a 1-0 win that will live long in the mem­ory.

Pro­mo­tion surely makes the im­me­di­ate fu­ture of the likes of Cair­ney, Ryan Sesseg­non and Ryan Fred­er­icks more se­cure, while putting the west Lon­don­ers in a stronger po­si­tion to tie up on-loan stars.

Mitro­vic is among those and has shone brightly in at­tack since his dead­line-day loan move from New­cas­tle in Jan­uary, be­com­ing an in­flu­en­tial and pop­u­lar fig­ure at Craven Cot­tage.

“I don’t know,” the Ser­bia striker said of his fu­ture. “Of course I am re­ally happy here. I had the best three-and-a-half, four months of my ca­reer. We will see what happens.

“I am still a New­cas­tle United player, I have two years left on my con­tract, so we will see.

“I want to en­joy now. I have one day to rest and then I have to work hard, and I will focus on that.

“I have peo­ple – my agent and peo­ple who speak with the clubs – and we will see what happens.

“I just want to en­joy the mo­ment. I am re­ally happy now.”

Mitro­vic grinned as he re­flected on Satur­day’s “re­ally un­be­liev­able” tri­umph and be­lieves Jokanovic’s side are set up to thrive in the top di­vi­sion.

“Of course Ful­ham will be suc­cess­ful in the Pre­mier League for sure,” he said.

The claret and blue half of Wem­b­ley was vir­tu­ally empty by the time Ful­ham lifted the play­off tro­phy. GOING UP:

“It is very dis­ap­point­ing,” said As­ton Villa full-back and for­mer Hull City player Ahmed Elmohamady. “I thought we played re­ally good in the sec­ond half and de­served at least a goal, but we were un­lucky.

“We had many chances to get a goal, but they took their chance in the first half, tak­ing it very well and scored. In the last 15 min­utes af­ter their send­ing off they de­fended very well be­hind the ball and made it very dif­fi­cult for us.”

The fi­nan­cial knock-on is likely to have ram­i­fi­ca­tions at As­ton Villa but Elmohamady hopes Steve Bruce’s side can rally next term.

“When you get in the play-offs, you want to step closer to the Pre­mier League,” said the Egypt in­ter­na­tional.


Ful­ham’s Aboubakar Ka­mara with the tro­phy af­ter the Cham­pi­onship play-off fi­nal at Wem­b­ley.

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