Championship - Play-offs - 2nd Leg
FulhamFulham2DerbyDerby County0

Fulham 2-0 Derby County (Agg 2-1)

By Gary SmeeBBC Sport
Ryan Sessegnon goal
Ryan Sessegnon has scored 16 goals in the Championship this season

Fulham booked their place in the Championship play-off final at Wembley as they overturned a first-leg deficit by beating Derby at Craven Cottage.

Trailing 1-0 from the game at Pride Park, goals from Ryan Sessegnon and Denis Odoi put the hosts through.

Teenager Sessegnon fired into the roof of the net from close range, before Odoi flicked in a header from a corner.

Aleksandar Mitrovic and Aboubakar Kamara had chances to add further goals, as the Rams created little.

Slavisa Jokanovic's side - beaten play-off semi-finalists last season - will play either Aston Villa or Middlesbrough in the final on Saturday, 26 May.

Having struggled to break down Derby in the first leg, Fulham demonstrated why they are unbeaten at home since October with a display full of flowing, attacking football.

The Rams frustrated their opponents during the first half with Scott Carson superbly saving Mitrovic's close-range header, and it was not until after the break Fulham made their dominance count.

The Cottagers find out who they will face in the final on Tuesday, when Villa take a one-goal advantage over Boro back to the West Midlands.

Fulham finally end play-off hoodoo

Victory in the semi-finals ends a run of seven play-off games without a win for Fulham.

In 2016-17, Reading defeated the west London side 2-1 on aggregate, but they are now one match away from a return to the Premier League for the first time since relegation in 2014.

It will also be the Whites' first visit to Wembley since 1975 when they were beaten by West Ham in the FA Cup Final.

Denis Odoi
Denis Odoi was held aloft by Fulham fans at full-time

Fulham finished third in the Championship and 13 points ahead of Derby, only missing out on automatic promotion because of a final-day loss at Birmingham.

But their form at Craven Cottage has been magnificent since the turn of the year, scoring more goals at home than any other side in 2018.

And they became only the second team out of 17 in a Championship play-off to lose the opening tie and then go through.

Derby will now spend an 11th successive season in the second tier despite reaching the play-offs in three of the past five campaigns.

Should England take a gamble on Sessegnon?

In Sessegnon, Fulham have one of the outstanding young talents in England.

The Championship Player of the Season, who turns 18 on Friday, has been touted as an outside contender for a place in Gareth Southgate's 23-man squad for the World Cup in Russia.

Ryan Sessegnon should go to World Cup - Mark Lawrenson

The left-footed winger was kept quiet in Friday's first leg, but this time was instrumental in most things Fulham did in the final third.

He had already seen a shot well saved by Carson before the break when found in space by Kamara, but made no mistake from Stefan Johansen's chest down just two minutes into the second half.

Fulham's leading scorer has now netted 22 times in 80 career appearances, despite spending most of his first season playing from left-back.

England's squad will be announced on Wednesday.

Reaction - 'The fans did a crucial job'

Fulham boss Slavisa Jokanovic told BBC London:

"I must be very satisfied personally, for my players and the fans. We made a great step and will bring the team to Wembley after 43 years.

"We believe in our way and the team have showed their confidence. It is a fantastic achievement.

"We will play the final and know that people only remember the team who wins the game.

"We must enjoy this moment and be happy, especially for our fans as they pushed us all year at home and did a crucial job for us tonight too."

Derby manager Gary Rowett told BBC Radio Derby:

"The way we performed was the most disappointing thing for us. I think it's very easy to be critical, but I don't think that's the right thing to do.

"I think the players over the two legs have given everything and worked incredibly hard.

"We've tried everything, we've had a go, we're disappointed. Sometimes you've got to handle that disappointment and move on.

"Three out of the four teams are going to be disappointed at the end of these play-offs and unfortunately we're the first ones."



Formation 4-3-3

  • 1BettinelliBooked at 90mins
  • 2Fredericks
  • 4Odoi
  • 13Ream
  • 21TargettSubstituted forKalasat 76'minutes
  • 10CairneySubstituted forNorwoodat 90+1'minutes
  • 6McDonaldBooked at 78mins
  • 8JohansenBooked at 62mins
  • 47KamaraBooked at 74mins
  • 32Mitrovic
  • 3R Sessegnon


  • 9Fonte
  • 11Ayité
  • 16Norwood
  • 20Piazon
  • 22Christie
  • 26Kalas
  • 27Button


Formation 3-4-2-1

  • 1Carson
  • 6Keogh
  • 33Davies
  • 3Forsyth
  • 14Wisdom
  • 44HuddlestoneBooked at 77mins
  • 15Johnson
  • 8AnyaSubstituted forVydraat 67'minutes
  • 10LawrenceSubstituted forPalmerat 67'minutesBooked at 78mins
  • 19Weimann
  • 32JeromeSubstituted forNugentat 75'minutes


  • 7Palmer
  • 16Pearce
  • 21Roos
  • 23Vydra
  • 26Hanson
  • 28Nugent
  • 36Ledley
Chris Kavanagh

Match Stats

Home TeamFulhamAway TeamDerby
Shots on Target

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Fulham 2, Derby County 0.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Fulham 2, Derby County 0.

  3. Post update

    Attempt missed. Richard Keogh (Derby County) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Andre Wisdom with a cross.

  4. Post update

    Attempt blocked. David Nugent (Derby County) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Curtis Davies with a headed pass.

  5. Post update

    Foul by Aleksandar Mitrovic (Fulham).

  6. Post update

    Richard Keogh (Derby County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  7. Booking

    Marcus Bettinelli (Fulham) is shown the yellow card.

  8. Post update

    Attempt missed. Matej Vydra (Derby County) right footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Kasey Palmer.

  9. Post update

    Aboubakar Kamara (Fulham) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  10. Post update

    Foul by Tom Huddlestone (Derby County).

  11. Substitution

    Substitution, Fulham. Oliver Norwood replaces Tom Cairney.

  12. Post update

    Tomas Kalas (Fulham) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  13. Post update

    Foul by Andreas Weimann (Derby County).

  14. Post update

    Attempt missed. David Nugent (Derby County) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Bradley Johnson.

  15. Post update

    Aleksandar Mitrovic (Fulham) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  16. Post update

    Foul by Bradley Johnson (Derby County).

  17. Post update

    Corner, Fulham. Conceded by Craig Forsyth.

  18. Post update

    Attempt saved. Stefan Johansen (Fulham) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Tom Cairney.

  19. Post update

    Attempt saved. Stefan Johansen (Fulham) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Aleksandar Mitrovic.

  20. Booking

    Kevin McDonald (Fulham) is shown the yellow card.


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