Kermorgant fires Reading into Championship play-off final

17 May, 2017, 12:48 | Author: Nora May
  • Fulham's Tom Cairney celebrates after the match

Reading had missed six penalties prior to yesterday's game and Kermorgant squandered a spot-kick for Leicester City in a play-off semi-final against Cardiff City in 2010 when an attempted Panenka backfired.

YANN KERMORGANT'S second-half penalty was enough for Reading to book their place in the Championship play-off final after a nervy victory over Fulham last night.

All that stands in their way is a one-off winner-takes-all tie at Wembley with either Sheffield Wednesday or Huddersfield, who face off at Hillsborough tomorrow (Wednesday).

The draw in the first leg at Craven Cottage had been notable for Stam's Reading cleverly nullifying Fulham's attacking ability.

Yann Kermorgant put the spot-kick away after Fulham defender Tomas Kalas handled - and now it is Jaap Stam's team who will bid for the £200 million prize of Premier League football on May 29.

Kermorgant was so close to scoring early in the game when he unleashed a strike from inside the area, but Fulham goalkeeper Marcus Bettinelli would make a fine save.

The Royals should have been two up but John Swift inexplicably shot straight at Bettinelli from two yards out as he attempted to convert Chris Gunter's cross. So he had to do it today.

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"That's why I was hoping it would be over in 90 minutes".

A second-half Yann Kermorgant penalty sealed a 2-1 aggregate win for the Royals on a lively night in Berkshire. "We were very confident he would score". Fulham manager Slavisa Jokanovic: "Did the best team lose? Yes".

For Fulham that also means a fight to keep hold of their best players. They are through to the play off finals, after beating Fulham at the Madejski stadium. We made some good chances, but we just can't seem to get that first goal in the games and tonight we had one or two opportunities to do that.

"It's great to work with a club that's got a lot of potential and with players willing to work really hard to get somewhere".

Stam admitted he feels the tension of a semi-final as a manager far more than he ever did as a player.

"We lost a key player in Macca, that can happen, but the squad has been fantastic all season and we will manage to play well without him".

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