Tom Cairney describes promotion feeling as ‘an out of body experience’

Fulham match-winner Tom Cairney describes the feeling of scoring the winning goal in the Championship play-off final against Aston Villa

Fulham matchwinner Tom Cairney described winning promotion with Fulham as “an out of body experience” after beating Aston Villa.

Cairney struck midway through the first half in a fierce-tempered occasion on Saturday, with the Cottagers having to see through the final 20 minutes with 10 men following Denis Odoi’s dismissal.

“It feels incredible, it feels like an out of body feeling,” Cairney told Sky Sports.

“I swear, in that last minute when the ref blew the whistle and we were defending with 10 men for 20 minutes, I had a feeling they wouldn’t score. It was our time, it was going to be our year.”

Slavisa Jokanovic believed Fulham's promotion to the Premier League was a culmination of a great season long campaign.

Cairney has been earning rave reviews in Slavisa Jokanovic’s side, who lost in the semi-finals last year.

His 91 per cent passing accuracy in the Championship this season is the best of any recorded by a player in the EFL – and Premier League clubs have been linked with a move for him.

Highlights of the Sky Bet Championship Play-off final between Aston Villa and Fulham.

Cairney has been aware of the interest but is delighted to have made it to the big league with the west Londoners.

“It’s a dream come true,” he said.

“For the last year, 18 months or so I’ve been linked with a few clubs and people have been questioning what I was doing, but I’ve signed a contract extension for a reason.

“I believe what we’re doing here is special, what the gaffer is doing is special. I’ve said for quite a while we’ve been playing Premier League football in the Championship and I’m so happy we get to play Premier League football in the Premier League.”