Championship play-off match report Aston Villa v Middlesbrough 15 May 2018

Championship play-off match report Aston Villa v Middlesbrough 15 May 2018

"The boys have been superb and we're off to Wembley, one more to go".

Aston Villa paid tribute to former defender Jlloyd Samuel, who died in a vehicle crash at just 37 on Tuesday, as a 0-0 draw with Middlesbrough at Villa Park booked their place in the Championship playoff final.

The ramifications for Villa if they fail to achieve promotion do not bear thinking about but, for now, they are focusing on the chance to end their two-year exile from the top tier.

The club's last trip to Wembley was under different circumstances - the FA Cup Final in 2015 - where they faced Arsenal.

He said: "Eighteen or 19 months ago this club was in a mess but the experienced players have done the job for us and we're delighted about that".

Villa captain John Terry told Sky Sports: "It's unbelievable and incredible".

Mile Jedinak's first-half header was the difference at the Riverside last time out, and Boro still have a chance of making it to the final given the slim margin in aggregate.

No big progress on Brexit since March - EU's Barnier
He went on: "The prime minister in her Mansion House speech gave plenty of indications of how we will deal with the problems that [Ms Thornberry] describes".

"Unbelievable, incredible, the support, the lads, the dressing room is unbelievable".

Villa came close through Lewis Grabban and Conor Hourihane and were comfortable against a poor Boro side.

There was a lack of goals here but no shortage of drama on a raucous night at Villa Park, with Stewart Downing's 88th-minute free-kick coming within the width of the crossbar of forcing extra-time.

After the tension came the overwhelming relief and unbridled joy for Aston Villa.

Bruce said: "If I'm being brutally honest, maybe the referee got that wrong, maybe it could have been a red card".

"It's a hard season, it's a long season but they've been the third and fourth best teams in the league so you have to take it on the chin". We've just fallen short.

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