Published: Sat, May 26, 2018
Sport | By Gary Shelton

Aston Villa to return to Premier League? Predicted line-up for play-off final

Aston Villa to return to Premier League? Predicted line-up for play-off final

The Villans face Fulham in the Championship playoff final on Saturday, and according to The Telegraph, the former England global will consider extending his stay with them if they defeat the Whites and book a return to the top flight.

And Bruce said that he would not pick Terry against his old club if Villa win promotion back to the top flight.

Fulham finished third, missing out on automatic promotion by two points.

Having previously taken Birmingham City (2001/02 & 2006/07) and Hull City (2012/13 & 2015/16) into the Premier League from the Championship, he is a dab hand when it comes to these late season pushes.

Shortly after his move to Villa was confirmed last July, Terry said: "Playing against Chelsea just doesn't sit right with me, to be honest".

Fulham have no injury worries, but boss Slavisa Jokanovic must decide which of his six loanees to omit from the matchday squad.

Bruce was appointed Villa boss in October 2016, taking over after Roberto di Matteo had overseen a hard start to life in the Championship.

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Reports on Friday morning have suggested that the 37-year-old former Blues captain is prepared to sign a new deal to extend his stay at Villa Park - but it seems likely that an agreement by which he could miss games against his old club would be part of it. "You know he doesn't get too up, doesn't get too down, if he struggles in a game he puts it behind him, and he just goes about his business".

"I've thoroughly enjoyed the challenge of my 19 months here".

"There were four or five Championship clubs interested and Aston Villa were 16th or 17th at the time, so it looked as if it would be tough for them to get promotion".

"We have to have a healthy respect for Fulham but not be fearful of them", Bruce, 57, added.

"We've beaten everybody this season but it's a case of when that big chance comes, can you take it?"

Jokanovic, who led Watford to second place in the Championship in 2014-15, has guided Fulham to successive top-six finishes in his two full seasons in charge. "But at the same time I think that most of us feel that had we won then Cardiff would have probably have won as well".

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