Kevin McDonald was delighted that Fulham ground out a vital win at the New York Stadium yesterday – and believes that sort of gritty performance is exactly what the Whites will need if they are to reach the Championship play-offs.

The Scottish midfielder felt that Fulham’s progression into the top six – which came courtesy of a scrappy winner from Sone Aluko – has been in a long time in coming. Remaining in the play-off positions in a ridiculously competitive and unpredictable league will require different reserves of character, too. McDonald, speaking to GetWestLondon after the final whistle yesterday, felt that relegated Rotherham offered a real test:

It was long overdue and we’ve had a couple of chances to get in there and we’ve done it after which, for me, was one of the toughest games of the season. We just edged it but they had a couple of chances but luckily enough we got the three points.

I think the pitch wasn’t ideal and it was really slow and bobbly and it was a game between two different types of teams – they want to play the long ball and they were good at it today, while we try to play football.

That’s us, we try to play football all the time and we really struggled to play it today and our pass completion rate was probably the lowest of the season today but sometimes to get promoted you need games like that where you fight for your lives and I felt we did that today.

McDonald admitted that Sheffield Wednesday’s failure to win at Barnsley gave Fulham a boost prior to kick off, but was relieved that the Whites managed to take advantage of another stumble by the Owls.

We went out for the warm up and there were rumours floating around that it was 1-1 and heard it was when we came back in and obviously it gives you an extra incentive but we knew we had to win regardless of their result so thank god we did.