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Scott Parker hailed Fulham’s resolve after watching his side do just enough to reach the Championship play-off final having survived a second leg scare against Cardiff City.

Fulham were beaten 2-1 at Craven Cottage on a nervy night but progressed to the showpiece final at Wembley next month having beaten the Bluebirds 2-0 in the first leg in Cardiff. Parker acknowledged the enormity of the achievement during his post-match press conference:

“We’ve got ourselves to the final, an incredible achievement in terms of a long, drawn out season. The goal was to get to the final and we’ve done that. The performance tonight was tough, Cardiff made it very difficult for us. They came here as a wounded animal after the first leg, and had nothing to lose. You could see the difference in the two teams, there was a bit of edginess to us.

They constantly put you under pressure because they can put the ball into the box from literally all over the pitch. They get a throw-in on the halfway line and then the ball comes in your box. At times tonight we didn’t deal with that well enough, I think we all recognise that. It was a roll your sleeves up, do all you can to win this game, situation. There was a massive prize on offer, the final, it was a prize that we all wanted because we want that chance to try and get into the big league.”

Parker saluted Fulham’s mentality that allowed them to respond with an equaliser swiftly after going behind on the night – which proved crucial to the final result.

“There’s always points in football matches which are nothing to do with tactics or technique. It’s to do with a mindset, an understanding of the moment, and that was a prime example tonight. In the first half it wasn’t like that. They scored, but we had our quality and technique about us, and our structure and control got us through that half.

The second half was totally different, it was a case of you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do to win a football match. You do what you have to do to get through this game and get to a final. And we did that.”