Fulham earned promotion to the Premier League with a 1-0 win over Aston Villa in the Championship play-off final at Wembley.
In the 23rd minute, English starlet Ryan Sessegnon played a ball in behind to Tom Cairney, who launched his club into the top division with a calmly placed shot past keeper Sam Johnstone.
Fulham returns to the Premier League after a four-year stop in the Championship.
American Tim Ream started and played 90 minutes at center back for The Cottagers. The 30-year old made 48 total appearances this season and most likely (transfer market permitting) returns to the top flight after spending six seasons in the Championship with Bolton and Fulham.
Tim Ream was very good in today's playoff final. pic.twitter.com/Uog9u2V5i5— Paul Carr (@PaulCarrTM) May 26, 2018
”I don’t know that you can describe what the feeling is right now and the emotions, and the release of everything that’s gone on this season, in the second half of the season,” Ream said after the match (Sky Sports via ESPN). “There’s not many better feelings than this. It’s incredible. I had a taste of it what, six years ago now, and I wanted to get back ever since. It’s the top of the top. Now to be back there and to get a change again to prove ourselves against some of the best in the world, there’s nothing better.
This is the part of the post where I do some basic math. Ream is 30-years old and while any Premier League center back should be an automatic call-up for the U.S. national team, these are strange times without a major tournament on the horizon. He’ll be 35* at the next potential World Cup (2022 is being played in the winter), and that may put him just on the precipice of being left out of future camps due to reasons beyond talent and performance.
All Ream can do is play well for Fulham, so well that it’s impossible to leave him out of future national team rosters regardless of age. That is all any of us can do. Control what is in front of us and hope the rest falls into order.
- h/t Muncyman22