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LONDON, May 2 (Reuters) – Fulham were in seventh heaven as they sealed the second-tier Championship title with a 7-0 win over Luton Town on Monday, giving them an unassailable lead at the top of the standings with a game to spare.
Fulham had already sealed promotion to the top flight Premier League last month after they were guaranteed a top-two finish.
The full-time whistle was followed by a pitch invasion at Craven Cottage as selfie-hunting fans mobbed the players before they were ushered off for the trophy presentation.
The London club also became the first team in two decades to score more than a 100 goals (106) in a single season in the second tier as six different players found the back of the net against Luton.
Fulham were led by a brace from Serbian striker and top scorer Aleksandar Mitrovic, who has now scored 43 goals in 43 games this season – a record for the division since the Premier League was founded in 1992.
„To do it at home in front of your fans, to be champions of the league – no matter whatever league, whatever standard – that lives forever,“ said Tom Cairney, who scored the opener which was also Fulham’s 100th goal of the season.
„We create a hell of a lot of chances… It also tells you about a person (Mitrovic) who is a special talent – 43 Championship goals is astounding. He deserves all the plaudits, he’s a top, top striker.“
Fulham will finish their season with a trip to fifth-placed Sheffield United on Saturday. The result leaves Luton in sixth and final playoff spot, level with United on 72 points and two points above Middlesbrough.
Second-placed Bournemouth (82 points from 44 games), third-placed Nottingham Forest (79 points from 44 games) and fourth-placed Huddersfield Town (79 points from 45 games) are vying for the second automatic promotion spot.
Promotion is worth up to $240 million, according to last year’s Deloitte Annual Review of Football Finance. Teams that finish third to sixth go into the playoffs to fight for the final promotion spot. (Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; editing by Pritha Sarkar)