Karanka- We deserve promotion

The Teessiders cruised to a 3-0 semi-final, second-leg win over Brentford in front of a bumper crowd at the Riverside Stadium on Friday night to seal a 5-1 aggregate victory which sends them into a Wembley showdown with either Norwich or Ipswich on May 25.

Karanka will allow his players to enjoy their success for a couple of days, but on Monday, he will turn his attention to a game which could be worth as much as £150million to the winners.

The Spaniard said: "The first thing I think about is the money, but it's not just about the money, it's about these players because these players deserve to play in the Premier League.

"I think a few of them have played in the Premier League and after 10 months working with them, all of them deserve to play in the Premier League.

"It's a big step for everybody, for the players, for me, for the club, for everybody

But again, we have to prepare for the game the best we can."

Boro's victory was set up by Lee Tomlin's expert first-half strike, but cemented after the restart by Kike and Albert Adomah as the Bees fell by the wayside for the eighth time in play-off football.

They are now tantalisingly close to a return to the top flight for the first time since 2009, and while there is a sizeable hurdle yet to clear, Karanka dedicated the semi-final victory to chairman Steve Gibson.

He said: "I don't have words enough to say 'thanks' to my players

I said a long time ago they all deserve the best and once again, everybody saw they are an amazing team, they are amazing lads, they have amazing spirit in the changing room and I have to say 'thanks'.

"I have achieved a lot of things as a player - the Champions League and leagues and everything - but I didn't have the opportunity to play at Wembley and they have given me that opportunity.

"But the first one is Steve Gibson

When I came here, I told him that he deserved the best and for him, for the crowd, for the club, for everybody, it's very good."

For Brentford boss Mark Warburton, in charge of his final game before a parting of the ways between he and the club, there were mixed emotions.

He said: "It's sad I'm using the word 'they' and not 'us'

It's frustrating, but that's old news now

There's a group of players and staff here who are outstanding

They're top drawer and Premier League standard.

"I knew my last game was coming

I will see the players tomorrow and do the right thing by them.

"The players are obviously very disappointed

We were outstanding over 46 games, but tonight we were second best

We fell at the last hurdle - but it's still been a fantastic season."

Source : PA

Source: PA