Jedinak heads Palace towards EPL
Socceroo Mile Jedinak moved a step closer to his Premier League dream after scoring the winner to seal Crystal Palace's place in the Championship promotion playoffs.
The Palace captain's 89th-minute header on Saturday secured a 3-2 home win over Peterborough, who were condemned to relegation from the second-tier competition.
With Cardiff and Hull City gaining automatic promotion to the Premier League next season, fifth-placed Palace will now feature in the four-team playoffs for the third spot on offer.
Jedinak's side will face fourth-placed Brighton in the two-leg semi-finals, starting on Friday and will take some much-needed confidence from their first win in 10 games.
They were outplayed early at Selhurst Park and trailed Peterborough 2-1 until substitute Kevin Phillips equalised in the 83rd minutes.
Jedinak then met Stephen Dobbie's dangerous cross with a glancing header to complete the win and inflict a cruel blow upon Peterborough, who were minutes away from safety.
While Australia's stocks in the Premier League have shrunk in recent years, Jedinak will be looking to continue his steady rise since leaving A-League side Central Coast in 2009 to play in Turkey.
The 28-year-old defensive midfielder has earned wide acclaim for his performances this season, starting in 41 games and scoring three goals.
He continues to attract interest from other clubs, including Premier League side Stoke.
Brighton are unbeaten in nine games but Palace manager Ian Holloway says his side can now make a fresh start after a frustrating run of results.
"The last six weeks have been a living, breathing nightmare but they've come through it and I think we will be stronger for it," Holloway said.
Leicester and Watford will meet in the other playoff semi-final.
Jedinak's fellow Australians Brett Holman and Chris Herd look likely remain in the top flight after Aston Villa boosted hopes of staying up in a 2-1 away win over Norwich in the Premier League.
Holman came on as a late substitute while Herd remains out injured.
Socceroos goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer had an afternoon to forget as Fulham were thumped 4-2 at home to relegation-doomed Reading.
Robbie Kruse played a full match in Fortuna Dusseldorf's 3-1 Bundesliga loss to Eintracht Frankfurt, amid reports he's agreed to terms with Bayer Leverkusen next season.