Mile Jedinak's first-leg winner proved the difference as Aston Villa held on for a 1-0 aggregate victory over Middlesbrough in the Championship play-off semi-finals.
The Caltex Socceroos skipper headed in the only goal at the Riverside Stadium on the weekend and it was all Villa needed to book their spot at Wembley as they secured a decisive 0-0 draw in Wednesday morning's (AEST) return leg.
The former Crystal Palace captain is now just one match away from promotion back to the Premier League, with only the final against in-form Fulham to come.
There were to be no goal-scoring heroics from Jedinak this time around but that didn't prevent the veteran midfielder from having a big say in proceedings.
Again named as the primary holder in midfield, Jedinak was hugely impressive in topping his team's count for passes, tackles, clearances and blocks.
It was a commanding display that earned the 33-year-old another wave of plaudits.
His performance captured exactly what Steve Bruce demanded as the hosts gave up few opportunities until Stewart Downing rattled the crossbar with a late free-kick.
Darren Randolph had earlier kept Boro in the contest, first denying Lewis Grabban at close-range on the hour and later parrying a curling Jack Grealish attempt.
But the deadlock always seemed likely to remain intact and that's how it transpired, Villa content to keep a clean sheet that moves them within a game of ending their two-season exile from the top-flight.
They will now prepare for the all-important play-off final against Fulham at 2:00am on Sunday, May 27 (AEST).
It will be Jedinak's final club assignment before he joins up with the Caltex Socceroos' pre-FIFA World Cup camp in Turkey.
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