Rover Joyed At Away Day Display

BORO’S win at table-topping Blackburn was a thoroughly professional away day perfromance that went some way to banishing the sting of Blackpool and settle the nerves and steady the knocking knees of the early wobblers.
Blackburn were top, unbeaten and had won all their previous home games. But Boro made it look easy in beating them. They were strong and organised at the back, efficient and tidy in the middle and pacy going forward on the break and two well taken goals by Lukas Jutkiewicz earned a deserved victory for a hard-working side that looked up for it.
Boro were patient in possession as they probed for gaps then looked threatening as they exploited them. And they were effective at the back too, Woodgate and Bikey snuffing out the threat of big money goal machine Rhodes and the full-backs blocking Rovers’ attempts to get wide to provide crosses. It was a world away from Blackpool.
Scatter those stars around: Juke was excellent up front, Emnes looked bright and he and Carayol tore through Rovers’ defence in the first half. McEachran and Thomson used the ball well in the middle to retain the ball and probe and pick out holes and Leadbitter buzzed around and got forward to support quickly. Boro created some good chances and should have had it wrapped up earlier – but you can’t have everything
A good night’s work. A good week’s work in fact: yes, Blackpool was a bruising defeat but six points from three games in a tough week including trips to the top two puts Boro back on track, the first win on the road after three painful defeats ends any rising fears of some fundamental flaw or hoodoo and the spirited perfromance – and on TV too – will boost the flagging morale of some sections of the supporters.
It was great. More later.

48 thoughts on “Rover Joyed At Away Day Display

  1. Just as Predicted. A tonking for Blackburn on national TV. Watched it in a bar in Turkey, the lads did me proud. TFFKAAB frightened them to death.

  2. Three points from two away games is one better than the two points I would happily have settled for.
    The manner of defeat at Blackpool would seem to be balanced out by the manner of defeat of victory at Blackburn but of course there are still concerns: Two primary ones.
    The first AV did his best to address on the last thread, that of Mogga’s propensity to change his team to ‘suit’ (ahem) the opposition, (it certainly suited Blackpool). Being an old fashioned sort I much prefer a pick your best eleven and play them every game approach. If your full back is injured or out of form, then replace him with a full back. Not Barry Robson. (yes that was GS2 but the point is still valid).
    Now Mogga may be brilliant at explaining his team choices and changes but if your primary access to team news is this blog (my available time to dedicate to Boro being limited) (and I’m sure it’s the same for many of the disaboro) then I sometimes fall into an information gap and into the looking glass world of professional coaching qualifications.
    The second concern is Mogga’s wait and see approach. Judging from the report of the first game we sat back and invited ‘Pool to attack with a predictable result. Against ‘Burn according to the BBC we ‘took total control from the get-go’ which suggests no twenty minute watching the opposition while they steam into us.
    To recap; we start passively and lose, we start aggressively and win.
    I’ll never get my UEFA coaching badges will I?

  3. Missed first ten minutes on TV but listened on the radio. Top perforance and could have won by more even though the last 15 minutes started to get hairy.
    Two well taken goals, more pleased wih the first because it was on Jukes wrong foot and was the type of chance that you would expect Juke (and Miller) not to take.
    The key thing appeared to be the fact we didnt hang around and played with tempo from the off. Getting the early goal gave us something to build on and play. Going two up was great.
    A bit scary at the end, their cross for the winner was undefendable such was its delivery. You just hope it goes to a defender ecause there was no chance to to it.
    Then the Hoyte challenge! Gulp.
    Still that is an away win against the top team in the division though Blackpool seem better at the moment. Still a long way to go.

  4. It appears the blog is following in Mogga’s footsteps.
    Five threads with the same tile, anyone’s guess which one it will be today.

  5. Not many people will know this, and I bet the Sky commentators didn’t but the reason The Juke scored twice last night is the fact that Julie (yes, that same, very well-known lady in Boro away traveller circles) was having a birthday celebration, her twenty-somethingth. So 2 x J – Juke for Julie, geddit?
    Not sure how Juke knew it was her birthday, but his goal celebration was clearly aimed at her, and two J goals is clear enough evidence for anyone!
    Lucas Jutkiewicz, la, la, la, la, la! Lucas Jutkiewicz, la, la, la, la, la la!
    What a performance from him! What drive and desire! I noticed at one point that he was standing on the ball with two defenders a yard in front of him and neither of them looked anything like the sort of men who were thinking of a physical challenge on him! That’s when your centre forward is winning you a game!
    And there was another moment, importantly less than a couple of minutes after he looked as if he’d hurt himself in a challenge (ankle-ish limping), when he dived in on their goal-line to take the ball off one of their defenders, scooped it off him like a spoon in a grapefruit. Great stuff!
    Blackpool? No, Black-burn, Black-BURN!
    Some people felt that Emnes was beginning to form an understanding with the Juke. Maybe, but I quite fancy the idea of Carayol playing off him, because Carayol’s runs forward have more thrust than Marvin’s. We could ask Friend to move forward into midfield, and find a job for young Parnaby at left-back, maybe, or even younger Halliday? Or keep Friend at full-back and bring Adam Reach in, of course, the more obvious option. You could keep it the same but bring Luke in for Emnes. I’d like to see that happen!
    But hey, guess what? We have got options now, not just injury crises; we have players who understand it is a squad game, this 46 game marathon! That’s the benefit of Mogga’s reign. And, for those who are wondering, that’s what the point of Ishmael Miller surely is!
    And nevergiveup gets my joke about Emnes! And Bails is back! Hurray! Hurray! UTB!

  6. A pitch perfect performance (& an added time panic-up)!
    In half-time discussion with Ian and my lad I said that that was the best away performance since Cardiff last season. At full time, I’d say it was amongst the very best – home or away – of Mogga’s reign.
    Great performances all over the park and a quality team display based on the approach Mooga took. Credit to all.
    Even survived the added time panic-up. I was just as glad to see Josh McEachran survive the attempted leg-breaker from Olsson – he should have walked.
    I think there was a certain arrogance – a quality of his often commented on – about Kean’s approach to the game. It amounted to ‘all we’ve got to do is turn out & we’ll win’. In my pre-match Boro Banter piece I said we couldn’t count on Kean not preparing his team properly and taking account of Boro’s failings.
    I was wrong – turns out we could!
    Not to take anything away from Boro or Mogga, though. First class.

  7. I am beginning to wonder after supporting this club for over fifty years have I learned anything but be surprised at how they will turn things upside down, lose when you expect them to win and win when you expect them to lose.
    Delighted that we won, pleased that we played better and encouraged that Mogga did not disturb the team too much. Let us hope we draw confidence from this result and it perhaps indicates that this division whilst competitive is open to any team that can find consistency.

  8. After the Blackpool game, that performance against Blackburn was just TYPICAL BORO. You just can’t trust them, can you?
    That was the best we have played this season. Everyone on our team looked “up for it”. It was one of those games when Bernie would have awarded a bottle of champagne to everyone who played.
    Carayol looks full of confidence, speed and skill, and can do a lot of damage at this level if he can play like that against Blackburn. Jukebox’s two goals were great to watch and the header, following a lovely cross from Carayol, was an object lesson in how to place and power the ball in from distance. Keeper had no chance for his second.
    Pity we couldn’t keep a clean sheet – but that shows the value of getting the second goal. All in all, a cracking night’s entertainment and all on TV for millions to see. I’ll bet Jarkko loved it as much as we did in the Pickled Parrot.
    Two points from the Blackpool and Blackburn games would have been seen as a great week’s work. We got three – even better! And it might just ignite the fuse both on the field and off it. Hopefully some who could be tempted back to the Riverside were watching on TV and might decide to join the party?

  9. First time I’d seen them in action since the pre-season, so not much to compare to, but that performance was fantastic.
    It’s taken a while for Mogga to build it up, but it looked last night like he now has a team of players that are comfortable on the ball, and can pass it around how he wants. (NB: could we have played like that with McManus in defence?)
    The only concern was the way we tired towards the end, and were a bit easily bullied off the ball. At that point we had our two first choice centre-halves missing (Woodgate and Rolls-Rhys), so that might be part of it.
    But I wondered whether there are any echoes of Southgate’s Arsenal-lite plan from a few years back. All good when we’ve got the ball and space, but big, strong, direct teams can nullify us a bit. I don’t want to sound too negative though, because that was a fantastic performance – play like that every game and we’d be up at the end of the season.

  10. Well done Boro, we could have drawn those three away and be unbeaten but still have the same points. We needed to prove we have “bouncebackability”

  11. OUTRAGEOUS! That’s the only way to sum up Mogga’s team and tactics last night.
    What on earth was Carry Out doing on the left? How many times have us blogsters told Mowbray how ineffectual it is to play a right footer on the left and vice versa? You can’t put a square peg in a round hole Tony as last years player of the year Barry Robson showed. Remember Hull at home last year? Has he learnt nothing!
    The way Carry out failed to ghost past players,constantlycomingback on his inside and giving the rovers full back the night off is testament to Mowbray’s ineptitude.
    Then we had to put up with the ineffective Thommo and Leadbitter. The way they huffed and puffed, went sideways and failed to break up play was yet another symbol of Mogga’s tactical failures. Useless the pair of them. This game cried out for Dickie Smallpiece.
    And to top it all, no kids and a non scoring centre forward that Mogga’s wasted the chairman’s last farthing on. Curtis main would have scored a brace last night. And Scott mac
    MOWBRAY OUT NOW!
    **AV writes: Yes; Booooooooo!

  12. Juke did well, worried about moggas subs. Hope he doesn’t drop Juke for the next league game though. Could give Miller a boost too, completion for places and all that.
    I though carayol was fantastic, he looks to be something haven’t seen at the Boro for a long long time. Hope he turns to be gem. Well done Mogga, I hadn’t turned on you, but I was beginning to sense a rumbling of doubt. Keep it up lads!

  13. Masham Wiggy –
    Maybe Mogga sent his players and said just play, start at the whistle and play. Tackle, move, pass. Play your own game, forget if the moon is in conjunction with venus, the leaves are disorganised, just bloody play.
    And lo and behold the other team worried about us. The luck and points went our way because we deserved them.
    There again it could have been an accident.
    All many have said is start at the beginning and play with some tempo. Ditch 10-0-0 as the starting formation and just sodding play.
    It is a simple game. Mogga wouldn’t have a chicken run, he would start with an aviary with a couple of random birds in it. Maybe change them round a bit and by he time he decided it would need chickens Christmas would be long gone.
    Booooooo. Throw away the 400 page manual and play. Just like on Friday.

  14. Great performance. Great Goals (climbs higher than the international space station) and a great three points. I’m starting to get the feeling the last ten minutes is done purely for effect.
    Anyway, like the defeat at Blackpool it is still only September.
    Keep calm and Carayol
    **AV writes: Can I nick that line and mock up a poster?

  15. Thought we would get an early slot on TV last night because it was the Friday night match. Sure enough there were second up but I sneezed and missed it.
    Watched it on iplayer just now and if they had edited anymore out it would have just been the scoreline.
    Luckily it is already on Boro+ so watched on there. We were 2-0 but not even half way through the highlights.
    I sat squirmimg as the ball went in to the box time and again. Blocks, catches, shots over the bar and that penalty call. It was worse watching the highlights as it condensed the action. I wont watch again in case the ref gives a penalty.
    It must have been sweaty bum time in the away end.
    Next round of the cup and a win against Leicester but anything is possible.
    Relegation fodder Barnsley beat us 1-0, had a poor run. Early in the week they were unlucky at Blackburn, then last night had played Brum off the park but went in 0-0. At that point I went off to make a curry and listen to the phone in on Radio 5. It was a call then a goal for 20 minutes. Good as our result was I would be tempted to give Barnsley performance of the weekend.
    But we won away against the unbeaten team on top of the table in a televised game. Defo up with the 3-0 at Cardiff.

  16. Good result but I’m a bit concerned about my falling levels of interest. It started with the Ipswich game. As usual I got up on Sunday morning and first thing I did was check the result. The thing is, for the first time ever I actually didn’t know who we were playing. Still…happy with the result.
    Then this weekend I got up on Sunday morning but couldn’t be bothered to log on. Once again I realized I had no idea who we were playing. I went out for a cup of coffee instead, and reading the Sunday morning papers in the small print I notice that we’d actually played on Friday night…and won. Maybe I should just continue to lose interest, they seem to be performing OK without me.

  17. Whilst I’m catching up with what’s been happening on planet Boro, I notice that incredibly 11 different players have scored for Boro in nine matches so far this season. Surely this must be some sort of record?
    **AV writes: Good question. I’ll have a flick through the books.

  18. Quite a week. Before Blackpool I would have settled for two points as a good return from the two away games. After Blackpool it was hard to imagine a point coming from anywhere. Funny old game football!
    I will enjoy this win for a few days, it’s very early in the season and certainly too early to make a judgement on how good we might be. I like Carayol though, he looks like a player with bags of potential, great quote from smog!

  19. AV, nick what you like. Because that’s all I have done. Talking to a Bristol City fan I believe they had some shirts made up but couldn’t get them on sale before he signed for us.
    No doubt an enterprising Teessider has bought them and they will on a street corner near you soon

  20. Can I make a plea that in future we take a lead from AV and Mogga himself by not either pressing the panic button when we have disappointing performances, or going overboard about our prospects after a good win or two.
    After Blackpool the pessimism around this blog, including the suggestion that Mogga was only a couple of games away from being out of a job, seemed ridiculous to me. After Blackburn its absurdity must be apparent to everyone.
    Mogga, as usual, responded reasonably and intelligently to his critics: “Judge me at the end of the season”. Don’t,in other words, make sweeping judgments on the basis of the last game. The season will be a long and physically arduous one with many twists and turns along the way. The important question is whether, in spite of a shoestring budget, and well understood financial constraints we are,under Mogga,making progress, and going in the right direction.
    The answer to that question has to be an unequivocal “yes”. We are developing a team to be proud of. A team that is very well organised, has a good spirit, the right kind of mixture of youth and experience, and, above all, tries at all times to play good progressive football based on a passing game, and an awareness of shape.
    Mogga himself has a high degree of tactical nous, awareness and flexibility that is widely admired within the game. His comments on our performances after games always seems to me to be spot on. And he is ,of course, like us, Boro through and through.
    Set within this wider context, the kind of doubts we all feel about this or that player or team selection may not be as significant as we sometimes like to think. What do we (and I include myself in this) know anyway?
    Our views are based on seeing how the team performs on match days . And, unless we are particularly dedicated, we only get to see around half of those. And all we really care about are the results. If we win everything is pretty well ok. If we lose-disaster. Compared with any manager, the evidence on which we, as fans,base our views, is thin to say the least.
    We neither know nor care whether Player W is a positive or a poisonous influence at the club; or Young Player X throws up with nerves before every game; or Player Y is going through some kind of traumatic domestic turmoil; or Player Z , a crowd favourite, can’t be bothered to train properly. We don’t know who feigns injuries and who plays through them, who has and who lacks bottle, who can and who can’t take instructions, or who plays for himself and who is a team man.
    We might be able to get an inkling about some of these things from our match day experience, but we are really only seeing the tip of the iceberg. For a manager like Mogga however they are part and parcel of a complex body of evidence that he is living with and making judgments about every minute of every day. And whilst some of this evidence can be made available for public consumption, a great deal of it must remain behind closed doors.
    The fan who first coined the slogan,”In Mogga We Trust”, hit the nail on the head. The question we have to answer is whether we buy into Mogga’s footballing philosophy, whether we share his vision, and whether we trust him to make the right day-to-day decisions at the club. Do we trust his experience, his perceptiveness, his integrity, his knowledge and understanding of the game, his tactical nous, his man-management skills, and, perhaps above all, his understanding of and dedication to the club and the culture of the wider community which it serves? And do we believe that he can channel these attributes into the project of producing a team that might stand a chance of surviving in the Premiership within the next three or four years?
    Our answers to these longer-term questions are rather more important than our often passionate and heartfelt reactions to specific matches. If we could more readily acknowledge the limitations of our own evidence base, and have a smidgin more trust in the general direction in which the club is travelling , it would be helpful all round.

  21. A great, great match on Friday. And a rare chance for me to see Boro play on TV. I enjoyed it immensely. Perhaps not the same watching alone back in the dark Finland than sitting by the fire place at the local as Dormo did. But great anyway – this would have not been possible before internet time.
    I think Juke was fabulous. I lost count on how many times he won a header and let us play forward. His goals – especially the latter – were great but I like to say his contribution was outstanding in all.
    lenmasterman –
    Great post. There will always be more banter after a lost match. Also I am afraid that the blog gets more posts when we play badly. It’s like bad news sell better scenario. Unfortunately.
    Let’s just hope we won’t do the typical on Tuesday. Some players are rested – Woody, anyone? – and it could be a possible banana skin. But the untypical Boro will win by 1-3 with goals from Carayol, Leadbitter and Emnes getting us a tie at Old Trafford. One does not expect a home draw anymore. Up the Boro!

  22. Len –
    I cant recall anyone calling for Mogga’s head but there are grumbles and cheers.
    None of us are privvy to the training ground nor do we have Vic’s access to the club. But we are all fans.
    Many who post on here dont have the luxury of living and working amongst fellow Boro fans, we dont even get the gazette around here, the paper boy from Acklam dropped Derby from his round years ago, so the message board is our ‘local’ where we can have a chinwag about Boro.
    That means the highs and lows just as if you were at the match or sat in the pub or having a coffee at work. We have our disagreements, we all see things differently so the views will rarely all match.
    We are making progress and that is all we can ask.

  23. I think that rather than focussing on whether Boro’s promotion aspirations are back on track because of the great performance at Blackburn (as opposed to being irrepairably damaged by the defeat at Blackpool) – we should ask the question of whether this is more likely a season of experimentation with a possibility of it turning into a promotion campaign.
    Given the number of players Mogga has already utilised it must be more than normal squad rotation to keep everyone fit, fresh and happy. How many games would you deem reasonable for a key player to start in a Championship season? more than two-thirds, three-quarters or as many as they can?
    I think it’s fair comment for fans to question decisions Mogga makes if it doesn’t make sense to them – afterall he’s not universally revered as the best manager in Europe. Managers will sometimes get team selection and tactics wrong or players will not perform the role they’re supposed to.
    What price of Mogga being restored to genius if Miller hadn’t been injured in the warm-up then Jutkiewicz wouldn’t have been on the pitch to take those chances so expertly. He looked in the best form since we bought him but will that mean he will retain his place?
    Players will often say that they hope they’ve done enough to keep their place but it seems at the moment few are guarateed their place with Mogga. I think he believes it’s just a matter of collecting points and keeping in touch before christmas and then hopefully having the team firing on all cylinders for the run-in. In the meantime should we all just keep quiet and keep the faith? There’s nothing wrong in giving your opinion in my book.

  24. lenmasterman –
    Good post. I am a big fan of Mogga’s, I like his style of football and his philosophy. This summer was really the first time we have had chance to see what he is trying to do and so far I’m impressed.
    For example, he sold Bennett for £2.5 million and bought Friend for £100000. Friend seems to be a very good player, so an excellent piece of business. I’ve also been impressed by Carayol. There was a body of criticism over the summer, with comments like ‘he’s only from Doncaster/Bristol Rovers’ flying about, regarding players Mogga was signing. But those buys from lower league teams have the makings of being excellent value.
    There is always a lot of hindsight management flying about after a defeat, apparently at Blackpool Mogga got the tactics wrong and the team shape but he played the same team, tactics and shape at Blackburn and we won, but not a single comment refering to him getting it right.
    A lot of fans don’t seem to be able to appreciate that the players sometimes put in below par performances which is out of the managers control. I have faith in Mogga and its not blind faith, I like what I see. What’s more he’s done it before at WBA so there’s no reason why he can’t do it again.
    My feeling is we’re going to be top six contenders this season, whether we can compete in and around the top two, time will tell.

  25. Nigel –
    By what I have heard, seen and read, whilst the players were basically the same for Blackpool they were set out differently. Miller was Billy no mates at Blackpool whilst Juke had Emnes as company. The early goal was because the strikers were working as a pair
    From the words of Mogga himself he tried rope a dope at Blackpool, at Blackburn it appeared he sent them out to have a go. Not silly chase the ball stuff but to be positive in what they did
    When Hoyte was about to clear the ball the strikers were up against the centre backs, in effect defending in their half. It makes a huge difference, it causes the other team to play a little deeper and us to be further up the pitch.
    Now some would call me a chicken runner for making those comments but they appear to make sense.

  26. Having been away since Friday I typically missed what was by all accounts a deserved and unexpected win. Well done lads.
    Another top post from the compelling Len Masterman and backed up by Nigel Reeve, but Werdermouth makes an equally strong argument.
    Like Nigel I’m a huge fan of TM, and whilst I accept that the evidence on the field isn’t always as coercive as we’d all like, I do feel that on and off the park we’re progressing at an easily acceptable rate. I also agree with Nigel that TM has had previous success in achieving what he is trying to achieve with us. I honestly do not believe that there is a better, realistic alternative as manager for us at this point in time.
    I get frustrated by what I sometimes see as illogical team selections and tactics. I appreciate though, that my lack of understanding probably says more about me than it does about the tactics.
    As I said after the Blackpool game, I think we’d most likely have lost however we were set up. With hindsight, the severity of that beating probably helped us get the points at Blackburn and we may be in credit now as an ironic consequence.
    I believe that fans should hold their manager to account and not accept decisions on faith, but I also believe that there is a bigger picture to acknowledge and any criticism of TM should be balanced against it.
    For me, Mogga is in plenty of credit on that score.

  27. Woodgate said
    “We were the better side, we were well organised, we set the pace, we grabbed the game and maybe played the way we should have at Blackpool. We deserved the win, we needed it and we got it.”
    Typical Chicken runner coming up with hindsight yet again.
    We should stick with the views of those inside the game, what does he know about the tactics and the way we set out to play.
    Sadly I agree with him.

  28. On holiday in The Lakes last week with, lo and behold, Blackpool and Blackburn just down the M6. Who knew?
    Couldn’t fit in both games so I had to choose. I chose Blackpool. You don’t have to be paranoid to recognise they really are out to get you.

  29. “A lot of fans don’t seem to be able to appreciate that the players sometimes put in below par performances which is out of the managers control.”
    Exactly. I’m sure we’ll get hammered again at some point this season when we have an off day. It will happen in a 46-game season.
    As Mogga repeatedly says, football is a game of very fine margins, there is not a lot of difference between success and failure, especially in this division where pretty much anyone can beat anyone.
    Look at us and Ipswich this week: people thought we were lucky to beat Ipswich, had they won that they’d have had three points with six more to play for last week. They ended up with 0. Had they beaten us, who knows, confidence would have been up, they might have got nine – and the opposite applies to us.
    Because it is about such fine margins, that’s why it’s important we get behind the team as much as we can, and not resort to whinging, whining, booing, etc, because our support could on occasion literally be the difference between winning and losing.

  30. We all know the fine margins that are in all sport. If the ref had done his job properly we would have been debating losing a two goal lead at Blackburn. But he didnt so we can celebrate a top performance.
    This is a message board where we discuss the Boro. It is not some Soviet forum where the first to stop applauding Mogga is carted off to a Gulag.
    We discuss the highs and the lows. If something looks bizarre we comment on it. The board is hardly full of bile like it was for Strachan and even Southgate.
    We all know the problems the club created for itself and the actions that have been taken to get it back on an even keel.
    There is no booing on here but we do pose questions. I wont be happy if we drop points but sometimes the other team are just better, sometimes the approach appears wrong and we debate it.

  31. Ian –
    For the zillionth time, no-one is arguing that people can’t disagree with the Mogga. It’s the panic at any defeat that annoys people. No-one will be happy when we lose, but that doesn’t mean we all have to get angry and blame everyone in sight. You say there was no bile (good!), but some people were starting to question Mogga’s position which is ludicrous.
    As for the ref doing his job properly, if he had, Olsson would have been sent off 1st half and we’d have won even more comfortably. As for the Hoyte incident at the end, I thought it was a foul on Hoyte.

  32. Andy R –
    Interesting watching Huddersfield doing a job on Blackpool last night. They set off with a decent tempo and asked questions of the Tangerines.
    Maybe if we had done the same we might have got something from the game. Maybe we then would have gone belly up at BBurn but we will never know.
    At least Mogga and Woodie seem to have taken lessons out of the match at Blackpool and put them in to force.
    Tonight may well see some players given a breather but at least there was an extra day off having played Friday night.
    Shame Reach is injured, Steele is doubtful and Main out for a long time. We may have the unusual sight of not one academy player on the pitch at kick off though I imagine Hines will deputise for Woodgate and Williams get a run out.
    Now there is a job for a someone, when did Boro last start a match without an academy player? I guess it must be back in the Robbo days as the academy side of the club got underway but we still had a reserve team.

  33. BoroPhil –
    I totally agree that Mogga’s position is without doubt secure, like you I cant fathom why people want his head. And, is it really the zillionth time?
    As for the Hoyte challenge I will have another look because I thought it was a pen. I admit I have seen it twice, the second time was through my fingers and I darent look again in case the ref gives a penalty. You can assure me we wont have a retrospective decision if I watch it again? That’s boronoia for you!
    I also agree Olsen should have gone walkies but there were quite a few shockers over the weekend.
    Lets hope for a good result tonight to keep feel good factor intact. It would also be good because those pushing for inclusion would put some pressure on the ‘first’ eleven.
    If there is to be rotation as much game as possible helps.

  34. InLago and Morrissey –
    you are not alone. I didn’t see much of the incident in real time from the away end, but the TV replay seemed to justify the ref’s decision: Hoyte was not looking behind him when contact was made; his eyes were on the ball, and it was the ball at which he seemed to me to be aiming his swipe!
    He also looked genuinely outraged, and I think Justin is a really nice lad, not a cheating bar steward at all! In any case, he’d already got away with it when he expressed annoyance at Rhodes’s actions: cheating bar stewards tend to look innocent in such situations, or else behave like those motorists who, disobeying right of way, almost crash into you on a roundabout and proceed to prove their superior driving skills by very studiously not recognising your existence afterwards!

  35. I think Mogga is guiding the ship to the right direction. The results are not perfect (we are not in the top two in the league – yet!) but the philosophy is there. As Simon from US said we are looking like a Borocelona and passing the ball around nicely.
    Also we seem to get just good news from Rockcliffe Park nowadays (except for McDonald, that is). I am absolutely delighted that Adam Reach has signed a new four year contract.
    The results must follow soon – latest next year. But hopefully by May. Up the Boro!

  36. After Blackburn Woodgate stated that the Boro “grabbed the game and set the pace. Does that imply that before the Blackpool match Mogga instructed his team not to grab the game and set the pace? Or does it imply that the players did what they were asked against Blackburn but not against Blackpool?
    The way I see it we lost against Blackpool because we didnt play well enough and we won against Blackburn because we did play well enough. I doubt the difference between the two was what Mogga said before each match. If that was true we would all be professional football managers earning £10k a week, it would be easy.
    In this league, like any other the teams that prosper will be the ones with the best players, after that within the teams that prosper, those that rise to the top will be the ones who want it the most. I suspect all the maangers of the top ten teams are of similar ability and probably cancel each other out to a large extent, unless one of them is exceptional, which Mogga might be.
    I won’t criticise Mogga for making a ‘mistake’ within anyone match because it is pointless/destructive and only my opinion. It is also true that the winner of a game of football is determined by a range of factors, not just a managers input before a game and how he sets up the team. Another fan watching the same match will undoubtedly tell me we lost for a different reason to the one I think is true. Our opinions as fans are largely based on emotion and our individual personalities. Our emotions rule when commenting on our team, for example most of us disliked Steve McClaren yet he is beyond question Boro’s best ever manager.
    I still think we’ll finish first.
    **AV writes: There are always two teams on the pitch. Maybe at Blackburn Boro couldn’t grab the game and set the pace because the opposition didn’t let them.

  37. Well there are lots of messages after that win. But only Dormo said typical Boro. I would have thought many of us would have put that in.
    Big shock for me it was on live in South Africa. First class game. Good passing Emnes the Juke and Carayol worked well together. But I really dont want to single any body out.
    Well done Boro I am a very happy camper.

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