IT WAS A cut and paste display: dominate & create chances, fall behind to a dead ball then bust a gut to claw to one point when three were there on a plate. We’ve that countless times in recent years and three times already this term.
Boro had 22 shots in the 1-1 draw with Sheffield Wednesday, rattled the bar and had a compelling penalty shout waved away. Their keeper made three good saves, a couple of efforts sizzled an inch or two wide, Andy Halliday bounced a free header over the bar, George Friend was over-lapping and weaving and tricking life a man possessed – he did a Cruyff turn and drag-back in his own box at one point – and Lukas Jutkiwiewicz got to wear the weekly head bandage of hour after a battling display in and around their box.
But as with last week at Wigan, and against Blackpool, and against Accrington in the Credit Card Cup Boro couldn’t make it count. All those games should have been out of sight. Boro could have been top of the table by now if only they had a deadly striker to complement the current set-up.. And as in all three of those games Boro got caught napping at a set-play. So that’s two problems. One at each end.
Continue reading A Cut And Paste Display… But Not Far Short Of Being A Potent Force
IT WAS a good point. Any away point is always a good one.
It may not have felt like it when former Boro target Jordi Gomez rocket of a free-kick clipped off the wall and spun home for a barely-deserved Wigan equaliser late on but, be honest, you’d have taken it before kick-off.
Yes, the sucker punch six minutes from time – stop me if you’ve heard this one before – hurt because we were all emotionally tuned for a second successive away victory by that stage.
It stung because Boro really deserved to win.
Continue reading Draw Points To The Positive At Wigan
IT WOULD be easy to look at the superficial sketchy outlines of the Blackpool game and think: Same old Boro.
Lots of possession and probing with no end product, predictable passing but no punch, caught cold at a scrappy set-play… the only thing that wasn’t “typical Boro” was that it was the opposition left reeling by the penalty box barrage and a leveller at the death.
The stoppage time salvage job didn’t just rescue a point.
It rescued hope that a new Boro are starting to emerge.
Continue reading Blackpool Rocked By New Look Boro
>KER-CHING! With million quid new boy Albert Adomah adding some bling to the Boro on his debut at Charlton, it seems we are in the big time again.
Meanwhile well-wadded boss Tony Mowbray is making noises about stepping up his bid for Leeds striker Ross McCormack who it may take close to £1.5m to prise away from Elland Road. And it is reported that a million euro bid for South African striker and headline writers Tokelo Rantie has been knocked back by Swedish side Malmo.
The gaffer is also looking at bringing in a couple of other signings, quality ‘core’ players who are Championship hardened – or from a higher level – and who, even if they come on frees, could command decent wages.
After years of belt-tightening and dipping into the slight seconds bargain bin, suddenly Mogga is splashing the cash like a drunk sailor on shore leave.
Has he found Steve Gibson’s lost wallet down the back of a sofa in the corporates? Did he get lucky on the Euromillions?Has he sold the fracking rights for the Riverside?
Continue reading Why “Big Spending Boro” Are Really Still Shrewd Shoppers
INTO the Valley… with Boro no longer on the Skids (one for the teenagers there.)
A rot-stopping welcome 1-0 win at Charlton eased the pressure a bit and ended a long run of very damning statistics. It doesn’t make Boro promotion favourites – but it may help to calm nerves, build bridges and create some breathing space for a fledging side to emerge.
And of course, it is nice to come away from a game (especially an away game) with a smile.
Continue reading Juke Box On Song : Rocking Robins
TWO defeats in two home games with a series of chances to seal them squander morale in on a knife-edge. Shot-shy Boro team – and the manager – need to slam the brakes on the long sickening slide and make an immediate improvement.
But to do they will need to start hitting the target -and fast.
Continue reading Shot-Shy Boro Striking Bum Note
BORO will need a lot more of the first half display against Leicester and a lot less of the second half if they are to make a success of this season.
The Championship curtain-raiser was a microcosm of last term: it started in impressive fashion with crisp passing, slick movement and a commanding display of creative zest. But the chances created were not converted and in a pivotal moment missed a sitter then found themselves facing a fierce counter-attack and they wilted.
Continue reading More Or Less Like Last Season?