Friday, 14 March 2014

Are Boro better than their league position suggests?

I have some mixed feelings about Middlesbrough. They are another ex-Premiership giant in the Championship with pretencions of being better than they really are perhaps. Give them another season though under the guidance of Aitor Karanka and they could be the ones that start to gel into a team that could well make the pace. At present though they are sometimes sloppy at the back and goal shy and on other days are well capable of beating the best in the division.

The signing of on-loan Danny Graham from Sunderland is already proving to be a shrewd move as he netted twice to give Boro a two-nil win against a Mick McCarthy Ipswich team who never give an inch to anyone. Lee Tomlin has also come into the side this January from Peterborough giving them a fresh look up front to when the Cherries last met Middlesborough at the Riverside. The player though that I see as their main danger man is Kamara. When he is on from the others around him get on board and it's important that Bournemouth keep him off the ball as much as they can.

Middlesbrough got off to a slow start this season and have certainly improved under Karnaka, but they sit just one points below the Cherries having played one more game. A win for AFCB could lift them into the top 10, while Middlesbrough will not come to Dean Court to block. Just like AFCB they may feel that a run at the play-offs is not a done deal yet and there is space for a team to still make significant progress towards that goal if they can keep a run going.

It is the away form that has been holding Boro back of late with just one win in their last six, while overall it's one win in nine for them
. They simply don't travel well and that should give the Cherries plenty of optimism to head into this game with everything to gain.

This week though they earned a good 1-1 draw at home against Nottingham Forest with winger Mustapha Carayol striking first for Boro, but they could not hold on for victory. Rantie frightened the life out of their back for at the Riverside so it may be that Eddie Howe will use him again at some time on Saturday, hopefully to good effect.

Middlesborough Away Form:

AFCB Home Form:

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  1. As a season ticket holder at Mbro , I naturally see every home game . Dont worry about Kamara as he rarely gets a start under Karanka , probably move him on at the end of the season . The man to tear you up is Caryol ( if he plays him on the left wing ) otherwise we wont score . At the back you will find us ( contrary to your report above ) extremely difficult to score against . 1 penalty (Sheff Wed ) and a blatant handball ( Notts Forest ) against us since January . No open play goals aginst since !
    Dave the Red.

  2. Hi Dave the Red,
    It is nice to have a visiting fan on the blog. I must admit I had though Middlesbrough would push on this season once they got a few wins behind them but I still think you have a strong squad. Hope you enjoyed visiting the site. Always good to hear opinions from opponents. Let's hope it is entertaining as the last time the two teams met.