Often Partisan

GAMEDAY – Boro Away

Blues make the long trip north to play Middlesbrough today with Gary Rowett facing a mini injury crisis in his squad.

Boro

Aitor Karanka’s side is flying high in second place with 39 points from 19 games having won six of their last seven Championship games. They haven’t lost at home in the league since August and Hull – who beat them 3-0 at the KC Stadium – are the only team to score past Boro in the league since Wolves on 24 October.

Boro have no injury problems and are likely to field the same team as the one that beat Ipswich 2-0 last weekend.

Blues

Rowett faces an injury crisis of sorts with Nicolai Brock-Madsen (ankle) and Jon Toral (dead leg) having not trained this week. They could join Paul Robinson, David Cotterill, Koby Arthur and Clayton Donaldson in the treatment room. Jacques Maghoma is a potential doubt having become a father in the past couple of days and Tomasz Kuszczak has been ill most of the week.

James Vaughan could get his first stop up top and Charlee Adams could be in line for an appearance on the bench.

Ref

Darren Bond takes charge of the game today. He’s taken charge of 14 games so far this season and shown 44 yellow cards and one red. The last game involving Blues that Mr Bond took charge of was the 1-0 win over Brentford in February. Paul Caddis was booked in that game while Stephen Gleeson received a straight red card.

Suspension Watch

5 Yellow Cards: Maikel Kieftenbeld
4 Yellow Cards: David Davis, Jonathan Grounds, and Paul Caddis
3 Yellow Cards: Stephen Gleeson and David Cotterill
2 Yellow Cards: Jon Toral
1 Yellow Card: Tomasz Kuszczak, Michael Morrison, Paul Robinson, Clayton Donaldson, Jonathan Spector, Andy Shinnie and Demarai Gray.

The cutoff date for 5 yellow cards to attract a suspension is November 30, 2015
The cutoff date for 10 yellow cards to attract a suspension is April 9, 2016

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58 Responses to “GAMEDAY – Boro Away”

  • StaffsBlue says:

    I selected my team in the last blog.

    Kuszczak

    Halford Morrison Spector Lowry

    Kieftenbeld Davis

    Maghoma Gleeson Gray

    Vaughan

    We need to be more aggresive in the full back positions and I’d rather have Gleeson further forward dictating our attack, rather than getting in the way in front of the back 4 and letting the opposition ghost past him. Vaughan is a given for me. We’ll either come away with a hard-earned 1-1, or we’ll take a pasting. You really can’t judge it with any confidence at the moment. I would have been much more confident a month ago.

  • zxcv says:

    Caddis back in and Halford and spector at C/Half and L/back respectively or other way round if Halford can play left back.

  • StaffsBlue says:

    Maghoma’s shirt is hanging in the dressing room, so he’s definitely there.

  • steve says:

    Decent line up. My Sky super 6 is knackered,we’re on it and i can’t bet against us.I’ve gone 0-1 but would be happy with a point.

  • StaffsBlue says:

    Rowett has asked for more aggression, so why stick Davis on the bench? Gray, Gleeson, Shinnie, Maghoma… neither could tackle a Tonka.

  • steve says:

    According to reports,it could be called off. I hope not.

  • steve says:

    Abandoned i mean.

  • Shirley Blue says:

    Well done Blues for getting a very credible point and especially well done to GR for not messing around making wholesale changes to the defence as certain people would have liked.

  • Hillfield Blues says:

    Where did a performance like that come from?.Great point!

    • Dave Mann says:

      Go to the odd away game Hillfield and you might just get the jist . Kro

      • steve says:

        Don’t start Dave.

      • paddocknick says:

        Morning Dave, glad the 3 of you had a good day yesterday. However I have one point for you. The away form seems to be the way we are set up as a formation not because our away support is more vocal. I have been to away games since the mid-seventies (can you remember the away day special trains about a fiver anywhere!?) and the vocal support was always there and I have seen us lose far more away than at home. Anyway enjoy Preston on Tuesday and hopefully 3 points.

        • Dave Mann says:

          Your right paddocknick, it is the way we set up and yes our support as always been very vocal away so no argoment there mate, the pace we have up front is bang on for away games though I was a bit mortified why Vaughan was taken off and had no striker on at the end but we still could have scored so point taken and happy with it . Kro

  • Dave Mann says:

    Guys….should have won , magnificent second half , better team .. Boro better than us .. Your having a laugh ain’t ya.. Better than us in every position staffs .. Don’t think so mate . Have a good night . Kro

  • Tony says:

    This result makes the home performances all the more frustrating.

  • Dave Mann says:

    Paule, hope the wife is fine and your having a wonderful evening … We should have won and second half dominated the game , gray , maghoma , Morrison all should have scored and we were proud as we are now at our performance.. Home form to away form , rediculous.. Preston , nailed on 3.points ..love to you and all blue noses. Kro

    • paule says:

      Sounds like a excellent 2nd half Dave Mann!! I’m afraid my wife can’t be cured hence why I can’t go to away games. Nice to look on here a hear how well we are playing on our travelers.

  • BhamCityJulian says:

    To those that went was this performance similar to Fulham without the goals?

    • dulux says:

      Very much so. After weathering the first 25 minutes, we were their equals till half time. The second half was a revelation, having four or five good chances flying just wide and other breaks that let us down with a poor pass around the edge of their box with Boro’s defence all at sea. How we didn’t score beats me!

    • jonno11blue says:

      No Julian. Fulham didn’t really get a look in until the game was won and in fact they played better after their player was sent off. In my opinion the first 20 minutes yesterday was like Brighton with bro having most of the play and being well on top. However we gradually worked our way into the game and made several decent changes in the second half at least 3 of which should have been taken. Bro also had chances in the second half but the defence stood firm and a lot less giving the ball away.

  • Lichblue says:

    I really enjoyed todays match. Apart from the first 20 mins i thought we were the better team. It was great to see such a good performance against one of the top sides in the league and in such attrocious conditions. I’m actually frustrated we didn’t get three points from all the chances we created. Looking forward to Preston. KRO.

  • Dave Mann says:

    Steve, Shirley and Hillfield , I wasent actually having a go about going away , the point I was making is the point I’ve been making all season , That performance as been there away from home so it’s no supprise to me that’s why home fans must be scratching there heads wondering why the hell we are where we are … And Julian we should have had three in the second half and it was one way traffic but didn’t get that bit of luck in front of goal as we did at Fulham but the performance was as good if you bear in mind the opposition … This home form like everyone else is saying is deppressing and is killing our season as far as top six goes because away from home were as good as anybody in this league and that is fact as well as opinion , good point but should have been three , roll on Preston!! Kro & lol

  • SuperKRO says:

    If the situation allows, could Donaldson and Vaughan be a good partnership ? I’ve been impressed with Vaughan so far and we all know what Donaldson can do so could be good together.

  • Dave Mann says:

    When all fit I would say cotterill , Vaughan , Gray behind Donaldson in that 3-1 formation looks very encouraging indeed but with Toral and Shinnie looking to push as well who knows where we can finish … It’s this damn home form that bugs me as everybody else so next Friday in front of sky against Cardiff let’s put it to rights and get back on track , with cotterill and Donaldson coming back for Boxing Day at Sheffield w and new signings coming in January were not out of that push for top six just yet . Kro

  • StaffsBlue says:

    Just read Aitor Karanka’s comments after the game. Why can’t managers be a little more magnanimous?

    He blames Nugent’s sending off on Blues timewasting. What a Karwanka.

  • Dave Mann says:

    Cheeky bugger , it was then hanging on for a point at the end not us the bloody idiot . Kro

  • Shirley Blue says:

    The problems at home particularly in terms are scoring goals are fairly obvious. Firstly defences play much deeper than they do when we are away which reduces the impact of the pace we have up front. Secondly and more importantly is the lack of creativity we have in central midfield. Last season Tesche was superb at making late runs into the penalty area and Fabbrini could pull defenders out of position with his trickery and skill. Our current three do not do or have either of those qualities. it’s like watching a game of table football with the lack of movement. If we play Toral he is more of a second striker while Fabbrini was a genuine number 10 and we are now much more predictable. These are problems that need to be solved in the January transfer window or that 6th place will not be achievable.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      I have to admit, other than the odd game, I’ve not been impressed with anyone that’s played the role this season. Is there anyone within our ranks that you feel could do the No.10 role better.. or do you think we need to buy/loan one in?

      • Dave Mann says:

        We’ve got one in Vaughan if we keep him , just my opinion by the way . Kro

        • StaffsBlue says:

          You reckon he could play that role Dave? He’s always been an out and out striker as far as I know.

          • Dave Mann says:

            Yes , that’s maybe why Huddesfield let him go because as they don’t see him in that role , we might have pulled a rabbit out of the bag . Kro

          • StaffsBlue says:

            What about Maghoma? He’s quick, strong and can play a pass. Whenever I saw him playing for Wednesday, he looked better playing inside, rather than outside. Just interested in your opinion Dave.. or anyone else. :)

  • Dave Mann says:

    The two points you make about defences sitting deeper and lack of creativity at home games is ofcourse very true and we have to put that right in the centre of the pitch but Shirley mate , spending Saturday nights on a coach full of great blue noses having a beer or three with xmas decorations up and singing in abundance on the M1 is more pleasurable than you think … Just for the record Boro supporters were none existent in there attendance and there singing , I thought our home support was bad but there’s takes the award for worst support I’ve seen this season , absolutely abysmal and that’s putting it kindly . Kro

  • Lichblue says:

    I totally with Dave re: the Boro support. Shocking for a side near the top of the league.

  • Shirley Blue says:

    I am sure it was good fun Dave. I did my fair share of travelling to away games in my 20’s and 30’s but I spend enough time sitting in traffic jams on motorways just getting to work and back these days and can’t bring myself to do it at weekends as well. I hope you and the other away game regulars have plenty more good trips bringing 3 points back with you.

  • BhamCityJulian says:

    The answer to our home form problem to me is not rocket science: playing like an away team at home can be nullified too easily by the opposition flooding the midfield AND giving them possession them KNOWING that their defence isn’t going to put under pressure.

    I’m happy to see our counter attacking play away from home. It’s a joy watching the opposition gradually suckered in but … at home I EXPECT us to assert ourselves from the first minute and dictate proceedings and have me on the edge of my seat. That’s what home games are about and its what away teams worry about

  • Dave Mann says:

    In theory yes in practice no because it don’t work for us . Kro

  • Shirley Blue says:

    I go to and have been to virtually every home game for as long as I care to remember including travelling up from London when I worked down there for three years. So as I choose not to go away games for a number of reasons including enjoying a little bit of variety in life I am not a real supporter then?

    • zxcv says:

      it does come down to choice so why knock others who wish to spend their evening as you put it sitting on the motorway, for them football may be there life, its okay for them to have that choice as well as you.

  • Shirley Blue says:

    Another couple of nails in the Vile relegation coffin today. Didn’t expect Newcastle to win at Spurs. They will be down by February at this rate. Just hope it happens when we are at home.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      It’s getting desperate for them now being 8 points adrift.. and Newcastle up next. If the Toon win that, it’ll put them 13 points clear of the vile. If vile don’t win in the next 3 games, they’ll find it difficult to stay up.

  • BhamCityJulian says:

    I think a No.10 has to be a clever player. Skilful with a football brain. An attacking midfielder who thinks like a striker but doesn’t have the pace or composure of a striker but is industrious.

    I think Toral has the skill and brains but lacks industry; Shinnie has the brain and industry but he is not skilful enough.

  • Mitchell says:

    Preston are a close knit side of ordinary players-similar to us but without a couple of stand out ones. My point is that this game MUST bring out a star performance by Gray. It really has to. Give him the ball and get Maghoma and Vaughan to support him. 3points would set up Cardiff game without doubt. This Preston game is a defining match in my view as to how we are mentally in our chase for top six.


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