Often Partisan

Boro v Blues Preview

Three days after playing in the relaxed climes of Funchal, Blues trek northwards to the smoggier climes of Middlesbrough, and the Riverside Stadium. It’s back to the mundanity of the Championship, and what promises to be a tough fixture.

Middlesbrough FC

Boro are having a good start to the season, having won two and drawn one in their three opening league games, with a 3-0 pasting of Walsall in the Carling Cup somewhere in the middle. Today is a return to the Riverside after three away matches on the spin, and I assume that they will probably be more rested than Blues having last played on Tuesday, away to Barnsley – not exactly the same sort of travel time as Madeira.

A quick look through their team shows some rather useful players; I always liked Julio Arca when he was Sunderland for instance. There’s a fair few who made their name north of the border too; Scott McDonald scored for fun for Motherwell and Celtic, and both Barry Robson and Stephen McManus turned out a fair few times for the Bhoys as well. Belgian attacking midfielder Faris Haroun isn’t expected to start, but may well make his Boro bow from the bench.

Birmingham City

It’s going to be a tough game for a Blues side that no doubt is already knackered from it’s exertions in midweek. With Gomis and Mutch definitely joining King, Jerome and Zigic in the treatment room and Fahey and Dann listed as doubts, it’s going to be a very thin squad that makes the journey north.

I’ll be interested to see if Hughton will continue with using Ridgewell or Beausejour in the centre of midfield, or if he decides to freshen it up by either risking Fahey or maybe even throwing in Valles. I think that we’ll probably continue with one up top, and I suspect that despite his good performance against Nacional Wood may drop to the bench to allow fresher legs into the side in Adam Rooney.

I think the team will line up like this:

Prediction

My heart says that we’ll turn them over 1-0, but I have to go with my head and say that this might be a defeat for us. It’s been a long week, and I think the exertions from the middle of the week will take their toll on us. I’m going to go with a 2-1 defeat, with Rooney scoring for us.

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One Response to “Boro v Blues Preview”

  • Andy Brown says:

    Mate i think that is the first time I have heard an opposing fan give such an honest opinion of a coming game. You were even straight up on your prediction of the result. I am a boro fan living in Perth Aus and try and catch up on any news available. Usually it is very one sided but as I said yours wasn’t. Good luck for the game but I hope you are right in your score line! My prediction? 2-2


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