Filed: Saturday, 15th September 2007
By: Gordon Thrower
Middlesbrough boss Gareth Southgate explains the long face following his team's 3-0 defeat this afternoon at the Boleyn.......
We were sitting there at half time thinking that we’d weathered the pressure very well and that we’d finished the half the stronger team. Then it was two in eight minutes - or whatever it was - and that’s finished the game off effectively.
We had good chances before half time and after they’d scored to take hold of the game or get back into the game but, as is often the case in this division, the first goal is often crucial.
Credit to the players – we kept going and had chances even at the death but we learned a harsh lesson. We didn’t get out of the blocks at the start of the second half and that’s cost us.
These things happen – what we don’t do is criticise outside the changing room. We got lots of pats on the back last week and that was good and we’ve had a poor spell for five or ten minutes today. We all lean the lessons from today and we’ll regroup for next week.
Aliadiaire? Well it’s a hamstring injury. We don’t know bad it is and we’ll have to wait until Monday until it’s settled down before we can get a scan. Obviously it isn’t looking very good. He was looking sharp before that. Having said that I thought Tuncay looked lively when he came on.
Tuncay’s chances? He’s come in and apologised afterwards but that’s football. When you get things like the one he lobbed on to the top of the crossbar you think well perhaps it’s not going to be our day today. He’s adapting well to the English game and he’s looking bright.
Forwards will miss chances – that’s part of the game. We didn’t lose the game because of that – we should have been in contention when he had those chances so there’s no blame attached to any individuals.
Do we have a psychological problem playing away from home? No we won our last away game. We were right in this one at half time and as I said I thought that we finished the half the stronger. After we’d let in the first goal we invited too much pressure on ourselves and didn’t play in their half. The response to going one behind wasn’t what it should have been.
Is there a problem at this particular ground? Well we have six or seven new players so what we’ve done in the past shouldn’t really have any effect on what happens now.
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