Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Brilliant Boro Are Doing It in Style

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Brilliant Boro Are Doing It in Style

Article excerpt

Boro cruised into the top half of the table with an enthralling attacking display.

Goals from Juninho, Szilard Nemeth and Massimo Maccarone had the points in the bag shortly after the start of the second half.

This was Boro's fifth game without defeat and they remain on course to achieve McClaren's ambition of recording the club's best ever finish in the Premiership of eighth place or better.

There should have been a lot more goals because Saints had that end-of-season look and Boro were allowed to play exhibition football at times.

Many other chances went begging and Boro were forced to battle for the points once fatigue began to kick in midway through the second half.

England striker James Beattie took advantage of an error by Boro keeper Mark Schwarzer to pull a goal back but the home side had the edge at both ends of the pitch.

The victory fully vindicated manager Steve McClaren's decision to field another barnstorming formation with Juninho operating virtually as a third striker and Bolo Zenden and Gaizka Mendieta pushing forward into the box at every opportunity.

Saints had arrived at the Riverside on the back of two consecutive wins under new manager Paul Sturrock and having enjoyed the benefit of a free Easter Saturday. But they looked heavy legged as Boro ran them ragged throughout the first half.

Maccarone was just off target with an early effort and then Saints keeper Antti Niemi made a fine save to keep out a volley from Juninho. However the breakthrough goal was inevitable and arrived in the 23rd minute from a fine move.

Maccarone played a brilliant ball through the right hand channel and Nemeth took the ball to the goalline. he played it back to the near post for Juninho to snap up his ninth goal of the season.

Saints did not seem to fancy the battle. Niemi kept out an effort from Mendieta while Nemeth had a goalbound shot deflected behind by Stephen Crainey. …

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