Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

The Ecstasy ... and the Agony; Boro's Rollercoaster Ride BERNIE'S BOLT

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

The Ecstasy ... and the Agony; Boro's Rollercoaster Ride BERNIE'S BOLT

Article excerpt

Byline: BERNIE SLAVEN

WHAT a way to sign off the season! No Premier League team should be winning 8-1 and you can't let the result camouflage the rest of Boro's campaign.

Man City didn't have their minds on the job with everything that has been happening behind the scenes with Sven Goran Eriksson and it was never a penalty that led to Richard Dunne being sent off.

But having said all that, you take those results all day long and there were some fabulous goals as Boro ripped City apart.

Alves's hat-trick took his tally to six and he hasn't blasted any of them - that's the sign of a good finisher.

Line the chances up for him and he will stick them away.

Stewie Downing's volley was as sweet as it gets and Fabio Rochemback's free-kick was a peach.

Let's face it, it was about time. Most of Fabio's efforts in his three years at the club have been more dangerous to low flying seagulls and the defensive wall's private parts than the opposition goal.

It's no surprise he has left the club to go back to Sporting Lisbon.

When he first arrived at the Boro, he didn't score or create enough and gave away too many free-kicks.

That was a trend he kept up throughout his three seasons and he didn't produce the goods often enough.

Seven goals in 91 games just isn't good enough for an attacking midfielder.

But let's talk about the players that are still here.

David Wheater and Downing have been fabulous this season - local lads doing themselves and the club proud.

For Wheater to go from fifth choice to first choice is fairytale stuff, capping it off with being named in the England squad.

It's a big season for him next term, because achieving high standards is one thing, keeping them up is something else.

There was a certain fear factor that kept me on my toes in my own career and you've always got to start fresh with a blank canvas.

But Wheater seems a down to earth lad and if he can keep up the way he is going, he will be a regular England international. …

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