Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

THE BIG MATCH; Bristol City V Boro at Ashton Gate Tomorrow at 3pm

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

THE BIG MATCH; Bristol City V Boro at Ashton Gate Tomorrow at 3pm

Article excerpt

KNOW THE FORM

BORO surrendered their unbeaten run when they went down 2-1 after extra time at Nottingham Forest in the Carling Cup on Tuesday. But they are still defending their unbeaten record in the Championship and the players will be keen to try to get another three points in the bag at Bristol City.

So far Boro have played particularly well away from home, having won convincingly both at Swansea and Scunthorpe to banish the memories of last season's poor form on the road.

Boro are using pacey wingers Mark Yeates and Adam Johnson to great effect. Up front Leroy Lita scored his first Boro goal in last week's home win against Doncaster, and looks set to grab more than his fair share.

THE THINGS WE SAY

BORO boss Gareth Southgate said: "People talk about the speculation about players leaving us affecting us but that won't be the case.

"We ended last season with four experienced players all needing operations, who we knew wouldn't be ready for the start of this season.

"But we have started off well and we are putting out a team every match who are proud to wear the shirt.

"We will go to Bristol in great heart, and we will be ready for a tough game. They've recruited well and have some good players, but we are unbeaten in the league and it's a run we want to see continue."

PLAYER SPOTLIGHT

TONY McMahon has emerged as a key component of Gareth Southgate's formidable backline.

Boro go into tomorrow's clash with City boasting the only 100% defensive record in the Championship.

Commanding centre-backs Robert Huth and David Wheater have taken the lion's share of the plaudits that have been directed at the defence. But credit must also go to McMahon and fellow full-back Jonathan Grounds. McMahon signed a new three year deal in April and expressed a desire to nail down a first team place after years of injury set-backs. He also revealed that he hoped to captain the club one day and given his total on-field commitment, who's to say that won't happen?

KNOW THE FORM

CITY suffered a shock home defeat at the hands of Carlisle United in the Carling Cup on Wednesday night. …

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