Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Strach's Angry - and We Should Be Pleased

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Strach's Angry - and We Should Be Pleased

Article excerpt

THOSE who've labeled Gordon Strachan a dour pragmatist will have been heartened to hear his reaction to Saturday's narrow win over Peterborough.

Boro's lacklustre performance left the boss fuming and that can only be a good thing.

Like the rest of us, he clearly expected his carefully assembled side to take rock-bottom Posh apart.

Leading 1-0 after seven minutes and bossing shambolic opponents, the Boro players' self-belief inexplicably deserted them and the long-suffering home supporters were forced yet again to endure a turgid Riverside tussle.

Barry Robson's early strike should have provided a platform for Boro to at last turn their improving displays into a convincing three or four-nil victory.

As it turned out, it took David Wheater's last ditch block to deny Peterborough a share of the spoils.

The win extended Boro's unbeaten run to six games and keeps the club in touch with the top six. But they are the only positives Strachan is prepared to take out of the fixture.

He never blames individuals in his post-match interviews, but he did hammer the team.

And it has emerged that several players felt the sharp end of the manager's infamous tongue at half-time and after the final whistle.

Virtually all those interviewed by the press after the game were quick to acknowledge that the performance hadn't been good enough and confirmed the manager's dissatisfaction.

Which is a good thing. When Strachan had been appointed, it had been suggested by his critics that he would build a Boro team that would be dull and functional - attritional even.

He was expected to adopt a win at all costs philosophy where the ends would always justify the means.

Not so. It's hard to argue that the fare served up by Boro since Strachan's arrival has been far from thrilling - the thumping wins at QPR and Doncaster are memorable for their rarity value. …

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