Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

3 Points Dominic Shaw

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

3 Points Dominic Shaw

Article excerpt


AK's selection was justified. There was a slight rumble of discontent when Aitor Karanka named his starting XI.

1 Kike, the man who endured such a frustrating time at Deepdale last week, preferred to two-goal Cristhian Stuani and new boy David Nugent.

Kike was forced to feed off scraps last week while Stuani had the pleasure of a Michelin Star meal in terms of service on Wednesday night.

As did Kike yesterday, fed on a golden platter thanks to the brilliance of Downing, Fabbrini and Adomah playing in-behind.

He took his first goal well, coolly slotting it underneath the onrushing Amos with his weaker left foot and was in the right place at the right time to tap home a second.

That's four goals in his last four games. It's no surprise there's a clamour to see the new lads start but Kike must surely lead the line again at Derby on Tuesday night? He didn't set the world alight in the second half yesterday but his clinical showing in the opening 45 was an excellent reaction to the fact he would have glanced over at the bench to see two strikers desperate to be out on the pitch in his very position.

Kike was clinical, Fabbrini was quite simply magical. It would be naive to think the Italian can perform to that standard week in, week out. If he could, he'd be plying a trade in the Premier League right now.

Setting up to stifle Boro doesn't always work.

What a relief.

2 The bore-draw at Preston last week was a slightly concerning indication of what Boro can come to expect this season: opposition with a game plan to stifle Boro's attacking intent and upset the rhythm of the game.

John Welsh showed it could be done, attaching an invisible cord to Stewie before kick-off.

Jay Spearing and Neil Danns showed it's not necessarily as easy at it looks. …

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