Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Wake Up, We've Scored a Goal!

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Wake Up, We've Scored a Goal!

Article excerpt

Byline: VIC'S VIEW

IT WAS a dramatic finale as Grant Leadbitter slammed home from the spot in the 94th minute.

Talk about leaving it late. Boro will bank the points and move on and we will never speak of this again.

Certainly it won't be widely discussed on Planet Football, because although it was broadcast live the penalty would have flown into the sound of gentle snoring across the nation.

Because most of the armchair audience would have nodded off long before the end.

At half time you could sense the drowsy armchair army switching over to watch I'm A Celebrity in droves.

In fact, long before half-time. Reacting early to a tired format in need of a radical makeover and you could have fitted in Masterchef too.

And to be fair, watching Z-listers chewing bits of kangeroo's digeridoos - in either programme - had its appeal after watching Boro labour their way through what was a poor quality televised trial by boredom.

God it was tedious. On a cold night that demanded some heat and passion to make the Riverside radiate, it was under-cooked, lacked substance and spice and was largely tasteless.

Well done it you stuck with it on the box at home or abroad. Especially if you were in a pub because at least then you could retreat into ale.

Commiserations if you were trapped inside the ground and forced to endure it.

It is probably fair to say it was 'one for the purists.' Stick subtitles on it and watch it in black and white and it could have been an art house examination of the the unremitting futility of the human condition.

Much was made during the week about Boro putting bums on seats in the Championship small screen stakes with some of the best viewing figures of the season, but you would have had to be made of stern stuff to stick with it if you didn't have a strong partisan attachment.

We've got used to teams coming and parking the bus, but QPR took it to a whole new level: Two banks of five.

They strangled the space and made it very difficult for Boro to find the kind of fluency, urgency and 'ambition' that Aitor Karanka had demanded for his yet to gel team. …

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