Boro hold Cardiff City to draw

Boro hold Cardiff City to draw

Middlesbrough look to be improving after every match as they continue to get good results in the Championship.

The rain poured down at the Cardiff City Stadium as both teams began their search for a goal. The first few minutes were littered with a series of free kicks and both sets of players found the slippery surface tough to deal with.

Neil Warnock's former team had a bright start to the match as Josh Murphy found Harry Wilson in the box inside the first couple of minutes, but the Welshman's right-footed shot went wide off the goalpost.

Boro were presented with their first real chance of the afternoon from a set piece, when a deflected corner found its way to Jonny Howson on the edge of the box. Howson played a deft touch into Marcus Tavernier, but his shot was tipped over the bar.

Cardiff looked to build their chances a little more and it resulted in another big chance for Wilson, as Will Vaulks shaped to shoot from outside the area but played his team-mate, but Wilson's quickly-taken shot from the edge of the box was too high and it landed on the roof of the net.

Just as Cardiff City were gaining momentum, Boro opened the scoring.

A whipped corner was met by George Saville, who steered his header expertly into the far corner beyond the reach of Alex Smithies to give the visitors the lead against the run of play.

Cardiff, then responded as they tried to hit back straight away before half time through Kieffer Moore, who was linked with a move to Boro in the summer. He spun his marker in the middle of the pitch, drove towards the box only to hit the ball wide off the post.

Boro came out after the break on the front foot with a number of really good chances, as Alex Smithies was alert to claw away a Paddy McNair corner.

Cardiff, though, then had two good chances in quick succession just before the hour as Vaulks had a stinging effort saved by Marcus Bettinelli, with the resulting corner seeing Moore go close with a header.

Marcus Tavernier had a couple of decent efforts in quick succession, drilling a long-range effort just wide before seeing a headed effort float by Alex Smithies' right-hand post.

Boro had a succession of shots through Marc Bola and Marvin Johnson as the second half ticked on.

It was from a set piece which did the damage again, as Moore won a header from the corner and powered it back into the danger area. A goalmouth scramble ensued and it was Liverpool loanee Sheyi Ojo who had the chance to react first as he put the ball into the back of the net from just a few yards out, with 20 minutes left to play.

A spirited reply was always going to come from Warnock's Boro men, but it was arguably Cardiff who had the best chance to snatch all three points as Wilson and Ojo had chances to put the match to an end.

As the clock ticked over 90 minutes, pressure began to build when Cardiff had their final chance to snatch a winner. Leandro Bacuna nodded the ball back across the box and it found its way to Moore, just five yards out but the striker failed to score.

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