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Boro v Preston 4-0 (Jones (2) Van Der Berg, Bangura)


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2 minutes ago, TheJew said:

Just seen our next 3 fixtures...

Leeds, Ipswich and Hull.

Uh. That's a tough run for a squad with so many injuries.

Our issue is not the top end teams but the bottom end.

There are currently 8 teams above us and we have played 5 already. WBA only one to have beat us and we took maximum points v the other 4 currently above us. Throw in the wins v Watford, Sunderland and Norwich on top of them 4 wins and 7 of our 8 wins have come against the so called championship big hitters

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The biggest result of the night was seeing Matt Clarke back on football pitch for me 👏

I wonder if we could just tell the authorities that we don't have enough fit players to fulfil the fixture? I mean, what's the worst that could happen?

I thought Lath had a really good game and done what was required by running and closing them down. Hustling them into releasing the ball quicker than they would have liked and allowing us to pick up t

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Given our injury situation. Where the 8 players out could all easily make the starting 11, If we are in touching distance of play offs (as we are now) then I will be happy. I do think when 6 out those 8 players hopefully return come January we will see more consistency and hopefully really push on.

GK

Smith Fry Lenihan Engel

Hackney OBrien

Forss, no.10, McGree

CF

Not saying this just to amplify our injury situation (and how we continue to do well) but all 8 could make a lot of boro current favoured boro 11.  

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30 minutes ago, TLF10 said:

Our issue is not the top end teams but the bottom end.

There are currently 8 teams above us and we have played 5 already. WBA only one to have beat us and we took maximum points v the other 4 currently above us. Throw in the wins v Watford, Sunderland and Norwich on top of them 4 wins and 7 of our 8 wins have come against the so called championship big hitters

I actually didn't realise this - it's an interesting stat. 

Let's see how the next 3 go then.

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Matt Crooks is now up to 8 goal involvements (3g5a) in 1152 minutes of football, meaning a goal involvement every 144 minutes for him, which isn't bad at all. 

In fact, since his FIRST "point" of the season - a goal vs Blackburn, he's gone on to have 8 goal involvements in his next 945 minutes of football = a goal involvement every 118ish minutes. 

He also hasn't been held off the scoresheet more than 2 games in a row since then either. 

He's red hot right now.

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I've been as critical of crooks of anyone, but he's in his best run of form with boro atm. Not just in terms of goal involvements, which he had always been pretty decent at. He's much better at linking play and moving the team forward and his passing has improved immeasurably. Think a lot of credit has to go to Carrick for how he's developed his game.

Do I think he's the long term solution for that number 10? No, but he's doing well and he's got that spot nailed down right now

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36 minutes ago, Brunners said:

Matt Crooks is now up to 8 goal involvements (3g5a) in 1152 minutes of football, meaning a goal involvement every 144 minutes for him, which isn't bad at all. 

In fact, since his FIRST "point" of the season - a goal vs Blackburn, he's gone on to have 8 goal involvements in his next 945 minutes of football = a goal involvement every 118ish minutes. 

He also hasn't been held off the scoresheet more than 2 games in a row since then either. 

He's red hot right now.

Has he improved since Mcgree got injured or am I imagining it? No hate at Mcgree just making an observation.

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9 hours ago, RealSlimSladeyy said:

Good to see Clarke back and happy that suggestions on here that he was facing a career ending injury have proven false

He *was* facing a career ending injury. None of our physios thought he had a chance. All down to Matt Clarke's determination. It's been a long road and i'm happy for him and glad he's back, he could be very important for us (especially if the injuries keep piling up!

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Thing about inconsistency is you get as much great as terrible. It is a cliche about only being able to beat what's in front of you but that's the worst away performance I've seen at the Riverside since Paul Ince's Reading last season. They let us play through them and around them and had no idea how to press us. However, we took full advantage something we failed to do earlier in the season against the likes of Wednesday and QPR. And, let's face it, did it with our second 11.

We have gone from being consistently awful to inconsistently excellent over the last 4 months or so. 

I suspect Carrick learned less from this game than any game in the last month. RVDB, Bangura and Lath showed that they can play when the opponents let them. Dijksteel was rusty as anything but the Crooks-Jones-Dijksteel triangle is still there. Barlaser feels a bit like a win-more player rather than a player who can dig you out of a hole when you're in one. Howson played in his slippers but I don't think he can quite hack it at the top of the Championship week in, week out.

It turned out to be a pleasant stroll in the park before 3 games (Leeds, Ipswich & Hull) that will really test us. It was pretty much a training ground game but at least RVDB, Bangura and Dijksteel got a game to try to build connections on the pitch before the real challenges.

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