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Boro vs. Sheffield United (A) 1-2 (Ayala)


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Well, well, well. Boro got out of their mini slump and beat Karankas toothless troops 2-0 thanks to goals from Daniel "CR7" Ayala and Downing. We keep our place in the play offs but Milwall are somehow keeping up the pressure. 

 

Our next game is already on tuesday night as we go to fellow play off contenders Sheffield United in the first of a number of "6 pointers". United lost their last game 2-3 away at Barnsley despite leading 2-1 with 25 minutes to go. United are in bad shape at the moment and have only won 1 game in 7 which was at home againt the mighty Burton 5 games ago. They are trailing Boro by 4 points so the onus is on them to attack us. That might free up some space for Traore, Downing, Howson and Bamford on the break which is likely the tactics Pulis will employ.

 

View from the other side: https://www.s24su.com/forum/index.php?threads/boro-tuesday.63283/

 

They seem a bit nervous about the game knowing that a loss or maybe even a draw could end their season. They know they are not in great form and their defence isn't getting much praise. If the players are thinking along those lines too I predict a very tactical game and probably only one goal in it. We really need to get at them and not let their confidence grow. They are in a bad shape and we need to rattle them from kick off.

 

I'd say the same lineup as the team that won against Forest. Possibly Clayton for Leadbitter depending on fitness.

 

Let's grab the first goal here and bring the three points home. A win will temporarily see us take 5th spot, at least until Derby are away at Wolves on Wednesday.

 

Games of significance:

 

Sheffield United - Boro

Bristol City - Birmingham (we could do with a favor from Monk here)

Preston - Leeds (PNE are almost out of it with them trailing by 6 points)

Forest - Brentford (Favor from AK thanks)

Bolton - Millwall (The Londoners are only one point adrift so we could de with a Wheater hattrick here, although Millwall are in great form so I expect them to win).

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Apart from Millwall all of the other contenders are as equally as bad as Boro in terms of results however looking at the fixtures it would seem likely that all should pick up 3 points though Millwall might not get the 3 points as I feel Bolton desperately need something to maintain their own precarious position.

 

Absolutely a massive game for both Boro and Sheffield United and falls into the category of THE MOST IMPORTANT GAME OF THE SEASON.............so far! Definitely a "must not" lose game for both teams.

 

Think it is within us to get 3 points but I suspect a draw will be the outcome

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It's a case of an in form team against a struggling one, so of course Boro will reverse the Blades fortunes as we do against any team low on confidence...

 

I'd go with the same Lineup, it seems like Sheffield United's momentum from their terrific promotion season is finally slowing down. Their left wing back Stevens has looked a bit dodgy in the games I've seen him, he wont be looking forward to matching up against Traore. Going to say we edge this game 2-1, Bamford to score.

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I watched Sheffield United against Cardiff live on Sky the other night and they were very, very good. If we are not at the races here we could get beat which would be a big blow. I've seen some calls for Adama Traore to be rested but we cannot afford to do that under any circumstances until a top 6 position is confirmed. Hard to predict the outcome until we know which Boro turn up!

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I have a feeling we'll lose this one, our away performances against top half teams have been poor and we aren't good enough on the counter-attack. Think TP would snap your hand off for a draw and will start too cautious with Bamford isolated. Can see us going behind by 1 then huffing and puffing like we tend to. We're really not good at chasing games, look at Burton.

 

Best case scenario Boro score first from a set piece or Adama/Bamford does something magic and then have something to defend, as that's when the team looks happiest (although it is torture to watch as fans). Not trying to be negative just think this is a fair reflection of how we've played recently and the likely outcome.

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I have a funny feeling Traore will be on the bench for this one.

 

-------------------- Randolph ------------------

-- Shotton --- Ayala -- Gibson --- Friend --

--------- Besic --- Howson --- Leadbitter ---

-- Downing ------------------------ Bamford --

----------------- Assombalonga ----------------

 

He looks a bit knackered and Sheff Utd will kick lumps out of him. He can come on if we're chasing a goal, otherwise Tony's happy with a 0-0 here I think.

 

Having said that, I'm predicting a 1-0 Bamford lucky break after 23 minutes and we hold on for the win with 36% possession.

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...

Having said that, I'm predicting a 1-0 Bamford lucky break after 23 minutes and we hold on for the win with 36% possession.

 

36% possession......Tony wont be happy with that  :(

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Sheff Utd's last 6 games W1 D4 L1, hard to beat on their own ground as Cardiff found out,so I think this will be a draw I'll go 1-1.

 

The draw would definitely scupper their play off hopes (now it’s unlikely but still hopeful) so they will attack us. This will be a BTTS betting slip nailed on, but I don’t think it will be a draw

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My gut feeling is that we'll get turned over, as Saturday showed we look extremely shaky when teams put us under pressure.

 

I expect them to come out and attack us early on and I think the fact that they need to win more than us will be the difference on the night.

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There is a fragility in our team that surfaces when the pressure is on and we don’t score early. I fear that this weakness will surface again when the tough must win games come round starting tomorrow night. I would be very happy with a point but I still have that awful Burton game in my mind so have to predict a narrow defeat and the loss of our sixth spot to Millwall. Still a few games to go and the chance to claw back any deficit with Millwall at the Riverside.

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Randz

 

Shotton, Ayala, Gibson, Fry, Friend

 

Besic, Cranie, Leadbitter, Downing

 

Bamford

 

 

5-4-1 as Pulis won't want to lose this one :P

 

Just joking ofc....

 

I think we will see the 3 holding midfielders as usual and close to same team as last few games.

 

I have a GOOD feeling, and Howson and Traore will score

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