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Saturday, 6 April, 2002, 15:56 GMT 16:56 UK
Old boys haunt Villa
Benito Carbone in action for Middlesboro against Aston Villa
Benito Carbone scored the first goal against his old club
Middlesbrough 2-1 Aston Villa
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Benito Carbone and Ugo Ehiogu conspired to haunt old club Aston Villa, scoring goals either side of half-time to lift Middlesbrough above the Villains in the Premiership table.

Juan Pablo Angel rediscovered his goalscoring form, answering for the visitors from a Peter Crouch knock down on the hour.

The three goals added gloss to an otherwise dull afternoon of football at the Riverside.

We've had lads playing who were carrying knocks, but it shows the character of the team
Steve McLaren
Boro manager

Neither team had much to play for, having both secured their places in the top flight despite falling out of contention for European qualification.

The home side, in particular, lacked attacking ambition at the start.

Steve McLaren was unable to field Alen Boksic - who failed a late fitness test - and his chosen strike force of Carbone and Noel Whelan was starved of quality supply.

Villa, who restored Mark Schwarzer to goal in place of Mark Crossley, looked marginally brighter with new-signing Crouch making his considerable presence felt.

  Key Riverside incidents
39: Carbone opens the scoring for Boro
60: Angel levels for Villa
65: Carbone tees up Ehiogu's winner

The 6ft 6in forward squandered an early chance and watched team-mates Juan Pablo Angel and Mustapha Hadji also let Boro off the hook.

Graham Taylor's men were made to regret their profligacy on 39 minutes.

From a Frank Queudrue cross, Carbone out-muscled Steve Staunton to the ball and slotted past Peter Schmeichel.

Villa did not deserve to be behind and fired a quick reply in the second half.

Gareth Barry whipped the ball across from the left flank and Crouch rose highest to nod the ball cleverly down to Angel, who made no mistake this time.

In the first half, there was a lack of appreciation by the Villa players that that was the time when we should have won the game
Graham Taylor
Villa manager

The parity lasted only five minutes.

Carbone swung a corner in at the other end and Ehiogu headed home to condemn his old club to a sixth successive game without a win.

The three points probably mean less to Boro than the confidence they now carry into next Sunday's FA Cup semi-final against Arsenal.

Middlesbrough: Schwarzer, Stockdale, Ehiogu, Southgate, Queudrue, Mustoe, Greening, Wilkshire, Johnston, Whelan (Windass 10), Carbone.
Subs Not Used: Festa, Debeve, Marinelli, Crossley.

Aston Villa: Schmeichel, Delaney, Mellberg, Staunton, Barry, Hadji (Vassell 74), Taylor, Boateng, Hitzlsperger, Angel, Crouch.
Subs Not Used: Enckelman, Stone, Balaban, Samuel.

Attendance: 26,003

Referee: G Barber (Tring).

BBC Sport's Peter Slater
"Carbone was a constant jinking menace"
Links to more Eng Prem stories are at the foot of the page.


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