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Saturday, 23 November, 2002, 16:53 GMT
Impressive Boro sink City
Ugo Ehiogu (left)
Ugo Ehiogu scored Boro's opening goal
Middlesbrough 3-1 Manchester City

Middlesbrough kept their unbeaten home record intact with an impressive 3-1 win over Manchester City at the Riverside.

Steve McClaren's side dominated proceedings in the first half, and looked set for an easy win as Ugo Ehiogu and Alen Boksic put them 2-0 up in the second half.


I don't think we would have too many arguments with the result
Man City boss
Kevin Keegan

A scrambled Nicolas Anelka goal gave City hope but the loss of Shaun Wright-Phillips halted their momentum and a late strike by Nijtap Geremi sealed Boro's win.

Middlesbrough dominated the first half, setting the tone as early as the third minute when Massimo Maccarone hooked over from inside the box.

Peter Schmeichel then did well to hold a testing Stuart Parnaby cross, while Joseph-Desire Job fired in a low cross which just eluded Jonathan Greening.

For City, Shaun Goater sent a shot over but the home side continued on top with Schmeichel again in action to block a Boksic left-footer.

  Key moments
53 mins: Ehiogu gives Boro the lead
62 mins: Boksic scores to put Boro two up
68 mins: Anelka throws Man City a lifeline
72 mins: Shaun Wright-Phillips is sent off for a second bookable offence
84 mins: Nijtap Geremi restores Boro's two-goal advantage
Keegan's side were playing on the counter-attack, and the tactic nearly paid off when Gareth Southgate did well to clear the ball with Goater pressing.

Ehiogu also needed to display his defensive qualities after Anelka and Eyal Berkovic carved open Boro, but the home side were soon back on the attack.

Southgate saw a header stopped on the line by Danny Tiatto, while Job just failed to turn in Geremi's cross.

Job then fired a shot just wide of Schmeichel's post, before the Cameroon striker crossed for Maccarone whose flicked header was just wide.

Boro began the second half in the same manner they finished the first, with Maccarone and Boksic both squandering early chances.

Shaun Wright-Phillips was sent off for Manchester City
Wright-Phillips picked up two yellow cards
But City nearly took the lead on 50 minutes when Anelka broke and unleashed a great shot which Mark Schwarzer just managed to tip over.

But Boro finally managed to break the duck on 53 minutes when Ehiogu got the crucial touch on a Geremi free-kick to nod past Schmeichel for his second goal of the season.

The home side were in no mood to rest on their laurels, and Geremi saw a long-range effort fly just wide, Job had a shot blocked and Schmeichel raced off his line to foil Maccarone.

But City could not hold out much longer and on 62 minutes Boksic doubled Boro's lead with a fine header.

The home fans began to relax, with Boro seemingly in command. But a lapse of concentration brought Kevin Keegan's side right back into the picture.


I thought the two strikers were very, very good in general play, attitude, work-rate
Middlesbrough boss
Steve McClaren

An untidy goalmouth scramble ended with Anelka pushing the ball over the line.

But Man City's renewed hopes were hit as Wright-Phillips received his marching orders after a scything tackle on Greening earned him his second yellow card.

Job then hit the post for Boro and Maccarone had a header disallowed for offside as the home side attempted to re-establish their two-goal lead.

But Geremi settled the home fans' nerves, poking the ball home on 84 minutes.


Middlesbrough: Schwarzer, Parnaby, Ehiogu, Southgate, Vidmar, Geremi, Boateng, Greening, Job, Maccarone, Boksic (Whelan 86).

Subs Not Used: Nemeth, Crossley, Cooper, Wilkshire.

Goals: Ehiogu 53, Boksic 62, Geremi 84.

Man City: Schmeichel, Dunne, Mettomo (Benarbia 87), Jihai, Wright-Phillips, Berkovic, Horlock, Tiatto, Jensen, Goater (Huckerby 77), Anelka.

Subs Not Used: Nash, Vuoso, Barton.

Sent Off: Wright-Phillips (72).

Booked: Tiatto, Mettomo, Wright-Phillips.

Goals: Anelka 68.

Attendance: 31,510.

Referee: N Barry (N Lincolnshire).

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
BBC Five Live's Ian Dennis
"Boro's display was full of flair and fine defending"
Man City boss Kevin Keegan
"I'm not terribly disappointed with the performance"
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