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Saturday, 11 January, 2003, 16:52 GMT
Saints foiled by Boro
James Beattie scores for Southampton
Beattie scores his first for the Saints
Middlesbrough 2-2 Southampton

Jamie Beattie powered to the top of the Premiership scoring charts, but a late show from Middlesbrough made sure their unbeaten Premiership home record remained intact.

A goal in either half from the man tipped to play for England seemed to have given Southampton the points.

But Noel Whelan and Massimo Maccarone scored late goals to earn an unlikely point for Boro.

It's a fantastic result for us

Steve McClaren
The draw halted an abysmal run for the hosts, who had lost their last three games in league and cup football.

Both teams move up a place in the Premiership - Middlesbrough to 11th, while Southampton will remain fifth if Everton lose to Spurs on Sunday.

Instrumental in much of Southampton's good work was Fabrice Fernandes, who threatened the Boro goal early on with a 25-yard drive which just cleared Mark Schwarzer's crossbar.

Match facts
40 mins: Beattie scores 0-1
60 mins: Beattie grabs second 0-2
73 mins: Whelan scores 1-2
82 mins: Maccarone penalty 2-

His next effort should have opened the scoring - he struck the angle of the post and crossbar, with the rebound falling at the feet of Jo Tessem, who missed an open goal.

Fernandes' inswinging pass to Chris Marsden began the move for the opening goal, the midfielder then exchanging headers with Beattie, who volleyed the ball into the net.

The second goal for Beattie came from an unlikely source - Boro's Tony Vidmar.

The Australian accidentally passed the ball straight to Beattie.

And the striker took one touch before hammering a tremendous rising shot from 25 yards past Schwarzer for his 15th Premiership goal of the season.

The situation looked hopeless for the hosts, but substitutes Maccarone and Whelan came on to save the day.

The honesty and the professionalism of my players was first class

Gordon Strachan
The Italian's lay-off set up Whelan, who smashed the ball home to bring the home crowd to life for the first time all afternoon.

And with just eight minutes remaining, referee David Elleray controversially awarded a penalty after Paul Telfer's tackle on Luke Wilkshire was adjudged a foul.

Maccarone struck home the penalty - his first goal since September.


Middlesbrough: Schwarzer, Parnaby, Southgate, Vidmar, Queudrue, Geremi, Greening, Wilkshire, Job (Whelan 45), Nemeth (Murphy 70), Boksic (Maccarone 70). Subs Not Used: Crossley, Cooper.

Southampton: Niemi, Telfer, Lundekvam, Michael Svensson, Bridge, Fernandes, Delap, Oakley, Marsden, Beattie, Tessem (Ormerod 88). Subs Not Used: Jones, Williams, Davies, Anders Svensson.

Booked: Marsden, Oakley.

Attendance: 27,443

Referee: D Elleray (Middlesex).

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
BBC Five Live's Alan Biggs
"Middlesbrough found a big finish"
Southampton boss Gordon Strachan
"I'm delighted with my players"
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