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BBC Five Live's Peter Slater
"Spurs started to create the better chances"
 real 14k

George Graham
"The type of football we played was of real quality tonight"
 real 14k

Middlesbrough manager Bryan Robson
"We deserved to get back in the game"
 real 14k

Tuesday, 22 August, 2000, 22:40 GMT 23:40 UK
Boro in Spurs stalemate
Karembeu tussles with Leonhardsen and Freund
Middlesbrough 1-1 Tottenham Hotspur

Middlesbrough and Tottenham Hotspur failed to build on their opening day victories when they played out a dour draw at the Riverside.

Mike Summerbell's 59th-minute header cancelled out Ovyhind Leonhardsen's opener for a result that left both sides level with defending champions Manchester United on top of the embryonic Premiership table.

Middlesbrough's chances of building on their opening day victory at Coventry had been hit by the absence of three key players.

Striker Alen Boksic, who scored twice on his debut at the weekend, failed to recover in time from his exertions, while Paul Ince and Colin Cooper were also ruled out.

Hamilton Ricard, Paul Okon and Mark Summerbell were drafted in to face an unchanged Tottenham side.

I With more quality we could have won it. I am disappointed because I feel we were the better side
  Spurs boss George Graham
However, Boro, with Ricard, Brian Deane and Joseph Job in a three-pronged attack, started brighter, with Job side-footing a first-minute effort into Neil Sullivan's arms.

He should have done better after 29 minutes when he pounched on a glaring error by Sol Campbell, but the Spurs defence recovered.

Tottenham eventually found their rhythm, putting together the best move of the half after 31 minutes. The former Wimbledon pair Ovyind Leonhardsem and Ben Thatcher combined well, and Thatcher's left-wing cross was well met by Steffen Iversen, but he headed over.

Before the game I would have been pleased with a win - but I am just glad to get something out of the game. Christian Karembeu's energy is exceptional
  Middlesbrough boss Bryan Robson
Spurs came close again after 39 minutes when Stephen Carr ended a great run down the right with a lob over Mark Schwarzer, but Okon was back to clear.

The home side failed to heed that warning and Spurs took the lead after 41 minutes. Serguei Rebrov sent over a wonderful cross from the right and Leonhardsen rose well to head home.

Middlesbrough almost hit back within two minutes of the restart, with Deane sending a side-footed effort narrowly wide from just outside the area.

Minutes later, Sullivan did well to hold on to a fiercely-struck Christian Karembeu shot.

Leonhardsen celebrates his goal
However, the Scottish international 'keeper could do nothing after 59 minutes as 'Boro drew level. Mark Summerbell, arriving late, rose to send Curtis Fleming's right-wing cross to the top corner with a perfectly executed header.

That was the highlight of a keenly-contested if scrappy and sloppy encounter. And for all their toil, the sides lacked the guile to open up each other's defences.

Iversen struck a shot wide from distance after 73 minutes, while Fleming threatened with a cross-cum-shot minutes later.

Spus, with Les Ferdinand on for Rebrov, posed the greater threat in the final quarter. The returning striker had the ball in the net 10 minutes from time, but his effort was ruled out for offside.



Schwarzer, Fleming, Vickers, Pallister, Karembeu, Deane, O'Neill, Job, Okon, Ricard, Summerbell. Subs: Campbell, Stamp, Crossley, Whelan, Gavin.


Sullivan, Carr, Freund, Campbell, Perry, Anderton, Sherwood, Iversen, Rebrov, Leonhardsen, Thatcher. Subs: Walker, Taricco, Ferdinand, Clemence, Vega.

Referee: P Jones (Loughborough)

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