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Last Updated: Saturday, 5 January 2008, 17:07 GMT
Bristol City 1-2 Middlesbrough
By Mark Mitchener

Bristol City keeper Adriano Basso's howler handed Boro their equaliser
Adriano Basso's howler handed Middlesbrough their equaliser
Middlesbrough came from behind to win their FA Cup tie at Bristol City.

City took a shock lead when Jamie McAllister's free-kick was headed on by Tamas Vasko and Liam Fontaine bundled the ball over the line from two yards.

But Boro were back on terms when Stewart Downing cut in from the left and his tame shot squirmed through the grasp of Robins keeper Adriano Basso.

With City pushing for a winner, Boro broke forward and David Wheater stroked home Lee Cattermole's right-wing cross.

Both sides started with only one out-and-out striker in damp conditions, and the game did not start with the excitement of a classic Cup tie.

However, the Championship side went ahead in the 18th minute when McAllister hoisted a free-kick forward, Vasko nodded the ball into the danger area and fellow centre-back Fontaine reacted quickly to force home the opener.

It prompted a round of applause from City boss Gary Johnson - who had promised to bare his backside in Bristol's Burtons menswear store if Fontaine scored this season, only for Fontaine to score in the 1-1 draw at Wolves in November.

Boro had needed penalties to despatch City in a fourth-round replay last season, but as the rain eased off, they profited from a goalkeeping howler from Basso.

The Brazilian was caught napping when he allowed Downing's harmless-looking effort from the edge of the area to slide through his grasp like a slippery bar of soap and into the net.

In the second half, Fabio Rochemback's 20-yard shot sailed inches over the City bar while at the other end, midfielder Lee Johnson nearly booked his father a place in the fourth round but his curling free-kick was well held by Mark Schwarzer.

Johnson senior threw on strikers Lee Trundle and Enoch Showunmi in search of a winner, and it was Schwarzer that nearly turned provider for City as he spilled a routine catch and Marvin Elliott fired the loose ball wide.

But in a rare attack by the visitors, Cattermole's cross was met by central defender Wheater, who had taken up an advanced position and steered the ball home from 15 yards.

There was no way back for brave City after that, and Boro substitute Tuncay nearly added a third with a rising shot in the dying minutes.

Bristol City: Basso, Orr, Vasko, Fontaine, McAllister, Sproule, Johnson, Elliott, Brian Wilson (Murray 74), Noble (Trundle 61), Byfield (Showunmi 60).
Subs Not Used: Weale, Skuse.

Booked: Johnson, Sproule.

Goals: Fontaine 18.

Middlesbrough: Schwarzer, Young, Wheater, Huth, Pogatetz, Johnson (Sanli 66), Cattermole, Rochemback, Arca, Downing, Hutchinson (Lee 76).
Subs Not Used: Turnbull, Owens, Grounds.

Booked: Cattermole, Arca.

Goals: Downing 37, Wheater 72.

Att: 15,895

Ref: Chris Foy (Merseyside).

BBC Sport Player Rater man of the match: Bristol City's Liam Fontaine 7.75 (on 90 minutes).

  • Please note that you can still give the players marks out of 10 on BBC Sport's Player Rater after the match has finished.

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