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Last Updated: Friday, 31 March 2006, 10:24 GMT 11:24 UK
Pogatetz will miss rest of season
Emanuel Pogatetz
Emanuel Pogatetz was carried off with a serious head injury
Middlesbrough defender Emanuel Pogatetz will miss the rest of the season after suffering a bad head injury during the Uefa Cup first leg defeat to Basle.

Pogatetz will have surgery next week after breaking his nose and fracturing a bone near the upper jaw in a clash of heads with Basle's Mladen Petric.

The 23-year-old Austrian flew back to England after the game under supervision from Boro's medical staff.

Boro lost the quarter-final first leg 2-0 against the Swiss outfit.

Boro manager Steve McClaren told BBC Five Live after the game: "It looks a pretty bad injury. His nose is all over the place, and he is having a check on other things."

The incident came just five days after Pogatetz had five stitches out in a facial wound after a collision with Bolton's Kevin Davies.

We have given ourselves a mountain to climb but we are more than capable of doing that
Boro boss Steve McClaren

Despite the first-leg defeat McClaren remains confident of progressing to the last four and believes the return match will be completely different at the Riverside Stadium next week.

"We know we can score and play better than that," added McClaren, whose team conceded two goals in three minutes at the end of the first half.

"Although we have given ourselves a mountain to climb, we are more than capable of doing that.

"I thought for the first 40 minutes we looked very comfortable but it showed that if you lose concentration for a split second in European football, you can be two down.

"The priority in the second half was to make sure we didn't concede again because that would have left us with an Everest.

"But, if you are going to win a competition like this, there are times when you have to come through adversity and we are capable of doing that."

Basle manager Christian Gross, who was formerly in charge at Tottenham, was content with his side's effort as goals from Matias Delgado and David Degen put the Swiss champions into the driving seat.

He said: "It was a good result but not the perfect result - not conceding was one of our targets."

Asked about Delgado's goal, which he struck from long range, Gross added: "I told the players before kick-off it was a fast pitch and to try to shoot.

"It was an excellent shot from Delgado, and difficult for a goalkeeper."

News conference: Middlesbrough boss Steve McClaren

FC Basle 2-0 Middlesbrough
30 Mar 06 |  Middlesbrough


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