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Snow scene the setting for Riverside draw
Published : 27 Nov 2010 16:56:57Rss feed
MIDDLESBROUGH still find themselves occupying a relegation place in the Championship despite a spirited display at a snow-covered Riverside Stadium. Boro had to come from behind twice to prevent a third successive defeat after Hull City had looked like coping with the freezing conditions better. Robert Koren had put Hull ahead with a fortunate long range drive midway through the first half only for Leroy Lita to level with a clinical header on half an hour. And even though Hull had regained the advantage just before half-time through the head of Anthony Gerrard, Boro responded emphatically through Scott McDonald. Hull must have felt like Christmas had arrived early when, with visibility down to a minimum as the heavy snowfall continued, the Tigers claimed a lead and in fortunate fashion. Goalkeeper Jason Steele was unable to track a hopeful Koren strike from 30 yards that bounced in front of him and found his bottom corner. It was the first of many errors on an eventful afternoon. And nine minutes later Middlesbrough found the ideal response after Joe Bennett, Mikael Tavares and Nicky Bailey combined to find Marvin Emnes. Emnes, making his first start under Tony Mowbray, was the liveliest of the home team and his pass picked out Tony McMahon on the right. McMahon's delivery was perfect for Lita to jump and turn in to Vito Mannone's top left corner with a fine header. There was plenty of neat interchanging passing from Middlesbrough, but Hull created the better chances in the first half and should have scored through Nicky Barmby when he missed the target from five yards, unmarked. But Hull didn't have to wait too long for the lead for a second time. Koren floated over a free-kick and Gerrard's header could only be helped in by Steele's palm. But immediately after the restart, Lita turned provider. He crossed from the byline just 29 seconds in to the second half and McDonald nodded in from close-range. It might not have been the victory Boro craved, but in the conditions it was a point that was hard-earned. MIDDLESBROUGH (4-4-2): Steele; McMahon, Wheater, Bates, Bennett; Robson, Tavares (Kink 66), Bailey, Emnes; McDonald (Boyd 85), Lita. Subs: Ripley (gk), Hoyte, Arca, Smallwood, Park. HULL CITY (4-5-1): Mannone; Rosenior, Zayatte, Gerrard, Dawson; Barmby (Solano 80), Ashbee (McShane 32), Harper, Koren, Stewart (Simpson 73); Garcia. Subs: Duke (gk), Kilbane, Bostock, Devitt.