Southgate targets vital points

22 April 2008 11:55
Middlesbrough manager Gareth Southgate has urged his players to end their lingering fears of relegation with a derby victory over Sunderland. The Teessiders take on their local rivals at the Stadium of Light on Saturday still not sure of their Premier League survival following a 1-0 defeat at home to Bolton Wanderers last weekend. Boro remain just five points clear of the relegation places after a four-game winless streak. "We're not naive enough to think 36 points will be enough to keep us in the division so there's still a lot of work to be done," admitted Southgate. "On Saturday what we had was the opportunity to wrap it up on that side of things and we didn't take that. Whatever game we have next we have to respond. "The derby has an added incentive to it, but we've got to go and make sure that we perform on the day." Meanwhile, Boro have confirmed they have no fresh plans to sit down and discuss a new contract with goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer at the present time. The 35-year-old Australian is out of contract at the Riverside Stadium at the end of the campaign, but rejected a new 12-month deal earlier in the season. "Mark Schwarzer and the club agreed some time ago that there would be no discussions with regard to his contract until the season is over," said chief executive Keith Lamb. "That remains the case."

Source: ESA