City draw at Middlesbrough

 

MIDDLESBROUGH 1-1 COVENTRY CITY

 

SAT AUG 27 At Riverside Stadium, Middlesbrough,

Team: Murphy, Hussey, Christie, Keogh, Cranie, Clingan, Bell (Thomas 42), Baker, Bigirimana, Jutkiewicz, O'Donovan. SNU Dunn, McPake, Cameron, Eastwood.

Middlesbrough
Ikeme, McManus, Bennett, Willis, Bailey, McMahon, Bates, Hoyte (Martin 79), Robson, Arca (Haroun 62). SNU Smallwood, Kink, Hines.

HT MFC 1-0 CCFC FT MFC 1-1 CCFC ATT 17,432

REFEREE P.Tierney Assts P.Kettlewell & R.Wigglesworth

BOOKINGS Baker

GOALS Marvin Emnes 22, Lukas Jutkiewicz 75

MAN OF THE MATCH Sammy Clingan, Gael Bigirimana and Cyrus Christie took the votes.

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REPORT BY KEV MONKS

One of the things I love about Coventry City is their ability to come up with the unexpected and today, City earned a highly creditable 1-1 draw at third in the table Middlesbrough.

This was my 1950th City first team game but I don't think I have ever felt so low in my City supporting life following news that SISU had scuppered the only hope of giving Coventry City a long term future, purely because they wanted as a minimum the money they owe their bankers from any take-over, as I did making the trek to City's longest away league game of the season.

We arrived at the Riverside Stadium through sun, rain and traffic delays, to the news that Ben Turner was having a medical at Cardiff and the Sky Blues were unchanged from the side that had drawn against Watford.

Andy Thorn, who could not take all the eighteen players he wanted to take for this game in the North East due to CEO Paul Clouting deciding he was more worthy of a hotel room than the extra player that all clubs have with them in case of injuries or illness on the day of the game, sent his team out to have a go at Middlesbrough.

However, it was the home side who had most of the play early on. In the eighth minute, Justin Hoyte got to a cross from the right and struck the bar.

Middlesbrough won three corners whilst some of the City support that was about three hundred strong, were launching into SISU Out chants after stewards demanded a SISU Out banner from the back of the stand as it was political.

In the 21st minute, Middlesbrough attacked from the left, Cranie half cleared and then Hussey sent a deflected ball back across his own area for MARVIN EMNES to collect on the edge of the area and dispatch past Murphy.

City were making things more difficult than they needed to, by over hitting balls and passes and giving away possession and one of the players who was guilty of that David Bell limped off four minutes in the 41st minute.

On the stroke of half-time, which saw Gary Hoffman put a few people who had been slagging him off, right about exactly what happen with his bid, Murphy pushed a Bennett shot.

City attacked the end where the City support was for the second half and were nearly level two minutes in when Jutkiewicz sent a Hussey cross into the side netting.

Baker fired over from 25 yards as the likes of Gael, Clingan and Thomas found more space in midfeld.

City survived three corners and then a 57th minute free kick by Clingan was headed over his own bar by McManus. Keogh headed the resulting corner over and then O'Donovan headed at Ikeme.

City were getting their tackles in and working hard and in the 75th minute, they got their reward when Hussey sent the ball over, O'Donovan shot, Ikeme palmed it out and there was LUKAS JUTKIEWICZ to get his head in and force the ball over the line and into the net.

The City supporters which included supporters from Newcastle, Southampton and Kent went absolutely mental much to the disgust of the home fan to our right who were amongst those trying to get at the City supporters after the match.

City kept things tight but in the second minute of stoppage time, Middlesbrough hit the post and the ball dropped down. Murphy made a cracking save and City were heading back down the A19, A1 and M1 in the rain with a point and a performance that showed that Coventry City FC are a club more than worthy of a long term future, whoever the owners are.