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Match Report: Middlesbrough 0-2 Burnley

Sunday 15th January 2012
Burnley climbed to tenth in the Championship after a fine first half display and goals from Jay Rodriguez and Kieran Trippier saw off a sloppy Middlesbrough at the Riverside.

Two goals for the visitors in the opening half an hour were enough to secure the Clarets their seventh away win of the season.

The Teessiders handed a home debut to 18 year-old goalkeeper Connor Ripley in the absence of both Danny Coyne and Jason Steele through injury.

'Boro were also without their two most influential midfielders for the second game in a row with Barry Robson and Nicky Bailey out through suspension and injury respectively. This was apparent from the start in a first half dominated totally by the visitors and it took them less than six minutes to break the deadlock.

It came from a well worked corner and a move straight from the training ground. David Edgar dummied a Ross Wallace corner and Jay Rodriguez drilled home his 14th goal of the season.

The visitors continued to dominate and went close twice in a matter of minutes as Dean Marney's 20-yard volley went narrowly wide and Burnley top scorer Rodriguez produced a clinical turn and volley that grazed Ripley's post.

The away side came close again in the 27th minute when Junior Stanislas' excellent cross from the left found Martin Paterson but he could only prod wide.

Burnley despite their earlier wastefulness doubled their lead on 28 minutes. The goal will have to go do down as an unfortunate error by young 'keeper Ripley as Kieran Trippier's 35-yard effort somehow went through the keepers arms.
Tony Mowbray's men rallied slightly and Faris Haroun headed over from a Julio Arca corner, before Justin Hoyte crossed for Scott McDonald who somehow missed the ball completely with the goal at his mercy in the home side's best chance of the half.

Early in the second half the result was nearly put beyond doubt, but Rodriguez could only drag his shot wide after being put through by Lee Grant's long clearance.

'Boro's new signing Lukas Jutkiewicz was handed his debut by Tony Mowbray in the 57th minute as he replaced Richard Smallwood and the former Coventry man almost made a dream start. Grant took a loose touch and sliced a volleyed clearance straight to Jutkiewicz, but he failed to hit the target with a right footed shot.

'Boro came close in the closing stages through Haroun and Hoyte following a series of Tony McMahon corners.

McMahon also had a good opportunity late on himself, but he fired his shot straight at the keeper as Burnley stood firm to confirm a miserable day at the office for the Teesider's.

The result takes Burnley to within a point of the play-offs, while 'Boro lost ground on leaders Southampton who are now five points clear of Mowbray's men.
Matthew Nixon

Total articles: 28

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