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Match Report: Middlesbrough 1-1 Bristol City

Wednesday 28th March 2012
A 56th minute wonder goal from Malaury Martin wasn't enough to inspire Boro to come from behind against championship strugglers Bristol City.

The Teessiders made two changes from the side that drew at Upton Park on Tuesday, with Bart Ogbeche and Merouane Zemamma coming in for Marvin Emnes and Richard Smallwood who dropped to the bench.

The visitors started the brighter of the two sides and Steven Pearson should really have done better after he was set up by John Stead, but he could not get his shot away quickly enough and his effort was blocked by the Boro defence.

It only took the visitors 13 minutes to score their first away goal of 2012. Pearson put the on-loan Hogan Ephraim in through the middle, the QPR man got away from Matthew Bates and finished with a delicate chip over the advancing Jason Steele to score on his debut.

The hosts were restricted to long distance efforts as Bristol City looked content to sit back and frustrate Boro, the best of which was from Lukas Jutkiewicz whose long-range turn and shot went just over the bar.

The visitors had a chance to extend their lead shortly before half-time when Neil Kilkenny worked his way to the byline and pulled it back for Pearson, but the former Derby man skied what looked like a good opportunity.

City had the first chance of the second half too, but John Stead could only blast over after a neat run towards the Boro box.

From nothing Boro found a way back in to the game. Malaury Martin, who scored a stunning winner when the sides met at Ashton Gate earlier in the season, picked the ball up just outside the box and hammered home a fantastic strike past the despairing Dean Gerken.

That gave the hosts confidence and Gerken had to be alert moments later to bizarrely head Joe Bennett's cross over his own bar when it looked destined to go in.

Gerken again saved from Ogbeche after he managed to get on the end of a Adam Hammill cross and Merouane Zemmama's low strike flew just wide of the post.

Bristol City's job was made much harder in the 76th minute when defender Ryan McGivern bundled Lukas Jutkiewicz to the floor with the striker bearing down on goal, referee Colin Webster deemed him to be the last man and gave the on loan Man City man a straight red.

Boro however failed to make the numerical advantage pay in the closing stages and were booed off by their home faithful at the final whistle after a poor all round display. The result leaves the Teessiders in fifth while Bristol City lie in 21st.
Matthew Nixon

Total articles: 28

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