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Middlesbrough survive Xanthi scare

Published: Thursday 15 September 2005, 23.15CET
Middlesbrough FC 2-0 Xanthi FC
Goals in each half from George Boateng and Mark Viduka proved enough for a home victory.
by Andrew Haslam
from Riverside stadium

Standings

 
Published: Thursday 15 September 2005, 23.15CET

Middlesbrough survive Xanthi scare

Middlesbrough FC 2-0 Xanthi FC
Goals in each half from George Boateng and Mark Viduka proved enough for a home victory.

Goals in each half from George Boateng and Mark Viduka proved enough to give Middlesbrough FC a hard-earned win against Xanthi FC in the UEFA Cup first round in a closely-fought encounter.

Even encounter
Middlesbrough reached the last 32 of the competition on their European debut last season and controlled much of the game tonight, although the visitors also created a number of presentable opportunities. In the event, however, it was the home side who took their chances to leave themselves well-placed ahead of the return fixture at the Xanthis stadium in a fortnight.

Big names rested
Lacking Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink, Gaizka Mendieta and Stewart Downing through injury and with Gareth Southgate, Franck Queudrue and Yakubu Ayegbeni all on the bench, it was perhaps little surprise that the home side found it hard to establish a rhythm in the early stages. Indeed, with both teams making only their second UEFA Cup appearances, neither settled quickly although Massimo Maccarone might have put Middlesbrough in front, pouncing on Ioannis Papadimitriou's short back-pass and rounding goalkeeper Petr Pižanowski only to take the ball out of play.

Boateng opener
With former Middlesbrough man Emerson prompting from midfield, although too deep to cause the home team genuine concern, the visitors seemed content to stifle their opponents. The gameplan worked initially, but came unstuck two minutes before the half-hour mark as the Greek side fell behind. Viduka, who had increasingly dropped deeper in search of possession, created the initial chance with a clever lobbed pass that set Maccarone clear and, although Pižanowski blocked the striker's shot, Boateng was on hand to tuck the rebound into the unguarded net.

Middlesbrough threat
Both Maccarone and Adam Johnson had half-chances as the Premiership team threatened to take command. That impression was reinforced in the opening seconds of the second period as Boateng had an effort blocked, but instead Xanthi – who conceded four goals at S.S. Lazio in the 2002/03 UEFA Cup first round, their only other away game in the competition – rallied strongly.

Clinching second
Both Stavros Labriakos and Levan Maghradze missed the target having cleverly worked space in front of goal before Maghradze raced away down the right to prod a shot that Mark Schwarzer gathered at the second attempt. The Greek team were made to regret those misses with seven minutes left, Viduka's left-foot shot deflecting off Jacques Paviot and looping into the corner of the net to double the English side's advantage.

Last updated: 16/09/05 0.49CET

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http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuropaleague/season=2005/matches/round=2208/match=81836/postmatch/report/index.html#middlesbrough+survive+xanthi+scare

Lineups

middlesbrough

Middlesbrough

xanthi

Xanthi

1
SchwarzerMark Schwarzer (GK)
43
PižanowskiPetr Pižanowski (GK)
2
Abel XavierAbel Xavier
35
TorosidisVasilis Torosidis
Substitution67
4
EhioguUgo Ehiogu (C)
5
PapadimitriouIoannis Papadimitriou (C)
26
BatesMatthew Bates
Yellow Card63
14
SikovVance Sikov
12
PogatetzEmanuel Pogatetz
17
PaviotJacques Paviot
Substitution87
15
ParlourRay Parlour
Substitution74
18
AntzasParaskevas Antzas
17
DorivaDoriva
33
MaghradzeLevan Maghradze
Substitution76
7
BoatengGeorge Boateng
Goal28
8
LucianoLuciano
37
A. JohnsonAdam Johnson
Substitution61
13
LabriakosStavros Labriakos
36
VidukaMark Viduka
Goal83
6
EmersonEmerson
18
MaccaroneMassimo Maccarone
Substitution74
25
Gomez De Andrade JuniorFrancisco Gomez De Andrade Junior

Substitutes

22
JonesBrad Jones (GK)
26
AnastasopoulosNikolaos Anastasopoulos (GK)
6
SouthgateGareth Southgate
4
ZapropoulosNikolaos Zapropoulos
3
QueudrueFranck Queudrue
Substitution61
28
LeonardoCozalves Leonardo
Substitution76
25
MorrisonJames Morrison
Substitution74
15
QuintanaDiego Quintana
Substitution67
34
KennedyJason Kennedy
10
CarabasStelian Carabas
20
YakubuAyegbeni Yakubu
Substitution74
22
LafataDavid Lafata
30
GrahamDanny Graham
34
KazakisVlasis Kazakis
Substitution87

Coach

Steve McClaren (ENG) Ioannis Matzourakis (GRE)

Referee

Stefan Messner (AUT)

Assistant referees

Herbert Krenn (AUT), Gerd Adanitsch (AUT)

Fourth official

Manfred Krassnitzer (AUT)

Legend:

  • GoalsGoals
  • Own goalOwn goal
  • PenaltiesPenalties
  • Missed PenaltiesMissed Penalties
  • reds_cardRed Cards
  • yellow_cardsYellow cards
  • yellow_red_cardsYellow/red card
  • SubstitutionSubstitution
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