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Boro’s Cup seasons ...
 

Boro’s Cup seasons up to the Quarterfinals and beyond

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Ken Smith
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The FA Cup preceded the Football League by 16 years, the first season being in 1871/72. As an amateur club Boro first entered in 1883 and reached their first Quarterfinal in 1888 with the following matches:-

1887/88 FA CUP

8 Oct Home Hallam (Sheffield) 6-0 :Walsh, Fox, Humberstone 2, Wilson, Dennis  :Estimated Attendance 500

5 Nov Home South Bank 4-1 :Borrie 2, Wilson, Dennis  :Att not known

26 Nov Home Sunderland 2-2 :McCrie, Dennis  :Est Att 8,000 Sunderland
disqualified

7 Jan Home Old Foresters 4-0 :Wilson, Fox, Borrie, Dennis  :Est Att 8,000

QF 28 Jan Home Crewe Alexandra 0-2  :Est Attendance 5,000

1894/95 FA AMATEUR CUP

9 Feb Away Bishop Auckland 3-2 :Goalscorers unknown

23 Feb Away Darlington 2-2 aet :Davison, other scorer unknown 

2 Mar Home Darlington 1-1 aet :Mullen  :Est attendance 4,000

16 Mar Home Darlington 2-0 :Mullen, other scorer unknown  :Est Att 4,000

23 Mar Away Old Brightonians 8-0 :Morren, Green, Bach, Mullen, Johnson, Nelmes 2, other scorer unknown 

13 Apr Away Lancaster Regiment 4-0 :Goalscorers unknown 

Final 27 Apr Old Carthusians (played at Headingley) 2-1 :Mullen, Nelmes  :Estimated attendance 3,000

This was only Boro’s second entry in the FA Amateur Cup and their opponents in the Final Old Carthusians were the Cup holders. Their opponents took the lead through Gilbert Smith in the second half, but goals from Dave Mullen and Alf Nelmes won the Cup for Boro. However so confident were the Cup holders of retaining the trophy that they arrogantly didn’t bring the trophy to Headingley. The Teessiders returned home to a heroes’ welcome at the Railway Station minus the trophy where a band accompanied them to the Masham Hotel for further celebrations.

 
Three years later Boro won the FA Amateur Cup again, and these are the matches that won it:-

1897/98 FA AMATEUR CUP

29 Jan Home Leadgate Park 4-0 :Goalscorers and attendance unknown 

12 Feb Home Thornaby Utopians 1-1 :Goalscorers and attendance unknown 

19 Feb Home Thornaby Utopians 3-2 :Pearson, other goalscorer unknown 

26 Feb Away Casuals 1-0 :Frost

2 Apr Thornaby (at Brotton) 2-1 :Bishop, Wanless

23 Apr Uxbridge (at Crystal Palace) 2-0 :Kemplay, Bishop  :Est att 2,000

The Semifinal was originally scheduled to be played at Darlington, but because of a smallpox epidemic in Middlesbrough the locals were concerned about hundreds of Teessiders bringing the disease to the Quaker town. The FA sent a telegram to the Boro directors suggesting that the club should withdraw from the competition. The Boro board of directors refused, and after prolonged negotiations it was decided that the match should be played in East Cleveland not only behind closed doors, but at a secret location. Eventually the Semifinal was played at Brotton and Boro won 2-1. Boro then made a southern tour to play matches against Southampton, Swindon, Wycombe and Casuals to prepare themselves for the Final at the Crystal Palace against Uxbridge. Boro proved too strong for the Londoners. Goals from Jim Kemplay and Bob Bishop sealed the win, although there was a bit of fortune about the second goal as the Uxbridge goalkeeper in trying to throw the ball upfield managed for his throw to hit Bishop in the face and rebound into the net. Once again the players were met by jubilant fans at the Railway Station but this time they had the Cup with them and was paraded through the town to the Masham Hotel before the usual celebrations

The club later received a cheque for £39 being their share of the gate receipts.

The first time that Boro reached the Quarterfinals of the FA Cup as a professional team came early in the 20th century and I’ll review the 3 seasons that Boro reached the Quarterfinals up to the Second World War in my next submission.

This topic was modified 2 years ago by Ken Smith

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Ken Smith
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In their second season as a professional club in the Second Division Boro had to play 3 Qualifying Rounds to reach the First Round proper and this is how Boro performed:-

1901/02 FA CUP

3 Nov Home Willington 3-3 :Brown, Wardrope, Higgins  :Crowd 6,000

7 Nov Away Willington 0-0

12 Nov Home Willington 8-0 :Moran, Carrick 2, Wardrope, Robertson 2, Higgins 2  :Crowd 4,000

17 Nov Home Jarrow 3-0 :Carrick 2, Robertson  :Crowd 8,000

8 Dec Home Bishop Auckland 4-0 :Brown 4  :Crowd 9,000

5 Jan Away Grimsby 1-0 :Wardrope 

9 Jan Home Newcastle 3-1 :Robertson, McCowie, Wardrope  :Crowd 16,000

23 Jan Home Kettering 5-0 :McCowie, Wilkie, Robertson 3  :Crowd 12,000

23 Mar Home West Brom 0-1  :Crowd 20,000

All the crowd attendances were estimated and Boro were not only fortunate with the number of home matches, but also to be drawn against 4 non-League clubs in Willington, Jarrow, Bishop Auckland and Kettering, also Grimsby were a Second Division side. Nevertheless the win against Newcastle who finished 6th in the League was certainly a feather in Boro’s cap. In fact Boro were probably favourites to beat West Brom in the Quarterfinal as the Throstles finished bottom of the League that season.
Sandy Robertson was the first in a long line of famous centre forwards for

Boro making 56 appearances over 3 seasons and scoring 32 goals, whilst left winger Alex Wardrope also chipped in with 24 over 3 seasons from 73 appearances.

Boro gained promotion to the First Division in the next season, but it was the following season that they reached the Quarterfinals again as shown here with Boro receiving byes until the First Round proper:-

1903/04 FA CUP

6 Feb Away Millwall 2-0 :Brown 2

20 Feb Away Preston 3-0 :Brown 2, Atherton

5 Mar Away Manchester City 0-0

8 Mar Home Manchester City 1-3 :Brown  :Crowd 33,000

Boro’s first opponents Millwall were members of the strong Southern League, whilst Preston at that time had been relegated to the Second Division. However Manchester City were the current First Division Champions and after beating Boro went on to beat Bolton 1-0 in the FA Cup Final that year. It was also Boro’s first season at the brand new stadium of Ayresome Park so the estimated attendance of 33,000 broke the ground record at that time. Centre forward Alex Brown who scored 5 of Boro’s FA Cup goals was also top scorer in the League for Boro with 12 goals.

1935/36 FA CUP

It took Boro 32 years to reach the Quarterfinals of the FA Cup again, and the only time that they did so between the two World Wars. In fact they were knocked out 13 times in the First Round during that period, although they did have the distinction of beating non-League Goole Town 9-3 in 1915 when Jacky Carr, George Elliott and Walter Tinsley all scored hat tricks. However this    is how Boro reached their 4th FA Cup Quarterfinal:-

11 Jan Home Southampton 1-0 :Cunliffe  :29,550

25 Jan Home Clapton Orient 3-0 :Camsell 2, Cunliffe  :34,470

15 Feb Home Leicester 2-1 :Camsell, Forrest  :42,214

29 Feb Away Grimsby 1-3 :Camsell 

Southampton were a Second Division side, and Clapton Orient (renamed Leyton Orient after the Second World War) were competing in the Third Division South. 

 

This post was modified 2 years ago 3 times by Ken Smith

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Ken Smith
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Football started after the Second World War with the FA Cup to primarily give the soccer starved Country a taste of what most of the people had been missing for 6 years. Boro didn’t reach the Quarterfinals, but as all ties from the First Round proper were played over 2 legs I decided to include them in this review:-

1945/46 FA CUP

5 Jan Away Leeds 4-4 :Murphy, Fenton, Dews 2  :

9 Jan Home Leeds 7-2 (Boro won 11-6 on aggregate) :Gordon, Hardwick, Fenton 3, Spuhler, Douglas  :Crowd estimate 24,000

26 Jan Away Blackpool 2-3 :Suart og, Spuhler 

30 Jan Home Blackpool 3-2 (Aggregate score 5-5) :Fenton 2, Spuhler  :46,556

30 Jan (at Elland Road) Blackpool 1-0 :Hardwick (penalty)

9 Feb Home Bolton 0-1  :43,550

13 Feb Away Bolton 1-1 (Boro lost 1-2 on aggregate) :Fenton 

George Dews who scored one of the goals at Leeds was also a fine batsman who played for Worcestershire. In the Second Leg against Leeds, Boro led 7-1 at halftime.

The following season Boro did reach the FA Cup Quarterfinals as follows:-

 

1946/47 FA CUP

11 Jan Away Queen’s Park R 1-1 :Fenton

15 Jan Home Queen’s Park R 3-1 :Fenton 2, Mannion  :31,270

25 Jan Home Chesterfield 2-1 :Spuhler 2  :42,250

8 Feb Away Nottm Forest 2-2 :Mannion, Spuhler  

12 Feb Home Nottm Forest 6-2 :Spuhler, Mannion 3, Fenton 2  :26,907

1 Mar Home Burnley 1-1 :Walker  :53,025 (Ground record at the time)

4 Mar Away Burnley 0-1

Boro never met First Division opponents in any of their FA Cup matches, but the home draw against Burnley ended controversially as the Clarets late equalising goal appeared to be pushed over the goal line by Johnny Morris with his hand as he lay on the ground in a muddy goalmouth area.

It then took 23 years before Boro reached their next FA Cup Quarterfinal during which they failed to win a match in 11 of those seasons. This is how that season developed:-

 

1969/70 FA CUP

3 Jan Home West Ham 2-1 :McIlmoyle, Downing  :32,585

24 Jan Home York City 4-1 :McMordie, George Smith, Hickton, Laidlaw  :32,283

7 Feb Away Carlisle 2-1 :Hickton, Downing 

21 Feb Home Manchester Utd 1-1 :Hickton  :40,040

25 Feb Away Manchester Utd 1-2 :Hickton 

Boro were a Second Division team and West Ham included their 3 England World Cup stars, Bobby Moore, Geoff Hurst and Martin Peters in their side. York City were a Fourth Division club whilst the match at Carlisle broke the  ground record for the Cumbrian club with an attendance of 27,599.

Manchester Utd included Bobby Charlton, Dennis Law and George Best in the team that drew at Ayresome Park, but it was Carlo Sartori that put United ahead in the first half with John Hickton equalising for Boro 10 minutes before halftime. In the replay Bobby Charlton put the Red Devils ahead in the first half, and although John Hickton equalised for Boro with 15 minutes remaining, a Willie Morgan penalty 4 minutes later ended the scoring.

.

 


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jarkko
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@ken Thanks, Ken. I enjoy reading these. And the 7-2 win over Leeds is a gem 😉. Up the Boro! 


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Ken Smith
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The Football League Cup was the idea of Alan Hardaker Secretary of the Football League and introduced in 1961 when the Final was decided over 2 legs for its first 6 years. Indeed Rotherham reached the first Final beating Aston Villa 2-0 in the First Leg but losing 0-3 after extra time at Villa Park in the Second Leg. Even Rochdale reached the Final in the second season, although they lost to Norwich 4-0 over 2 legs. Not that Boro had much success  in it until the arrival of Jack Charlton as manager. But in the 1974/75 season Boro not only reached the Quarterfinals of the League Cup but also of the FA Cup as well and these are the details of how they managed that:-

1974/75 LEAGUE CUP

11 Sep Away Tottenham 4-0 :Smith, Mills, Hickton, Armstrong

8 Oct Home Leicester 1-0 :Mills  :23,901

12 Nov Away Liverpool 1-0  :Maddren  

4 Dec Home Manchester Utd 0-0   :36,005

18 Dec Away Manchester Utd 0-3 (Boro lost 0-4 on aggregate) 

Although the scoreline at Spurs was maybe a surprise, Spurs were a poor team that just escaped relegation that season, but the win at Anfield was a surprise as Liverpool finished as runners-up in the League.

 

1974/75 FA CUP

4 Jan Away Wycombe 0-0

7 Jan Home Wycombe 1-0 :Armstrong (penalty in 89th minute)  :30,128

25 Jan Home Sunderland 3-1 :Murdoch, Hickton 2  :39,400

15 Feb Away Peterborough 1-1 :Mills 

18 Feb Home Peterborough 2-0 :Foggon 2  :34,303

8 Mar Away Birmingham 0-1

Wycombe Wanderers were at that time a non-League club and were given a standing ovation by the Ayresome faithful after almost taking Boro to extra time. Sunderland were only a Second Division club, whilst Peterborough were a Third Division club. Boro had been expected to beat Birmingham having beaten them twice 3-0 home and away, but Bob Hatton scored the only goal of the match although they lost to Fulham after a replay in the Semifinal.

The following season Boro went one stage better in the League Cup, but won their first silverware, albeit in the Anglo-Scottish Cup which started with a 4 club regional mini-league as follows:-

1975/76 ANGLO-SCOTTISH CUP 

2 Aug Home Sunderland 3-2 :Souness, Craggs, Murdoch  :12,849

5 Aug Home Carlisle 4-1 :Willey 2, Hickton, Bailey  :8,737

9 Aug Away Newcastle 2-2 :Wiley, Armstrong

16 Sep Home Aberdeen 2-0 :Hickton, Mills  :13,965

1 Oct Away Aberdeen 5-2 :Mills 2, Hickton 2, Foggon (Boro won 7-2 on aggregate).

21 Oct Home Mansfield 3-0 :Armstrong 2, Hickton  :14,929

3 Nov Away Mansfield 2-0 :Murdoch, Souness (Boro won 5-0 on aggregate)

26 Nov Home Fulham 1-0 :Strong og  :14,700

9 Dec Away Fulham 0-0 (Boro won 1-0 on aggregate) 

Strangely after a plethora of goals to reach the Final (21 in 7 matches) it should take an own goal to win our first silverware.

 

1975/76 LEAGUE CUP 

9 Sep Away Bury 2-1 :Hickton, Mills 

7 Oct Home Derby 1-0 :Foggon  :25,740

11 Nov Home Peterborough 3-0 :Boam, Hickton, Armstrong  :17,749

3 Dec Away Burnley 2-0 :Mills, Maddren 

13 Jan Home Manchester City 1-0 :Hickton  :34,579

21 Jan Away Manchester City 0-4 ((Boro lost 1-4 on aggregate)

Boro had beaten Manchester City twice 1-0 at home but lost 0-4 away. We thought it would be revenge time, but City scored 2 early goals and then went on to repeat the League match thrashing and went on to beat Newcastle 2-1 in the Final now at Wembley.

As an addendum from 1982 the League Cup was sponsored by several companies, firstly the Milk Cup, then the Littlewoods Cup from 1987, the Rumbelows Cup from 1991, the Coca-Cola Cup from 1993, the Worthington Cup from 1999, the Carling Cup from 2004 (the year Boro won it), the Capital One Cup from 2013, the EFL Cup in 2017, and now the Carabao Cup from 2018, but for clarity I will always refer to it as the League Cup. Nevertheless I suppose we can always say that Boro were the first winners of the Carling Cup.

 


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Ken Smith
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Suddenly Boro created a habit of reaching Quarterfinals in the FA Cup but falling at that hurdle and let’s start in Jack Charlton’s last season:-

1976/77 FA CUP 

8 Jan Away Wimbledon  0-0

11 Jan Home Wimbledon 1-0 :Armstrong  :22,485

29 Jan Home Hereford 4-0 :Souness, Armstrong 2, Willey  :25,163

26 Feb Home Arsenal 4-1 :Mills 3, Armstrong  :35,208

19 Mar Away Liverpool 0-2

Wimbledon were a non-League club in those days yet 11 years later the Crazy Gang had not only been promoted 4 times and had not only reached an FA Cup Final but shocked the World by winning it against Liverpool, whilst Boro had been competing for over a hundred years and had still failed to even reach the Semifinals. However after a kind draw in the first 2 rounds Boro stunned the Gunners with David Mills scoring the first Boro FA Cup hat trick against a top tier club for 30 years. Nevertheless to face Liverpool at Anfield in the Quarterfinals was a game too far.

 

1977/78 FA CUP

7 Jan Home Coventry 3-0 :Mills 2, McAndrew  :18,015

28 Jan Home Everton 3-2 :Mahoney, Mills 2  :33,652

27 Feb Home Bolton 2-0 :Ashcroft, Cummins  :36,662

11 Mar Home Leyton Orient 0-0  :33,426

14 Mar Away Leyton Orient 1-2 :Armstrong 

With Comedian Freddie Starr a big Everton supporter in the Directors box waving to the crowd, Boro stunned the Toffees with a 3-2 win. Meanwhile Orient had opened the way for Boro to reach their first Semifinal by eliminating Chelsea in the previous round, but Boro missed countless chances at Ayresome Park and paid the price at Brisbane Road 3 days later.

Three years later Boro again reached the Quarterfinals and in John Neal’s last season as Boro’s manager this is how the Cup run evolved:-

 

1980/81 FA CUP

3 Jan Away Swansea 5-0 :Ashcroft, Angus, Hodgson 2, Cochrane 

24 Jan Home West Brom 1-0 :Bailey  :28,285

14 Feb Home Barnsley 2-1 :Proctor, Jankovic  :37,557

 7 Mar Home Wolves 1-1 :Cochrane  :36,382

10 Mar Away Wolves 1-3 (after extra time) :Hodgson 

 

The 3rd Round match was chosen by the BBC for television as Boro had won away only twice in 11 League matches and an upset against a Second Division side was on the cards, but Boro were ruthless on the counter attack with Terry Cochrane scoring a spectacular overhead kick which was the Goal of the Season. However Boro slipped up once more in the Quarterfinals time against Wolves a team they had previously beaten 2-0 at home in November. The 1-1 draw meant a replay at Molineux 3 days later, and Bosco Jankovic thought he had given Boro an early lead until the linesman put up his flag for offside. Boro went behind before halftime, but a David Hodgson header 20 minutes from time took the game into extra time where Wolves finished Boro off with two more goals.

There were rumours of a fracas in the dressing room after the match with Craig Johnson indicating he’d had enough and was off to Liverpool at the end of the season and in fact he only played once more for Boro at Norwich a week later. That started the break up of the team with Mark Proctor signing for Nottm Forest for £400,000, David Armstrong went to Southampton for £600,000, David Hodgson to Liverpool for £450,000, Tony McAndrew to Chelsea for £92,000, and Bosco Jankovic retired to take up a position as a lawyer. It was all too much for John Neal to take as Chairman Charles Amer seemed set on selling the cream of the team, and he resigned before the end of the season.


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jarkko
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Posted by: @ken

Suddenly Boro created a habit of reaching Quarterfinals in the FA Cup but falling at that hurdle and let’s start in Jack Charlton’s last season:-

1976/77 FA CUP 

8 Jan Away Wimbledon  0-0

11 Jan Home Wimbledon 1-0 :Armstrong  :22,485

29 Jan Home Hereford 4-0 :Souness, Armstrong 2, Willey  :25,163

26 Feb Home Arsenal 4-1 :Mills 3, Armstrong  :35,208

19 Mar Away Liverpool 0-2

The Arsenal match is the first Boro match I can definately remember. It was shown live on the Finnish TV on the Saturday afternoon. If I remember correctly, the sun was shining and we were suberb that afternoon. I was 14 years old then.

What I cannot remember is if we had a black and white television or a colour TV in that time. I guess it was already colour TV but I have definately been a Boro fan since.

My younger brother is a vivid Arsenal fan. Nowadays he travels to see the Gunners every year. So it could be also be the reason I remember the match so well.

The other match I remember well was listening to BBC World Service and the traditional second half commentary. It was against a strong Aston Villa team. They had recently won the League (?) and it was snowing at the Ayresome Park. We won and I even recorded the commentary on C casette. I do not know if I have that tape still somewhere.

At the time we had all the English League and some Scottich League matches on the pools coupons. So I followed all the divisions and the top tiers in Scotland. Even won some money on the Pools coupons.

They were happy times with the Saturday aftenoon TV match and the BBC World Service. Sports Round-Up was a must every evening at 19 H 45 our time. And I listened to half time results and second half commentary quite often if not watching the TV match. I wanted to know the results before reading them on the Sunday's paper.

And who could forgot James Alexander Gordon? Even him was a reason to listen to the results.

I love Boro, me. Up the Boro! 

 


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Ken Smith
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Not only did Lennie Lawrence guide Boro to promotion in his first season as manager, but also took them to the Semifinals of the League Cup and this is how Boro did it:-

1991/92 LEAGUE CUP 

24 Sep Home Bournemouth 1-1  :Wilkinson  :10,577

8 Oct Away Bournemouth 2-1 after extra time :Hendrie, Parkinson (Boro won 3-2 on aggregate)

29 Oct Home Barnsley 1-0 :Wilkinson  :9,381

3 Dec Home Manchester City 2-1 :Mustoe, Wilkinson  :17,286

8 Jan Away Peterborough 0-0

12 Feb Home Peterborough 1-0 :Ripley  :21,973

4 Mar Home Manchester Utd 0-0   :25,572

11 Mar Away Manchester Utd 1-2 after extra time (Boro lost 1-2 on aggregate)

Boro’s Quarterfinal replay against Peterborough was rescheduled as Boro had a home FA Cup replay against Portsmouth to contend with, which they lost 2-4. Then it had to be postponed through bad weather, so there were 5 weeks between the two matches.

In the Semifinal replay Lee Sharp put United ahead after half an hour, but Jamie Pollock shot over the bar when a pass to Paul Wilkinson or Bernie Slaven might have been a better option. In the second half Stuart Ripley outpaced Dennis Irwin to send a sublime pass into the penalty area which Bernie Slaven headed into the net to equalise only 5 minutes into the second half. Then Dennis Irwin brought out a great save from Stephen Pears which Alan Kernaghan managed to clear before the onrushing United forwards could reach it. Then at the other end Gary Pallister backtracked to clear a John Hendrie effort that was destined for the net. Later Bernie Slaven crossed a ball into the penalty area where Willie Falconer dived to head wide with Paul Wilkinson in a better position to score. Then into extra time and in the first half John Hendrie centred for Willie Falconer to send a superb header goalbound only for Peter Schmeichel to somehow stretch and push the ball over the bar. Finally though in the second period of extra time Neil Webb slalomed his way into the penalty area and the ball fell to Ryan Giggs to score the winner from close range.

Boro deserved to at least take the match to a penalty shootout against a team who went on to beat Nottm Forest 1-0 in the Final at Wembley and also finish runners-up to Leeds in the last First Division season before the advent of the Premier League.


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Ken Smith
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Now to the season often referred to as Two Cup Finals and a Relegation. I’ve already dealt with the relegation in my ‘20 most remarkable league seasons’ to be found on the History section of this website, but now wish to detail the two Cup runs starting with the League Cup statistics as follows:-

1996/97 LEAGUE CUP 

18 Sep Home Hereford 7-0 :Ravanelli 4, Emerson, Branco, Fleming  :17,136

24 Sep Away Hereford 3-0 :Beck, Stamp, Branco (Boro won 10-0 on aggregate)

23 Oct Home Huddersfield 5-1 :Juninho, Emerson, Ravanelli 2, Beck  :26,615

27 Nov Home Newcastle 3-1 :Whyte, Beck, Ravanelli  :29,831

8 Jan Home Liverpool 2-1 :Hignett, Vickers  :28,670

26 Feb Away Stockport 2-0 :Beck, Ravanelli 

12 Mar Home Stockport 0-1   :29,633 (Boro won 2-1 on aggregate)

6 Apr at Wembley Leicester 1-1 after extra time :Ravanelli  :76,757

16 Apr at Hillsborough Leicester 0-1 after extra time  :39,428

 Boro sailed through the first two rounds but needed a last minute goal from Ravanelli to make sure of the win. Against Liverpool Boro led 2-0 at halftime after David James made a terrible clearance which led to Craig Hignett gaining possession and sliding the ball past the goalkeeper after 14 minutes, and 11 minutes later a Hignett corner set up Steve Vickers to blast in the second. Steve McManaman scored for Liverpool in the second half but Boro held on. 

Against Stockport County in the Semifinal First Leg it took 73 minutes to break County’s resistance but Ravanelli settled it 6 minutes later. However in the Second Leg Steve Connelly shocked Boro with a goal in the first 6 minutes, and although Boro dominated the rest of the match were unable to score, however a 2-1 aggregate win was enough to take Boro through to their first major Cup appearance.

In the final Leicester manager Martin O’Neill seemed to have devised a plan to shackle Juninho who had terrorised his side in the League match at Filbert Street in March, though Boro were generally the better side, and when Ravanelli put Boro into the lead 5 minutes into extra time it felt like Boro would win. However a last minute goal from Emil Heskey meant a replay at Hillsborough where unfortunately Boro lost to a Steve Claridge goal in extra time.

 

1996/97 FA CUP 

4 Jan Home Chester 6-0 :Ravanelli 2, Hignett, Cox, Beck, Stamp  :18,684

25 Jan Home Hednesford 3-2 :Lambert og, Fjortoft, Ravanelli  :27,511

15 Feb Away Manchester City 1-0 :Juninho 

8 Mar Away Derby 2-0 :Juninho, Ravanelli 

13 Apr at Old Trafford Chesterfield 3-3 after extra time :Ravanelli, Hignett, Festa  :49,640

22 Apr at Hillsborough Chesterfield 3-0 :Beck, Ravanelli, Emerson  :30,339

17 May at Wembley Chelsea 0-2  :79,160

 The match against Hednesford Town was played at the Riverside Stadium as the non-League club opted to forfeit home advantage, but what a shock they gave Boro, Joe O’Connor a chemical factory worker scoring after 13 minutes. Colin Lambert put through his own goal to give Boro an equaliser before half-time. It wasn’t until the 86th minute that Jan-Aage Fjortoft scored the winner for Boro and Fabrizio Ravanelli scored the third goal 2 minutes later. Even then  Joe O’Connor scored another goal in injury time but too late to alter the result, but Town certainly weren’t flattered by the final score and were given a rousing reception by both sets of supporters after the final whistle.

Boro were to receive another shock in the Semifinal at Old Trafford. First Vladimir Kinder was sent off for bringing down Kevin Davies and eventually a goal from Morris, then a penalty converted by Shaun Dyche gave the Spireites a 2-0 lead. Ravanelli pulled a goal back for ten men Boro in the 64th minute after which Howard hit the bar for Chesterfield with the Spireites appealing with some justification that the ball had crossed the line. Dyche then gave away a penalty which Craig Hignett converted to take the match into extra time. Then Boro seemed to have won the match with 20 minutes remaining as a Steve Vickers effort hit the bar but rebounded for Gianluca Festa to finish it off. However in a dramatic finish Jamie Hewitt equalised in the last minute. The replay at Hillsborough didn’t cause too many problems save that it was a game that Boro could have done without with an already congested end of season fixture list.

Preparations for the Final were overshadowed by reports of scuffles between Ravanelli and some of the players in the team hotel hours before kickoff. On the field Boro never really recovered from a Robert Di Matteo goal after a mere 43 seconds, and Eddie Newton scored a second Chelsea goal in the second half.


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Ken Smith
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The next season Boro although now a First Division club again reached the League Cup Final but again lost to Chelsea who had beaten Boro in the FA Cup in the previous season, and this is how it happened:-

1997/98 LEAGUE CUP 

16 Sep Home Barnet 1-0 :Freestone  :9,611

23 Sep Away Barnet 2-0 :Beck, Merson (Boro won 3-0 on aggregate)

15 Oct Home Sunderland 2-0 :Campbell, Hignett  :26,451

18 Nov Home Bolton 2-1 after extra time :Summbell, Hignett  :22,801

6 Jan Away Reading 1-0 :Hignett 

27 Jan Away Liverpool 1-2 :Merson

18 Feb Home Liverpool 2-0 :Merson, Branca  (Boro won 2-1 on aggregate)  :29,828

29 Mar at Wembley Chelsea 0-2 after extra time :77,698

After playing a young team including Chris Freestone, Anthony Ormerod and Mark Summerbell in the First Leg against Barnet, Bryan Robson opted to use a stronger squad for the Second Leg.

Boro took the lead at Anfield in the Semifinal First Leg when Paul Merson latched on to a Craig Hignett pass in the 29th minute, but despite conceding a goal before the interval to Jamie Redknapp and another one to Robbie Fowler in the second half Boro hung on to not concede again and had the all important away goal for the return match at the Riverside 3 weeks later, where Boro made an amazing start with Paul Merson converting a penalty in the 2nd minute and Marco Branca adding another only 2 minutes later for an enormous win.

In the Final at Wembley Boro took Chelsea to extra time, but goals from Frank Sinclair and Boro’s nemesis in the previous year’s FA Cup Final Roberto Di Matteo ended Boro’s brave fight. Paul Gascoigne came on as a substitute but gave his loser’s medal to Craig Hignett who missed the Wembley but had scored 3 goals leading up to the Final.

 

1999/2000 LEAGUE CUP 

Boro ought to have  reached another at least another Semifinal in the League Cup but a woeful display at Birkenhead against Tranmere Rovers deprived them in the Quarterfinals put paid to that. Here is how they reached that stage:-

14 Sep Away Chesterfield 0-0

21 Sep Home Chesterfield 2-1 :Ince, Vickers (Boro won 2-1 on aggregate)  :25,602

13 Oct Home Watford 1-0 :Juninho  :8,843

30 Nov Home Arsenal 2-2 after extra time (Boro won the penalty shootout 3-1)  Ricard 2  :23,157

14 Dec Away Tranmere 1-2 :Ziege

A surprisingly large crowd for the replayed tie against Chesterfield was followed by an equally surprisingly low one for the visit of Watford in the next round. In the 4th Round tie against Arsenal Hamilton Ricard put Boro ahead after 9 minutes but Thierry Henry equalised half an hour later. With 10 minutes remaining Davor Suker put the Gunners ahead only for Ricard to convert a penalty thus taking the match into extra time and thereafter a penalty shoot out which Boro won 3-1.

In the Quarterfinal John Kelly put Tranmere ahead in the first half with Andy Parkinson adding a second after the interval. Christian Ziege pulled one back in the 79th minute but Rovers deserved their win.

This post was modified 2 years ago 2 times by Ken Smith

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Ken Smith
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Boro were going to ruffle a few feathers among the top Premier League clubs in the FA Cup in season 2001/02 as follows:-

2001/02 FA CUP

8 Jan Away Wimbledon 0-0

15 Jan Home Wimbledon 2-0 :Whelan, Cunningham og  :9,687

26 Jan Home Manchester Utd 2-0 :Whelan, Campbell  :17,624

16 Feb Home Blackburn 1-0 :Ehiogu  :20,921

10 Mar Home Everton 3-0 :Whelan, Nemeth, Ince  :26,950

14 Apr at Old Trafford 0-1   61,168

Boro went 490 minutes before conceding a goal in this particular season’s FA Cup run. The 4th Round televised encounter with Manchester United only half filled the Riverside Stadium, probably not surprising considering Boro were fighting relegation at the time in 18th position. However despite generally being outplayed for most of the match Boro snatched victory with 2 goals in the last 5 minutes. Boro did it again in the 5th Round with another late winner 3 minutes from time. However in the Quarterfinal against Everton Boro set their stall out in the first half with 3 goals in 7 minutes just before halftime.

On to Old Trafford and Boro without the suspended Paul Ince, the Cup tied Benito Carbone and the injured Jonathan Greening made most of the running. They rattled Arsenal with a succession of tackles and attacks that had the Gunners fighting for their lives. Dean Windass brought out a superb save from Richard Wright deputising for the injured David Seaman, as he turned away a powerful volley. Then Alen Boksic caused mayhem in the Gunners’ penalty area setting up Luke Wilkshire who missed from 8 yards. Arsenal were well below par with Thierry Henry overplaying an easy chance to score from a cross from Sylvian Wiltord. Just past the half hour mark Ugo Ehiogu was injured and was replaced by Gianluca Festa who 7 minutes later was very unfortunate to divert a Thierry Henry corner into his own net.

In the second half Wiltord missed an open goal for the Londoners, but at the other end Lee Dixon had to make a goal line clearance from a Dean Windass header, and with 18 minutes remaining Wright saved an Alen Boksic header from an Alan Johnston cross, but Arsenal then saw out the rest of the match without too much trouble, but Boro had excelled themselves and at least deserved to at least take the match to extra time.

Two years later though Boro were able to avenge that FA Cup loss by beating the Gunners twice this time in the League Cup on the road to their first major silverware after trying for 128 fyears, and this is how it happened:-

 

2003/04 LEAGUE CUP 

24 Sep Home Brighton 1-0 after extra time :Christie  :10,435

29 Oct Away Wigan 2-1 :Maccarone, Mendieta

3 Dec Home Everton 0-0 after extra time (Boro won the penalty shootout 5-4) 18,568

17 Dec Away Tottenham 1-1 after extra time :Ricketts (Boro won the penalty shootout 5-4

20 Jan Away Arsenal 1-0 :Juninho 

3 Feb Home Arsenal 2-1 :Zenden, Reyes og (Boro won on aggregate 3-1)   :28,781

29 Feb at Millennium Stadium Bolton 2-1 :Job, Zenden  :72,634

When the much injured Malcolm Christie scored against Briighton few would have believed that his goal would pave the way to glory and Boro’s first real win of silverware. It was the late goal by the much maligned Michael Ricketts late equaliser and the subsequent 5-4 win on a penalty shootout at White Hart Lane that had Boro fans dreaming it was possible. However Boro had lost their first home League match 0-4 to Arsenal and the return match in January 1-4, so it still seemed a tall order. The 1-0 win at Highbury certainly gave confidence to the team as well as the fans, but 4 days later Boro had to return to Highbury for an FA Cup tie and lost again 1-4. 

That First Leg win was dominated by Juninho; he hit the post from a George Boateng pass which luckily rebounded into the goalkeeper’s arms, hit the post again in the second half, and then scored the only goal of the match from a Gaizka Mendieta pass. In the Second Leg with the score 0-0 Martin Keown was  sent off just before the interval for a foul on Massimo Maccarone, but even with 10 men Patrick Vieira and Edu continued to dominate midfield until tiredness eventually caught up with them as they began to wilt. Boro then scored through Boudewijn Zenden to establish a 2-0 aggregate lead, and although some consternation was caused when Edu scored for the Gunners an own goal by Jose Antonio Reyes settled the result.

Now for the League Cup Final sponsored by Carling played under a closed roof at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, and Boro went ahead after a Gaizka Mendieta crossfield pass found Boudewijn Zenden whose cross was an easy slide in for Joseph-Desire Job. After 7 minutes Emerson Thome conceded a penalty for bringing Job down, and although Zenden slipped whilst making contact with the ball, goalkeeper Jussi Jääskeläinen was already committed to diving to his right as the ball hit the net. Mark Schwartzer then conceded a soft goal as a miss hit shot from Kevin Davies somehow squeezed through his hands and into the net. However Schwartzer made amends by twice denying Youri Djurkaeff with excellent saves. Emerson Thome then almost diverted a Juninho cross into his own net before Mark Schwartzer tipped over a curling Per Frauden shot. Giazka Mendiata almost scored a third goal for Boro but was well tackled by Emerson Thome when well placed. In the second half the game drifted somewhat to its inevitable conclusion except for a fine tackle by Ugo Ehiogu denying Stelios Giannakopoulos, and later a suspicious hand ball in the Boro penalty area by Ehiogu.

So finally Boro were able to win silverware as first Gareth Southgate lifted the Cup and Chairman slightly reluctantly was held up high by some of the Boro players.

This post was modified 2 years ago by Ken Smith

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jarkko
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Ken, it was a nice win at Cardiff. Finally,.I think Boro should have won something many years earlier but that was not meant to be.

Top marks for spelling Jussi Jääskeläinen correctly. I know you are pedant, so no surprice but you are not having these letters in your key boad.

I used to hate, that Mika Häkkinen was incorrectly spelt in the British press, too. If one spells it Hakkinen, then it become another Finnish last name. So we have people called Häkkinen as well as Hakkinen, the former being more popular.

Yesterday, I was visiting my local motor racing circuit called Keimola in Vantaa, next to the Helsinki International Airport (so not Ke-Imola). It was opened in 1965 and was closed 15 years later because of lack of money and the oil crise.

It was facinating to hear that all the British top drivers  of the time had visited the circuit. Even Frank Williams took part in the first ever race there.

Later there was also a karting circuit were Keke Rosberg also drove. Mika Häkkinen and Mika Salo started their careers in karting in there as they lived locally.

Ken, I do not know if you have interest in F1 racing, but there is a facinating story about the first Finnish F1 World Championship Trophy. As you might know, we have had a few Champions just to name a few: Keke Rosberg,  Mika Häkkinen and Kimi Räikkönen. You could also calculate Nico Rosberg in there as he has a Finnish pasport but a German racing licence.  His mother is German but actually he has always lived in Monaco. And Valtteri Bottas won the first race this year.

But the tricky question is who was the first Finnish person to officially receive the Formula One Championship Trophy? So already before Keke Rosberg.

A tip from my visit to Keimola yesterday. We had a very good local Finnish driver in the 1940's and 1950's called Curt Lincoln. He was the guy who later built the Keimola racing circuit. And the first Trophy was given to his relation in 1970.

Up the Boro! 

This post was modified 2 years ago by jarkko

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Ken Smith
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I’m glad that you tune in to this part of the forum. There are only 8 further seasons to review where Boro reached the Quarterfinals of Cup competitions, 3 in the League Cup and of the 5 remaining in the the FA Cup only one of those in 2006 did Boro reach the Semifinal. But that started a sequence of 4 successive seasons where whoever beat Boro in the Quarterfinal went on to reach the Final though each of them West Ham, Manchester United, Cardiff City and Everton were all beaten in the Final. 

Because of lockdown I spend much of my time reminiscing over Boro’s achievements and that’s the reason for sharing this information of Boro’s Cup Quarterfinals record and also my previous articles of Boro’s most interesting top 20 seasons that I can find with anyone that’s interested.  I just hope it’s an interesting record for present and even future generations of our great football club can refer to all set in one place. It does involve a lot of research sometimes, but it’s a legacy if you like that I enjoy sharing with other Boro fans. 

I also have individual statistics not on a data base by the way, of Boro’s record against each of the 95 clubs Boro have met in the League, the 138 against Derby County being the highest number. I should state that I’m not clever on computer technology. Of course listing all those records against each club would be too time consuming for me to copy on this website and too boring for other people to absorb.  

I’m sorry but I have no interest in Formula 1 but do enjoy the Speedway Grand Prix having been an avid supporter of Boro Bears (now Redcar Bears) in the past and am aware of the many fine current and former Danish and Swedish riders, though I can’t recall any from Finland although I know that they do have a Finnish team and possibly a Finnish Speedway League.


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Ken Smith
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The 2005/06 season was notable for not only Boro reaching the EUFA Cup Final but also the last time that Boro reached an FA Cup Semifinal and this is a breakdown of how that was achieved:-

2005/06 FA CUP 

7 Jan Away Nuneaton 1-1 :Mendieta 

17 Jan Home Nuneaton 5-2 :Riggott, Yakubu 2, Parnaby, Viduka  :26,255

28 Jan Away Coventry 1-1 :Hasselbaink 

8 Feb Home Coventry 1-0 :Hasselbaink  :14,131

19 Feb Away Preston 2-0 :Yakubu 2

23 Mar Away Charlton 0-0

12 Apr Home Charlton 4-2 :Rochemback, Morrison, Hasselbaink, Viduka  :30,248

23 Apr at Villa Park West Ham 0-1   :39,148

Boro conceded a late goal away to Nuneaton Borough which meant a replay 10 days later at the Riverside Stadium where Boro were untroubled by the non-League opposition. However Coventry proved to be tougher opposition in front of a home crowd of 28,120 and dominated possession in the first half without being able to break down Boro’s resolute defence. However it was Jimmy-Floyd Hasselbaink who put Boro ahead 29 seconds after the interval following a flick on from Aiyegbeni Yakubu. Nevertheless it took only 8 minutes for the home side to equalise after Matthew Bates failed to clear an awkward bouncing ball from reaching Don Hutchison who nodded the ball forward for Stern John to volley home from 12 yards. The replay eleven days later was settled by a goal from Hasselbaink.

 The 5th Round match at Deepdale saw two Yakubu goals end Preston’s 25 match unbeaten run. First a ferocious left foot drive ended the stalemate early in the second half, and he followed that up with a second as he headed home after Claude Davis failed to clear. After the goalless draw in the Quarterfinal at the Valley the replay at the Riverside Stadium against Charlton Athletic was a real thriller. The visiting support was helped by the Londoners supplying free transport for their fans. As for the televised match Charlton should have been 2-0 up in the first 5 minutes as both Shaun Bartlett and Darren Bent failed to convert easy chances which proved costly as  Boro took the lead in the 11th minute when Fabio Rochemback’s 30 yard free kick deceived Thomas Myhre, but Bryan Hughes equalised for the Addicks two minutes later. However Boro took a 2-1 halftime lead after James Morrison scored from close range in the 26th minute. Boro appeared to have the game won when Jimmy-Floyd Hasselbaink smashed home in the 73rd minute only for a James Bothroyd shot  to be deflected into the Boro net via Gareth Southgate. But Boro put the game to bed a minute later when Mark Viduka showed his amazing skills to restore Boro’s two goal advantage.

Only 3 days after Boro had lost 0-1 in Bucharest Boro were to meet West Ham United for the second time in a week, this time at Villa Park in the Semifinal of the FA Cup. Boro dominated the first half against a fairly lacklustre Hammers but were strangely let down by their two strikers Jimmy-Floyd Hasselbaink and  Yakubu not taking advantage of Boro’s exciting support play. Mark Schwartzer was injured 3 minutes before the interval and had to be substituted by Brad Jones. In the second half Frank Quedrue disappointingly headed over a Stewart Downing cross although West Ham had upped their game by then and eventually took the lead in the 78th minute when Dean Ashton headed down Anton Ferdinand’s long ball to Marlon Harewood to smash home. Even then Chris Riggott ought to have scored for a Boro side who deserved at least to have taken the match into extra time, but considering Boro’s heavy fixture list it was a match that Boro dominated for long periods. 

Next up then Boro’s amazing EUFA Cup adventure in the same season.

This post was modified 2 years ago by Ken Smith

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Ken Smith
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These are the statistics for the two years that Boro were involved in the EUFA Cup:- 

2004/05 EUFA CUP 

16 Sep Home Banik Ostrava 3-0 :Hasselbaink, Viduka 2  :29,746

30 Sep Away Banik Ostrava 1-1 :Morrison (Boro won 4-1 on aggregate)   :15,351

21 Oct Away Egaleo 1-0 :Downing   :2,689

4 Nov Home Lazio Roma 2-0 :Zenden 2   :33,991

25 Nov Away Villarreal 0-2   :14,250

15 Dec Home Partizan Belgrade 3-0 :Nemeth, Job, Morrison  :20,856

17 Feb Away Liebherr Graz AK 2-2 :Zenden, Hasselbaink  :13,500

24 Feb Home Liebherr Graz AK 2-1 :Morrison, Hasselbaink (Boro won 4-3 on aggregate)   :20,371

10 Mar Home Sporting Lisbon 2-3 :Job, Riggott  :23,139

17 Mar Away Sporting Lisbon 0-1 (Boro lost 2-4 on aggregate)   :21,217

The first two matches were Preliminary Round matches to determine group matches of 5 clubs, the top 2 qualifying for the 1st Round of the knockout stage, Boro beating the Austrian club Liebherr Graz AK 4-3 on aggregate but losing to the Portuguese club Sporting Lisbon in the 2nd Round. Boro were 0-3 down at one stage before Boro scored two late goals. Sorry I have no more information of match reports.

 

2005/06 EUFA CUP

15 Sep Home FC Xanthi 2-0 :Boateng, Viduka  :14,191

29 Sep Away FC Xanthi 0-0 (Boro won 2-0 on aggregate)   :5,013

20 Oct Away Grasshoppers Zurich 1-0 :Hasselbaink   :8,500

3 Nov Home Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk 3-0 :Yakubu, Viduka 2  :12,953

24 Nov Away AZ Alkmaar 0-0  :8,461

15 Dec Home Liteks Lovetch 2-0 :Maccarone 2  :9,436

16 Feb Away VfB Stuttgart 2-1 :Hasselbaink, Parnaby  :21,000

23 Feb Home VfB Stuttgart 0-1 (Boro won on the away goals rule)  :24,018

9 Mar Home AS Roma 1-0 :Yakubu (pen)  :25,354

15 Mar Away AS Roma 1-2 (Boro won on the away goals rule) :Hasselbaink :32,642

30 Mar Away FC Basel 0-2  :23,639

6 Apr Home FC Basel 4-1 (Boro won 4-3 on aggregate) :Viduka 2, Hasselbaink, Maccarone   :24,521

20 Apr Away Steau Bucharest 0-1  :45,000

27 Apr Home Steau Bucharest 4-2 (Boro won 4-3 on aggregate) Maccarone2
Viduka, Riggott  :34,622

10 May Sevilla at Eindhoven 0-4 :  33,100

Once again the first two matches were Preliminary Round matches to determine group matches of 5 clubs, the top two qualifying for the 1st Round of the knockout stage where Boro beat the German club VfB Stuttgart and then in the 2nd Round the Italian club both on the away goals rule after 2-2 aggregate scores. The two matches against the Swiss club FC Basel were Quarterfinal ties, and the two matches against the Romanian club Steau Bucharest were Semifinal ties. The Final against the Spanish club Sevilla was played in the Dutch city of Eindhoven.

Sorry again I have no match reports, but I’m sure everyone remembers the knockout matches especially the comeback wins in the Quarter and Semifinal matches where in both cases Boro recovered from 0-3 deficits to win 4-3 with late Maccarone goals at the death.


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Ken Smith
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The next season Boro again reached the Quarterfinals of the FA Cup. They might have been fortunate in reaching that round not having met a Premier League side until the Quarterfinals but unlucky to advance further, and this is how it happened:-

2006/07 FA CUP

6 Jan Away Hull 1-1 :Viduka 

10 Jan Home Hull 4-3 :Hines, Viduka 2, Yakubu :16,702

27 Jan Away Bristol City 2-2 :Yakubu, Christie

13 Feb Home Bristol City 2-2 after extra time  :Viduka, Yakubu :(Boro won penalty shootout 5-4)   :26,328

17 Feb Home West Brom 2-2 :Arca, Yakubu  :31,491

27 Feb Away West Brom 1-1 after extra time  :Viduka  (Boro won the penalty shootout 5-4)

10 Mar Home Manchester Utd 2-2 :Cattermole, Boateng  :33,308

19 Mar Away Manchester Utd 0-1

Boro wasted a plethora of chances against Hull City, but the Tigers think they ought to have had a penalty when Julio Arca appeared to handle in the penalty  area but the referee waved play on. But generally Boro were well on top but it  took 73 minutes for them to take the lead when Mark Viduka lashed the ball into the net from a Yakubu pass. However it was short lived as Nicky Foster nodded home just 3 minutes later. Boro almost won the match when Chris Riggott hit the post but Hull hung on for the replay only 4 days later.

In the replay Send Hines put Boro ahead in the 32nd minute and that was the only goal in the first half. However within 12 minutes of the second half Boro had seemingly established a winning lead against the team who were bottom of the Championship with goals from Mark Viduka and a penalty converted by Yakubu. But suddenly City hit back with goals from Andy Dawson and then a penalty converted by Jon Parkin. However Viduka settled the fans nerves with his second goal in a 4-3 win. 

At Ashton Gate Boro took an early lead against Bristol City when Louis Carey’s stray pass was pounced on by Stewart Downing whose 20 yard shot was spilled by City’s goalkeeper Adriano Basso and Yakubu was on hand to place it into the net. After 10 minutes Basso deprived Malcolm Christie of putting Boro 2-0 with a good save, but within 15 minutes Christie made amends when he was on hand to turn in a cross from James Morrison. Andrew should have put Boro 3-0 up before the interval by shooting horribly wide after Stewart Downing had set him up. The second half though was completely different as by the 60th minute City were on level terms. Firstly Richard Keogh reduced the deficit with a header from Lee Johnson’s free kick, then Mark Schwartzer could only punch the ball out as far as Scott Murray who deftly lobbed the ball over the Boro keeper from some 30 yards out. Jamie McAllister almost won it for City as Boro hung on for a replay.

The replay at the Riverside also ended 2-2. This time David Noble gave the Robins a half time lead before Mark Viduka equalised mid way into the second half with a header. It was now all Boro but City held out to take the match into extra time. Yakubu then missed a penalty shooting straight at Chris Weale but when he was unable to hold an Adam Johnson shot Yakubu made amends by side footing home the rebound. Boro seemed now in complete control but were stunned by a City equaliser from Jamie McCombe with only 4 minutes remaining. In the penalty shootout Phil Jevons missed City’s first spot kick, but Yakubu also missed. However Bristol missed their 6th penalty and Adam Johnson converted Boro’s 6th to win 5-4. 

Next up was West Brom at home and after a patient build up Julio Arca headed Boro ahead from a Stewart Downing cross, but Diamansky Kamara equalised for the Baggies when his shot somehow squeezed past Mark Schwartzer. Yakubu restored Boro’s lead from the penalty spot following Curtis Davies’ foul only for Kevin Phillips’s diverted shot to send the match into yet another replay at the Hawthorns. This time Boro fell behind when Darren Carter curled a shot around Brad Jones in the Boro goal. The equaliser came after Mark Viduka converted a Stuart Parnaby cross. In extra time Nathan Ellington was sent off for a foul on Parnaby and thereafter Albion seemed content in allowing the game to be decided by penalties. Lee Dong-Gook was sent on and he caused mayhem in the Albion‘s penalty area but the Baggies held out. With the penalty count standing at 4-4 after 10 penalties George Boateng put Boro ahead after which Sherjill MacDonald blasted his spot kick over the bar to give Boro a home Quarterfinal tie against Manchester United.

Against United Wayne Rooney put them ahead midway through the first half after good work from Ryan Giggs. However Boro were really up for it as Yakubu outmuscled Rio Ferdinand and brought out a fine save from Tomasz Kuszczak deputising for Edwin van der Sar who had suffered a calf injury in the pre-match warm up. Ryan Giggs then almost doubled the score when his shot hit the post. Nevertheless Boro were still in the match when Kuszczak only half cleared a Boro attack and Julio Arca sent the ball back into the penalty area for Lee Cattermole to equalise. Boro then took the lead in the first minute of the second half as George Boateng rose unchallenged to head home a Stewart Downing corner. The turning point came in the 66th minute when Rio Ferdinand’s header caught Boateng’s hand in the penalty area, although it was slightly controversial as he could hardly have got his hand out of the way. Despite a few protests referee Rob Styles pointed to the spot and Christiano Ronaldo scored to make the score 2-2 and that was the end of the scoring. The replay 9 days later at Old Trafford was just one game too far for Boro but they kept United at bay in the first half until Jonathan Woodgate pulled down Ronaldo in the penalty area and converted the spot kick himself for a 1-0 win against a plucky Boro. United went on to reach the Cup Final but lost to Arsenal 5-4 on a penalty shootout after a goalless draw.

This post was modified 2 years ago by Ken Smith

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jarkko
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Posted by: @jarkko

But the tricky question is who was the first Finnish person to officially receive the Formula One Championship Trophy? So already before Keke Rosberg.

A tip from my visit to Keimola yesterday. We had a very good local Finnish driver in the 1940's and 1950's called Curt Lincoln. He was the guy who later built the Keimola racing circuit. And the first Trophy was given to his relation in 1970.

Up the Boro! 

The anwer to my question is a lady, Nina Rindt. He was presented the trophy in 1970 when his husband Jochen Rindt won the formula 1 Champioship after his tragic death in Monza practice.

Nina was daughter of Curt Lincoln, the famous Finnish racing lagend. 

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jochen_Rindt

Up the Boro! 

This post was modified 2 years ago by jarkko

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Ken Smith
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Boro didn’t have to play a Premier League side in 2007/08 but failed to get beyond the Quarterfinals and these are the sides they met:-

2007/08 FA CUP 

5 Jan Away Bristol City 2-1 :Downing, Wheater.  

26 Jan Away Mansfield 2-0 : Lee Dong-Gook, Buxton og

17 Feb Away Sheffield Utd 0-0

27 Feb Home Sheffield Utd 1-0 after extra time :Kenny og  :28,108

9 Mar Home Cardiff 0-2   :32,896

Bristol City took the lead in the 18th minute when Jamie McAllister’s free kick was headed on by Tamas Vasco for Liam Fontaine to slide the ball into the net. Boro equalised 20 minutes later when Stewart Downing’s tame shot was fumbled into the net by City goalkeeper Adriano Basso. In the second half Fabio Rochemback hit a 20 yard shot just over the bar, then Lee Johnson’s swirling shot was well gathered by Mark Schwartzer. As City piled on the pressure Schwartzer almost gifted a goal to the home side as Marvin Elliott pounced. Then in a rare Boro attack Lee Cattermole’s right wing cross was met by David Wheater to guide the ball home in the 72nd minute. Bristol tried to counter to no avail and Tuncay Sanli almost added a third goal for Boro in the dying minutes.

In windy conditions Boro took the lead at Mansfield when the home team failed to clear Adam Johnson’s corner which fell to David Wheater whose shot was blocked but Dong-Gook Lee was on hand to tap it into the net in the 15th minute. After that Mansfield dominated the match with Michael Boulding hitting the crossbar from 25 yards as Boro were under heavy pressure. Then from a corner Boulding forced a full length save from Mark Schwartzer. Eventually after weathering the storm and with just 3 minutes remaining a George Boateng cross was put into the net for an own goal by Jake Buxton under pressure from Stewart Downing as Boro sealed the win 2-0. 

Next up was a visit to Bramall Lane to play Sheffield United in a typical Cup match played at a frenetic pace. United did most of the pressing with Matt Kilgallon and Jonathan Stead prominent, and Jeremie Aliadiere and Stewart Downing having efforts easily saved by Paddy Kenny. Just before the interval James Beattie struck the post for the Blades. Boro came more into the game in the second half with Mido’s overhead kick being tipped over the bar and from the resulting corner Kenny forced to make a save from David Wheater’s strong header. Downing and Fabio Rochemback also failed to hit the target, and in the last minute Emil Pogatetz’s effort was cleared off the line.

And so to the replay ten days later at the Riverside where Afonso Alves made his debut. The Brazilian striker twice forced Paddy Kenny into saves. Fabio Rochemback then sent over a beautiful flick to send Stewart Downing on his way, but his centre went out of play. With 20 minutes remaining Tuncay Sanli replaced Alves but it was James Beattie who should have won it for the Blades, but under pressure from Mark Schwartzer he shot wide. Into extra time with both teams looking tired play became scrappy although Downing forced Kenny to save at his feet. However Boro scored the winning goal with only 6 minutes remaining as Mido’s shot was deflected on to a post and on trying to retrieve the ball, Paddy Kenny only managed to divert it into his own goal.

Up next was the match that Boro fans hate to be reminded of as Boro were odds on to reach the Final. Cardiff City were their opponents and started livelier of the two teams. In the 9th minute Stephen McPhail appeared to handle the ball in mid air, but referee Mike Dean waved play on and the ball fell to Peter Whittingham who skilfully dribbled the ball into the penalty before curling the ball into the top right hand corner of the goal. The Boro players were furious but worse was to follow 13 minutes later as Roger Johnson headed Whittingham’s cross into the net. Boro created only one chance in the first half as Afonso Alves cut inside but his shot was parried by Peter Enckelman. Boro were being outfought and outplayed in one of their worst performance for many a season, and that’s how it finished 0-2 against a Championship club. 


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Ken Smith
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2008/09 turned out to be the fourth consecutive season that Boro reached the Quarterfinal of the FA Cup although it also turned out to be a relegation season, but here are details of the FA Cup run:-

2008/09 FA CUP 

3 Jan Home Barrow 2-1 :Alves 2  :25,132

24 Jan Away Wolves 2-1 :Alves, Emnes 

14 Feb Away West Ham 1-1 :Downing

24 Feb Home West Ham 2-0 :Downing, Tuncay  :15,602

8 Mar Away Everton 1-2 :Wheater

7,000 Barrow fans trekked over from Cumbria for this Cup tie, the highest ever number of away fans to visit the Riverside Stadium and they almost earned a replay. Boro were on top and deservedly took the lead in the 23rd minute through Afonso Alves but the non-League team almost equalised just before halftime when Mike Pearson’s shot was deflected onto the post by Boro’s German centre half Robert Huth. When Stewart Downing’s cross was converted by Aves on the hour mark it looked all over. However with ten minutes remaining Mark Boyd’s corner was flicked on by Steve McNulty into the path of Jason Walker who stabbed it into the net. The Barrow fans went beserk and urged their team on for an equaliser, but Boro played the last 10 minutes and the 7 minutes extra time fairly comfortably, but the plucky Barrow players were given a great round of applause especially from their own fans at the final whistle.

Championship leaders Wolves were Boro’s next opponents at Molineux and more than held their own. Jason Shackell headed wide and then Kyel Reid’s shot at goal was blocked by Tony McMahon, but Boro were also active with Adam Johnson especially missing a few chances notably when he rounded the keeper only to see his shot cleared off the line by David Edwards. However the stalemate was finally broken just before halftime time as Afonso Alves chipped  over the keeper. Sam Vokes equalised for Wolves 15 minutes into the second half heading in Edwards right wing cross, and Wolves should have taken the lead with 11 minutes remaining after Brad Jones could only push Andrew Keogh’s shot into the path of Matt Jarvis who sliced his shot wide. Wolves were to rue that miss as only 4 minute later a great run from Stewart Downing found Marvin Emnes whose shot hit the post but rebounded into the net off goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey.

It took a replay for Boro to dispose of West Ham after a draw at Upton Park. Not much happened in the first fifteen minutes, but suddenly the Hammers upped the tempo and Brad Jones had to make good saves from Mark Noble and David Di Michele, then against the run of play Boro took the lead as Gary O’Neil’s cross eluded both James Collins and Matthew Upson to fall to Stewart Downing whose header beat the stranded Robert Green. Then O’Neil’s through ball found Afonso Alves whose shot just passed the wrong side of the post. Downing then tested Green from long range, after which Di Michelle ballooned the ball over the bar after good work from Herita Ilunga. However Ilunga had the final say when Savio’s cross eluded everyone except the Congolese who headed home the equaliser with only 7 minutes remaining.

In the replay Boro made a stunning start after Radoslav Kovac felled Tuncay Sanli 25 yards out. Stewart Downing hit the resulting free kick into the goal via the angle of post and crossbar. Downing almost scored another when he intercepted Matthew Upson’s wild crossfield pass but shot just narrowly wide. Nevertheless in the 20th minute Gary O’Neil sent over a sizzling cross which James Tomkins merely only headed in front of the onrushing Tuncay who blazed the ball into the net to put Boro 2-0 up, and that’s how it stayed despite a few anxious moments as Boro’s defence proved impenetrable.

Boro’s next trip was away to Everton never a happy hunting ground for the Teessiders with only 5 wins at Goodison Park in 56 matches at that time. Also Boro’s main concern was trying to avoid relegation having been in the bottom three since January and in a run of 7 successive away defeats in the League and failing to score in 6 of them. Yet Boro surprised the Toffees with their pace  and should have taken an early lead as Justin Hoyte’s astute pass found Matthew Bates in the box and the midfielder set Jeremie Alliadere up for a shot at goal but the Frenchman wastefully blazed it over the bar from 12 yards. Everton’s first chance came when Leon Osman’s corner was headed by Joseph Yobo straight into the hands of Brad Jones. Steven Pienaar then sent Osman’s cross just wide of the post. But Boro stunned Everton just before the interval as Bates’s cross was headed home by David Wheater. Into the second half and Boro nearly doubled their lead when Tuncay Sanli’s cross found Alliadere in the six yard box but his shot was deflected wide. It didn’t take long for Everton to equalise then as Tom Cahill’s cross was headed home by Marouane Fellaini. Six minutes later and Everton were ahead as Pienaar crossed from the left for Louis Saha to head past Jones. Leighton Baines almost made it three after 64 minutes as his free kick hit the bar, and although Marvin Emnes was sent on 4 minutes later to replace Alliadere Boro looked a spent force. Then against the run of play Boro might have earned a replay in injury time as Tim Howard dropped a Gary O’Neil effort only for Joleon Lescott to hack the ball away. 

As I mentioned before this was the 4th time in successive seasons that Boro had reached at least the Quarterfinal of the FA Cup and on each occasion Boro’s victors reached the Final only to lose, on this time Everton lost to Chelsea as Boro were relegated.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This post was modified 2 years ago 3 times by Ken Smith

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Posted by: @ken

Boro didn’t have to play a Premier League side in 2007/08 but failed to get beyond the Quarterfinals and these are the sides they met:-

2007/08 FA CUP 

5 Jan Away Bristol City 2-1 :Downing, Wheater.  

26 Jan Away Mansfield 2-0 : Lee Dong-Gook, Buxton og

17 Feb Away Sheffield Utd 0-0

27 Feb Home Sheffield Utd 1-0 after extra time :Kenny og  :28,108

9 Mar Home Cardiff 0-2   :32,896.

Up next was the match that Boro fans hate to be reminded of as Boro were odds on to reach the Final. Cardiff City were their opponents and started livelier of the two teams. In the 9th minute Stephen McPhail appeared to handle the ball in mid air, but referee Mike Dean waved play on and the ball fell to Peter Whittingham who skilfully dribbled the ball into the penalty before curling the ball into the top right hand corner of the goal. The Boro players were furious but worse was to follow 13 minutes later as Roger Johnson headed Whittingham’s cross into the net. Boro created only one chance in the first half as Afonso Alves cut inside but his shot was parried by Peter Enckelman. Boro were being outfought and outplayed in one of their worst performance for many a season, and that’s how it finished 0-2 against a Championship club. 

Yes,Ken, this is one of the worst memories from our recent past. I liked your story but couldn't hit the 'like' button below it. I hate the result but we have to live with the past.

Who were the other teams still in the Quarterfinals that year? If I rememeber correctly, only one other Premier League side, perhaps.

Up the Boro! 

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Jarkko

Sorry incorrect. There were 3 others as well as Boro - Chelsea, Manchester Utd and Portsmouth, but only one reached the Semifinal.

QUARTERFINAL results for 2007/08 were as follows:-

Barnsley 1 Chelsea 0

Bristol Rovers 1 West Brom 5

Manchester Utd 0 Portsmouth 1

Middlesbrough 0 Cardiff 2

SEMIFINAL results 

Barnsley 0 Cardiff 1

West Brom 0 Portsmouth 1.

FINAL result

Portsmouth 1 Cardiff 0

 

The only time that the FA Cup has been won by a club outside of England was in 1927 when Cardiff beat Arsenal 1-0. The only other times that a non-English club has reached an FA Cup Final were in 1884 and 1885 when the Scottish club Queen’s Park of Glasgow were beaten by Blackburn Rovers on each occasion at the Oval currently the home of Surrey County Cricket Club.

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@ken Yes, it was of course the semi-finals where there were not many other PL clubs left as you said. That made the defeat to Cardiff even worse. Up the Boro! 


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Before I review the 2012/13 League Cup season it’s worth reminding folks that Boro had not received a home draw in this competition since September 2008, a run of 7 matches and that run was to be extended to 12 in this particular season with the following results:-

2012/13 LEAGUE CUP

11 Aug Away Bury 2-1 :Emnes, Ladesma

28 Aug Away Gillingham 2-0 :Carayol, Park 

25 Sep Away Preston 3-1 :Ledesma, Zemmama, Smallwood

30 Oct Away Sunderland 1-0 :McDonald

12 Dec Away Swansea 0-1

For the match at Bury, Boro took well over 1,000 fans in a crowd of 2,964 and  their first real chance came after only 6 minutes when a cross from Emmanuel Ledesma found Grant Leadbitter whose 15 yard blockbuster was well blocked by the legs of Bury keeper Trevor Carson and cleared away by Joe Skarz. Four minutes later a Mustapha Carayol cross was met by Mark Hughes who trying to blast the ball away it cannoned off Nicky Bailey straight into the arms of the Bury goalkeeper. Boro were creating plenty of chances and in the 25th minute should have taken the lead when Justin Hoyte exchanged passes with Kevin Thomson who set up Marvin Emnes, but he failed to hit the target from 6 yards. However Emnes redeemed himself 7 minutes later when a quickly taken free kick found him and he hit a low shot from fully 25 yards into the net to open the scoring. Bury had a chance to equalise just before halftime when after a bout of head tennis in the Boro penalty ended with a spectacular overhead kick from Bury’s captain Steven Schumacher’s going just past the post. Boro increased their lead on the hour mark when Carson failed to hang on to an Emnes shot and Ledesma was on hand to tap the ball over the line. Suddenly though within 2 minutes Bury had reduced the deficit when Hughes scored, and although Bury had more of the play afterwards they couldn’t break down Boro’s impenetrable defence.

Against Gillingham Marvin Emnes nearly put Boro ahead in the 5th minute when he beat the offside trap only for Gills goalkeeper Stuart Nelson racing out to deny him. Danny Kedwell then shot wide for the Gills, but Mustapha Carayol then immediately bundled his way through the Gills defence to put Boro ahead in the 23rd minute. Gillingham should have equalised when Deon Burton headed on for Kedwell but he shot wide. Carayol nearly scored a second just after the interval when his drive cannoned off Callum Davies onto the post, and then Rhys Williams was carried off the field after twisting his ankle. The Gills then started to dominate proceedings, but in almost the last minute when Kedwell lost the ball in midfield Cameron Park broke away and cleverly chipped Gillingham’s goalkeeper to gain Boro a place into the next round.

Preston had a good home record as they entertained Boro at a wet Deepdale but Boro did the early pressing as Andy Halliday almost opened the scoring from 25 yards as Preston goalkeeper Steve Simonsen had to dive full length to  touch the ball round the post. But Emmanuel Ledesma scrambled the ball over the line from a Mustapha Carayol corner to give Boro the lead. The Argentinian almost scored another soon after but it was Merouane Zemmama who scored a second goal from distance for Boro. However Preston pulled a goal back before the interval and in the second half a Joel Byrom piledriver just whizzed past the post. However Boro sealed the win after Zemmama caused confusion in the Lilywhites penalty area resulting in Paul Huntington almost putting through his own goal but Richie Smallwood was on hand to crash it into the net.

The away tie at Sunderland attracted a crowd of 32,535 although Boro fans were restricted to a mere 5,000 tickets. Sunderland started brightly and Jason Steele was forced into a save from Boro’s former winger Adam Johnson’s inswinging corner. However Boro soon settled with Grant Leadbitter and Nicky Bailey controlling midfield. Faris Haroun shot just wide then forced Keiren Westwood into making a save as Boro continued to dominate. Scott McDonald tried two long range efforts which just cleared the crossbar, and just before halftime was on hand to turn Emmanuel Ledesma’s cross into the net to score the only goal of the match. Sunderland' improved in the second half, but Boro were dangerous on the counter attack. As the half wore on the Black Cats put extra pressure on Boro’s defence, but found it hard to penetrate as 4 extra time minutes were played. Boro certainly deserved to win and it proved ample revenge for their extra time defeat by the Mackems in the previous year’s FA Cup.

Again Boro were drawn away for the long trek down to South Wales for the Quarterfinal tie, and the club provided free transport for those who had purchased tickets as a token of goodwill for Boro’s away support in previous rounds of this competition. Boro almost took the lead after 30 seconds when Grant Leadbitter tested Chico Flores but failed to take advantage of the rebound. Next he forced Swansea goalkeeper Gerhard Tremmel to save at full stretch then his following shot was straight at the keeper as Boro continued to dominate. The Swans  though were strangely lethargic in a quiet first half but made several substitutions after the interval including Ki Sung-Yeung and Luke Moore. Swansea then started to exert some pressure as Michu had shots blocked. Stephen Pears then tipped Jonathan De Guzman’s freekick onto the crossbar and as a flurry of corners ensued Seb Hines facing his own goal was pressurised by Gary Monk into heading into his own goal with time running out. Boro deserved at least a replay against the Premier League team but could now concentrate on the League.

However the fortunes of the two clubs had contrasting results as Swansea went on to beat Chelsea 2-0 on aggregate in the Semifinals and then surprise package Bradford City 5-0 at Wembley in the Final, whilst Boro 3rd at the time in the League won only 3 more matches after Christmas to finish 16th.

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Not only was 2015/16 a promotion season for Boro but they also reached the Quarterfinals of the League Cup for the 10th time and this is how they did it:-

2015/16 LEAGUE CUP

12 Aug Away Oldham 3-1 :Wildschut, Stuani 2

25 Aug Away Burton 2-1 after extra time :Stuani 2

22 Sep Home Wolves 3-0 :Adomah 2, Fabbriini   :13,368

28 Sep Away Manchester Utd 0-0 after extra time (Boro won the penalty shoot  out  3-1)

1 Dec Home Everton 0-2   :31,628

Boro should have taken the lead against Oldham in the 7th minute when awarded a penalty after goalkeeper David Cornell brought down Diego Fabbrini   However Cornell after having been booked made amends by saving Adam Clayton’s spot kick. However Boro eventually took the lead after 23 minutes when Yanic Wildschut ran on from a through ball from Albert Adomah to score. Cristhian Stuani then doubled the lead 4 minutes before half time when he headed in a cross from Fabbrini, and then scored another from 6 yards on the hour mark with a right footed shot after latching on to a James Husband pass. Danny Philliskirk scored a consolation goal for Oldham in injury time when he headed in a cross from Lee Croft, but this was an easy win for Boro.

Burton Albion proved a much more difficult task in the next round as George Friend diverted Matthew Palmer’s free kick into his own goal in the 24th minute. Although Boro had more possession and over 30 attempts at goal it wasn’t until the 70th minute that they were able to equalise when Tomás Kalas’s pass found Cristhian Stuani in the centre of the goal to send in a right foot shot to beat Remi Matthews. Boro were dominating play but Albion held out to force extra time, but at last 4 minutes into the second period of extra time Stewart Downing crossed for Stuani to shoot into the bottom top right corner to win the match. Grant Leadbitter almost scored a third after that when his shot was directed into the top right hand corner but was saved by the Albion keeper. The final statistics showed Boro having had 11 of their attempts on goal being on target.

Next up was a home tie with Wolves and after a fairly even half an hour Boro took the lead in the 36th minute when Carlos De Pena’s cross caused havoc in the Wolves defence for Albert Adomah to fire home. Three minutes before the hour mark a fine team move ended with Diego Fabbrini hitting a great strike to double Boro’s lead. De Pena in his best game for Boro was causing all sorts of problems for the Wolves defence and he was instrumental in providing the third goal 7 minutes later as Adomah hit a nice low strike across the goal and nestling into the bottom right corner.

A crowd of 67,258 were at Old Trafford including 10,000 from Teesside to watch a battling display by Boro taking this game to a penalty shootout. The first attempt at goal belonged to Boro as George Friend nutmegged Jesse Lindgard to win a corner, and when United failed to clear Grant Leadbitter’s return, Friend found himself unmarked with only the goalkeeper to beat but unfortunately hit his shot straight at Sergio Romero. Marouane Fellaini seemed certain to score when Ben Gibson failed to cut out a cross only for Friend to throw himself in front of the shot at point blank range to save the day. Next at the other end Stewart Downing tried his luck with a shot which brought a fingertip save from Romero. Wayne Rooney was introduced at halftime, but it was Boro who nearly scored first after the interval when Kike hit the post and Daley Blind could only turn the rebound into his own net, although the linesman’s flag was already up for offside. Next Romero allowed a back pass to go under his foot and was relieved to see it just go past the post. United then turned on the heat but Boro held firm to take the contest into extra time. By this time Boro were playing out the game hoping for a penalty shootout but overall deserved that opportunity. Wayne Rooney took the first penalty but Tomás Mejias saved it, then David Nugent blazed his effort over the bar. However both Michael Carrick and Ashley Young also missed their penalties whilst Grant Leadbitter, Stewart Downing and Ben Gibson succeeded with theirs to end a memorable win for Boro.

The Quarterfinal match against Everton showed the Riverside crowd the sheer brilliance of the Toffee’s Gerard Deulofeu. In the 20th minute he weaved past two challenges leaving Ben Gibson on the seat of his pants before sliding the ball past Tomás Mejias, and then eight minutes later after a series of six step overs he crossed for Romelu Lukaku to head in the second goal. He was the main difference between the two sides as Boro had more goal attempts and shots on target despite only having 42% possession. Nevertheless the only goal attempt that looked like threatening Everton was a Stewart Downing effort which Joel Robles tipped over the bar. To state that Boro were outclassed is a little unfair as they improved after the interval, but it did show what they are might expect in the following season in the Premier League.

 

,


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The last time Boro reached the Quarterfinals of the FA Cup was only 3 years ago but with Boro fighting relegation that season surprisingly Boro fans also yearned for a long Cup run. In fact despite entertaining clubs outside the Premier League in the first 3 rounds they averaged nearly 26,000 spectators per match for those 3 matches and here are the statistics:-

2016/17 FA CUP

8 Jan Home Sheffield Wed 3-0 :Leadbitter, Negredo, De Roon  :23,601

28 Jan Home Accrington 1-0 :Downing  :24,040

18 Feb Home Oxford 3-2 :Leadbitter, Gestede, Stuani  :28,198

11 Mar Home Manchester City 0-2  :32,228

In the 3rd Round match against Sheffield Wednesday both teams struggled to break the deadlock with neither side able to register a shot on target in the first half. It took almost an hour before Boro opened the scoring when Grant Leadbitter scored from a free kick. Within seconds though Boro were a man down as Daniel Ayala recklessly brought down Fernando Forestieri and was shown a red card. However 10 minutes later the Owls’s keeper Joe Wildsmith  attempted to clear the ball, but only managed to send it straight to Alvaro Negredo who duly planted it into an empty net. Even with a man advantage Wednesday rarely troubled the Boro defence and it was left to Marten De Roon to seal Boro’s passage into the next round when he smashed in a third goal from the edge of the penalty box in injury time.

Boro then struggled to beat Accrington Stanley in the next round. Their dominance produced plenty of chances in the first half but Patrick Bamford missed a couple of clear chances from short range. Sean Clare forced Dimitrios Konstantopoulos into a save but that’s all that Stanley produced in the first half and it wasn’t until the 70th minute that Stewart Downing settled the nerves of the Boro faithful with a rasping left foot shot from all of 25 yards into the top corner of the net. Sean McConville came closest from equalising for Stanley heading wide when unmarked but generally the Lancashire team were indebted to goalkeeper Marek Rodak for keeping them in the match especially against Rudy Gestede and Adama Traore whose effort was pushed to Cristhian Stuani who shot high over the bar with Rodak off his line.

The 5th Round match against Oxford United sprung into life as Toni Martinez having received a long punt from Simon Eastwood outpaced Bernardo Espinosa but shot straight at Boro keeper Brad Guzan. Soon after Grant Leadbitter tried his luck but the ball just sailed inches over the bar. Then after 25 minutes when Stewart Downing was brought down in the penalty area by Chris Maguire, Leadbitter scored from the resultant penalty to put Boro ahead. Maguire then was denied an equalising goal as Kane Hemmings was controversially penalised for fouling Espinosa. A few minutes later Boro scored a second goal as Rudy Gestede scored with an acrobatic volley. However Maguire started the fight back when he nonchalantly curled in a free kick after Adama Traore had fouled Ryan Ledson just outside the penalty area, and a minute later Toni Martinez stunned the home crowd with an equaliser. after Adam Clayton had given the ball away. However Cristhian Stuani won the match with only 4 minutes remaining when he bundled the ball in near the left hand post after a cross from Fabio eluded every one else in the penalty area.

In the Quarterfinals Boro were granted another home tie, the first time that  this had ever happened to Boro in any of their FA Cup matches in the same season. However this was against much sterner opposition in Manchester City who took only 3 minutes to take the lead through David Silva from 6 yards out  after Pablo Zabaleta had found enough room to cross the ball. Rudy Gestede had two opportunities to equalise, firstly when he headed over the bar and then had another header cleared off the line by Zabaleta before leaving the field with a lower back injury. However Boro were indebted to Brad Guzan for keeping them in the match as City repeatedly carved open the Boro defence with saves from Silva, Leroy Sane and pushing a shot from Sergio Aguero onto the post. Nevertheless it was only a matter of time that City would increase their lead and it was that man Aguero who converted Sane’s low cross into the net midway through the second half. Surprisingly though City failed to beat Boro in the League with a 1-1 draw at the Etihad Stadium, and later at the Riverside when the match ended 2-2 with Boro a tad unfortunate not to have won.

Finally Boro’s record in the FA Cup has been pretty dismal with only 126 matches won, 87 drawn and 119 defeats in 332 matches. That’s almost the equivalent of being knocked out in the Second Round every other year. Going back in time as a professional club participating for 127 seasons, they have failed to even reach the First Round 14 times in Qualifying Rounds, been eliminated in the First Round 47 times, 34 times in the Second Round, 20 times in the Third Round and 9 times in the Quarterfinals. Only 2 Semifinal defeats and 1 Final appearance is a poor return for a club of such stature, and I’m certain that they will never win the FA Cup in my lifetime, but no matter what I’ll be a Boro fan till I die. 

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This was the last time that Boro reached the Quarterfinal of a major Cup competition almost only a year ago and this is how it enfolded:-

2018/19 LEAGUE CUP 

14 Aug Home Notts County 3-3 :Fletcher 2,Mahmutovic (Boro won penalty shootout 4-3)   :9,942

28 Aug Home Rochdale 2-1  :Johnson, Hugill  :10,344

25 Sep Away Preston 2-2 :Fletcher, Tavernier (Boro won penalty shootout 4-3)

31 Oct Home Crystal Palace 1-0 :Wing  :11,850

18 Dec Home Burton 0-1   :17,342

Boro were never ahead in this match against a team from Division 2 who were ultimately relegated to the National League at the end of the season. First Terry Hawkridge released Jon Stead to find Tom Crawford with a quick free kick to put County ahead in the 20th minute, but Ashley Fletcher equalised for Boro 7 minutes later when Grant Leadbitter’s corner was fiicked on by Danny Ayala for Ashley Fletcher to head home. But the Magpies were not to be denied and in the 34th minute Stead with his back to goal spun past his marker to swoop a loose ball into the net only for Boro’s Luxembourg international Enes Mahmutovic to make the score all square just before halftime after heading home a Marvin Johnson cross. In the 63rd minute Noor Husin drilled a low shot against the post for Stead to score from the rebound to restore the Magpies lead, but once more Boro drew level as Stephen Walker teed up Fletcher to equalise for the third time with 15 minutes remaining. As extra time has now been scrapped the game went into penalties, and Andy Lonergan first saved Jon Stead’s spot kick and also one from Dan Jones, whilst Grant Leadbitter, Paddy McNair, Stephen Walker and Marcus Tavernier all converted theirs to put Boro into the next round.

Next up was Rochdale and Boro almost scored an early goal as Marcus Tavernier was released and he passed a through ball to Jordan Hugill who passed it to the onrushing Paddy McNair whose cross just evaded Ashley Fletcher. Then Marvin Johnson’s pace enabled him to cross into the penalty area but Hugill’s cross was blocked. Then Fletcher could only find the side netting from a narrow angle, and later McNair made room for himself beating 3 men but his shot was saved by Rochdale keeper Magnus Norman. However 8 minutes before halftime Boro took the lead as a McNair cross was headed off  the post for Johnson to send the rebound into the net. Into the second half and Andy Lonergan had to tip a Calvin Andrew effort over the bar, and the resulting corner had to be scrambled away. But 8 minutes into the second half Hugill’s powerful header from a Johnson cross Boro 2-0 ahead. Ian Henderson then forced Lonergan into a save, then at the other end Harry Chapman almost put Boro three up when his curling shot hit the post. But it was Rochdale who scored next through Ryan Delaney to set up a grandstand finish. Lonergan made a great save from a Callum Camps shot shot shot but Delaney retrieved the ball and his shot was cleared off the line by Enes Mahmutovic as Boro survived.

A fixture at Deepdale to face Preston North End was Boro’s next match in the League Cup and Boro should have been ahead in the first 6 minutes had Paddy McNair not hit a tame side-footed effort when having made space in the   penalty area. But Preston had more of the play and Dlmitris Konstantopoulos had to make a save from Paul Huntington’s header from a corner. Then the same player glanced Ryan Ledson’s cross narrowly wide. It was no surprise when the Lilywhites took the lead in the 27th minute when Alan Browne squared the ball for Callum Robinson to fire into the corner. However 7 minutes later Boro equalised when Lewis Wing released Ashley Fletcher through the middle to round Chris Maxwell before slotting home. Rudy Gestede flashed a header wide just before halftime, but just after the interval Tom Barkhuizen hit the post for Preston. Moments later though Gestede headed against the bar after Maxwell could only parry Fletcher’s shot. The game had now become end to end and Preston regained the lead midway through the half as Dimi allow a shot from Barkhuizen to go under his body. Nevertheless Boro were level again shortly afterwards as Marcus Tavernier picking up a ball in space hit a wonderful shot from outside the penalty area into the top right hand corner of the net. That was the end of the scoring so the game went into a penalty shootout. Ryan Ledson scored first and Grant Leadbitter equalised, but when Callum Robinson missed, Boro were in the driving seat. Then Rudy Gestede, Paddy McNair and Marcus Tavernier all scored from the spot to give Boro a home tie against Premier League club Crystal Palace in the next round.

The match against Palace took some time to get going as both clubs had made 8 changes from their respective weekend fixtures. Also a serious knee injury to Sam McQueen Boro’s on loan signing from Southampton didn’t help. George Friend weaved himself towards the Palace penalty area but his weak shot was easily gathered by Vicente Guaita. Martin Braithwaite then sent Friend on his way and from his centre George Saville wastefully shot wide. Then Jordan was sent through but he sliced his shot high and wide of the goal. Then in first half injury time Lewis Wing hit a screamer of a shot into the net after Marcus Tavernier had set him up. Up to them Palace had been fairly insipid but had much more of the possession in the second half yet still didn’t trouble Konstantopoulos until two minutes from time when Andros Townsend’s effort was beaten away. The Eagles did appeal for a penalty in stoppage time when Max Meyer’s shot did appear to strike a hand in the penalty area, but the referee waved Palace protests away.

The home Quarterfinal against Burton Albion gave Boro an excellent chance of a two-legged appearance against Manchester City in the Semifinal. Burton  started brightly with Stephen Quinn whipping in a free kick as early as the 2nd minute, then two minutes later Marcus Harness won the ball off Martin Braithwaite but then hit his drive just wide of the target. But Boro responded when Dael Fry did well to send Braithwaite on his way but his cross just evaded Jordan Hugill. Soon afterwards Hugill headed a Stewart Downing cross just over the bar as Boro now seemed to have grabbed the initiative. Next Downing set up Lewis Wing only for Bradley Collins to make a great save. Downing then hit a a beautiful shot heading for the top corner, but Collins brilliantly palmed it away. Albion then had a chance from a short corner but  Quinn’s shot missed the target. Boro had a penalty shout as Wing set up Braithwaite who appeared to be fouled in the area by Jake Buxton but the referee waved play on. Burton then created their best chance of the half right on the interval when a sweeping counterattack saw Lucas Atkins finding Jamie Allen who dummied before passing to Harness who curled his effort over the bar. Nevertheless Boro really should have been ahead at the interval but had been profligate in front of goal. Into the second half and after only 3 minutes the Brewers stunned Boro by taking the lead. It all started with Allen racing into the box and firing his shot against the post, and as it rebounded towards Mohamed Besic he was beaten to the ball by Jake Hesketh who swivelled round to place the ball into the bottom corner of the net. All of a sudden Burton were growing in confidence and looking for a second goal as Boro lacked ideas how to break them down. It wasn’t until the last ten minutes that Boro looked likely to equalise as first Aden Flint missed a sitter from 2 yards when it looked easier to score than to miss, and in the last minute when Bradley Collins came racing out of his goal to deny Britt Assombalonga.

Boro’s overall record in the League Cup is better than in the FA Cup with 85 wins, 40 draws and 63 defeats in 188 matches. However in the 60 years of the competition they have been beaten 22 times in the First Round, 20 times in the Second Round, 6 times in the Third Round, once in the 4th Round, 6 times in the Quarterfinals, twice in both the Semifinals and the Final, but of course have won it in 2004. So that completes 33 seasons of Boro’s history in reaching Quarterfinals, Semifinals and Finals which I started as something to occupy my time during the Coronavirus lockdown. Although I have enjoyed completing this project, it has become much more onerous than I had anticipated. But at least it stands there in posterity for those who enjoy the history of our great club.

 

This post was modified 2 years ago 3 times by Ken Smith

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jarkko
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Ken, when was the cup exit when there was a draw in the actual match, but a long penalty kick shoot out? It was at Liverpool (?) me thinks and many players shot two times. Adomah was the player who missed his second shot and we went out.

We did have a loanee in goal that evening. Was it Jamal Blackman from Chelsea?

Finally, thanks for all the above info. Enjoyed reading them 😊. Up the Boro! 


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Here you go Jarkko.......

 

https://www.bbc.com/sport/football/29216833


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jarkko
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Posted by: @grovehillwallah

Here you go Jarkko.......

https://www.bbc.com/sport/football/29216833

Thanks a lot.

So Liverpool won a record-equalling penalty shootout 14-13 to progress to the fourth round of the Capital One Cup at Middlesbrough's expense.

Was it nearly six years ago in September? I thought it was just a couple of years ago - but of course I remembered it was during Aitor's reign. Up the Boro! 


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