City No Match for Boro
Hughes made two changes to the side that eased past Stoke. Onouha came in for Garrido, as Richards went to left-back, and Nedum at Right-back. Upfront Sturridge replaced Evans who had to make do with a place on the bench.
The game started well for the hosts, and they had an early shout for a penalty. The ball seemed to have struck Richard`s hand at a free kick, but referee Mason was having none of it.
It took a mere 8 minutes before City had the first half chance. Ireland robbed Digard and set up Robinho, whose shot forced Turnball into a good save. Middlesbrough then had a very good chance. Downing paced down the left, before whipping in a cross that deflected off Onouha, straight to the head of Alves, who headed the chance straight at Hart.
Alves then tried to create his own chance. He managed to set himself before a superb tackle from Onouha denied any shot. City then broke down the other end. Shaun Wright-Phillips looked dangerous but his break came to nothing, but within second Richards cut in from the left flank, and fired a sizzling shot straight into the gloves of Turnball.
Richard Dunne then picked up an injury but was able to play on after treatment. Sanli T. then made Hart scramble but was unable to find the back of the net. Sturridge then was realised free on goal, but fired straight at Turnball, and City began to struggle. Middlesbrough took hold of the game and wound down the clock to halftime.
The Second half started with City on the front foot. Ben-Haim`s big hoof up the pitch fell to Stephen Ireland who had their best chance of the game so far. He stormed into the box before firing for the bottom corner, only for Turnball to deny him a great goal.
Contrervesary arrived again, on the 52nd minute. Sturridge and Wheater tangled on the edge of the box, and the ref pointed to the spot. Replays show the incident to have happened on the outside of the box, but eventually Afonso Alves steeped up to send Hart the wrong way.
The penalty woke both sides up, Ben-Haim had his shot saved by Turnball, and seconds later Sanli T, whipped a shot wide of the post.
City pressed for the equaliser and Danny spurned a great chance with 19 minutes left. Kompany`s long-range shot was saved, and the rebound was set for Sturridge but his shot flew out for a throw in?
The Game looked set to wind down to a conclusion as City could not break down a very good Boro defence. However it was Middlesbrough who managed to score again from a break. Gary O`Neil set up Sanli, whose stabbed shot rebounded off Hart and back to O`Neil, who slammed the ball high into the back of the net to finish city off.