Stoke City Takes on Middlesbrough in Bid for Third Straight Win
Impressive Win Streak for Stoke City
Stoke City are back in the north as Alex Neil takes on promotion-chasing Middlesbrough. Stoke are trying to build on two impressive back-to-back wins over Sunderland and Blackburn and go for a rare feat of three wins in a row, which the club has only done once since October 2016. Neil is targeting at least the club’s best finish since relegation from the Premier League in 2018 and trying to get into the top half.
Middlesbrough Stands in Stoke City’s Way
But they will have their work cut out against a Middlesbrough side whose results have been transformed since Michael Carrick took over in October, finding them fourth from bottom of the Championship. They have won 14 of their last 18 games and can close the gap to second-placed Sheffield United to just a point if they win this evening. You can follow all the action and reaction from the game below. We would also like to hear from you, so please send us your views via our Stoke City Facebook and Twitter accounts or join the Stoke news and gossip group. You can now also comment right here. You can sign in by clicking on the round silhouette in the top right corner of this piece.
Live Match Updates
Ben Pearson shines despite mistake. Stoke were excellent this evening. Baker’rs nice cross is picked out by Steffen. Campbell goes for an ambitious shot. Just wide. Campbell in the book for trying to nick the ball from Steffen. Five minutes added time. Bonham jumps on a loose ball in the Stoke area. Campbell is down. Another bad foul by Forss. No card. Fox dashes over to mop up a Boro break down the Stoke left. Corner. Claimed by Bonham. Ooof! A slide from McNair and it’s just wide, running onto a flicked free-kick. Gayle off. Baker on. Steffen saves from Smallbone. Well struck, good save. Brown off the line! Gayle can’t finish. It was a great header from Smallbone cross and Steffen didn’t know much about it. Pearson is on his knees. He’s getting clapped off by the directors’ box to our left. Thompson on. Campbell runs at Smith and squares for Smallbone, whose shot is deflected wide. Thompson is going to relieve Pearson. Pearson has been brilliant tonight, even taking into account that mistake for the Boro goal. Smallbone’s dangerous cross is cut out just before Laurent can finish. Bonham saves one-on-one with Akpom, who was offside. Pearson in the book by this awful referee. Smallbone – ooof! Just past the post from 20 yards. Pearson had done really well to win the ball in the middle and set up the break. He does it again and Campbell’s cross is only just intercepted before Gayle can finish. Another poor tackle is finally punished by Pawson as Forss goes in the book. Laurent has just made two excepetional recovering runs to stop Middlesbrough counter attacks. Hoever is getting in down the right and Stoke are looking for that final ball. Forss and Barlaser are replacing Howson and Archer. Again Lenihan’s elbow is flailing, this time catching Tuanzebe. Again no free-kick. Physios called. Tuanzebe has blood pouring frmo around his eye. He’s getting booed by the home fans. Another poor tackle, this one from McGree. No card. Good recovery from Hoever to stop McGree on the edge of the Stoke box after Laurent lost possession on the half-way line. Hackney is the latest to foul Smallbone. No card from Pawson.