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'If It's Football, It's Vital'

Boro chase more festive joy

Middlesbrough's second home game in a week has mid-table Blackpool providing their latest opposition at the Riverside.

Manager Tony Mowbray will be expecting them to build upon their narrow victory over Blackburn Rovers on Boxing Day - a result that helped fuel the departure of visiting boss Henning Berg after only 57 days in charge at Ewood Park.

He must first though carry out checks on defender Andre Bikey (hamstring) and midfielder Josh McEachran (ankle), together with Seb Hines (hamstring), Stuart Parnaby (medial ligament) and Faris Haroun (hamstring).

Otherwise, recovering trio Julio Arca, Mustapha Carayol and Curtis Main remain sidelined for the third-placed home side.

"Blackpool gave us the biggest beating of the season so far and they played very well on the night, I have to say," Mowbray admitted to Boro's official website. "We owe ourselves to show that we're better than we were on that day. We'll try to put them on the back foot but be very mindful of the quality they have and the talent in certain areas of the pitch."

Blackpool could give starts to Nathan Delfouneso or Nouha Dicko while Craig Cathcart (sickness) may continue with Neal Eardley on the bench.

However, former Boro loanee Isaiah Osbourne is suspended after receiving his fifth booking of the season during their 1-1 draw at Huddersfield Town on Boxing Day.

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The Journalist

Writer: Vital Boro Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday December 28 2012

Time: 5:02PM

 

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