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Boro chase more festive joy

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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Writer:Vital Boro
Date:Friday December 28 2012
Time: 5:02PM

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# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Hull City 29 17 5 7 56 26
2 Middlesbrough 28 17 5 6 56 23
3 Burnley 30 15 10 5 55 22
4 Brighton 29 14 11 4 53 9
5 Derby County 30 13 12 5 51 14
6 Sheff Wed 30 13 11 6 50 12
7 Ipswich 30 13 9 8 48 2
8 Birmingham 30 13 8 9 47 8
9 Cardiff 30 11 12 7 45 5
10 Forest 30 10 12 8 42 6
11 Wolves 30 10 10 10 40 -1
12 Brentford 30 11 7 12 40 -2
13 Q.P.R. 30 9 12 9 39 1
14 Preston 30 9 12 9 39 -1
15 Reading 30 9 9 12 36 0
16 Leeds Utd 30 8 12 10 36 -5
17 Huddersfield 30 8 8 14 32 -4
18 Blackburn 28 6 13 9 31 0
19 Fulham 29 6 11 12 29 -5
20 Bristol City 30 6 10 14 28 -22
21 MK Dons 29 7 6 16 27 -18
22 Rotherham 30 7 4 19 25 -19
23 Bolton 30 4 12 14 24 -21
24 Charlton 30 5 9 16 24 -30
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