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Boro twice lose lead

Birmingham
3 - 2
Middlesbrough

St Andrew's

Fri 30th Nov 7.45pm

Attendance: 15,322

Referee:

Middlesbrough missed out on a share of the leadership of the Championship despite twice taking the lead at St Andrew's.

Midfielder Grant Leadbitter gave the visitors an early advantage after returning from suspension to lead the side. But former Boro loanee Marlon King equalised from the spot after being brought down inside the area by Andre Bikey on the stroke of half-time.

Free-scoring Scott McDonald regained the lead for Boro following the break with his eighth goal in twelve games, only for substitute Wade Elliott to level again four minutes later.

Then with nine minutes remaining King added his second of the night to ensure maximum points and leave the visitors disappointed following a third defeat in four games.

Big Serbian Nikola Zigic headed wide early on for the home side but it was their opponents going in front on fourteen minutes when Andy Halliday delivered for Leadbitter to head his first goal for the club from around six-yards.

Boro's Justin Hoyte then crossed from the opposite flank and Lukas Jutkiewicz nodded over before King went much closer at the other end when clipping the outside of a post with a low shot.

Back came the visitors and Jutkiewicz again headed over while Emmanuel Ledesma twice forced Jack Butland to save until King equalised from the spot in first-half added time.

Aussie striker McDonald has been in great scoring form for Boro since returning to the side and went close when Butland turned away his first-time lob after Leadbitter delivered over the top.

Both Ledesma and McDonald were wide for the visitors until McDonald took advantage of poor defending to restore their lead with a neat finish from six-yards.

But that advantage lasted only four minutes as substitute Elliott despatched over Jason Steele to equalise from the edge of the box.

And with nine minutes remaining King added his second on the break with a firm drive from inside the area to leave Boro still in third place in the table.

Birmingham City: Butland, Pablo, Davies, Spector, Caddis, Robinson, Mullins, Morrison (Elliott 46), King, Zigic (Lovenkrands 75), Hall (Burke 69)

subs (unused): Doyle, Caldwell, Redmond, Diop

Goals: King (pen 45, 81), Elliott (66)

Middlesbrough: Steele, Hoyte, Bikey, Hines, Halliday, Leadbitter, Bailey, McEachran (Zemmama 83), Ledesma (Smallwood 67), Jutkiewicz (Miller 67), McDonald

subs (unused): Leutwiler, Parnaby, Thomson, Emnes

Goals: Leadbitter (14), McDonald (62)

Ref: East

Att: 15,322

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Writer:Vital Boro
Date:Friday November 30 2012
Time: 9:51PM

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2 Arsenal 14 9 4 1 31 19
3 Liverpool 14 9 3 2 30 17
4 Man City 14 9 3 2 30 15
5 Spurs 14 7 6 1 27 14
6 Man Utd 14 5 6 3 21 3
7 WBA 14 5 5 4 20 3
8 Everton 14 5 5 4 20 1
9 Stoke 14 5 4 5 19 -3
10 AFC Bournemouth 14 5 3 6 18 -3
11 Watford 14 5 3 6 18 -6
12 Southampton 14 4 5 5 17 -2
13 Middlesbrough 14 3 6 5 15 -2
14 Crystal Palace 14 4 2 8 14 -2
15 Burnley 14 4 2 8 14 -11
16 Leicester City 14 3 4 7 13 -7
17 West Ham 14 3 3 8 12 -14
18 Sunderland 14 3 2 9 11 -10
19 Hull City 14 3 2 9 11 -18
20 Swansea 14 2 3 9 9 -15
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