Middlesbrough 0-1 Watford

16 Oct

Jose Holebas


Both of Jose Holebas’ goals this season have come from outside the box – no other defender has scored from outside the area

Jose Holebas’ fine strike settled a poor game as Watford’s victory left Middlesbrough still looking for a first home of the Premier League season.

The Greece defender drove past Victor Valdes from 20 yards to provide some inspiration for a forgettable match generally devoid of quality.

Boro – who remain above the bottom three on goal difference only – failed to properly test Hornets goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes at all during the game.

The result moves Watford up to ninth.

Middlesbrough have now lost three home games in a row for the first time in seven years – and have not won in the top flight at the Riverside since April 2009.

No home comforts for Boro

Middlesbrough won promotion to the Premier League last season on the back of a formidable defence and strong home record – which they have so far failed to bring to the top flight.

Aitor Karanka’s side conceded just 31 times last season – eight at home – but have already let in six at the Riverside in a run which has seen them take just a point in front of their own fans.

But while they still looked untroubled by Watford for large periods, it will be their lack of attacking threat that should most concern Karanka.

They managed just three tame efforts on target, Adam Forshaw wasting their best opening with little more than a backpass from the edge of the area.

Striker Alvaro Negredo – who scored 23 times in his first 33 appearances for Manchester City, and then none in his final 16 – now has just a goal on the opening day to his name in Boro colours and never looked like adding to it.

And with trips to Arsenal, Manchester City and Leicester in their next three away games, Boro must find goals from somewhere if they are to compete.

More to follow.

Live Text

Match ends, Middlesbrough 0, Watford 1.

Second Half ends, Middlesbrough 0, Watford 1.

Foul by George Friend (Middlesbrough).

Roberto Pereyra (Watford) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Hand ball by Etienne Capoue (Watford).

Corner, Watford. Conceded by Calum Chambers.

Gastón Ramírez (Middlesbrough) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by José Holebas (Watford).

Foul by Stewart Downing (Middlesbrough).

José Holebas (Watford) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Substitution, Watford. Ben Watson replaces Isaac Success.

Substitution, Middlesbrough. Jordan Rhodes replaces Marten de Roon.

Corner, Middlesbrough. Conceded by Juan Zuñiga.

Substitution, Watford. Christian Kabasele replaces Miguel Britos because of an injury.

Foul by Marten de Roon (Middlesbrough).

Isaac Success (Watford) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match Miguel Britos (Watford) because of an injury.

Attempt missed. Marten de Roon (Middlesbrough) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Stewart Downing with a cross following a corner.

Corner, Middlesbrough. Conceded by Juan Zuñiga.

Attempt saved. Isaac Success (Watford) right footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Miguel Britos.

Marten de Roon (Middlesbrough) is shown the yellow card.

Adam Forshaw (Middlesbrough) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Juan Zuñiga (Watford).

Substitution, Watford. Juan Zuñiga replaces Nordin Amrabat.

Attempt missed. Etienne Capoue (Watford) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Sebastian Prödl following a corner.

Corner, Watford. Conceded by Calum Chambers.

Substitution, Middlesbrough. Daniel Ayala replaces Antonio Barragán.

Substitution, Middlesbrough. Adama Traoré replaces Cristhian Stuani.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match José Holebas (Watford) because of an injury.

Attempt saved. Álvaro Negredo (Middlesbrough) header from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by George Friend with a cross.

Corner, Middlesbrough. Conceded by Nordin Amrabat.

Foul by Ben Gibson (Middlesbrough).

Etienne Capoue (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Nordin Amrabat (Watford) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

George Friend (Middlesbrough) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Nordin Amrabat (Watford).

Foul by Stewart Downing (Middlesbrough).

Nordin Amrabat (Watford) wins a free kick on the right wing.

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