Report: City 2 - 4 Middlesbrough
23.04.2011 - 15:00
Hull City`s hopes of a top six finish came crashing down after a disastrous home display saw Middlesbrough take full advantage.
Having built a successful season on the basis of a solid defence, it came as a total surprise to see City make error after error in defence that gifted Middlesbrough their goals and, in the process, all but consigning City to another season in the Championship.
Nigel Pearson opted to field the same team that were victorious over Doncaster Rovers last week, and his side started brightly, taking the lead after just three minutes. Dawson`s cross was headed back across goal by Richard Garcia and Jay Simpson prodded the ball from close range into the roof of the net, his sixth goal of the season.
City could not take advantage of a bright start, and quickly found themselves behind as the visitors scored two in the space of three minutes.
Firstly, after a calm chest down, Gerrard played the ball against Emnes when trying to clean. McDonald raced onto the ball and shot powerfully past the advancing Mannone.
Two minutes later, and this time Dawson put the defence in trouble with a poor back pass. Emnes again reacted quickest, prodding past Mannone for his strike parter McDonald to score despite the attentions of Gerrard near the line.
Horrifyingly, City gifted the visitors` a third before the half hour. Dawson slid in to deny McDonald but only achieved in taking the ball away from Mannone and his fellow defender`s; the ball breaking to Arca who side footed into the empty net.
The Tigers tried to respond but were dealt a blow when Rosenior was taken off injured, replaced by Mclean as The Tigers looked for goals.
Yet it was Middlesbrough who added a fourth. McDonald and Emnes had added a further warning when the Australian was first denied by Mannone, before Emnes was twice denied in quick succession from the rebound. As time added on continued, Robson crossed for McDonald who turned Gerrard far too easily and shot past Mannone for his hat-trick.
The on loan Arsenal keeper injured his shoulder during the goal, and was substituted at half-time for Matt Duke.
Matty Fryatt hit the bar shortly after the restart, and City needed that goal to believe in a come-back. A goal did arrive from a powerful long range shot from Gerrard after Koren`s free-kick.
Despite some pressure, it was not enough and Middlesbrough held out solidly, nearly adding a fifth through substitute Leroy Lita who hit the bar in added time.