Middlesbrough boss Jonathan Woodgate admits where side must improve after Blackburn defeat

Middlesbrough head coach Jonathan Woodgate had no complaints after his side suffered a 1-0 defeat to Blackburn and says it will take time to implement his ideas.

Saturday, 17th August 2019, 6:51 pm
Updated Sunday, 18th August 2019, 10:21 am
Middlesbrough head coach Jonathan Woodgate.
Middlesbrough head coach Jonathan Woodgate.

A first-half penalty from Danny Graham was the difference at Ewood Park after Boro defender Anfernee Dijksteel tugged the striker’s shirt in the penalty area.

Woodgate had no complaints about the decision but thought his side deserved a point for their second-half efforts.

“I thought it was a poor game from both teams,” said Woodgate. “I thought a draw would have been a fair result, I don't think any team particularly dominated.

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“Football is fine margins, we hit the post late on and they get the penalty so it was one of those games but we need to grind it out and get that result.

“It was a typical Championship game, you can't always play well but we move on and go again on Tuesday.”

When asked about the penalty, Woodgate added: “I think it was penalty, I could see it was from where I was, I'm not going to say I didn't think it was. I will be honest, I thought it was a penalty and the referee got it right, we need to be better in those situations.”

Boro were sloppy in possession, especially in the first half, and it’s an area Woodgate highlighted after the match.

“We need to keep the ball better at times,” added Woodgate. “In training you can see them playing, we need to show the courage in possession, move it quicker from side to side.

“It's about being brave and getting on the ball and if you give it away get back on it, get it again if you make a mistake under intense pressure. First half we didn't do it as well, second half we started to play but we need to do it better.”

Boro were pinned back from the off against Rovers and weren’t able to press their opponents high up the pitch like they did against Brentford last weekend.

“They did quite well and were quite direct, that's when you've got to role your sleeves up and try to defend,” added Woodgate.