AUTHOR: Star Sports Content

STAR PREVIEW: Middlesbrough v Stoke City

Middlesbrough and Stoke had hopes to be aiming for the Championship title at the beginning of the season but tonight they meet in what is a relegation six pointer based on both teams’ position in the table.

Only three teams have a worse goal difference than Middlesbrough and they’ve scored the fewest goals of any side in the Championship, but there have been some improvements recently, with just two defeats in their last six – one against Leeds and the other at Swansea when they were level after an hour before Marcus Browne and Paddy McNair were sent off in the final 30 minutes.

Middlesbrough v Stoke City
Championship
19:45 Sky Sports Football / Sky Sports Ultra HD

HEAD TO HEAD RECORD
(Maximum 10 matches, Since 2010)
APR 2019 CHAMPIONSHIP Middlesbrough 1-0 Stoke
NOV 2018 CHAMPIONSHIP Stoke 0-0 Middlesbrough
MAR 2017 PREMIER LEAGUE Stoke 2-0 Middlesbrough
AUG 2016 PREMIER LEAGUE Middlesbrough 1-1 Stoke

Stoke’s decision to appoint Michael O’Neill might well be the difference between them staying up or being relegated. In their first seven games they’ve earned more points (10) than their opening 15 games of the season (8) and in that period their 11 goals is nearly half the 24 they’ve scored all season.

They’ve still got a problem going forward, however – there were no shots on target in their 0-0 draw with Reading last week and Sam Vokes and Lee Gregory have scored just once each from open play, with Sam Clucas the top scorer for the club from midfield.

This could be another low scoring encounter – 9 of Middlesbrough’s eleven home games have seen under 2.5 goals and seven of those games had just the one goal too. Both sides are improving on face value, so it would be no surprise if they cancelled each other out this evening. A dutch of the no goalscorer and the 1-0 home win, which has taken place four times this season, could be the way to go.

RECOMMENDED BETS (scale of 1-100 points)

BACK No Goalscorer 1 pt at 7/1 with
BACK Middlesbrough 1-0 Stoke City 1 pt at 13/2 with


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