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Match Preview – Middlesbrough FC vs Preston North End: Wilder seeks his first win as Boro manager



Credit: boroofficial instagram

Middlesbrough welcome 16th place Preston North End to the Riverside on Tuesday evening knowing that a win could see them move into the top half of the Championship table. 

Following the 1-1 home draw with Millwall in Chris Wilder’s first game as manager, fans will be hoping Boro build on that performance to claim all 3 points against Preston tomorrow night. 

The visitors know a win could take them above the club from Teeside. 

Boro are winless their last 4 games (all-comps) as the gap between them and QPR in the play-off places has grown to six points.

However, Wilder was full of praise for his sides efforts on Saturday afternoon, acknowledging their hard-work as the former Sheffield United boss implemented a new style of play. 

Despite having 3 games in the space of a week which will be tough on the squad fitness, Middlesbrough have a great opportunity to gain some momentum going into the Christmas period and could fight their way up the table. 

The home side have taken 10 points from an available 15 in their last five games at the Riverside and are welcoming a visiting team with a questionable record on the road.

Credit: boroofficial instagram – Wilder’s first game at the Riverside

Despite, beating promotion hopefully Bournemouth a few weeks back, Preston have only one one in their last five away games.

Frankie McAvoy’s side have been in woeful form of late, winning just once in their previous ten matches in the Championship. The teams are just two places apart at the bottom of the league and will be hoping to transform their seasons, starting with a victory in the game tomorrow. It promises to be a feisty one. 

PNE are heading into their match on Teeside following a narrow defeat to strugglers Cardiff at the Deepdale Stadium. Having taken the lead in the 2nd minute courtesy of striker Sean Maguire, they were unable to hold out as The Bluebirds mounted a second half comeback with both goals coming within 20 minutes of the restart. 

Back-to-back setbacks against lesser teams, Cardiff and Nottingham Forest have left North End at the foot of the table in 16th spot. Despite losing just two of their nine home games this season, McAvoy’s squad have a terrible away record, collecting just six points in the same amount of fixtures. 

It’s hard to chose a winner between the two sides as their recent head-to-head record shows two victories each in their previous five meetings.

Boro eased to a 2-0 victory in this fixture last season and will be hoping for a similar result heading into Tuesday evening,

Team News

With his side hit by fatigue in the closing stages of their last game, Wilder may consider making changes to his starting eleven ahead of the important clash with Preston on Tuesday evening. 

Neil Taylor could feature at wing-back after his free transfer last week, while Onel Hernandez is also available and could make the starting eleven.

Dael Fry and Marcus Browne are still out injured and are not expected to be match-fit until 2022.

Duncan Watmore has been in poor form this season and may miss out. Ache Ikpeazu or Josh Coburn are both in contention to replace Watmore.

Preston may recall both Josh Earl and Daniel Johnson to their starting XI as players suffer with tiredness. Liam Linsday hasn’t featured since the start of October but will be hopeful to get some minutes at the Riverside. 

Ched Evans (calf) and Matthew Olosunda (Hamstring) are doubtful as the pair are yet to string together a run of games this campaign.

On-loan Cardiff City Winger Josh Murphy is out for a few weeks with an ankle injury as attacking midfielder Isaiah Brown is also set to miss out. Ex Sunderland Striker Conor Wickham is still unavailable following his hamstring injury sustained in the Carabao Cup fixture with Cheltenham Town.

With the list of names missing for the team from the North-West it looks to be a tough midweek fixture but as both sides have struggled for goals, this one is hard to call.


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Potential Line-ups

BORO:                                                                                                          PNE:












Pre-Match thoughts? Will Wilder claim his first win as Middlesbrough manager? Where can Boro finish this season?

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Beth Mead left out of England Women’s World Cup squad



Euro 2022 top goal scorer Beth Mead is not included in England Women’s World Cup squad.

The 27-year-old Arsenal forward has not played since November having been a major doubt for the competition.

This comes after an anterior cruciate ligament injury which she still has not fully recovered from.

England head coach Sarina Wiegman has named the 23-player squad for this summer’s tournament in Australia and New Zealand.

Tottenham striker Beth England, who has not been involved since last summer’s Euro competition is included.

Chelsea centre-back Millie Bright, who has been out with a knee injury since March, has made the 23-player squad.

Sarina Wiegman confirmed Bright would captain the team in the absence of injured defender Leah Williamson.

Wiegman went on to say she never thought Beth Mead would be fit in time for the tournament, saying: “She’s so positive and going well, but the timescale she had we would have taken so many risks to get to the World Cup

“I’m not willing to take that risk to push her too much and she gets injured again. We need to take care of players.”

England play Haiti in their opening match on 22nd July in Australia where they look to build on their success following Euro 2022.

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Karl Darlow set for permanent move away from Newcastle United



After a successful loan spell to Hull City, Karl Darlow is poised for a permanent move away from St. James’.

Hull City manager Liam Rosenior has made it clear he wants to keep a hold of Newcastle United goalkeeper Karl Darlow.

Signing for the club in 2014 from Nottingham Forest, he went onto make 100 appearances for the magpies with his debut coming in 2015 under Steve McLaren. His best stint for the club was during the 2020/21 season making 25 appearances. He then saw himself fall out of favour when Martin Dubravka signed for the club and now with Nick Pope cementing the position as his own, Darlow saw himself drop down the pecking order.

Signing for Hull City on loan in January, he has since made 11 appearances keeping 5 clean sheets in the process, with three coming in the last four matches against good opposition in Millwall, Blackburn, and Watford.

“He’s been magnificent since he’s come in,” Rosenior said after Darlow’s clean sheet against Watford on Saturday. “I think he’s massively enjoying working here, I think he’s enjoying the club, he’s settled in with the players really really well.

“What I really like about Karl was as soon as he signed he had his young family come and join him and settle down in the area, and I think that’s helped him. Hopefully we’ll have discussions in the summer about his long-term future.”

Rosenior revealed earlier in the week his intention to keep Darlow at the club, and Hull are believed to be in discussions with Newcastle over making the goalkeeper’s stay at the MKM Stadium permanent – as his loan agreement is believed to have as an option.

Contracted at St. James’ until 2025, it seems as though a permanent move to Hull City would be the best thing for Darlow with his position at Newcastle United seemingly gone.


Where do you think Karl Darlow will be next season – let us know on our social media and follow us for latest North East Updates –

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Our Premier League Team of the Season 2022/2023



With the season drawing to a close, we have put together our Premier League Team of the Season.

In what has been a season that is set to go right down to the very end, it has been yet another spectacular campaign of football with players breaking out on to the scene and some very memorable moments.

Lets have a look at who we have decided is in the starting 11 for the Team of the Season.

The starting 11 was chosen in terms of not only who we think has been the best in those positions, but also who has either exceeded expectations but also who has done exactly what was expected of them in their position.

Nick Pope, Kieran Trippier and Sven Botman mean Newcastle United make up 60% of the defence in this team, but for good reason. This season, the magpies are currently bosting the best defence in the league conceding the least amount of goals, 24 to be precise.

William Saliba and Oleksandr Zinchenko make up the remaining two spots in the defence, the Arsenal duo have had a great campaign with the gunners still sat top of the league and looking to get their first league title in nearly 20 years.

A midfield three of Casemiro, Keving De Bruyne, and Martin Odegaard, three players so vital to their clubs and all having a wonderful season, it’s hard to put anyone else in there over them.

Up top, we have a front three of Bukayo Saka, Marcus Rashford, and Erling Haaland as all three players have had goals, influence, and star power in their clubs to push them to the very top this season.

The substitutes include top of the league goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale, which seems harsh to leave him out of the starting squad but up against Nick Pope, either could go in and it would be a good decision, but Ramsdale just makes it onto our bench.

Ben Mee has had a cracking season with Brentford seeing them looking set to enjoy a top half finish with him at the heart of defence. Luke Shaw gets on the bench after a solid season under Ten Hag at United.

Bruno Guimaraes, Gabriel Martinelli, and Harry Kane are the remaining players on the bench, all have had a fantastic season but unfortunately only make the bench for this squad.

Roberto De Zerbi is the manager of the season for us, having joined Brighton in September following Graham Potter’s departure, many thought this spelt the end of Brighton’s good fortunes in the Premier League, but not only did De Zerbi do better than expected of him, he has taken a very good Brighton and Hove Albion team and improved them navigating them to a top half finish.

Manchester City only see two players in this team, although they have had a great season, the rotation of the team sees a great team instead of individual players, which is a testament to how Pep Guardiola wants his teams to be.


Premier League 22/23 Team of the Season:

Nick Pope (GK), Kieran Trippier, William Saliba, Sven Botman, Oleksandr Zinchenko, Casemiro, Kevin De Bruyne, Martin Odegaard, Bukayo Saka, Marcus Rashford, Erling Haaland.


Aaron Ramsdale (GK), Ben Mee, Luke Shaw, Bruno Guimaraes, Alexis Mac Allister, Gabriel Martinelli, Harry Kane

Manager: Roberto De Zerbi (Brighton)


Who would you put in your Premier League Team of the Season – Let us know on our social media and follow us for latest North East Updates –


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