Middlesbrough boss Aitor Karanka keeping his feet firmly on the ground

Middlesbrough manager Aitor Karanka.
Middlesbrough manager Aitor Karanka.
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Middlesbrough head coach Aitor Karanka is refusing to get carried away by the league table after Tuesday night’s 1-0 win against Burnley.

The result took the Riverside Stadium club to the top of the Championship, although with both Brighton and Derby County within two points, there are no guarantees Boro will remain in first for long.

That led to Karanka hailing his team’s spirit after beating Sean Dyche’s side.

“Forget the table, the main thing is the attitude and commitment of the players,” he said, “That we showed we are a good team.

“The game was very different to Saturday. I didn’t like the first half. I said we needed to play higher and press, and we did in the second half.”

Emilio Nsue scored the only goal of the game, but Karanka believes much of the credit for the strike should go to the Guinean’s teammates.

He said: “The players who played – whether it was 90 minutes or Albert who played five – their attitude and commitment for everyone was amazing. It was good because after the game on Saturday in the conditions it was difficult and we could have won that, but the team showed they were ambitious.

“As for Emilio (Nsue), he is the kind of player who you know can play in a lot of positions. He is a good player and I was pleased for him, but he couldn’t have scored if it wasn’t for his team-mates.”