Middlesbrough 1 West Brom 0: Morgan Rogers goal earns deserved win for hosts

Middlesbrough moved to within three points of the Championship play-off places with a deserved 1-0 win over West Brom at the Riverside.

Morgan Rogers scored the only goal as Boro followed their midweek Carabao Cup quarter-final success at Port Vale with a third straight win in all competitions.

Albion remain fifth, but Carlos Corberan’s side have now won just one of their last five league games and were second best throughout on Teesside, despite the fact Boro’s squad have been decimated by injury in recent weeks.

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Michael Carrick was forced to name a team without a recognised striker after Emmanuel Latte Lath was forced off at Port Vale and Josh Coburn was only deemed fit enough for the bench, but their forward line still caused the Baggies problems.

Morgan Rogers stuck the winner. Image: Owen Humphreys/PA WireMorgan Rogers stuck the winner. Image: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire
Morgan Rogers stuck the winner. Image: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire

Isaiah Jones had a glorious early chance when he was played in by Rogers, only to be denied by the feet of Alex Palmer.

Jones broke in behind again after 15 minutes and was fouled by last man Cedric Kipre, but referee James Linington opted for a yellow card rather than a red, to the fury of the home players and fans.

The Baggies almost took full advantage of that stroke of good fortune.

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First Kyle Bartley’s header from a corner clipped the outside of a post and, after Albion kept the move alive, fellow defender Darnell Furlong forced a superb point-blank save from back-up Boro goalkeeper Tom Glover, in for the injured Seny Dieng.

Even without a striker Boro looked threatening throughout the opening period and got themselves in front with a really well-worked goal five minutes before half-time.

Midfielder Dan Barlaser picked out Lukas Engel with a defence-splitting pass and the left-back crossed first time for Rogers, who calmly found the bottom corner.

Boro thought they had got off to the perfect start in the second half when Rav van den Berg had the ball in the net, but the defender was offside and the goal ruled out.

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Albion saw a lot more of the ball in the early stages of the second period, but their probing failed to result in any clear-cut chances.

It was Boro who still looked the more threatening and Rogers was denied a second goal just after the hour mark when Palmer somehow kept out a close-range effort, tipping the ball on to a post.

Rogers was pulling the strings for Boro.

He teed up Sam Greenwood for what looked like a certain goal, but the Leeds loanee somehow fired over from six yards out.

The 21-year-old then set Jones away down the right, with Palmer again coming to Albion’s rescue.