Bolton Wanderers 2 Middlesbrough 2: Karanka far from impressed as Boro let it slip

Middlesbrough manager Aitor Karanka admitted his side did not deserve the three points, despite being moments away from victory at Bolton Wanderers

Aitor Karanka

Mustapha Carayol and Curtis Main struck first-half goals which looked set to have earned the visitors a welcome three points at the Reebok Stadium. But substitute David Ngog scored a last-gasp equaliser after Alex Baptiste had cut the deficit to one before the break.

The result ended a three-game winning streak for Boro and Karanka was not happy with his team.

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“I think that today is the worst we have played since I came to the club,” said Karanka. “I was disappointed that we could not hold on for the win, but I think that we didn’t deserve to go 2-0 up and I’m sure that we can play much better than we did do today.

“We had five or six players who didn’t play the last game, so I thought because of this my team could be a lot better than we were. I made the changes because I believe that they are the best 11 that I have at the club.

“But today we had no possession of the ball and we weren’t comfortable on the pitch. We need to have the possession of the ball to keep them away from the counter-attacks.

“We played thinking that we were better than we are and we needed to play like we did in the previous three games.”

Bolton manager Dougie Freedman backed club captain Zat Knight despite him being at fault for both Boro’s goals.

Freedman felt that Knight recovered well and that his side could have snatched victory.

“Once again we shot ourselves in the foot and gave them a 2-0 lead,” said Freedman.

“We then showed great character and spirit and I believe that we did enough to eventually win the game in the end.

“Zat Knight will take it on the chin and after the mistakes there wasn’t much else he did wrong in the game. He stood up and did well. But I’m not going to sit here and defend Zat because he’s a big guy and he can do that himself. The fans are entitled to their opinion because they pay good money.”

Bolton Wanderers: Lonergan, Baptiste, Knight, Mills, Ream, Spearing, Pratley (Moritz 65), Lee (Ngog 78), Mark Davies, Eagles, Mason (Beckford 65). Unused substitutes: Vela, White, Lee-Barrett, Medo.

Middlesbrough: Given, Rhys Williams, Ayala, Gibson, Friend, Adomah (Emnes 89), Leadbitter, Butterfield (Ledesma 79), Smallwood, Carayol (Jutkiewicz 67), Main. Unused substitutes: Richardson, Varga, Konstantopoulos, Hines.

Referee: C Sarginson (Staffordshire).