Middlesbrough boss Tony Pulis names an unchanged starting XI for Saturday's Championship playoff semi-final first leg against Aston Villa.
Middlesbrough boss Tony Pulis has named an unchanged starting XI for Saturday's Championship playoff semi-final first leg against Aston Villa.
Boro ended the regular season with a 2-2 draw against Ipswich Town last weekend and Pulis stated that he would keep faith with the same players from that game.
This means that striker Patrick Bamford, who has scored 13 goals this season, will begin the game on the bench, and Britt Assombalonga will lead the line at the Riverside Stadium.
As for Villa, John Terry returns to the heart of defence and Jack Grealish, Robert Snodgrass and Lewis Grabban all start.
Albert Adomah has got the nod at wide left against his old club despite Jonathan Kodjia's recent return from injury.
Sam Johnstone has made it to play in goal after his partner gave birth last night, while former playoff winner Mile Jedinak will play in midfield alongside Conor Hourihane.
Middlesbrough: Randolph; Shotton, Ayala, Gibson, Friend; Clayton, Besic, Howson; Traore, Downing, Assombalonga
Subs: Dimi, Cranie, Fabio, Fry, Leadbitter, Harrison, Bamford
Aston Villa: Johnstone; Elmohamady, Chester, Terry, Hutton; Jedinak; Snodgrass, Hourihane, Adomah, Grealish; Grabban
Subs: Bunn, Samba, Whelan, Bjarnason, Onomah, Hogan, Kodjia
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