Championship
Middlesbrough1Reading0

Middlesbrough 1-0 Reading: Johnson goal gives Boro unconvincing win

Marvin Johnson
Marvin Johnson's free-kick was one of just two shots on target for Boro

Marvin Johnson scored the only goal of the game as Middlesbrough held on to record an unconvincing win over battling Reading at the Riverside.

Johnson finally broke the deadlock with Boro's first shot on target when his free-kick from the right found its way past everyone and into the bottom corner.

Britt Assombalonga also had the ball in the net shortly after the break when turning in a well-worked free-kick, but his effort was flagged offside.

The result was tough on Reading, with Lucas Joao almost snatching a late equaliser when he met John Swift's corner, only to be denied by one of a string of saves from keeper Darren Randolph.

Boro were hoping to toast their 500th league match at the Riverside with a sixth straight Championship win over the Royals.

But it was the visitors who produced the lion's share of the shots on target, with Yakou Meite having the best chance of an uninspiring first half, when he pounced on an under-hit Marc Bola backpass, only to shoot straight at Randolph.

After Johnson broke the deadlock, he was denied a second by Rafael Cabral after great work from Ryan Shotton, but it was Randolph at the other end, who prevented Boro dropping two points for a third league game running, denying Lucas Boye following a fine solo run and shot.

He then tipped over a free-kick from Swift, who also shot wide after another run from Boye as Jose Gomes' side searched in vain for an equaliser.

The victory extended Middlesbrough's unbeaten run to four matches and lifted them to 13th, while Reading dropped to 17th.

Middlesbrough manager Jonathan Woodgate:

"I thought we deserved to win it. I thought towards the end of the game they piled the pressure on, but we stood strong.

"Like I said in the week, we needed to find that inner steel, that belief and I thought we did that.

"Does that result make a statement? I'd like to think so. We're four unbeaten now, and it's hard to go four unbeaten in this league, but we've done that."

Reading boss Jose Gomes:

"(George) Puscas, (Lucas) Joao and Pele didn't start. Pele and Puscas had travelled for their national team, but that was not the only reason why they did not play.

"The reason was that I did not like the way that they played in the last game.

"They must give everything they have inside them, and it is my obligation as their manager to demand that. If they do not give the maximum they can, in my opinion, then we have very good quality players that can replace them and play."

Line-ups

Middlesbrough

  • 23Randolph
  • 2Dijksteel
  • 6Fry
  • 5Shotton
  • 27BolaSubstituted forAyalaat 68'minutes
  • 17McNair
  • 8Clayton
  • 26WingSubstituted forSavilleat 86'minutes
  • 21JohnsonSubstituted forTavernierat 90+3'minutes
  • 9Assombalonga
  • 11Fletcher

Substitutes

  • 4Ayala
  • 7Tavernier
  • 10Browne
  • 22Saville
  • 34Malley
  • 36Walker
  • 42Pears

Reading

  • 33Cabral Barbosa
  • 6Moore
  • 4MorrisonBooked at 59mins
  • 16McIntyreBooked at 27minsSubstituted forLucas Joãoat 67'minutes
  • 17Yiadom
  • 14Ejaria
  • 10Swift
  • 8RinomhotaSubstituted forPuscasat 67'minutes
  • 27Richards
  • 18BoyéBooked at 44minsSubstituted forLoaderat 84'minutes
  • 19Meite

Substitutes

  • 15Loader
  • 20Neves Virgínia
  • 24Blackett
  • 26Adam
  • 29Tuncará Gomes
  • 31Lucas João
  • 47Puscas
Referee:
Robert Jones
Attendance:
19,414

Match Stats

Home TeamMiddlesbroughAway TeamReading
Possession
Home41%
Away59%
Shots
Home11
Away18
Shots on Target
Home2
Away7
Corners
Home5
Away10
Fouls
Home12
Away17

Live Text

Match ends, Middlesbrough 1, Reading 0.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Middlesbrough 1, Reading 0.

Foul by Liam Moore (Reading).

Britt Assombalonga (Middlesbrough) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Ovie Ejaria (Reading).

Marcus Tavernier (Middlesbrough) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt missed. Yakou Meite (Reading) header from the right side of the six yard box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Omar Richards with a cross.

Substitution

Substitution, Middlesbrough. Marcus Tavernier replaces Marvin Johnson.

Attempt missed. George Puscas (Reading) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Omar Richards with a cross.

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Darren Randolph.

Attempt saved. George Puscas (Reading) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top left corner. Assisted by John Swift with a cross.

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Ashley Fletcher.

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Darren Randolph.

Attempt saved. Lucas João (Reading) header from the left side of the six yard box is saved in the top right corner. Assisted by John Swift with a cross.

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Anfernee Dijksteel.

Attempt blocked. Danny Loader (Reading) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Omar Richards.

Liam Moore (Reading) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Ashley Fletcher (Middlesbrough).

Substitution

Substitution, Middlesbrough. George Saville replaces Lewis Wing.

Attempt missed. George Puscas (Reading) left footed shot from the centre of the box is too high. Assisted by Omar Richards.

Substitution

Substitution, Reading. Danny Loader replaces Lucas Boyé.

Michael Morrison (Reading) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Ashley Fletcher (Middlesbrough).

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Darren Randolph.

Attempt saved. John Swift (Reading) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

John Swift (Reading) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Ashley Fletcher (Middlesbrough).

Corner, Middlesbrough. Conceded by Andy Yiadom.

Foul by Lucas Boyé (Reading).

Marvin Johnson (Middlesbrough) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Daniel Ayala.

Attempt blocked. John Swift (Reading) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Lucas João.

Attempt missed. Patrick McNair (Middlesbrough) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Lewis Wing following a fast break.

Attempt saved. Lucas Boyé (Reading) right footed shot from a difficult angle on the left is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Omar Richards.

Attempt missed. Britt Assombalonga (Middlesbrough) header from the right side of the six yard box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Adam Clayton following a corner.

Corner, Middlesbrough. Conceded by Michael Morrison.

Corner, Middlesbrough. Conceded by Rafael Cabral.

Attempt saved. Marvin Johnson (Middlesbrough) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Ryan Shotton.

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Anfernee Dijksteel.

Attempt blocked. Lucas Boyé (Reading) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Ovie Ejaria.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Swansea7511125716
2Charlton7421116514
3Bristol City7421139414
4Leeds6411103713
5Preston7412137613
6West Brom7340118313
7QPR74121211113
8Birmingham741278-113
9Nottm Forest7331106412
10Fulham7322116511
11Blackburn731377010
12Sheff Wed63038629
13Middlesbrough72328809
14Cardiff7232810-29
15Millwall723259-49
16Luton72141213-17
17Reading721489-17
18Brentford721456-17
19Derby7142710-37
20Hull7133811-36
21Barnsley612349-55
22Wigan7124613-75
23Huddersfield6015511-61
24Stoke7016717-101
View full Championship table

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