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Preview: Middlesbrough vs. Coventry City - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Tuesday's Championship fixture between Middlesbrough and Coventry City, including predictions, team news and lineups.

Middlesbrough welcome Coventry City to the Riverside Stadium on Tuesday night as these two sides meet for the first time since 2012.

Coventry will be looking to put their 4-0 defeat to Blackburn Rovers behind them, while Boro will be hoping to turn draws into wins, after failing to seal three points away to Cardiff City on Saturday.


Match preview

Boro boss Neil Warnock on September 11, 2020© Reuters

Middlesbrough have made a strong start to the campaign, but despite this still sit in the bottom half of the table having faced a tough run of fixtures against many of the promotion-chasing teams.

Neil Warnock's return to Cardiff City was not quite the emotional affair many would have expected had fans been present, but Warnock was able to remind his old club of his ability to grind out a result.

Warnock admitted before the game that he was looking forward to his return, but that playing at an empty ground would help him concentrate on trying to beat a Cardiff side he helped build.

Coming off the back of a draw with league-leaders Reading, and then a win against high-flying Bristol City, Boro are evidently a much-improved side this season but were unable to see out the game on Saturday as Cardiff left it late to salvage a point.

If Boro are to fulfil their potential, however, matchups like this one against Coventry will be the type of fixture they will have to win, and Warnock will hope they can claim their third win of the season against the Sky Blues.

Coventry City manager Mark Robins pictured in September 2020© Reuters

Mark Robins's side will need to turn the tide quickly after only securing a point from their last four games, shipping 10 goals in the process, four of which were handed out by Blackburn Rovers on the weekend.

After starting brightly against Blackburn, they hit the self-destruct button when Michael Rose committed a clumsy challenge in the box, receiving a red card and handing Adam Armstrong the opportunity to score his sixth of the season.

The Sky Blues sit 20th in the table and hover precariously above the relegation zone, and many will expect City to play out most of the season at this end of the table.

Robins will need to pick his team up, and quickly, as they now face Boro, the division's in-form team Reading, and fellow strugglers Nottingham Forest in their next three.

Middlesbrough Championship form: DDWDWD
Middlesbrough form (all competitions): DDWDWD

Coventry City Championship form: WDLLDL
Coventry City form (all competitions): WDLLDL


Team News

Britt Assombalonga celebrates scoring for Middlesbrough with James Tavernier on July 22, 2020© Reuters

Warnock will hope to have Britt Assombalonga at his disposal after he recently returned from injury, and he could partner Chuba Akpom in attack.

Patrick Roberts could also return to the starting lineup as Warnock may prefer to go with a more attacking outlook against struggling opposition.

Recent signing Grant Hall and forward Ashley Fletcher remain sidelined.

From a Coventry City perspective, Mark Robins will be hoping to welcome back striker Tyler Walker and he could replace Jordan Shipley, who suffered a concussion in the match against Blackburn.

Fankaty Dabo is also likely to miss the trip to Middlesbrough after he underwent a small operation that has kept him away from the first-team squad in recent weeks.

Gustavo Hamer could come back into contention after recently concluding his suspension, but this fixture will come too soon for midfielder Julien Dacosta, who is yet to get to full fitness.

Middlesbrough possible starting lineup:
Bettinelli; Dijksteel, Fry, McNair; Howson; Spence, Morsy, Saville, Roberts; Assombalonga; Akpom

Coventry City possible starting lineup:
Marosi; McFadzean, Hyam, Rose; McCallum, Sheaf, Hamer, Giles; Allen, O'Hare; Godden


SM words green background

We say: Middlesbrough 3-0 Coventry City

Warnock's men have shown they can grind out results in recent weeks, but we expect to see a more attacking Boro side this time around, and considering that they face a depleted Coventry side, we cannot see past the Smoggies for this one. We expect Boro to seal their second home win of the season, and inflict further misery on City's poor start.


Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting over 1.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Over 1.5:data

ID:419725:cQx

Who will win the Championship clash between Middlesbrough and Coventry City?

Middlesbrough
0.0%
Draw
0.0%
Coventry City
0.0%
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Blackburn Rovers manager Tony Mowbray pictured on October 17, 2020
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Bournemouth1686229161330
2Norwich CityNorwich158431914528
3Reading158342419527
4Bristol City158341915427
5Brentford157532213926
6Swansea CitySwansea157531710726
7Stoke CityStoke157442218425
8Blackburn RoversBlackburn1573529171224
9Watford146621811724
10Middlesbrough14662169724
11Luton TownLuton156451418-422
12Cardiff CityCardiff155552013720
13Millwall154831312120
14Preston North EndPreston156182023-319
15Barnsley165471721-419
16Huddersfield TownHuddersfield155371822-418
17Queens Park RangersQPR154561722-517
18Birmingham CityBirmingham153751114-316
19Coventry CityCoventry153571525-1014
20Rotherham UnitedRotherham153481420-613
21Nottingham ForestNott'm Forest15348917-813
22Wycombe WanderersWycombe15249721-1410
23Sheffield WednesdaySheff Weds15366813-59
24Derby CountyDerby15159722-158

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