Southgate issues Boro warning

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Middlesbrough manager Gareth Southgate saw his side ease to a 2-0 win over Doncaster to go top of the table and clock up a record-equalling defensive start of the season.

Some late wobbles aside, the Boro defence again looked rock solid en route to a fourth clean sheet for the first time since 1994/95, while Tuncay and Leroy Lita did the damage at the other end.

But the Boro boss was far from pleased and warned that his team must not let their early high standards drop, saying: "We have set high standards in the opening few games and if we want to get back up where we want to be as a club then we must stick to them."

He added: "We had long spells of possession and maybe did not make that count as much as it should. And we maybe conceded possession too cheaply in important areas, especially later on and that made the game more difficult for ourselves than it should have been and we were hanging on a bit at the end when we should have been comfortable.

"We still need to tighten up, stay focussed and work hard. That said, it is nice to be sat on the top with 10 points and be talking about the need to improve."

Rovers boss Sean O'Driscoll agreed that Boro had left the back door open and insisted that his side could have got something from the game.

"Even at two down we were still in it," he said. "We controlled the game for long spells, had a lot of possession in their half and we had chances.

"But if you lose your discipline and organisation in this division then you get punished and we did that for both their goals.

"It is hard to keep your shape when both your full backs keep on going forward and you have players like Adam Johnson and Tuncay running at you.

"We knew we would be up against it. Our reports were that their two centre-backs were immovable objects and we saw that. It is very hard to break through that."

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Doncaster Rovers
Gareth Southgate
Leroy Lita
Adam Johnson

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