MICHAEL CARRICK remains confident his Middlesbrough side are capable of carrying a goalscoring threat despite the absence of a natural centre-forward.

Carrick was forced to field Sam Greenwood in the number nine role for yesterday’s 2-1 home defeat to Bristol City, with injured duo Josh Coburn and Emmanuel Latte Lath both unavailable.

While Greenwood had a goal somewhat controversially ruled out for offside, he has still not scored since being switched up front, with Boro’s only goal yesterday coming in fortuitous circumstances when Finn Azaz’s shot was unwittingly deflected in by Sammy Silvera.


Boro have not scored more than one goal in a home game since November, but Carrick remains convinced his side’s goalscoring fortunes will change provided his players continue to perform as they are.

The Boro boss said: “You’ve just got to keep making changes and having belief in the boys, which I’ve got 100 per cent.

“I still feel there’s a lot of good things going into our game to be able to create those chances and get in those positions, and at some point, I know the boys are capable of taking them.

“They just need to keep giving themselves chances to do that, and believing it will turn, which I really do.”

While Carrick kept Greenwood as his central striker for 80 minutes yesterday, only changing things when the Leeds United loanee was replaced by Silvera, he tweaked his midfield in an attempt to get his side back into the game in the second half.

Hayden Hackney was pushed back alongside Dan Barlaser, with Lewis O’Brien shuffled further up the field to play closer to second-half substitute Riley McGree.

Carrick said: “I just thought we just looked like we didn’t quite have that natural instinct to our play and we were second-guessing ourselves a lot. Not individually as such, but as a team.

“That switch gave us a bit more balance and we looked better for it. We finished the first half better and were definitely better in the second half.”