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Middlesbrough look to snap goal drought


Shoots of recovery at Hull City

Hull City

As Real Madrid boss, Zidane loyal to the style that made him a great player

The key stats ahead of the weekend's La Liga action, including an impressive unbeaten run for Zidane's Real Madrid.

After Real Madrid's Copa del Rey win in Leon -- 7-1 against hosts Cultural Leonesa -- a surprising fact has been highlighted by the Spanish media: Only three outfield players in the squad have not scored yet.

Most defenders, midfielders and, of course, forwards have managed to make the score sheet at least once, with the exceptions of Mateo Kovacic (not exactly a starter or a scorer), Casemiro (who has played only four matches after picking up an injury in September) and Fabio Coentrao (a full-back...

 By Tom Adams

Arsenal without Santi Cazorla is a bad situation given his importance

Neither Sunderland or Arsenal could break the deadlock in last season's meeting.
If Santi Cazorla misses a significant number of games through injury, Arsenal's fine form could well end.

Of all the encouraging features of Arsenal's season to date, which sees them joint top of the Premier League heading into Saturday's game against Sunderland, perhaps the most impressive has been the generous scattering of goals around Arsene Wenger's team. Alexis Sanchez is taking to his new central role with six goals in all competitions. Meanwhile, with a brace in the midweek 2-0 League Cup win against Reading, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain already has five, his highest-ever season tally. With eight...

Middlesbrough look to snap goal drought at home vs. Bournemouth

Adama Traore excelled at Arsenal and has given defensive minded Middlesbrough a bit of life the last few times out.

Middlesbrough must look to play with positivity and verve to build on last weekend's hard-working performance that won them a valuable point in a 0-0 draw at Arsenal.  

Winger Adama Traore was one of the standout men from last weekend, clocking up pacey runs at almost 35km/h. Fans had seen glimpses of the former Barcelona man's speedy skills when he livened up the 2-1 defeat to Tottenham earlier in the season. Ever since, boss Aitor Karanka has been called upon to give Traore a place in his...

Atletico Madrid still on the right path despite recent setback against Sevilla

Diego Simeone's side slumped to defeat in Sevilla but they can take solace in the fact that they won't be the only ones.

For the Atletico Madrid faithful, this past week provided a bit of a reality check if one was even needed. Flying high, top of the league and soaring into the knockout stages of the Champions League, they travelled to Sevilla, a side Diego Simeone had never lost to, in La Liga. It all seemed a bit too good to be true. And so it transpired.

Atletico turned in a disjointed display from start to finish. One Angel Correa chance in the first half aside, there was nothing of note to write home about...

 By Will Kent

Jordon Ibe should not start for Bournemouth against Middlesbrough

Jordon Ibe
Jordon Ibe has been wasteful with his final ball this season, and Bournemouth would be wise to drop him vs. Middlesbrough.

Bournemouth head into their next fixture against Middlesbrough on Saturday in superb form and the Cherries will be as confident as ever about claiming their first away win of the season. A recent 6-1 demolition of Hull City followed by a solid performance against high-flying Tottenham proves Eddie Howe's side is more than suited for the Premier League despite fears they may fall foul to its notorious "second-season syndrome". Bournemouth are, in short, playing outstanding football.

Such impressive...

 By Shaka Hislop

Real Madrid go top in the Power Rankings; Sevilla second, Benfica third

The key stats ahead of the weekend's La Liga action, including an impressive unbeaten run for Zidane's Real Madrid.
After Real Madrid's flurry of goals and wins, they're a perfect choice to top our ranks this week.

Real Madrid's ruthless week of goals and glory makes them the new No. 1 in Shaka Hislop's Power Rankings, with Sevilla leaping up to second place.

1. Real Madrid (+3)

It's been a good week for Zinedine Zidane's side. After four consecutive draws from Sept. 21 to Oct. 2, Los Blancos have racked up four straight wins. In the past seven days, Cristiano Ronaldo & Co. notched a 2-1 home win vs. always-difficult Athletic Bilbao before putting SEVEN goals past Cultural Leonesa in the Copa del Rey....