1996–97 Middlesbrough F.C. season

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Middlesbrough
1996–97 season
Chairman England Steve Gibson
Manager England Bryan Robson
Stadium Riverside Stadium
Premier League 19th (relegated)
FA Cup Runners-up
League Cup Runners-up
Top goalscorer League:
Fabrizio Ravanelli (16)
All:
Fabrizio Ravanelli (31)
Highest home attendance 30,215 (vs. Tottenham Hotspur, 19 October)
Lowest home attendance 17,136 (vs. Hereford United, 18 September)
Average home league attendance 28,724[1]

During the 1996–97 English football season, Middlesbrough competed in the Premier League (known as the FA Carling Premiership for sponsorship reasons). Despite reaching the finals of both domestic cup competitions, Middlesbrough were relegated from the Premier League in 19th place (although this came after a points deduction for postponing a fixture against Blackburn Rovers).

Season summary[edit]

The multi-million pound signings of Brazilian midfielder Emerson and Italian striker Fabrizio Ravanelli suggested that Middlesbrough could compete with the very best after finishing 12th the previous season, but ahead lay quite a unique season which ultimately ended in disappointment; though, on the goalscoring front, Middlesbrough's games were undeniably entertaining to watch, as in total, 111 goals were witnessed, the fourth highest total of goals for and against within Premier League clubs' matches. The season though started brightly with a thrilling 3-3 draw against Liverpool with Ravanelli scoring a hat-trick on his debut. The next two home games were impressively won: 4-1 against West Ham United and 4-0 against Coventry City (with Ravanelli and Juninho scoring two goals each in that match). Their season's first away win at Everton saw them rise as high as fourth in the table; however, beginning from their 2-0 home defeat to title challengers Arsenal, they were not to win another match in 12 attempts until Boxing Day, winning the return fixture against the Toffees 4-2.

By Christmas, Middlesbrough were deep in relegation trouble, despite Ravanelli proving himself as one of the league's top goalscorers. Added to this, Middlesbrough were faced with the wrath of the Football Association for postponing a fixture against Blackburn Rovers at short notice. The club's officials insisted that manager Bryan Robson had been unable to field a team due to a severe injury and illness crisis among his players, but this did not prevent the Football Association from docking the club 3 points.

Middlesbrough managed to put together a good run of results and look like decent bets for survival, but the Football Association's refusal to restore Middlesbrough's 3 points counted against them and a 1-1 draw at Leeds United on the final day of the season, when they needed a win, resulted in relegation that would have been avoided (at the expense of Coventry City) if the points had not been deducted.

Middlesbrough also hit the headlines with two brilliant cup runs. As a club who had never won a major trophy or even reached a domestic cup final before, history was made in February when Middlesbrough reached the League Cup final. They drew 1-1 with Leicester City at Wembley in the first match, but lost the replay 1-0 at Hillsborough. Two months later, they took on Chelsea in the FA Cup final, but lost 2-0. Therefore, they became the first team to finish in the last two of all three major tournaments - eliminating Crystal Palace's distinction (attained in 1995) of finishing in the last four of all three major tournaments.

Final league table[edit]

Pos Team Pl W D L F A Pts
1. Manchester United 38 21 12 5 76 44 75
2. Newcastle United 38 19 11 8 73 40 68
3. Arsenal 38 19 11 8 62 32 68
4. Liverpool 38 19 11 8 62 37 68
5. Aston Villa 38 17 10 11 47 34 61
6. Chelsea 38 16 11 11 58 55 59
7. Sheffield Wednesday 38 14 15 9 50 51 57
8. Wimbledon 38 15 11 12 49 46 56
9. Leicester City 38 12 11 15 46 54 47
10. Tottenham Hotspur 38 13 7 18 44 51 46
11. Leeds United 38 11 13 14 28 38 46
12. Derby County 38 11 13 14 45 58 46
13. Blackburn Rovers 38 9 15 14 42 43 42
14. West Ham United 38 10 12 16 39 48 42
15. Everton 38 10 12 16 44 57 42
16. Southampton 38 10 11 17 50 56 41
17. Coventry City 38 9 14 15 38 54 41
18. Sunderland 38 10 10 18 35 53 40
19. Middlesbrough *** 38 10 12 16 51 60 39
20. Nottingham Forest 38 6 16 16 31 59 34

Note: Middlesbrough deducted 3 points for failing to fulfil a fixture.

Key
Qualified for the Champions League
Qualified for the UEFA Cup
Qualified for the Cup Winners' Cup
Relegated to Division One

Results[edit]

Middlesbrough's score comes first[2]

Legend[edit]

Win Draw Loss

FA Premier League[edit]

Date Opponent Venue Result Attendance Scorers
17 August 1996 Liverpool H 3-3 30,039 Ravanelli (3, 1 pen)
21 August 1996 Chelsea A 0-1 28,272
24 August 1996 Nottingham Forest A 1-1 24,705 Juninho
4 September 1996 West Ham United H 4-1 30,060 Emerson, Mustoe, Ravanelli, Stamp
7 September 1996 Coventry City H 4-0 29,811 Ravanelli (2), Juninho (2)
14 September 1996 Everton A 2-1 39,250 Barmby, Juninho
21 September 1996 Arsenal H 0-2 29,629
28 September 1996 Southampton A 0-4 15,230
14 October 1996 Sunderland A 2-2 20,936 Emerson, Ravanelli
19 October 1996 Tottenham Hotspur H 0-3 30,215
26 October 1996 Wimbledon H 0-0 29,758
3 November 1996 Newcastle United A 1-3 36,577 Beck
17 November 1996 Derby County A 1-2 17,350 Ravanelli
23 November 1996 Manchester United H 2-2 30,063 Ravanelli, Hignett (pen)
30 November 1996 Aston Villa A 0-1 39,053
3 December 1996 Leicester City H 0-2 29,709
7 December 1996 Leeds United H 0-0 30,018
14 December 1996 Liverpool A 1-5 39,491 Fjørtoft
26 December 1996 Everton H 4-2 29,673 Hignett, Blackmore, Juninho (2)
28 December 1996 Coventry City A 0-3 20,617
1 January 1997 Arsenal A 0-2 37,573
11 January 1997 Southampton H 0-1 29,509
18 January 1997 Sheffield Wednesday H 4-2 29,485 Ravanelli (pen), Festa, Emerson (pen), Juninho
1 February 1997 Wimbledon A 1-1 15,046 Mustoe
22 February 1997 Newcastle United H 0-1 30,063
1 March 1997 Sheffield Wednesday A 1-3 28,206 Mustoe
5 March 1997 Derby County H 6-1 29,739 Kinder, Ravanelli (3), Hignett, Beck
15 March 1997 Leicester City A 3-1 20,561 Blackmor], Juninho, Beck
19 March 1997 Blackburn Rovers H 2-1 29,891 Juninho, Ravanelli
22 March 1997 Chelsea H 1-0 29,811 Juninho
24 March 1997 Nottingham Forest H 1-1 29,888 Beck
9 April 1997 West Ham United A 0-0 23,988
19 April 1997 Sunderland H 0-1 30,106
24 April 1997 Tottenham Hotspur A 0-1 29,947
3 May 1997 Aston Villa H 3-2 30,074 Ravanelli (2, 1 pen), Beck
5 May 1997 Manchester United A 3-3 54,489 Juninho, Emerson, Hignett
8 May 1997 Blackburn Rovers A 0-0 27,411
11 May 1997 Leeds United A 1-1 38,567 Juninho

FA Cup[edit]

Main article: 1996–97 FA Cup
Round Date Opponent Venue Result Attendance Goalscorers
R3 4 January 1997 Chester City H 6-0 18,684 Ravanelli (2), Hignett, Cox, Beck, Stamp
R4 25 January 1997 Hednesford Town A 3-2 27,511 Lambert (own goal), Fjørtoft, Ravanelli
R5 15 February 1997 Manchester City A 1-0 30,462 Juninho
QF 8 March 1997 Derby County A 2-0 17,567 Juninho, Ravanelli
SF 13 April 1997 Chesterfield N 3-3 49,640 Ravanelli, Hignett (pen), Festa
SFR 22 April 1997 Chesterfield N 3-0 30,339 Beck, Ravanelli, Emerson
F 17 May 1997 Chelsea N 0-2 79,160

League Cup[edit]

Round Date Opponent Venue Result Attendance Goalscorers
R2 first leg 18 September 1996 Hereford United H 7-0 17,136 Ravanelli (4, 1 pen), Emerson, Branco, Fleming
R2 second leg 24 September 1996 Hereford United A 3-0 (won 10-0 on agg) 4,522 Beck, Stamp, Branco
R3 23 October 1996 Huddersfield Town H 5-1 26,615 Juninho, Emerson, Ravanelli (2), Beck
R4 27 November 1996 Newcastle United H 3-1 29,831 Whyte, Beck, Ravanelli
QF 8 January 1997 Liverpool H 2-1 28,670 Hignett, Vickers
SF first leg 26 February 1997 Stockport County A 2-0 11,778 Beck, Ravanelli
SF second leg 12 March 1997 Stockport County H 0-1 (won 2-1 on agg) 29,633
F 6 April 1997 Leicester City N 1-1 (a.e.t.) 76,757 Ravanelli
FR 16 April 1997 Leicester City N 0-1 (a.e.t.) 39,428

First-team squad[edit]

Squad at end of season[3]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
2 England DF Neil Cox
3 Scotland DF Derek Whyte
4 England DF Steve Vickers
5 England DF Nigel Pearson
6 Brazil MF Emerson
7 Slovakia DF Vladimír Kinder
8 England MF Robbie Mustoe
9 Denmark FW Mikkel Beck
10 Brazil MF Juninho
11 Italy FW Fabrizio Ravanelli
12 Republic of Ireland MF Alan Moore
13 England GK Gary Walsh
14 Republic of Ireland DF Curtis Fleming[4]
15 England DF Phil Whelan
No. Position Player
16 England MF Bryan Robson (player-manager)
17 Wales DF Clayton Blackmore
18 Italy DF Gianluca Festa
19 Australia GK Mark Schwarzer
20 England MF Phil Stamp
21 England MF Craig Hignett
22 England DF Craig Liddle
24 England FW Chris Freestone
25 England GK Ben Roberts
26 Republic of Ireland DF Chris Morris[5]
30 Brazil DF Branco
32 England FW Andy Campbell
33 England MF Mark Summerbell

Left club during season[edit]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
1 England GK Alan Miller (to West Bromwich Albion)
7 England MF Nick Barmby (to Everton)
18 Republic of Ireland MF Graham Kavanagh (to Stoke City)
No. Position Player
19 Scotland FW John Hendrie (to Barnsley)
23 Norway FW Jan-Åge Fjørtoft (to Sheffield United)
29 England MF Jamie Pollock (to Bolton Wanderers)

Reserve squad[edit]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
27 England DF Michael Barron
28 England DF Viv Anderson
31 England DF Alan White
No. Position Player
34 Republic of Ireland MF Keith O'Halloran
35 England MF Anthony Ormerod

Statistics[edit]

Top scorers[edit]

Premiership[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ 718110/25
  2. ^ "Middlesbrough 1996-1997 Home - statto.com". Archived from the original on 2012-03-03. Retrieved 2012-02-26. 
  3. ^ http://www.footballsquads.co.uk/eng/1996-1997/faprem/middles.htm
  4. ^ Fleming was born in Manchester, England, but was raised in Dublin, the Republic of Ireland.
  5. ^ Morris was born in Newquay, England, but also qualified to represent the Republic of Ireland internationally through his mother.