May 15, 2015 11:06:27 UK
Middlesbrough boss Aitor Karanka has warned his players their strong record against Brentford will count for nothing when they clash on Friday night for a playoff final place.
Karanka’s team have defeated Brentford in all three meetings this season, including when grabbing a vital 2-1 first leg victory at Griffin Park last week.
Boro hold the advantage ahead of their meeting at the Riverside courtesy of Fernando Amorebieta’s stoppage time winner and it means Karanka is just 90 minutes from leading his team out at Wembley to jostle for a place in the Premier League.
The Spaniard is determined that his team will not try and sit on their advantage during the second leg.
“We have to go to the pitch with a winning mentality,” the Spaniard said.
Middlesbrough are 1.83 to make it four wins over Brentford this season. The visitors are 4.50 while the draw is 3.90.
Karanka is leaving his players with no uncertainty that their previous meetings with Mark Warburton’s team should be long forgotten when they take to the field tonight, while he is unwilling to consider a trip to Wembley just yet.
We have to go to the pitch with a winning mentality.
“I don’t think we can think about the future when we have a really important game, I prefer to focus on (this game) – after that we can dream,” Karanka said.
“In football anything can happen, it’s great for confidence to beat them three times but (tonight) it will mean nothing.”
Karanka is set to make a late decision on the fitness of on-loan Chelsea forward Patrick Bamford. The Championship Player of the Year is suffering from an on-going ankle problem but did play for 90 minutes in the first leg.
Middlesbrough are 1.90 to earn promotion to the Premier League via the Playoff Final on 25th May.
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