Middlesbrough match preview

FA Cup fifth round replay
Middlesbrough v West Ham United
Riverside Stadium
Wednesday 25 February
Referee: Steve Bennett


• West Ham United travel to the north-east for the fifth time this season to take on Gareth Southgate's Middlesbrough in tonight's FA Cup fifth-round replay.

• The winners will meet Everton in the FA Cup sixth round on Sunday 8 March, with the match getting under way at 4pm. Middlesbrough are bidding to reach that stage for the fourth consecutive season while West Ham are aiming for only their second last-eight berth in eight campaigns.

• West Ham United have taken more than 3,000 fans to the Riverside with the club laying on up to 30 free coaches for supporters.

• The first meeting of the clubs on Saturday 14 February finished as a 1-1 draw. Stewart Downing put the visitors in front in the 22nd minute before Herita Ilunga headed in an 83rd-minute equaliser.

• The club have won through to the last-16 for the first time since the 2005/06 season, when they went all the way to the final before losing to Liverpool on penalties following a 3-3 draw at Cardiff's Millennium Stadium.

• The Hammers knocked out Barnsley 3-0 at home in the third round with goals from Herita Ilunga - his first for the club - a Mark Noble penalty and Carlton Cole. West Ham then won 2-0 at Hartlepool United in the fourth round, with the goals coming courtesy of Valon Behrami and another Noble penalty.

• The fixture is a rematch of the 2005/06 FA Cup semi-final between the two sides at Villa Park. That day, 23 April 2006, Marlon Harewood's 78th-minute goal secured a 1-0 win for Alan Pardew's West Ham United.

• West Ham will have no one on view who played in that match. James Collins, Dean Ashton and Daniel Gabbidon, who all started the semi-final, are working their way back to fitness. For Middlesbrough, former England defender Southgate is now the man in charge at the Riverside Stadium.

• Goalkeeper Brad Jones - who replaced the injured Mark Schwarzer midway through the semi-final - defenders Andrew Taylor and Chris Riggott and midfielder Stewart Downing all started at Villa Park and are still with the club, although Riggott is sidelined by injury. Midfielder Matthew Bates, an unused substitute in April 2006, is also still a member of the Boro squad.

• The tie is the fourth time West Ham United have been drawn to face Middlesbrough in the FA Cup. Aside from the 2006 semi-final, West Ham overcame Boro 2-1 in a second round replay in February 1912 with goals from Herbert Ashton and Fred Harrison.

• Middlesbrough gained their revenge by securing a 2-1 third round victory at Ayresome Park on 3 January 1970. West Ham's goal that day was scored by Alan Stephenson.

• Gianfranco Zola and Middlesbrough boss Southgate faced one another as players in the 2000 FA Cup final. Zola's Chelsea beat Southgate's Aston Villa 2-0 in the last final to be contested at the old Wembley Stadium.


• Wednesday's referee is Steve Bennett

Last time out

Saturday 21 February 2009
Middlesbrough 0-0 Wigan Athletic
Middlesbrough: Jones, Hoyte, Wheater, Huth, Pogatetz, O'Neil, Digard (Walker 23), Arca (Aliadiere 52), Adam Johnson (Tuncay 62), Downing, Alves
Subs not used: Turnbull, Emnes, Bates, McMahon
Booked: O'Neil, Alves

Saturday 21 February 2009
Bolton Wanderers 2-1 West Ham United
West Ham United: Green, Spector (Sears 85), Collins (Tomkins 16), Upson, Ilunga, Behrami, Parker, Noble, Collison (Savio 62), Cole, Di Michele
Subs not used: Lastuvka, Lopez, Kovac, Tristan
Booked: Upson, Noble
Goal: Parker 66

West Ham United

• West Ham United go into Wednesday's match having lost just two of their last eleven matches in all competitions.

• West Ham have won the FA Cup three times - in 1964, 1975 and 1980 - and been runners-up on two occasions - in 1923 and 2006.

• Midfielder Scott Parker was named E.ON Player of the Round following his man-of-the-match performance in West Ham United's FA Cup fourth round win at Hartlepool United.

• Lucas Neill is available to face Boro after missing the trip to Bolton Wanderers following a one-match ban. Mark Noble can play if selected but will Sunday's league visit of Manchester City because of his own one-match suspension.

• Valon Behrami is one yellow card away from a one-match suspension - although only needs to avoid a caution tonight before the threat is lifted.


• Middlesbrough are on their worst Premier League run of 14 games without a victory. However, Boro have beaten non-league Barrow (2-1 with both goals from Afonso Alves) and Championship leaders Wolverhampton Wanderers (2-1 with goals from Alves and Marvin Emnes) to reach the FA Cup fifth round.

• Middlesbrough have never won the FA Cup. However, they were runners-up in 1997, when Gianfranco Zola and Steve Clarke were part of the Chelsea side that beat them 2-0 at Wembley Stadium.

Team news

• January transfer window signing Savio is pushing for his first start in a West Ham United shirt.

• Czech Republic international Radoslav Kovac, 29, who has arrived at the Boleyn Ground from Russian side Spartak Moscow on loan until the end of the season with a view to a permanent move, could make his West Ham debut.

• Dean Ashton (ankle), James Collins (hamstring), Luis Boa Morte (groin), Danny Gabbidon (stomach) and Kieron Dyer (calf) are not under consideration.

• Ashton underwent successful ankle surgery on his left ankle earlier this month to aid his rehab while Gabbidon continues to make progress on his long-term problems related to an abdominal injury. Both are aiming to be fit before the end of the season - although may not play any part this campaign.

• Dyer is thought to be a fortnight away from a possible training return while Boa Morte and Collins could be back before the end of March.

• Academy product Bondz 'Gala, 19, has travelled with the squad but winger Junior Stanislas was left behind as he is cup-tied.

• England Under-19 James Tomkins mpressed as a substitute against Bolton and will challenge Jonathan Spector, who started at right-back, and the returning Lucas Neill for a place.

• Gareth Southgate has lost midfielder Didier Digard for three months with knee and thigh injuries suffered against Wigan. He has already had to do without central defender Chris Riggott for a lengthy period after a knee ligament injury earlier this month. Former West Ham forward Jeremie Aliadiere and defender Andrew Taylor are both sidelined with ankle problems.

• Striker Marlon King is cup-tied.

Last meeting

• The teams met for the first match on Saturday 14 February 2009, when the two sides drew 1-1. 

The lineups were:
West Ham United: Green, Neill, Collins, Upson, Ilunga, Collison, Parker, Noble (Savio 74), Boa Morte (Sears 49), Di Michele, Cole (Tristan 33)
Subs not used: Lastuvka, Lopez, Kovac, Spector
Booked: Noble, Di Michele
Goal: Ilunga 83

Middlesbrough: Jones, Hoyte, Huth, Wheater, Pogatetz, Adam Johnson, O'Neil, Digard, Arca (Walker 77), Downing, Alves (Tuncay 74)
Subs not used: Turnbull, Emnes, Bates, McMahon, Bennett
Booked: O'Neil
Goal: Downing 22

Old boys

• Middlesbrough's French striker Jeremie Aliadiere made eight league and cup appearances on loan for West Ham United from Arsenal between August 2005 and January 2006. The Rambouillet-born player has scored eight goals in 51 games since joining Boro from the Gunners for £2m in June 2007.

• Among the other players who have represented both clubs are Brian Deane, James Dow, Paul Ince, Frank Piercy, Luke 'Lou' Raisbeck, George 'Geordie' Reid, Robbie Stockdale and Robert Young.

Head to head

Last six meetings (Premier League unless stated)
FA Cup, 14 February 2009 - West Ham United 1-1 Middlesbrough
Premier League, 1 November 2008 - Middlesbrough 1-1 West Ham United
Premier League, 22 December 2007 - Middlesbrough 1-2 West Ham United
Premier League, 15 September 2007 - West Ham United 3-0 Middlesbrough
Premier League, 31 March 2007 - West Ham United 2-0 Middlesbrough
Premier League, 11 November 2006 - Middlesbrough 1-0 West Ham United

Overall record v Middlesbrough (all competitions) W 24 D 24 L 12

Next up

• West Ham United will welcome Manchester City in the Premier League on Sunday 1 March, kick-off 12.30pm.

• Middlesbrough play host to Liverpool at the Riverside Stadium next Saturday, 28 February, kick-off 3pm.

General information

• For ticket information, click here

• Wednesday's weather forecast is for a clear evening, with the temperature set to peak at around 7C.