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Bates ponders Boro return

Matthew Bates admits it will be strange going back to the Riverside when Bristol City face Middlesbrough this weekend.

Last Updated: 20/11/12 at 15:24 Post Comment

Matthew Bates: Made over 100 appearances for Middlesbrough

Matthew Bates: Made over 100 appearances for Middlesbrough

The 25-year-old, who parted company with Boro earlier this month, signed a short-term deal with the Robins on Friday, which will keep him at Ashton Gate until January.

The defender has been plagued by injuries in recent years and is now glad to be in new surroundings as he looks to get his career back on track.

"Boro are my hometown club, they're the team I supported as a boy and I made my professional debut there," Bates told Bristol City's official website.

"I captained the team and made over 100 appearances for the club - of course it was hard to leave, but I just felt a change of club, a change of manager and a change of surroundings would do me good."

He added: "I was aware it was on the fixture list. I don't like to look or think too far ahead so I concentrated fully on the Blackpool game (on Saturday).

"It will be strange going back there. I've still got plenty of friends there and it will be good to see them. I'll have to see what the gaffer wants to do first. If he wants to pick me then I'll be ready."

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e have the personnel. The trick is keeping them fit. Carrick and Blind have missed large chunks of the season, while the defence has been one muddled mess of intermittent stooges, all coming and going at various intervals thus far. We may be just short of title winning quality, but we're half way through. An injury crisis to either of the top two could change things. Optimistic, yes, but not unrealistic.

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arish is the man to blame for this shambles. Pulis must be chuckling into his left over turkey sandwich. I pray this doesn't mean the Neil Warnock media machine will kick in now and he'll be back on the telly box.

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e almost found a new way to lose, just when I thought it was getting boring Giroud does that. Although Arsenal are deservedly called 'soft' the entire midfield is out injured. Still must admit MU are managing to win despite a similar raft of absentees. Think the Gunners have good players but poorly coached.

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