Barry Robson: Middlesbrough injuries hurt us

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MIDDLESBROUGH captain Barry Robson admits that tomorrow’s season finale has probably come too soon given his side’s recent form.

Tony Mowbray’s men upset Cardiff City’s Premier League promotion tilt by emerging with a 3-0 victory during Monday’s televised clash in Wales, Norwich City securing the second automatic slot later that evening.

Robson (right), along with Leroy Lita and Richie Smallwood, hit the Bluebirds with a quick-fire treble in the first half, making it three wins on the spin for the Riversiders.

The Reds welcome Doncaster Rovers to Teesside for tomorrow’s final Championship fixture, but the skipper wishes the campaign had a few more weeks still to run.

“The season is probably ending too quickly,” said the Scotland international.

“But what people need to realise is that we’ve had horrendous injuries at this club this season. We’ve struggled to cope at times and have never been able to get a settled side.

“That’s been frustrating but recently we’ve strengthened up and have really started to hurt teams.

“I look around the dressing room and I see some good players in there.

“On current form if we’d started to play like that three or four months ago we would be right up there.

“We now need to build and get ready for next season.

“I think we need to hold on to most of our players and hopefully add a few more.”

But we can challenge in this division.”

Robson has been deployed on the right-hand side of midfield in recent weeks, not that the shift from the centre of the park is worrying the former Celtic schemer.

“I’ve been playing on the right where the manager likes me to cut in and try and get shots off,” he said.

“I do like to play in the middle but the main thing for me is that I’m the captain and I’ve got to give 100 per cent no matter where I am on the pitch.

“I’ll do whatever I can to benefit this football club and I’ll always do the same no matter where I play.”

Middlesbrough this week confirmed Julio Arca as their player of the season, while England U21 starlet Joe Bennett took the young player prize.

The club have also launched their new home kit for next season.

The retro-style red shirt sees a return for the white shoulder ‘yoke’ made famous by Boro’s all-time top scorer George Camsell when he scored 59 league goals during the 1926-27 promotion campaign.