David Prutton has backed Middlesbrough to come out on top against Brentford in the Championship at the Riverside Stadium tomorrow.
Middlesbrough just missed out on the play-offs under Tony Pulis last season and will be hoping to challenge for promotion this campaign under new head coach Jonathan Woodgate.
Boro started the new season with a 3-3 draw against Luton Town at Kenilworth Road, while Brentford began their campaign with a disappointing 1-0 defeat at home to Birmingham City.
Sky Sports pundit Prutton believes Brentford may struggle for goals this season without striker Neal Maupay and is predicting a 2-1 win for Middlesbrough in Woodgate’s first league game in charge at the Riverside.
“There weren’t six goals in a single Middlesbrough game under Tony Pulis last season, so their 3-3 draw at Luton suggests that things will, at the very least, be more entertaining under Jonathan Woodgate,” Prutton told Sky Sports.
“Brentford face another rebuild after losing a few key players and you wonder if they may struggle for goals without Neal Maupay up front. Both teams will go for this one, but I reckon Boro will claim victory at the Riverside.”
Woodgate took charge at Middlesbrough earlier this summer after the club decided not to renew Pulis’ contract, after he failed to guide the team to promotion from the Championship last season.
I agree with Prutton here. I’m expecting it to be a close game at the Riverside tomorrow, but I think Middlesbrough might just nick it.
Brentford have lost two of their most influential players from last season in Maupay and midfielder Romaine Sawyers, so there’s a chance they could struggle this season.
As for Middlesbrough, it’s the start of a new era at the Riverside under Woodgate and it will be interesting to see if he can handle the pressure of managing a club who will be expected to challenge for promotion.
There were certainly a lot of positives for him to take away from the draw with Luton last week and I’m backing his side to come out on top against Brentford tomorrow.