A spirited Middlesbrough’s FA Cup campaign came to an end at the first hurdle following defeat at Championship rivals Brentford on Saturday.
Much-changed Boro fell behind to Halil Dervisoglu’s first-half strike, although Neil Warnock’s team responded when Sam Folarin’s first professional goal restored parity in West London.
However, the North East outfit were unable to pull off a surprise as Saman Ghoddos’ 64th-minute winner sent the Bees through to the fourth round.
But the defeat at the Brentford Community Stadium was overshadowed by the potential serious injury to Boro midfielder Marcus Browne, who was stretchered off in first-half added-time following a dislocated kneecap.
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Browne appeared to get his studs stuck in the ground, and although he was left in serious pain, Boro boss Warnock was left hoping for some positive news when he undergoes a scan on Monday.
“His kneecap came out and went back in, so it will depend on the scan on Saturday,” Warnock told Teeside Live. “If there’s no other damage then it’s not as bad as we first feared. But if there is other damage it will be longer.”
“I really felt sorry for him because he’s just got back fit, worked really hard and looked really sharp tonight. It’s disappointing and he’s had bad luck since I’ve been here, but I’ve just said to him, there are worse things in life, and you’ve got to get up and keep going.
“You look after and think you shouldn’t have played him, but that’s life isn’t it.”
To put it bluntly, it didn’t look good for Browne.
But Warnock’s post-match comments did provide some sort of hope, so hopefully Middlesbrough receive some good news in the coming days and Browne is only facing weeks on the sidelines rather than a possible season-ending injury.
Even more so because he’s only recently returned from a two-month injury, and scored in the recent win at Wycombe.