Middlesbrough 2 Southampton 2

Last updated : 11 January 2003 By Footymad Previewer

For the Saints had been the better side and in sight of ending Middlesbrough's unbeaten record at the Riverside Stadium.

Boro pulled the game out of the fire with a two-goal fightback but were fortunate to keep their record intact.

Strachan said: "Basically we won the game but I could not have asked more from my players. Their honesty and professionalism were fantastic.

"My players will sleep well knowing that they have shone today."

Strachan was unhappy with an 82nd minute penalty by referee David Elleray that saved Boro a point.

After watching a video replay Strachan hit out: "It is criminal that my team is not going back on the plane with three points. It was not a penalty, my man played the ball."

Southampton striker James Beattie maintained his scoring run with two more goals. The former Blackburn Rovers striker is in lethal form these days.

He was unmarked for his first goal and his second came courtesy of an appalling error by Boro centre-half Tony Vidmar.

There was no apparent danger until Vidmar misdirected a pass and Beattie hammered the ball into the roof of the net with tremendous power and accuracy.

Boro came storming back when all seemed lost. A powerful shot by Noel Whelan, his first Premiership goal of the season, inspired a rally.

Ten minutes from time sub Massimo Maccarone ended his scoring drought with a penalty when Matthew Oakley was adjudged to have taken down Luke Wilkshire.