Michael Carrick's referee frustrations and his positives from Middlesbrough's Leeds defeat

Michael Carrick, head coach of Middlesbrough
Michael Carrick, head coach of Middlesbrough -Credit:2024 Getty Images

Michael Carrick cut a frustrated figure at full-time as he remonstrated initially with the fourth official and then with referee Tony Harrington after Middlesbrough's 4-3 defeat to Leeds United at the Riverside.

The defeat saw Boro's nine-game unbeaten run come to an end as rivals Leeds strengthened their promotion hopes by moving to second in the Championship with the three points. But Carrick's frustrations were certainly not with his own side.

Though defeated on the night, Carrick was ultimately left really encouraged and took plenty of positives with the way his side battled and went toe-to-toe with the Whites, who look well-placed to go an achieve promotion back to the Premier League.

READ MORE: Middlesbrough players ratings vs Leeds United with two 8s but one 4 after a tough evening

In Boro's performance, Carrick said: “I enjoyed the game. I thought we did a lot of really, really good things. We pinned them back, and I thought we did loads of good things. They’ve got some good quality, they’ve shown that all season, and at the top end of the pitch, they’re really dangerous.

"You don’t have to give them much space for them to look dangerous. We knew that, but I thought the boys largely dealt with that pretty well. There were moments where they looked dangerous, but I thought other than that, we were really good in the game.

"We largely defended in shape really well, and I thought we were really good with the ball, and dominated and controlled large parts of the game. I was really pleased with the boys, it was an incredible effort all the way to the end. We went for it, we had to go for it, and we threw everything at them."

Despite his contentment with his side's performance, there was ultimately frustration for the Boro boss - with two particular officiating issues agitating the Boro boss.

Explaining his rare show of anger at full-time, Carrick said: “The offside goal [Leeds' third] is a massive, massive decision, not just for us, but I’m sure there are two other teams that have been affected by it too, in the bigger picture. It’s such a big thing.

"We asked the boys to defend well and hold the line together, and the line is impeccable really. There’s three of them in the line on the edge of the box, they’re holding the line, and you expect that the offside will be given. It was too clear not to be.

“To be honest, I got really frustrated with the added time too. The board goes up for five minutes, and we end up getting about 18 seconds added on (on top of that). But the ball was out of play for 90 seconds or two minutes within that five minutes that was getting added on.

"I just get frustrated. Yeah, there’s added time, but then there should be added time onto the added time as well. I got a bit frustrated with that."