Brentford 1 Middlesbrough 1

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Middlesbrough had to work hard before coming away with a 1-1 draw against Brentford at Griffin Park.

The Teessiders actually went ahead midway through the first-half courtesy of Adama Traore’s firm execution.

However, Lewis MacLeod levelled prior to the interval before the hosts had substitute Romaine Sawyers sent-off late on.

The result leaves Boro still sixth in the table but only a single-point above nearest challengers Bristol City.

Brentford opened strongly and Neal Maupay lifted an early opportunity over, although they were to slip in arrears as Traore drove powerfully past Daniel Bentley.

Bentley then denied the Spaniard a second with a low save before opposite number Darren Randolph tipped over from MacLeod.

But the same player seized upon a loose ball and produced a low finish from the edge of the area to equalise just beyond the half-hour.

In-form Patrick Bamford saw a missed chance to add to his recent haul from a Stewart Downing free-kick after the break, while Randolph was again tested by MacLeod at the other end.

The Republic of Ireland international was also at full-stretch from Sawyers, who was soon dismissed following a couple of rapid late yellow cards.

Boro substitute Grant Leadbitter then forced the retreating Bentley to turn over his chipped attempt during the final moments.

Brentford: Bentley, Dalsgaard, Egan, Mepham, Clarke, Woods, Mokotjo (Judge 84), Jozefzoon, MacLeod (Sawyers 75), Watkins (Canos 67), Maupay

subs (unused): Yennaris, Marcondes, Daniels, Barbet

Goals: MacLeod (34)

Middlesbrough: Randolph, Shotton, Gibson, Ayala (Fry 60), Friend, Howson (Leadbitter 65), Clayton, Besic (Assombalonga 75), Traore, Bamford, Downing

subs (unused): Konstantopoulos, Cranie, Harrison, Baker

Goals: Traore (21)

Ref: S. Hooper

Att: 11,134

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