Date: 3rd January 2006 at 9:49am
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Graeme Souness remained in defiant mood after seeing his side snatch a draw with a set of raggamuffins from a ‘little town in Yorkshire’. Fat Fred says Geordies ‘give you 10% extra’, and it was another Geordie boy – not Alan Shearer – that saved a few Jock blushes.

Lee Clark’s first goal for United in almost nine years claimed a point for the Mags just when it looked as though substitute Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink had put Freddy Shepherd in a very difficult position. Should he (Souness) stay or should he go?. The arguments rage on.

Once again the sound of boos greeted the final whistle, as supporters again questioned tactics and the performance against a side that is heading towards a relegation dogfight.

Souness: ‘Take six of the best players out of any of the teams above us or below us and they would find it very difficult. But we have a group of lads with whom we talk all the time about sticking together, showing we are in it together, and that typified it today.

‘We have lost two points today. We bossed the game for the vast majority of the time. Middlesbrough set up to play counter-attacking football, and that’s what they did. We had nearly all the possession, we had the better chances, and yet we find ourselves 2-1 down with three minutes to go and you feel you have been mugged.

‘When they scored the goal, you start to feel sorry for yourself, but credit to my players because they kept going right to the end. It would have been very hard for them if they had lost.’