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It’s to Dracula-land we’ve come, to pursue the Boro’s quest,
Of further Euro progress against Steaua Bucharest,
No, it’s not true that we’ve journeyed to Transylvania,
Along with seventeen hundred fans, we’re in that far-off land, Romania.
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That’s not strictly true for I have watched it on the telly,
And I caught a glimpse of Sven and the ‘White Feather,’ Ravanelli,
I had to pinch myself and ask, ‘Could this all be really true?
Are we so close to Eindhoven, the Cup Final rendezvous?’
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In the opening exchanges we saw many meaty tackles,
But Boro couldn’t manage to evade the Steaua shackles,
We’d looked totally in control then came a lapse of concentration,
And, quick as the proverbial flash, the hosts had cause for celebration.
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A long throw-in by Steaua, surprisingly picked out Dica,
Who, although marked by Boateng, proved he was, by far, the quicker,
He turned and, in an instant, let fly a shot of such velocity,
I’m sure he then thanked George, for unexpected generosity.
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The look on Steve McClaren’s face was impossible to disguise,
Then, twice within a minute, we had the chance to equalise,
Yakubu was unlucky when he struck the Steaua bar,
Then Morrison brought from Carlos, his most amazing save so far.
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Mark Schwarzer had done wonders to ensure the Boro’s survival,
We could have been three goals adrift, but there’s time now for revival,
He performed a miracle on each occasion that any danger beckoned,
And it’s most imperative – make no mistake – we don’t concede a second.
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Parnaby was then guilty of a most atrocious blunder,
And, with the ball at Dica’s feet, it was odds-on we’d go under,
Would Boro now pay heavily for some awfully rash behaviour?
The answer’s ‘No!’ Mark Schwarzer was once more the Boro’s saviour.
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Marin then missed an open goal: we couldn’t have complained,
And Boro, almost to a man, looked absolutely drained,
But, in the closing minutes, the hosts almost came a cropper,
When a shot from Maccarone somehow bounced off Steaua’s stopper.
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At just one-nil, it must be said, we did get out of jail,
And I feel that, at the Riverside, Boro will ultimately prevail,
McClaren must have been delighted for we could have lost by five,
But as things stand it’s certain that Boro’s dream is still alive.
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With our weakened team we’re one down, but we’re certainly not out,
And with our ‘big guns’ back next Thursday, we will surely have more clout,
We’ve reached the final countdown, but nothing’s yet been proven,
But with a modicum of good fortune, it’ll be Boro in Eindhoven.
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But, let us not forget that Boro must first of all embark,
Upon yet another semi-final, and that’s at Villa Park,
Where we again take on the Hammers: but can we tip the scales,
And reach yet another final, at the Millennium in Wales?