Middlesbrough boss Michael Carrick makes Leeds United penalty complaint but issues high Elland Road praise

Middlesbrough head coach Michael Carrick believes his side should have been awarded a penalty for a Leeds United tackle on Matt Crooks during their 3-2 defeat at Elland Road.

An enthralling first half made way for a more tame second on Saturday afternoon as Leeds went ten games unbeaten at home in the Championship. All five goals were scored during the opening half, including a spot-kick converted by United striker Joel Piroe.

Boro boss Carrick, though, said after the full-time whistle he felt his team should have been given a penalty of their own.

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"We feel like we should have had a penalty with Crooksy. We were right in there and the boys can take a lot from that," the ex-Manchester United midfielder told reporters.

"I think there's a lot of fouls in the game, I could sit and say a lot went against us but it's not going to get me anywhere.

"We're playing against a good team, we have to respect what they're good at, they have individuals who can open you up at times," Carrick added.

Saturday's result was only Middlesbrough's third defeat since mid-September, a run which has seen the north-east club record ten wins from their last 15 matches.

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"Disappointed, that's my over-riding feeling with the result, not the boys. Tough place to come, really good individuals, top individuals in this league and they're a good team. We gave as good as we got, up against it a bit with some boys playing their first in a while. We had issues we needed to fix and conceded goals but in general I felt there was loads of good things from it. We've let one slip really, we should have got something from the game."

Leeds remain third in the Championship table, one point ahead of fourth-placed Southampton, seven behind Ipswich Town in second and eight adrift of league leaders Leicester City, whose late winner at The Hawthorns in the lunchtime kick-off ensured they remain at the division's summit for another week. United's next outing is away to Blackburn Rovers, shortly followed by a trip to Sunderland three days later.

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