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26 February 2014

After Tuesday’s win against Crewe, Graham Westley praised the team’s spirit and ability to ground out three points when needed, despite not playing the most attractive game of football.

“It was a performance where grit and determination were the predominant features, where there was a lot of hard working qualities about the team," he told us. "There was not a lot of quality in possession on the ball, but we got that early goal and you can see the team were really determined to hang onto the lead and to defend its goal with its life.”

Last week’s new signings, Bira Démbéle and Curtis Obeng both made their debuts and although Démbéle had a somewhat bumpy start to the game, the gaffer was more than pleased with his first game in England.

“Welcome to League 1 with the first challenge! Pogba showed him that there’s probably more strength than he’s been used to where he’s been playing, but as the game developed he grew too. He showed the type of asset that I think he will be for us. I thought it was a good debut for him."

Starting as right-back, Obeng was singled out by the gaffer as the man of the match.

“Curtis Obeng was the one for me who put in a stunning show at full back. He’s a handful, Inman, and on a different day he could really give you problems but I thought Curtis from first minute to last showed great concentration, was very resolute in his defending, showed the pace that he’s got and the appetite he’s got for the challenge. I thought he had a first class debut.”

Curtis was understandably pleased with his first game for Boro.

“I’m absolutely delighted to get 90 minutes under my belt, it’s what I’ve come here for and to get a win as well, it’s makes it such an important day and result.

“I’m happy with the job I did, I’m happy with my performance but it wouldn’t mean much if we didn’t get the result, so I’m just delighted we’ve got the 3 points.”

Francois Zoko was back on the score sheet and put in a scintillating performance full of energy and endeavour.

“I feel better, I’ve been struggling the last few weeks physically but I’ve rested and I've been training hard. I feel better and hope to continue like this.”

And finally on his goal…

“It was just instinct.”

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