Monk praises Fulham but predicts Middlesbrough will be hard to stop

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Middlesbrough boss Garry Monk said his side are still to find their top level of performance – but predicted few teams would be able to live with them when they do.

Boro were installed as one of the pre-season favourites for promotion following a squad overhaul that left them with a strikeforce of Britt Assombalonga, Patrick Bamford, Martin Braithwaite, Rudy Gestede and Ashley Fletcher.

But it took a defender, Cyrus Christie, to snatch a late equaliser at Fulham in a 1-1 draw that leaves Monk’s team fifth in the Championship – five points behind his former side Leeds.

“I don’t think we’ve hit our full stride yet,” Monk said.

“But I think that’s coming. When it fully clicks, and we hit that top gear, there won’t be many sides that can stop us. That’s the attitude we have to have.

“It’s still early days and we’re trying to find that consistency.”

Monk praised Fulham and said he believed a draw between the two teams was a fair result, after a game that was full of chances but was goalless until the 86th minute.

He said: “Last season they were, for me, one of the best sides in the league and I don’t think anything different this season.

“I’m disappointed with their goal, when it came and how it came. We’d defended those situations pretty well all afternoon.

“But the character in the team is undeniable. If anything, after the equaliser, we were in the ascendency and tried to push for the winner.

“I think a point was the fair result for both teams.”