Arsenal manager George Graham was set to find that his methods were being copied when his cup double chasing side would face Middlesborough at Ayresome Park. Graham gambled on young players to bring FA Cup semi-final win over Tottenham a week earlier and his next opponent Lennie Lawrence was ready to do the same for his survival bid.
Lennie Lawrence said “Last season was the best of my life. This season has been the worst of my life. The extremes have been unbelievable. I plan to introduce young players against Arsenal, though I don’t want to risk players who are not quite ready for promotion and slaughter their development.”