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Posted on 9 January 2006  - 12:00

Teemu Tainio says he will never change his combative style of play - even if it means picking up a few injuries along the way.

Teemu Tainio says he will never change his combative style of play - even if it means picking up a few injuries along the way.

The versatile midfielder was forced off the pitch on Monday with a knee injury after another typically tenacious display against Portsmouth, a problem that is likely to end his run of six successive starts in the Premiership - Martin Jol described his chances as 50-50 for Sunday's trip to Middlesbrough.

Thankfully, he reports the injury is not as serious as he himself first feared.

"It was a little bit scary, I went up to jump for the ball with a Portsmouth player and when I came down I felt something in my knee and couldn't carry on," recalled the Finland international. "I had some x-rays and I feel much better now so hopefully I won't be out for too long.

"You never know with knee injuries but thankfully it is nothing serious.

"I have been operated on four times - so I know what injuries are like! The knees are something I haven't had an operation on and hopefully that will stay the same.

It is my style of play and if you ever change that you make it difficult for yourself. That is the way I play, sometimes I will get injuries but that is part of the game

Teemu went on to admit that the team have made hard work of their last two games and, although happy to have now made it a hat-trick of wins when you add them to the Wigan victory, he feels the winning habit may be a little harder to maintain at the Riverside.

He suspects Boro are a side capable of big results when on song - as the 4-1 mauling of Manchester United demonstrated - but are susceptable to surprise results, such as the home defeat to Sunderland.

"We are not giving ourselves an easy time. Portsmouth got a good goal, but if he tried it ten times he would only score once. The lads showed really good character in the second half to reply with three goals and if we hadn't won the game it would have been a very bad blow for us.

"Hopefully we can carry on with our winning ways and take it into the Middlesbrough game.

"Middlesbrough can be a strange team, when they play well they can beat almost anybody, but sometimes they don't play so good.

"It will be a good test for us, a hard game and if we can come away with something it will show that we are progressing.

"They have a lot of experience, but I don't know if there is such a big difference between an experienced or a good young player - it's all the same, you get the ball and try to score a goal."