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200-up for Woody

In an ideal world, Jonathan Woodgate would without question have chosen a different scenario to mark the 200th league appearance of his career.

In an ideal world, Jonathan Woodgate would without question have chosen a different scenario to mark the 200th league appearance of his career.

However, he reached that notable milestone with defeat against his home-town team Middlesbrough at the Riverside on Saturday.

The England international who made his debut for Leeds United almost 10 years ago had few complaints after his latest return to Teeside ended in a 2-1 win for the home side in our Barclays Premier League opener.

"Fair play to Middlesbrough, I thought they deserved it," was the England man's honest appraisal after a tight game that saw Boro crucially go ahead in the second half before doubling their lead with 10 minutes left - an own goal from Robert Huth our late consolation.

"I thought Middlesbrough did well. They set-up with two banks of four, were resolute and played well.

"We had a lot of the ball but we have to work on when we haven't got the ball. It will take a little time for everyone to settle, but fortunately it's only the first game - I'm sure all the players will have learned a lot."

‘Woody' made his debut for Leeds against Forest on October 17, 1998 and went on to play 104 times for then.

He has since added 28 games for Newcastle United, nine in La Liga for Real Madrid and 46 for Middlesbrough. Saturday was his 13th Premier League appearance in our colours since joining us from Boro last January. In addition to his five League goals to date, Jonathan has scored twice in 63 European and domestic cup appearances.