Middlesbrough crushed Steaua Bucharest 4-2, (4-3) in the second leg of the UEFA Cup semifinals despite a weak start of the game, and will play the finals. Steaua striker Nicolae Dica scored first (16’) and Dorin Goian followed suit in the first half, which ended with 1-2, after Maccarone lowered down the difference when scoring in min.33.

The second half brought the equalizer goal for Boro, scored by Viduka (64') and the goal that marked Boro’s lead by Riggott in min.74. The match fate was sealed by Maccarone's goal in min. 90.

The dynamism of the game was doubled by the fiery atmosphere created by some 35.000 spectators and the acoustics of the Riverside stadium. However, Steaua was overwhelmed by the quick and decisive attack of the English team in the second half of the game.

Steaua had to deal without midfielders Banel Nicolita and Sorin Paraschiv after both were cautioned in the first leg, but coach Cosmin Olaroiu surprised fans by introducing on the field Victoras Iacob, recovered from a shoulder damage. Florin Lovin also replaced one of the absentees and Daniel Balan replaced Iacob in the second half.

Olaroiu brought in the field Eugen Baciu and Mihai Nesu, both defenders, but defense was the weak point of Steaua.

The finals will take place in Eindhoven on May 10.