JONATHAN Woodgate was pleased with the "character" of his side to force home a 3-1 victory against Middlesbrough, stating: "When push came to shove, we were there."

Cherries led 1-0 at half-time at Vitality Stadium through Philip Billing, but were pegged back just past the hour mark when Duncan Watmore fired home.

However, the hosts quickly got back in front thanks to Jefferson Lerma's deflected effort, before Dominic Solanke wrapped up the win.

Discussing his side's slow start to the second half, Woodgate told the Daily Echo: "I just think Middlesbrough imposed themselves on us. When that (Watmore) goal went in, we did answer the question.

"Can we dig in? Can we get the result now that we need? When push came to shove, we were there.

"You could see that goal coming at times in the game. We huffed and puffed at times and didn’t move the ball quick enough.

"But then when we upped our tempo, I thought we were clear winners in the end. We’ve got some good players and they showed up when they needed to."

Asked if he had faith his side would secure the victory after being pegged back, Woodgate added: "That goal obviously woke us up and they showed character and resilience to get back in the game.

"I thought we deserved it, to win in the end. Middlesbrough are a really difficult team to play against.

"They’re well set up and they had eight players that I didn’t have at my disposal last season, but you can see they’re a good team."