Boro are yet to win successive games this season, losing after each of their four wins.
But Neil Warnock’s side have an opportunity to end that run when they welcome a struggling Barnsley side to Teesside on Wednesday evening.
Warnock’s men had to wait until late in the day to see off Peterborough United at the weekend with Paddy McNair’s spot kick and substitute Josh Coburn’s second goal for the club, and in the Tykes they are welcoming another team in the Championship’s bottom three.
The Yorkshire side found themselves in the Championship promotion picture last season having made it to the play-off semi-finals but have found life difficult under new boss Markus Schopp following Valérien Ismaël’s switch to West Bromwich Albion in the summer.
The Tykes are on a run of four consecutive defeats heading into their trip to the Riverside as Boro look to edge further into the top half of the table win a win.
But Warnock still has a number of injury concerns plaguing his squad and was forced into playing a number of players out of position in Saturday’s win over Peterborough.
Warnock will be boosted by the return of Lee Peltier after serving his one-match ban but with none of those on the treatment table expected to make a return the Boro boss still has a selection headache.
Who do you think should start against Barnsley? Here at The Mail we’ve selected what could be Boro’s strongest available XI for the clash with the Tykes.
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5. Lee Peltier - Wing back
Peltier was one of a number of defenders missing from Saturday’s win over Peterborough having had to sit out through suspension. But the 34-year-old is available again for Warnock and will be seen as a round peg in a round hole in one of the full or wing back positions for the visit of Barnsley and is given the nod to come straight back into the team here. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
Photo: Stu Forster
6. Onel Hernandez - Wing back
Like most inside the Riverside, Hernandez would be preferred higher up the field to influence the game in attack. But the on loan Cuban did a professional job in helping his team on Saturday operating up and down the left-hand-side. With Marc Bola set to miss out once more, 28-year-old Hernandez may continue to deputise in his absence with his pace a key factor in being to able get forward and defend. (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)
Photo: Matthew Lewis
7. Marcus Tavernier - Midfield
With the return of Peltier it affords Tavernier the opportunity to be more impactful on the game from a midfield capacity. Tavernier is capable in a number of positions and will be able to influence the game from the pockets of space between midfield and attack as opposed to if he were to remain as a wing back. He gets the nod as part of a fluid midfield trio. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
Photo: Stu Forster
8. Matt Crooks - Midfield
Crooks has become a dependable asset for Warnock offering his services as either an advanced midfielder or as we saw on Saturday in a deeper role. With injuries still plaguing Boro’s defensive line we give Crook another deep-lying role here allowing his midfield colleagues more freedom in attack while he looks to mop up in front of the defence. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
Photo: Stu Forster