Middlesbrough lost their first game in nine at the hands of Blackburn Rovers on Monday night, with manager Chris Wilder giving his thoughts to Teesside Live after the defeat.

Middlesbrough remain in seventh place and two points outside of the division’s top six, although they do have a game in hand on sixth-placed Huddersfield above them.

A win would have took them into the play-off places above Huddersfield and West Brom into fifth, but instead Blackburn took advantage of a poor performance from Boro and ran out 1-0 winners.

Rovers jumped up into an automatic promotion place above Bournemouth into second, with only Fulham above them leading the pack.

After the defeat, Middlesbrough boss Chris Wilder launched an attack on his players, stating that their gameplan wasn’t followed and labelled his side ‘poor’ and outlined exactly what he wants from his players going forward.

“We weren’t bright enough and our gameplan wasn’t executed and when it was the final ball was poor.

“I’ve told the players, I want more, expect more and demand more.”

“Our quality wasn’t there,” he stated.

“But you have to be consistent in your attitude and tonight we weren’t.

“I’m not saying players pulled out of challenges. But if we’re not right at it 100%… It wasn’t an embarrassing performance, but these are the standards I want and I expect.”

Middlesbrough have a few days to assess and prepare for their next game, when they take on Coventry City at the Riverside this weekend.

Coventry are five points behind Boro in 10th, but the sky blues have two games in hand on their upcoming opponents.

Thoughts

Wilder has been very rigid in his team selection since taking over and there hasn’t been much room for rotation at all.

Jonny Howson, Matt Crooks, and Marcus Tavernier have been the go-to trio in the centre of the park yet Martin Payero could well come into the fold against Coventry.

Elsewhere, there could be rotation up front with Duncan Watmore and Folarin Balogun in contention to replace either Andraz Sporar or Aaron Connolly.