Middlesbrough ratings: Rudy Gestede tops average display in win over Sheffield United

Middlesbrough's Rudy Gestede (left) and Sheffield United's Jack O'Connell battle for the ball (Photo: PA)
Middlesbrough's Rudy Gestede (left) and Sheffield United's Jack O'Connell battle for the ball (Photo: PA)
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Rudy Gestede's first half strike gave Garry Monk his first win as Middlesbrough boss against Sheffield United.

Football writer Leon Wobschall was at the Riverside and gave his verdict on the performances from the home side.

Darren Randolph. Not too much to do, but one fine second-half save to deny Paul Coutts. 7

Cyrus Christie. Got forward well and showed great energy and spirit. A potent threat down the right. One excellent first-half cross to pick out Gestede almost yielded a goal. 7

Dael Fry. Would maybe have expected a more difficult afternoon. Decent showing in a rare Boro outing, his first in the league at the Riverside since February 2016. 6

Ben Gibson. Steady-away in the heart of the defence and marshalled his back-line well. 7

George Friend. Bombed forward with intent at times and solid in defence. Booked for a second-half foul. 6

Adam Clayton. Strong shift in the middle of the park with one of Boro's most influential men. 7

Adam Forshaw. Some neat stuff in patches, but quiet in the second period along with several others. 6

Jonny Howson. Typically workmanlike display and got through lots of work and his energy levels didn't dip. 6

Patrick Bamford. Promising first-half and looked the part in the number ten role and pulled the strings at times. 7

Rudy Gestede. Cool opener and went close to a second when his header hit the post. 7

Britt Assombalonga. Showed strength and a great work ethic, despite not being afforded any chances. 6

Substitutes: Lewis Baker. Little chance to show his talents going forward, with Boro digging in and sitting on their gains in the sec ond period and on the retreat. 6

Ashley Fletcher. Entered the fray for Assombalonga on 80 minutes. 6

Grant Leadbitter. A late substitution to shore things up for the Teessiders. 6

Not used: Dimi, Fabio, Connor Roberts, Adama Traore.