A side that has not won yet this season takes on an outfit that is yet to score this campaign when Middlesbrough host Barnsley this weekend.
Manager Neil Warnock will return to the Boro dug out this Saturday after missing the last two matches while in self-isolation after testing positive for COVID-19.
On the opposite bench, Tykes boss Gerhard Struber is surrounded by reports linking him to the head coach role at MLS giants New York Red Bulls after the American outfit declared an interest in the Austrian.
After his side’s goalless draw with Coventry City last weekend, he told the BBC: “Some clubs have interest in me and this is an honour for me, but not more, I am head coach here and I like to work here in Barnsley.”
Meanwhile, Middlesbrough shared the spoils away at QPR following a 1-1 draw.
Middlesbrough vs Barnsley Head-to-Head
Middlesbrough suffered two defeats to Barnsley in 2020 as they fell to a 2-0 League Cup defeat in September after losing 1-0 at Oakwell in February.
However, they did win 1-0 in their home game against the club, meaning they have won their last three home games against Barnsley.
The last time Boro lost at home in the league to Saturday’s opponents was February 2013.
It is unsurprising then to learn that out of the 62 games between the two clubs, the Riverside outfit have won 32 of them, losing on 18 occasions across all competitions.
Middlesbrough vs Barnsley Team News
Middlesbrough only have one fully fit centre half going into this fixture after Grant Hall picked up a knock against QPR.
Dael Fry has returned to action, although he is not yet up to full speed.
He may be asked to start the game, though, despite missing the whole of pre-season and the 2020-21 Championship campaign so far.
Meanwhile, Ashley Fletcher could be in line for a return as he continues to recover from his knock.
Injured: Grant Hall
Doubtful: Dael Fry, Ashley Fletcher
Barnsley are expected to name the same starting XI that earned them a 0-0 draw with Coventry, with Bambo Diaby suspended.
Suspended: Bambo Diaby
Middlesbrough vs Barnsley Predicted XI
Middlesbrough predicted XI (3-5-2): Marcus Bettinelli, Anfernee Dijksteel, Dael Fry, Paddy McNair, Djed Spence, Jonny Howson, George Saville, Marcus Tavernier, Marvin Johnson, Chuba Akpom, Britt Assombalonga
Barnsley predicted XI (3-4-1-2): Jack Walton, Michael Sollbauer, Michal Helik, Mads Juel Anderson, Kilian Ludewig, Alex Mowatt, Callum Styles, Jordan Williams, Luke Thomas, Cauley Woodrow, Conor Chaplin
Middlesbrough vs Barnsley Prediction
Barnsley will aim to put in a performance that will show that they are unaffected by the rumours surrounding their manager, but the speculation will undoubtedly have an adverse affect.
With Neil Warnock returning to the sideline, you can be sure that the hosts will receive a boost.
Middlesbrough are frail defensively but their attacking line-up should be strong enough to see them to their first three points of the season.
Prediction: Middlesbrough 2-1 BarnsleyPublished 01 Oct 2020, 17:55 IST