Boro secure championship survival at Sheffield Wednesday

Neil Warnock, MFC manager, at Reading on July 14
Boss Neil Warnock has avoided relegation in less than a month at the Riverside. Credit: PA Images

Middlesbrough secured their Championship status with a 2-1 win at Sheffield Wednesday.

Britt Assombalonga's injury-time goal took the Boro to safety, as boss Neil Warnock completed his mission at the home of the side he used to manage.

It was heading for a draw after Paddy McNair's leveller for Boro cancelled out Jacob Murphy's early opener for Wednesday, but Assombalonga won it at the death.

The job was all but done anyway - with an unlikely set of results needed to send Boro down.

71-year-old Warnock who will now discuss his future with the club's hierarchy after guiding them to safety.

Warnock was almost celebrating an early goal as McNair shifted the ball across goal and then rattled the post from theedge of the area.

Three minutes later Boro were further cursing their luck as they fell behind because of the cruellest of deflections. Murphy was allowed too much space and his 25-yard shot hit a Boro defender and completely wrong-footed Dejan Stojanovic.

Boro's response was impressive and they created two fine chances to quickly equalise. First Ashley Fletcher shot straight at Joe Wildsmith following a mix-up in the Wednesday box and then the Owls goalkeeper made an impressive save to deny George Saville after a surging run into the box.

The leveller eventually came midway through the first half and it was McNair who found the score sheet as Marcus Tavernier did well down the left and perfectly cut back to the midfielder to slot into the bottom corner.

Wednesday, in need of all the points they could get to improve their buffer, were the better team after the break.

They were nearly gifted an own-goal after Dael Fry put a defensive header from Barry Bannan's cross excruciatingly wide of the post before two late chances should have seen them win the game.

First Murphy rolled an effort just wide after great work from Dominic Iorfa onthe left and then Connor Wickham had a shot blocked after a great turn in the box.

But they were killed at the end by a Boro counter-attack, with Assombalonga'sturn and shot too hot for Wildsmith to handle with the ball spinning in.