Boro travel to Birmingham tonight to take on Coventry City playing at their home from home, St Andrews. Kick off at the early 7pm time slot. Can we push on from that second half equaliser against Cardiff City and return with 3 points from beating the Bluebirds? On SKY Red Button/ website

Coventry City have made a real fight of their return to second flight football. Even though the off field problems that have dogged them for years have not been resolved, Mark Robins team have been far from push overs. In fact, as high flyers Brentford can testify, the Sky Blues can knock anyone off their perch at St Andrews. So, Boro beware.

I asked Neil Warnock about that recent victory over the Bees and he said: “I couldn't believe how well they played. You had to take a step back that game and think, are they playing Brentford, or what? That is how good they were.”

As for Boro, didn't we look better for having Tav back buzzing around behind the forward line? The defence look more solid than of late with Grant Hall alongside Dael Fry. I wonder how Warnock will see it tonight? Will he retain the centre back pairing or look for a little mobility with either Dijksteel or McNair patrolling around Fry?

Warnock gave me a few words about Marcus Tavernier's impact.
“ He (Tav) gives everyone a lift and not just on the pitch. He gives everyone a lift when we see him on a morning. To hear him moaning its like a breath of fresh air on the training ground. He is the biggest moaner that we have got. It's only similar to the three lads, Mendez-Laing and in particular Kebano and Yannick, they have been exceptional in the dressing room. Real good pros, lifting everyone and you can see what they want to do. And I think it has rubbed off on one or two.”

After stopping the rot with the draw against in-form Cardiff we have to decide which road to go down, do we bring back Morsy and/or Saville or attack Cov with Neeskins Kebano? After all the apparent criticism, Chuba Akpom came on late doors and impressed at the weekend. What role might he perform?

Warnock reflected on the draw v Cardiff: “I told Grant (Hall) that I wouldn't be playing him last week but I would against Cardiff because it's made to measure for him. And I didn't think Kieffer (Moore) did an awful lot, if I am honest. He was feeding on scraps and that was down to the way we played and Grant and Dael as well. I was delighted how we coped with that and gave them so few opportunities.”

The manager was giving little away in his pre-match press conference. Yannick Bolasie must also be close to pressing for a role tonight. Warnock will want to be absolutely sure about him, he does not need another Ashley Fletcher. But Bolasie showed enough in his first two appearances to suggest he could yet be a lethal weapon for Boro in the remaining games of the season.

It will be another tough battle against a team that held Blackburn away at the weekend, 1-1. Matty James finished off Tyler Walker's headed assist. Walker is the top scorer with 6 this season, one ahead of Gustavo Hamer who was on the bench at Ewood.

One player that will not be taking part tonight is right back Ostigard sent off for two yellows towards the end of the draw with Blackburn Rovers.

Warnock praised the Coventry boss, former Man U striker, Mark Robins.

“I think he is a good young manager, Mark (Robins). He's had his critics but he never changes. He has done well. I thought he did well at Barnsley.”

Coventry, are now in their second stint away from the sky blue Ricoh Stadium. First spell away was at Sixfields, Northampton, now their lockdown home from home is St Andrews.

“It is difficult when you don't play your home games and you haven't got a stadium. I suppose it is not as bad in the pandemic. But I was always sad when I saw the Ricoh Stadium not being used and going to Birmingham. You don't want that as a club. The fans must be distraught. All credit to Mark he has kept them going and he's got a great chance of staying up now which is a good feather in the cap, really.”

Looking at the Coventry situation as an away fan their hedge fund owners appear to be the total antithesis of Steve Gibson. I don't think you could ever describe them as custodians of the club. Coventry will be city of culture soon and it is to the eternal shame of SISU owners that they have turned their back on their city just as it jumps into the spotlight.

Anyway, back to the contest and it is ninth versus twentieth. We are separated by 12 points.

And how it would give us all a lift to take 3 points for a win this evening.

“You know me, we are going to try and win every game,” the Gaffer told me. He continued “I get frustrated when we lose games that we shouldn't lose and draw games that we should win. But we have got what we have got and we are not going to change the squad now, the squad is what we have got. So, over the 14 games you have got to look ahead and try things and see if players can do a different job and that is what I will be doing.”

Come On Boro and Up The Boro

7pm Kick Off – SKY Red Button or