We must get basics right - Mowbray
Tony Mowbray admitted his side were sloppy at the back and toothless further forward following their 2-0 defeat at bottom club Bristol City.
The Robins struck in each half to leave their visitors now ninth in the table and three points outside the play-offs.
Boro have now lost nine of their twelve league games since the turn of the year after earlier harbouring real hopes of an automatic promotion place.
"The bottom line is football is very simple when you break it down," Mowbray told the Evening Gazette. "You have to take your chances in front of one goal and keep it out of the other.
"You couldn't look at Saturday's game and think that Bristol City were much better than us," he added. "In fact we had a lot of the ball but just huffed and puffed and couldn't penetrate their defence. We didn't have enough shots, despite making so many passes, we didn't threaten their goal but that's football."
Both Josh McEachran and Faris Haroun were unwell at the weekend while Grant Leadbitter and recent signing Sammy Ameobi missed out with hamstring strains. Defender George Friend later limped off with the same problem.