Middlesbrough 0 Sheffield Wednesday 0
Tue 30th Jan 7.45pm
Middlesbrough couldn't be separated from Sheffield Wednesday as both teams had to settle for a 0-0 draw at the Riverside.
Patrick Bamford forced Joe Wildsmith into an early near post save after already turning over Grant Leadbitter's inswinging corner, but the opening half proved a frustrating affair with no way through at either end.
Daniel Ayala saw a header blocked following the restart, and Bamford also hoisted over before Ben Gibson's header was similarly diverted away.
Recalled striker Britt Assombalonga then had a couple of efforts saved by Wildsmith, whose opposite number Darren Randolph denied substitute George Boyd before Bamford and Adama Traore replied - but those were only comfortable.
Manager Tony Pulis therefore made a triple-change with the final ten minutes of the contest approaching, and witnessed Stewart Downing volleying narrowly off-target from the edge of the area.
Spanish defender Ayala's downward header from Downing's late free-kick then bounced wide before substitute Martin Braithwaite struck directly at Wildsmith from around twelve-yards.
Middlesbrough: Randolph, Shotton, Ayala, Gibson, Friend, Howson (Clayton 79), Leadbitter, Traore, Bamford (Gestede 78), Downing, Assombalonga (Braithwaite 79)
subs (unused): Konstantopoulos, Fletcher, Fry, Christie
Sheffield Wednesday: Wildsmith, Palmer, Ferrao Venancio, Pudil, Thorniley, Fox, Wallace (Nielsen 90), Pelupessy, Butterfield (Boyd 66), Reach, Lucas Joao (Nuhiu 73)
subs (unused): Hunt, Jones, Rhodes, Dawson
Ref: J. Linington