Middlesbrough manager Chris Wilder has highlighted the efforts of midfielder Marcus Tavernier for his side.
The Middlesbrough player competed through the pain-barrier during the team’s midweek win over Cardiff City.
The Boro boss has complimented Tavernier’s commitment to the cause as the side continues their chase of a play-off place.
The 23-year old had rolled over on his ankle just a few days prior in the draw with Swansea City the previous weekend.
Wilder had admitted that the midfielder would be out of action against the Bluebirds, but Tavernier made himself available for selection in the game.
It was his goal that gave Boro the lead against Cardiff as they earned a 2-0 victory.
That earned the team a crucial three points to keep pace with Sheffield United going into the closing weeks of the season.
“Tav walked off the pitch on Saturday and there was no way he was playing on Wednesday night because of the injury,” said Wilder, via Teesside Live.
“No way he was playing. But everything the physios, the medical department and Tav himself did to get him ready when we wrote him off is superb.
“To then go out and produce a performance like he did, brilliant. He wasn’t playing, he had a late fitness test which he passed at 12.30 on Wednesday.
“He hobbled out there on Monday to have a look at the shape, not as much, but he hobbled out Tuesday again and then he goes and plays in the manner that he played.
“People talk about commitment, and don’t get me wrong I’m not clapping him or whatever, but I wanted to give you a picture of what that boy’s about from a psychological point of view.
“From how he plays on the park – the energy he gives us, how he takes the ball, how he’s brave in possession – and then being the one that found the big moment, which we talked about beforehand.”
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That victory took Middlesbrough to within two points of Sheffield United in 6th place in the Championship.
United have since won 3-1 against QPR, so Boro will need to get a result this weekend to have something to play for on the final day of the season on May 7.
Up next for Wilder’s side is the visit of Stoke City this afternoon.
Given how important these last few games of the season are for Middlesbrough, it is only right that Wilder mentions Tavernier’s commitment.
His goal could prove the most important of the season so far if the side can earn a top six finish.
The result over Cardiff was much needed, but only a win over Stoke this afternoon will do.
Results have been mixed as of late, but two final wins in their final two games could yet still see Boro earn a play-off place.