Paddy McNair came up trumps for Boro at Charlton as Jonathan Woodgate’s side finally recorded their second victory of 2020.
McNair’s 17th minute strike proved enough to secure the all-important points to lift Boro out of the relegation zone and move above Charlton in the table.
Woodgate’s side are now firmly back in the cluster of clubs who are hovering above the drop zone after picking up what could prove to be a valuable three points in the final shake-up.
It was a deserved win for Boro who showed more quality than a Charlton side who looked bereft of confidence and were their own worst enemies at times with some sloppy play.
Lyle Taylor was wasteful for the hosts with the first real chance of the game when he lifted a shot over after a good run and cross from Andre Green, and within minutes Boro made Charlton pay.
The hard working Rudy Gestede fed the advancing McNair whose first time strike was placed to perfection beyond Dillon Phillips. The goal came from a Charlton error and was superbly executed by Boro.
That goal gave Woodgate’s side confidence and with Gestede showing good movement and Hayden Coulson and Marvin Johnson linking up well, a second goal didn’t look out of the question.
Jonny Howson headed wide after a great ball from Coulson and twice Marcus Tavernier dragged shots wide of the mark after finding acres of space on the edge of the box.
Woodgate had given a debut to January signing Dejan Stojanovic, but with Harold Moukoudi and Ryan Shotton dealing with much of what the visitors offered, he had little to do.
When he was called upon, the efforts were straight at him. Green warmed his hands with a powerful shot at one point, Deji Oshilaja headed straight at him, and Darren Pratley failed to hit the target after good work by Macauley Bonne.
Needless to say, the final whistle was greeted with delight the fantastic 1750-strong away following, who were rewarded with a precious victory.